General Conference together. During Saturday's session, our Prophet, President Thomas S. Monson, announced that the age for our youth to serve missions has been lowered. Young men used to go at the age of 19 and they will now have the option to go at the age of 18 (immediately following high school graduation) and young women could go at the age of 21 and they now are able to go as young as 19. Missionary service is expected of young men and is an option for young women
As the mom of a 17 1/2 year old young man, I was somewhat in shock! We are currently in the midst of college testing, visiting and applications. I have been counselling my young man to consider how he will be affected by WHERE he goes to college and how it will determine whether or not he actually serves a mission. Because we feel that giving two years of his life to serve the Lord and serve others will be such a faith and character-building experience, we hope that he will choose to go. We know it will affect his life immeasurably for the better.
With the option of a mission coming before college, I find myself wanting to re-double my efforts to train my son well. He is an incredible young man. He has faced trials and challenges that I cannot imagine having to face at his age. But he has walked away with an inner committment and strength that I find to be nothing short of amazing! I am not sure yet how this change will affect our family and Caleb's decisions surrounding college and mission, but I know it has already affected me and my resolve to be a better mother!