Your son has arrived to the England Manchester Mission (EMM) safe and ready to go to work as a missionary. We held a training session Wednesday morning where we covered many things including their mission finances, their first three month training schedule, becoming a “Sacred Missionary” and the EMM vision and guiding principles. We concluded with a testimony meeting and afterwards Sister Bullock fed the group a warm hearty meal. I held a personal interview with each missionary and we then transported them to the Manchester Stake Center where they were introduced to their first companion and trainer.
As parents, the most important thing you can do for your son is to be supportive and encouraging. The first month or two can be challenging for a missionary with many adjustments in their life. But it normally does not take long until they capture the full vision of their calling, gain a love for the people of the U.K. and get lost in the work.
Please be supportive of the church’s policy on communications which allows missionaries to send and receive emails only with family members which in addition to the immediate family includes grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins. Anyone not part of the family must communicate through letters. Occasional efforts by some to circumvent this policy, such as family members forwarding personally directed emails from non-family members, are outside the spirit of this principle.
We often talk and train on the principle of “Becoming a Sacred Missionary.” While it is good to be an Honorable Missionary, there is higher principle and that is becoming a Sacred Missionary. This involves many things but it primarily is a commitment by the missionary to purify and sanctify their life and fully commit their heart and soul to their mission. The happiest and most effective missionaries are those who limit thoughts of their pre-mission life, put the world behind them and get completely lost in the work of serving the Lord. Your encouragement and support of this will help your son grow personally, gain a greater depth of spiritually and impact the lives of others.
Attached you will find a picture of your son with Sister Bullock and me in front of the mission home and a picture of his first companion and trainer. Sister Bullock and I have three sons who have served missions with another one currently in the Japan Tokyo Mission, so we fully understand the emotions and joys that you are going through right now. Know that we love the missionaries in the England Manchester Mission and watch over them with care. May the Lord bless you during this wonderful time of your life. With warm regards,
England Manchester Mission
Cody with his trainer Elder Moss from Naperville, Illinois