Elder Maughan and Elder Crook of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are serving in the Ooltewah area. Most missionaries for the restored Church are young people who put their lives on hold for a period of time to serve the Lord full-time. Young men, from ages 18-25, serve 24 months and young women, from ages 19-26, serve 18 months. Missionaries are not paid. Service is voluntary.
Elder Maughan is from Springville, Ut. He comes from a family of four and is the youngest. He loves the outdoors – mainly hiking, backpacking and skiing. He also loves martial arts. For now, he has left those interests behind while he serves a mission. He has been called to serve in the Tennessee Knoxville mission and has been serving for about 13 months.
“I love the beauty of the area,” he said, “whether in the middle of the Smokies or in the heart of Knoxville or Chattanooga. The views and sites are amazing – but the people are everything.
“One of my favorite things about being a missionary is talking to people, especially about the restored gospel of Jesus Christ. Our Heavenly Father has a plan for each of us. His plan is perfect and made possible through the atonement of Jesus Christ, who is the true and living Son of the true and living God,” Elder Maughan said.
Elder Crook is from Eugene, Or. He has been a missionary for about 16 months. He has four siblings – two older sisters, an older brother and one little sister. He says his parents and siblings made growing up a really good experience.
“I absolutely love my family,” Elder Crook said. “I also love art and reading. My favorite book is The Book of Mormon. From the time I was old enough to understand scriptural language, I have feasted on this amazing record that testifies of Jesus Christ. I have learned so much from The Book of Mormon about coming closer to Christ. This is why I decided to become a missionary and share this joy with others.
“My mission is wonderful. I was originally called to serve in Fukuoka, Japan and served there for about nine months, doing my best to become familiar with the language and culture. I grew to love the people and made many friends whom I will never forget. As I shared The Book of Mormon with them, I saw their lives begin to change. The same is true in Tennessee. That’s because The Book of Mormon comes with a promise. Anyone with a sincere heart can come to know if it’s true. To all those searching for something more in their life, the message we share about Jesus Christ can change everything for everybody who is willing to hear Him.”
Elder Crook and Elder Maughan said they are both grateful to be in Tennessee serving among great people who love The Lord.