Hello, everyone. This is Mallory herself posting.
Sometimes, missionaries get sent home for situations that are out of their control and (believe me) it’s heart-breaking and devastating – for the missionary, their family, their ward, and their friends. It’s especially difficult, because the missionary feels shame and guilt for not being able to complete what the Lord called them to do. Often, it’s an honorable, clinical release. That’s the case with me.
While I was in the MTC, I developed anxiety and severe depression. I met with therapists, doctors, sister training leaders, my branch president and his wife, and several district presidents. They all determined yesterday that for my mental health and well-being, I was going to be sent home. Saying goodbye to my companion and my district was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done, up until I had to walk out of the MTC. I felt like a failure, even though everyone kept reassuring me that I gave it my all, and I served the Lord to the best of my ability and that there should be no shame or guilt whatsoever in my mind.
I was given a scripture that really helped me to understand my situation, and it may help all of you as well: D&C 124:49. It reads: “Verily, verily, I say unto you, that when I give a commandment to any of the sons [or daughters] of men to do a work unto my name, and those sons [or daughters] of men go with all their might and with all they have to perform that work, and cease not their diligence, and their enemies come upon them and hinder them from performing that work, behold, it behooveth me to require that work no more at the hands of those sons [or daughters] or men, but to accept of their offerings.” My enemy on my mission was my severe depression and anxiety and it hindered me from performing my work, and it would have continued to get worse had I been allowed to stay. The brethren that released me are inspired men. They perform the work of the Lord through the promptings of His Spirit. Even though this is so very difficult for me to be home, I have faith in Christ and His Atonement that I will be comforted and, one day, healed (both emotionally and mentally).
My mission (because no matter how short it was, I served to the best of my ability) was an amazing experience. I was able to bless my companion and several sisters in the district while I was there. My testimony and faith in Jesus Christ, our Savior and Redeemer, grew exponentially. The Holy Ghost was so strong. I’ve never been given answers to prayers as quickly as I had in the MTC. Every time I opened and read the scriptures, I found answers to questions I’d been pondering. I’ve never loved the Savior more than I do right now, even though I’ve been given this trial. I hope to continue to grow closer to Him throughout the rest of my life. I intend to stay a faithful, diligent servant of His for all time and eternity.
I thank you all for your love, support, prayers, and letters. It means so much to me to have a solid support system, and I truly hope that it continues through this next trial of mine. I love you. Heavenly Father and His Son both love you so much – more than our mortal minds can comprehend.
God be with you,