Tooele Transcript Bulletin – News in Tooele, Utah
image Sister Janna Roberts teaches three men the gospel of Jesus Christ in Ibenga, Zambia. Neighborhood children also gather to listen.

September 28, 2021
Exciting and inspiring experiences available for those willing to serve

Please read this as an invitation, not a lecture, nor a guilt trip.

Janna and I return home next week after gaining a plethora of spiritual uplifting experiences serving the people in the Zambia Lusaka Mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. In short, we love sharing the message of Jesus Christ and Him crucified.

Those of you who know Janna, know she loves the Savior and his gospel with her entire heart and soul. She esteems and treats all of God’s children as her literal brothers and sisters.

Leaders of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have done everything possible to make it convenient for senior couples to serve the Lord full-time.

“We’re not saying that couples can pick and choose their own missionary assignments,” explained Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve. “A call is still a call… [But] we talk to our senior couples about their service preferences, and every consideration is given to letting them serve where and how they want to serve.”

You, and the best companion you will ever have, can serve for six, 12, 18, or (gulp), 23-months. You can serve in a mission office, humanitarian, inner city, visitor centers and historic sites, teaching, military relations, public affairs, and member and leader support.

We wanted to serve in an English-speaking, non-U.S. country. We listed Ghana, Botswana, Scotland-Ireland, New Zealand, Cook Islands, and Australia as options. But the Lord needed us in Zambia and now we know why.

Here is a potpourri of activities we anxiously engaged ourselves in here in Zambia:

  • Taught “Every Kwacha Counts” to help young missionaries budget their allotted funds
  • Prepared and taught “Coming to the Temple” discussions for 20 missionaries prior to receiving their temple endowment
  • Organized, sold, and distributed emergency storage foods to missionaries and members
  • and delivered Christmas gifts to all our good little sisters and elders
  • Fed missionaries, including 12 hungry Tongan elders and sisters. (Because of COVID, they all served between 25 and 37 months.)
  • Taught Missionary Preparation lessons 
  • Safely deposited branch funds  
  • Taught “After Baptism” lessons to new converts
  • Wrote and directed “Two Nations – One Mission” monthly video for missionaries 
  • Organized project to rebuild home for 95-year old sister in our branch
  • Helped organize project to install roof for sister and her family who have lived under the stars for six years. (There are four months annually of a heavy rainy season.)
  • Trained branch leaders throughout the Copperbelt districts 
  • Helped supply missionary flats with furniture and supplies
  • Conducted regular missionary flat checks
  • Organized mission finances and other administrative functions
  • Made wonderful new friends hanging out for hours at the Immigration Office 
  • Hosted missionary zone activities, including roasting a pig 
  • Distributed happy stickers weekly to Primary children 
  • Taught branch sisters how to bake marketable goods to earn transport money
  • Counseled missionary elders on the importance of time management
  • With assistance of branch missionaries, taught the gospel to people who speak only Bemba and/or French

“If you are tempted to think you’re not needed, let me reassure you that you are,” said President Russell M. Nelson. Our Prophet added, “Couples might get on their knees and ask Heavenly Father if the time is right for them to serve a mission together. Of all the qualifications, a desire to serve may be the most important.” 

Do yourself, the Lord, your eternal companion, your family, and hundreds of others somewhere in the world a favor by going to and serve the Lord full-time.

Charlie Roberts and his wife Janna are currently serving in the Zambia Lusaka Mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

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