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Local girl on a mission to Australia


Goldendale native Addie Christensen, daughter of Rene and Cori, is headed off to Australia for the next 18 months.

Christensen, who is two years into a nursing degree at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah, decided to take a break from school to serve a mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

“I’m looking forward to getting to teach,” she said.

Christensen said she has always wanted to serve a mission for her church, but what really cemented her decision to go was discovering how much she enjoyed an assignment to teach a Sunday school class in college.

“I love people and I love the gospel and I want to help people and see their life change,” she said.

When young adults decide they want to serve an LDS mission they turn in application papers and then wait for their “mission call” from church headquarters in Salt Lake City. Until they get the thick white envelope they have no idea where they might be sent—anywhere from Pocatello, Idaho to South Africa. Christensen said she thought she would probably be called stateside, so she was ecstatic to see she was being called across the world to Adelaide, Australia (coincidentally, her full first name is Adelaide).

“I was so excited,” she said.

She will report to the Missionary Training Center in Provo, Utah on March 27 but won’t be there long because she doesn’t have to learn a new language, unlike many international missionaries.

Missionaries for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints live a life without television, movies, secular music or other distractions. Instead they fill their days with teaching new and potential members, contacting new people, studying the Bible and Book of Mormon and doing service projects. In preparation Christensen said she has been dialing back on media and studying the scriptures and books like Preach My Gospel, which is meant to help missionaries become better teachers.

“Being a missionary isn’t like selling windows door to door …we’re not doing it for our benefit,” Christensen said. “We’re doing it because we want to give people the same happiness [our religion] gives us.”

The LDS church currently has four other missionaries from the area who are serving in various parts of the world. Nick Dohrman left for the West Indies Mission in April 2012. Nathan Bischoff has been serving in the Georgia Atlanta Mission since November 2012. Michael Fuss and Dorothyanne Fuss, a retired married couple, are serving in the South America South Area and left in August 2012.

There are also two LDS missionaries from other parts of the world serving in Goldendale.


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