News Release

Missionaries Prepare for New Role as Medical Ship Heads to South Pacific

Missionaries from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in several South Pacific countries are preparing to lend a hand to medical and dental officers on their way to the region on board USS Pearl Harbor.

During the months of May through August, Latter-day Saint missionaries will have the chance to interpret for visiting health professionals as they provide medical and dental services to residents of Samoa, Tonga, Kiribati, Marshall Islands and Papua New Guinea.

Missionaries will also be assisting in other humanitarian projects in each country being planned by those on the visiting ship.

As missionaries are called to serve in areas throughout the world, if they cannot speak the local language, they learn it. These language skills make Mormon missionaries invaluable in situations like these.

“This project provides an excellent opportunity for missionaries to give service,” says Steven Stebbings, welfare manager for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the Pacific Area.

“There are over 65,000 Mormon missionaries worldwide,” he says, “and they are wonderful.”

“They teach people about Jesus Christ and are always looking for ways to help individuals, families and communities.”

USS left San Diego on 15 May on its way to the South Pacific region. U.S. Navy Captain Wallace Lovely will lead the 2013 mission, according to a news release from the U.S. Navy.

Captain Lovely says he hopes the mission will “make a real difference for the people of our Pacific island host nations.”

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