Monday, February 24, 2014

Missionaries are now in Myanmar (Burma)

Every 9 weeks we get a fresh batch of new Missionaries and we send the most experienced ones home.  These new missionaries have spent 9 weeks in the Missionary Training Center learning how to be a missionary and attempting to master the Thai language.  This past week is what we call transfers.  We received 14 new missionaries, 13 young Men (Elders) and one young women (Sister).   
On Wednesday Morning President Senior hosts a meeting where missionaries are transferred.  They find out where they are moving to and who their new Companion will be.  They come to the meeting only knowing if they will move or not. 
Right near the end of the Transfer Meeting President Senior made the official announcement that he had sent young single Proselyting Missionaries to Myanmar (Burma).  The Missionaries let out quite a loud cheer.  I believe this is the first time young LDS missionaries have been sent to serve in Myanmar (Burma) since the 1850’s.  Elder Fronberg and Elder Steiner have been in Myanmar since December 21st 2013. 

We have not publically announced their presence as to not upset the Visa application process.  Apparently in the past social media has broadcast the missionaries presence in a specific sensitive country such that the government did not then allow a Visa for the missionaries to stay in the country. 

1st Young Missionaries in Myanmar since the 1850's

The Missionaries entered the country on a Tourist visa and did come back into Thailand in January to renew their Visa.  This last time they received a Non-Immigrant Visa that will allow them to stay until the end of their missions in Myanmar.  In the December transfer meeting President Senior simply said that he was opening up a new area west of Bangkok – Nakhorn Pathom.  That is where the software that I maintain stated that the two missionaries were located – a cover story. The two missionaries were actually in Myanmar. The missionaries parents were notified and told that they could tell no one where their sons were located at that time.  There are two Senior Couples serving with Deseret International Charities (DIC) in Myanmar.  The young missionaries are actually staying in a home that is part if the facility the church is renting in Yangoon.  The property also has a separate structure that we use for the chapel.

It was just a year ago (February of 2013) that the Church first sent 4 young missionaries to Lao. Now one year later we have sent Missionaries to Myanmar.  The Book of Mormon does not yet exist in the Burmese Language.  Very exciting times here in the mission field.

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