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Women and Early Missionary Work

The first years of the Church are filled with dramatic stories of elders who left everything and traveled hundreds or thousands of miles over difficult terrain to preach the gospel. Many historians, though, have overlooked the effect of women’s letters in spreading the gospel message during the same period. “When reading over my Mothers letter,” Ira Ames recalled about his first exposure to the gospel, “it ran through me like lightning, it roused every feeling of my mind, the effect was powerful.” It was his mother, Hannah Ames, whose written witness that made him long to know “whether the letter and the matter of it was true or false.”


Lisa Olsen Tait, “‘I Quit Other Business’: Early Missionaries: D&C 42, 75, 79, 80, 84, 99,” history.lds.org