Elder Holland Clears Up an Embellished Missionary Story

Elder Holland missionary story
Image courtesy of LDS Media Library / churchofjesuschrist.org

Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of the LDS Church retracted a story that he shared with new mission presidents preparing to serve at the MTC. The story, about the power of missionary work in reuniting a family, was embellished by the person who related it to Elder Holland.

The embellished story claimed that a missionary discovered an unknown brother and helped return him to activity. As reported by Deseret News, Elder Holland cleared up the misunderstanding when the family stepped forward:

“There are inspiring and important missionary lessons in this story. The older brother did indeed leave his home and his family and for many years pursued the lifestyle I described in my talk. During these years his parents lovingly tried to maintain contact, prayed faithfully for him and even sent local leaders to seek after him. However, at the time his younger brother was called to serve as a missionary, the older brother had already returned to Idaho. With the help of missionaries there, he started the difficult and courageous process of changing his life. In time, he would return to full activity and be sealed in the temple, and he would also have a son who would serve a mission.”

Elder Holland then went on to commend the family for having the courage to step forward with the corrections. In the future, the Church encourages people with missionary stories to share them with the Church History Library to create a collection of accurate, faith-inspiring accounts.

Allison Weber grew up in the Great Plains of northeastern Colorado, decided to see some mountains, and went to Provo, Utah where she got her BA in English at BYU. Afterwards she did some writing and traveling, and then went to Minnesota State University for a Masters in Technical Communication. Now she freelances as a writer, works on her novel, runs regularly and travels when the mood strikes