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The following was written by Tad Walch for the Deseret News. To read the full article, click here.
As soon as the two missionaries logged into the system, a window popped up with a long list of people waiting on Mormon.org to ask questions. Sister Megan Pazos clicked on one and began an online chat with a Spanish speaker.
“Hola, como esta?”
“What brings you to Mormon.org today?” added her companion, Sister Kimeme Ackley, using Google Translate to convert the question into Spanish.
“I’ve wondered what a Mormon is,” the man wrote back. “I’ve heard good things about Mormons, but I want to know what their purpose is. I’d be grateful for an answer.”
For the next hour, Pazos and Ackley, each 20 years old, sat together at a desk in a spartan room inside the North Visitors Center on Temple Square and used computers to chat comfortably with the man, a 26-year-old Mexican native living in Denver, via their Mormon.org interface and Facebook messenger. He and the missionaries freely shared their feelings about God and life’s biggest questions.
Their conversation is one example of the many ways technology is changing Mormon missions from Temple Square to Tokyo. Today, more than 600 missionaries — mostly young sister missionaries — of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are manning 20 online teaching centers in the United States, Mexico, Europe and New Zealand.
“The world is changing, so the way we do missionary work is changing as well,” said Sister Bonnie L. Oscarson, a member of the LDS Church’s Missionary Executive Committee. “We recognize our methods need to change with technology. Our missionaries are growing up with technology and are well-versed in it and comfortable with it. They are using technology to do missionary work more effectively and more efficiently.”
To read the full article, click here.