I currently serve as one of 1200 FamilySearch Support Missionaries worldwide. The support programme began in 2005 to assist members with family history and temple ordinances for their ancestors. We also help non-members find their way around FamilySearch. I am the group leader of the UK team of support missionaries and we want to tell you about our calling and encourage like-minded members to think about serving the Lord in this way.
Like all missionaries we are all called of the Lord, set apart to serve and wear a missionary badge and therefore offer Christ-like service as we represent the Church and the Saviour in every interaction. You serve part-time from own home with a flexible schedule. If you are an adult, unable to serve a full-time mission or have health challenges but desire to serve the Lord then this could be exactly what you are looking for.
As a FamilySearch Support Missionary you provide help and guidance to those who contact FamilySearch by telephone, on chats, or by email using a computer and telephone. Patrons contact us from all over the world so you could be speaking to someone from Australia, the Philippines, the USA and even England.
So what is required? You will generally be asked to serve a minimum of 12 months for an average of 15/20 hours per week. You are able to take holidays. After training your weekly schedule is arranged in shifts typically of 2 - 4 hours duration.
Like all callings you need to learn your duties and initially you will receive training to understand the computer programs, the processes, and the procedures we use. In the first month/six weeks this will be quite intensive but rewarding and worthwhile. On graduation you will work one to one with an experienced missionary until you feel confident to be on your own. Training includes self-paced online modules, web-based conference calls, printed materials and practice sessions with trainers. Initial training is backed up by regular team meetings and on-going in-house support. We have a massive knowledge base at our fingertips to provide accurate, up to date and consistent advice.
You will, without doubt feel the Spirit of Elijah. I have served in various leadership positions within the church but this mission was a completely different concept and a new challenge for me. Early on in training the real question arose – Will I really be able to help a patron when I am unsure of the answer myself? I then realised that I had been set apart to do just that. In each interaction the Spirit guides me so I can make a difference to every person I am helping.
As part of a like-minded team I know that experienced missionaries were always at hand to help answer a question or concern. I find great satisfaction in serving every day and within the mission there are also opportunities to use other talents in areas such as IT, indexing, supporting family history centres and processing permissions for temple ordinances.
If this appeals or you want to know more please visit https://www.lds.org/callings/temple-and-family-history/support-missionary?lang=eng and arrange to talk with us. We look forward to your contact.