Mongolia dedicated for preaching of the gospel

A milestone was reached in Mongolia recently when Elder Neal A. Maxwell of the Council of the Twelve dedicated the land for the preaching of the gospel.

Elder Maxwell and Elder Kwok Yuen Tai of the Seventy, a member of the Asia Area presidency, traveled to Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, and dedicated the country April 15. They also met with five missionary couples serving there and with government leaders.In his dedicatory prayer, Elder Maxwell asked the Lord to bless the nation and people of Mongolia that they might be able to maintain independence and find ways to better their economy.

After the dedication, a reception was held for the missionary couples. About 50 government officials attended. "They were very warm and appreciative," Elder Maxwell noted. "We have a very wholesome relationship there."

Missionary couples entered Mongolia in September 1992. (See Church News, Sept. 19, 1992.)

The couples are assisting government leaders and educators in the transition as they move their higher education system from a Russian-style command economy system to a western style market economy system.

"This is a very difficult process," remarked Elder John K. Carmack of the Seventy, a member of the Asia Area presidency. "Our people are lending the expertise as they consult with the ministry of education, as well as lending needed support by teaching at universities - all without pay."

"They have been welcomed by the highest levels of government in education," said Elder Monte J. Brough, a member of the Seventy and Asia Area president.

The missionaries have held Church meetings, with about 20 people attending. In February this year the first baptisms were held. Two were baptized with others scheduled to be baptized soon after.

The missionaries are free to proselyte and are busy teaching. They have received national attention for their humanitarian service with their work coming to the highest level of attention from the government, Elder Carmack said.

"It is to the point where the government is asking if there is any way we can send more missionaries."

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