How to write a missionary

We recently received a letter from the Fukuoka Japan Mission president, C. Samuel Gustafson, telling us how excited he and his wife are that Stephen is coming to their mission, and sharing some words of comfort and counsel.
In their letter, they mentioned an article on the best ways to support missionaries from “the home front”. The principles in the article were really enlightening, and a great help in knowing some of the best things to share in the letters or emails we send to our missionaries! So we wanted to share some of what the article said here. 🙂

“The Lord taught a principle that can be applied to missionaries and their families and friends when He admonished, “No man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God” (Luke 9:62). Once your missionary enters the MTC, everything you say and do should help him or her stay focused on the task and challenges ahead.

“The letters and packages you send carry powerful messages to your missionary and to his or her companion. A letter from home can be like pure spring water to the thirsty soul. What you say in a letter may very well be the highlight of the week.

“It is natural when writing a letter to write about those things in which you are involved. May we suggest, however, that when you write your missionary, you try to limit describing what is going on at home. Rather than telling about sporting events or who is dating whom, center your comments on the gospel of Jesus Christ and missionary work. Ask for whom you could pray. Follow with interest the progress of your missionary’s investigators. Share a favorite scripture or describe a lesson from your life that might apply to a situation the missionary is facing. This will help your faithful missionary to continue putting his hand to the plough without looking back and being distracted by events at home.”

(“Helping from Home”; Ensign, July 2003 issue)

We’re really excited to hear more from Stephen, and we’re so grateful for the wonderful mission president he’s going to have while he’s in Japan. We know that Stephen will be blessed as he does the Lord’s work!