Monday, September 8, 2014


Letter From President Ostler to Missionaries

Dear Elders and Sisters,
I have been receiving many requests for visits with family members who come to Manila. I can see that it would be helpful for me to clarify Church policy with regard to visits with family members. I know that you love your family and that they would like to see you when they are in town. But your mission is not the time for this.
On page 37 of the white Missionary Handbook it says:
"Visits from family members, friends and acquaintances are against Church policy. The impact of such visits may extend far beyond the visit itself, both before and after the visit and among other missionaries. It can often take some time for missionaries to refocus on their callings and their work. While expressing your love and your desire to share your experiences with them after you have been released, help those who may want to visit you to understand the importance of maintaining singleness of heart and mind on the work of the Lord."
The only time it is permissible to see a family member during your mission is if you are being sealed to your family in the temple or if a sibling or parent is receiving a live ordinance. This is not categorized as a "visit" for the purpose of the handbook.
Please do not request permission to spend time with family members or friends who are in Manila. Please do not request time to see family members or friends who are at the MTC or going through Manila for any other reason. Let them know that are devoting your time to the Lord.
At the end of your mission, after you have had your final interview with me, a parent or sibling(s) may come to the mission office to pick you up. They can also come to the final dinner and testimony meeting. If they are endowed, they can attend the temple with the other departing missionaries.
I hope that this clarifies church and mission policy regarding these things. Please let me know if you have any questions.

With love,

President Ostler