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artvandelay

Want to prepare for mission.. But I have some repenting to do.

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So, first off. Hello everyone. I was raised in the church and I am 18 years old.

For the past few years I have had no interest in going on a mission. And no real strong interest in the church itself. I didn't understand the laws and commandments, the scriptures, the meetings, the anything. So I just lived off of my own set of laws.

I slowly fell away.

I hung around some pretty bad people and never attended activities and that just made it worst. I seemed to be content with life this way. That I could make it on my own.

Anyway, I had one girlfriend (a member no less) and she was a horrible example to me. We ended up breaking the law of chastity a few times together before our relationship ended badly and I was in a complete slump for months. Then just a few months ago I had another girlfriend, and the I was breaking the law of chastity again. I didn't really understand it, nor care for the law. I thought it was unnecessary.

In the last month of our relationship something major happened to me and I completely fell apart. I was horribly depressed and I couldn't find meaning in life. That's when I started to come back to the church and I realized all of the mistakes I had made. I broke it off with her and kept myself isolated from things that caused me harm.

Ever since I did that it became instantaneously clear what I needed to do. That I needed to go on a mission and stay strong.

But now I'm realizing that it would probably be appropriate to confess, and it's freaking me out.

I just want to know what I should expect, and what I should prepare for.

I also was wondering about confidentiality and if this will be something that will be between me and the bishop and stuff like that.

Anything helps.

That's it for now. Thank you.

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Make an appointment immediately with your Bishop. Be prepared to receive love and understanding and a willingness to help you get back onto the right track.

That is the most important thing. Worrying about the "what could happen" is so small in the grand scheme of your eternal salvation.

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As someone who has sat in 'the hot seat', I can unreservedly state that if you can force yourself to put one step in front of the other and get into that office, and then open your mouth and tell your story, everything else will fall into place. The Bishop isn't interested in punishing or embarassing you. He's interested in helping remove this burden of sin from you, so you can walk through life clean.

LM

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Also as one who's been in the hot seat, please try not to be super concerned with confidentiality. Of course the Bishop is not going to tell anyone who doesn't need to know, but there are some people who probably should know if they will play a role in helping you correct it. Your parents, for example, will probably need to know.

I know for me, telling my parents was the hardest part of the whole deal. But they were very supportive. Being freaked about about "who knows" leads to being secretive, and it hinders the process. Everyone makes mistakes, even if some are bigger than others, but that is what repentance is for. And one you are clean again you can walk with your head high and fulfill your responsibilities in God's kingdom.

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Also as one who's been in the hot seat, please try not to be super concerned with confidentiality. Of course the Bishop is not going to tell anyone who doesn't need to know, but there are some people who probably should know if they will play a role in helping you correct it. Your parents, for example, will probably need to know.

I know for me, telling my parents was the hardest part of the whole deal. But they were very supportive. Being freaked about about "who knows" leads to being secretive, and it hinders the process. Everyone makes mistakes, even if some are bigger than others, but that is what repentance is for. And one you are clean again you can walk with your head high and fulfill your responsibilities in God's kingdom.

He's 18....his parents don't need to know. Likely, he will only meet with the Bishop and it will be between him, his Bishop and the Lord.

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I may be wrong but I'm pretty sure if you've had sex, you can not go on a mission. Ever since they raised the bar, I don't believe they allow members to serve missions if they have had premarital relations. Good luck with that if they do though.

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I may be wrong but I'm pretty sure if you've had sex, you can not go on a mission. Ever since they raised the bar, I don't believe they allow members to serve missions if they have had premarital relations. Good luck with that if they do though.

That isn't necessarily true.

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I ditto everything above. My dear fellow, the Lord loves you and will bless you. I have associated with many bishops over the years and I can state that the Lord guides and inspires them as they are called to be shepherds of their flocks (wards and branches). I have been truly amazed at their ability to help members in the the way they do.

Go see your bishop immediately. He will guide you along the path to repentance. If you can serve a mission, fine! If you cannot, no problem! There are sooooo many ways to serve the Lord.

True repentance will be very painful. But the joy of the fruits of the Atonement of our Savior will lift and comfort you.

God bless you my dear brother.

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But now I'm realizing that it would probably be appropriate to confess, and it's freaking me out.

Great, you know what the first step is, go confess. Focus on what you want and be willing to do what it takes to get there. Fight and stretch for what you want. It is worth it.

I just want to know what I should expect, and what I should prepare for.

The Bishop will decide based on the guidance of the church manual and the revelation he gets on your behalf. In my experience, your particular path to repentance will be unique to your situation. It may be hard, but it's worth it and attainable. So get going! You've got a wonderful happy life awaiting you.

Personally I would suggest reading The Miracle of Forgiveness. Here's a great quote from it:

"Eternal life hangs in the balance awaiting the works of men. This process toward eternal life is a matter of achieving perfection. Living all the commandments guarantees total forgiveness of sins and assures one of exaltation through the perfection which comes by complying with the formula the Lord gave us... Being perfect means to triumph over sin. This is a mandate from the Lord. He is just and wise and kind. He would never require anything from his children which was not for their benefit and which was not attainable. Perfection therefore is an achievable goal." (p. 208)

I also was wondering about confidentiality and if this will be something that will be between me and the bishop and stuff like that.

You're 18, you are an adult. When you see the Bishop just ask him about the confidentiality. He'll listen and then tell you what the steps are to repent and get back on the right path. You'll have to decide what to do next. I had the same fears. I was afraid it was going to get out and I was going to be embarrassed and shunned. It didn't happen, I repented and it's all good.

As for going on a mission, your desire is the most important thing. Pray for it, ask for it, and if it's meant to be, it will be. If not, keep moving forward. You can be a Ward Missionary, be a Home Teacher, and other callings. You can also serve a couple mission in the future.

You know what is the right thing to do, choose to do it. Remember, the gospel is a guardrail, not a fence. Good luck!

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