Nearly two decades after the first publication of “Preach My Gospel: A Guide to Missionary Service,” the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have issued a second edition. This book is a guide for sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ. (See the First Presidency letter.)
President Russell M. Nelson announced the second edition at the Church’s seminar for new mission leaders on June 22, 2023. “This new edition comes at a time when the world is rapidly changing,” he said. “[It] reflects a sensitivity to many of those changes. It contains some of the best instruction I have ever seen to help people accept the Lord’s invitation to come unto Him.”
In the world today, individuals, families, communities, and nations face unprecedented needs and challenges. The gospel of Jesus Christ is the only enduring solution for addressing these needs and challenges. The second edition of Preach My Gospel will inspire and help members and missionaries as they serve and invite people to enjoy the blessings of the gospel of Jesus Christ. It will help bring the Savior’s healing, sanctifying power into the lives of members, missionaries, and those they teach.
The updated Preach My Gospel includes teachings from Church leaders since it was first published in 2004. It aligns with the new “General Handbook,” published in 2020 and 2021, and other new policies. It also includes safeguards and guidelines for using technology in sharing the gospel.
Church leaders have been working on this new edition of Preach My Gospel for some time.
“[It has involved] hours and hours of prayer, hours and hours of work [and] rewrite,” said Young Women General President Bonnie H. Cordon. “What was wonderful is — every one of the Twelve had had their eyes on this. The First Presidency has read it completely. And this is really the book that the Savior has really put his stamp on.”
“It really was a revelatory experience where you felt like the heavens opened,” added Elder Marcus B. Nash of the Seventy, who serves as executive director of the Missionary Department.
Preach My Gospel is an important tool for a growing missionary force. At the end of 2021, the Church had 56,000 missionaries. Now it has just over 68,000 missionaries. And by the end of the year leaders expect the number to top 72,000.
“When you think about what President Nelson has done, it’s just amazing,” Elder Quentin L. Cook of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles said of President Nelson’s clarion call in April 2022 for young people to go on missions. “Oh, it’s a great time to be serving. We’ve got a great prophet and we’ve got great young people and we’ve got great mission presidents. And they are committed to taking the gospel of Jesus Christ to the world.”
The earliest missionaries preached with little or no formal training. In the spirit of the scripture that missionaries should “seek to obtain the word” of God before they preach, the Church produced several iterations of standardized missionary discussions between the 1950s and the 1980s.
The advent of Preach My Gospel in 2004 brought in a new era when missionaries began teaching a unified curriculum of Christ’s teachings in their own words as guided by the Holy Ghost.
“Preach My Gospel is a key resource for missionaries, but Latter-day Saints should remember that every member of the Church is a missionary, and some of our choicest converts are found within the walls of our own home,” said Sister Amy A. Wright, first counselor in the Primary general presidency and a member of the Missionary Executive Council. “Through this inspired guide, all members can find greater joy and meaning in the gospel of Jesus Christ. And that joy is magnified as we help others make lifelong covenants with God through baptism and confirmation.”
The second edition of Preach My Gospel is available online to everyone in the Gospel Library app in English, French, Portuguese and Spanish. Print editions will be available by the end of 2023. Additional languages will be available beginning in January 2024.
Videos Introducing the Second Edition of Preach My Gospel
The following videos are provided to introduce this new edition:
What’s New in the Second Edition of Preach My Gospel?
This second edition of Preach My Gospel is based on the teachings, inspiration, and emphasis of current Church leaders. It is enhanced by additional scripture references, more recent teachings from prophets and apostles, and additional art and other visuals. The content in each chapter has been updated (see summary of changes below). However, the chapter order and core teachings remain the same.
Preach My Gospel will inspire and help members and missionaries as they serve and invite people to enjoy the blessings of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
A summary of some of the changes in the individual chapters is provided below.
Introduction to Preach My Gospel
The introduction is significantly simplified and reduced. More emphasis is placed on members (not just missionaries) using Preach My Gospel.
Chapter 1: Fulfill Your Missionary Purpose
This chapter has more clarity around the doctrine of Christ and the importance of making covenants with God. Sections about establishing the Church and becoming a successful missionary have also been enhanced.
Chapter 2: Search the Scriptures and Put on the Armor of God
This chapter has additional encouragement and promises for diligent scripture study. It also includes a new section outlining safeguards for using technology.
Chapter 3: Study and Teach the Gospel of Jesus Christ
This chapter provides new instruction about preparing to teach. It also includes a new section about inviting people to be baptized so that they can have the opportunity to start life anew with God’s sustaining power. It also includes a new section about inviting people to be baptized and summarizes the importance of this ordinance and covenant. A new plan of salvation visual has been added. Lesson 4 combines what were previously lessons 4 and 5 into a new lesson titled “Becoming Lifelong Disciples of Jesus Christ.” The teachings in this lesson are organized according to specific aspects of the baptismal covenant.
Chapter 4: Seek and Rely on the Spirit
The quotations in this chapter are updated with teachings from current Church leaders. The “Word of Caution” section is also expanded.
Chapter 5: Use the Power of the Book of Mormon
This chapter has been updated with teachings from current Church leaders and the Book of Mormon.. The “Questions of the Soul” section also includes substantial updates.
Chapter 6: Seek Christlike Attributes
This chapter focuses on seeking Christlike attributes. Adjustment are based on the role of the Holy Ghost in distilling these attributes on those who seek to follow the Savior. A new section titled “Integrity” has also been included.
Chapter 7: Learn Your Mission Language
This chapter has been simplified and reflects the latest approaches to language learning.
Chapter 8: Accomplish the Work through Goals and Plans
This chapter greatly simplifies the goal-setting process and includes the two new key indicators for conversion (“Lessons with a Member Participating” and “New Converts Attending Sacrament Meeting”). These new indicators are intended to help missionaries better unite with members in the Lord’s work and help new members continue to progress spiritually. This chapter also includes two appendices with detailed examples of how missionaries can use the goal-setting process in working with people they are teaching and in finding new people to teach.
Chapter 9: Find People to Teach
This chapter has new instruction and many new ideas for finding people to teach, including some based on using technology and the Preach My Gospel app. It includes a new section on the importance of always being engaged in finding people to teach called “Keep Lines in the Water.” This chapter includes additional ideas on how missionaries can support members in their efforts to apply the principles of love, share and invite.
Chapter 10: Teach to Build Faith in Jesus Christ
This chapter now includes instruction on following the Savior’s example in teaching, teaching by the Spirit, teaching children, helping people access the scriptures, using technology, and inviting members to participate. It also provides more help on teaching someone from a non-Christian background.
Chapter 11: Help People Make and Keep Commitments
This chapter now has additional teachings about the importance of conversion and Spirit-led invitations. It also provides more guidance on helping people keep commitments. A section titled “Come and Stay” is new.
Chapter 12: Help People Prepare for Baptism and Confirmation
The revisions in this chapter align with the new General Handbook regarding baptism and confirmation. The section “After Baptism and Confirmation” is expanded to emphasize helping new members participate in the blessings of the temple.
Chapter 13: Unite with Leaders and Members to Establish the Church
The instruction in this chapter align with the General Handbook on the roles and responsibilities of local leaders in their efforts to share the gospel. This chapter provides helpful instruction to missionaries and local leaders about weekly coordination meetings. It also highlights principles for sharing the gospel.