Mitt Romney’s 1968 Letter from Mission Field Shares Why Missions are the Greatest Training for Success

Mitt Romney
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While serving an LDS mission in France during the year 1968, Mitt Romney wrote this letter home to his father. It was originally shared by The following is an excerpt. 

When I first came on my mission, I heard of a missionary who tried to get his time in the field extended. I confess that I couldn’t really understand him then.

Now my appreciation for my mission has vastly changed. At first it seemed like such a demanding thing — tract, tract, try to get people to listen, try to get them to read the Book of Mormon — I thought that was all there was to a mission. All I could see was the minute detail of the thing I was laboriously doing — I hadn’t caught the fantastic overall picture of what a mission really is.

I have now. This mission has formed me more than any other part of my life. A mission is the greatest training program for success that exists ; only on a mission does a young man spend all his time merely trying to get people to listen to him, to understand his arguments, to be successful. It is here on my mission that I have come to an understanding of the meaning of life — why I am here and where I want to go.

It amazes me how little I knew about the gospel before. Sure, I had a lot of facts down, but I just hadn’t caught the vision. I had heard people say that the gospel was and is a message of happiness and good news, yet I didn’t understand why. It is here that I have begun to feel the joy that the gospel was established to give to man.

Read the full letter at

Kylie is a writer at and graduate of BYU with a degree in Broadcast Journalism. She grew up in a Chicago suburb where she gained a passion for the Chicago Cubs. She enjoys writing and live event video production.