Before you Start: Things to Collect before Starting the Online Recommendation Process

If you are like me, then getting started on your mission papers was almost as exciting as getting your call. And, if you’re like me, then after about twenty minutes of filling out the answers that you know, you realize you’re going to need a little bit more information before you’re able to get any further. To prevent this from happening, I’ve compiled a list of things you will want to have on hand or find out before starting your mission papers that you may not just know innately.

To Have:

  • Drivers License, or (if unavailable) some alternative form of ID. This will need to be scanned and attached. 
  • Recent transcripts from within the past four years if you have taken a foreign language (they will ask for your grades, not just the languages you took)
  • Insurance Card(s). This will need to be scanned and attached.
  • Passport (if you have one). This will need to be scanned.
  • A digital photo of you dressed in appropriate missionary attire. This will be included in the recommendation file.
  • Immunization records. These will help you know what shots you have had, and which you may still need, which is needed information for your physician evaluation.

To Find Out:

  • Birth locations of both parents or other caregiver
  • The name of the missions (not just the countries) of your parents and grandparents, as well as any siblings who are currently serving
  • How you will be paying for your mission. They will ask for specifics about how much is coming from the missionary, his or her family, and any church or other outside resources. For more information on financing your mission, see my last post.
  • Will you be covered by your personal health insurance while on a mission? If so, what coverage do you have and will there be any deductible that needs to be met?

Beyond this, you’ll need to have your physical and dental examinations to submit. When going in for these appointments, be sure to print out the health history and evaluation forms and to bring them with you to those examinations. With these forms, be completely honest to enable your physician and the Church to determine what missionary service is best for you. If necessary, additional health forms can be filled out which allow you to further explain any existing medical conditions.

With these in hand, you should be ready to fill out your papers without any stumbling blocks. Starting early will enable you to have ample time to prepare your papers so that you’ll be ready to leave when the time comes. Enjoy!

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