Stack of BooksI am often asked what missionary preparation books I would recommend for young people (and those not so young). So here you go. Most Importantly:

I have read a lot of good mission prep books, and they are listed below. If you know of others that should be added to the list, please contact me.

  • Willpower Is Not Enough: Why We Don’t Succeed at Change by A. Dean Byrd and Mark D. Chamberlain. For young people struggling with law of chastity issues or other habits they need to break, this is one of the best Church books I have found. I highly recommend it.
  • Mormon Mission Prep: A Practical Guide to Spiritual and Physical Preparation by James R. Smith. This is the book I wrote in 2011, so it is a little dated now, but still full of great information.
  • Raising Ourselves to the Bar by Brad Wilcox
  • What I Wish I’d Known Before My Mission by John Bytheway
  • How to Be an Extraordinary Missionary by John Bytheway
  • Raising the Bar: Missionaries to Match the Message by Ed J. Pinegar
  • The Ultimate Missionary Companion by Ed J. Pinegar
  • Prepare With Honor: A Guide for Future Missionaries by Randy L. Bott


13 replies
  1. Dean
    Dean says:

    I would also suggest two other books:
    -Lectures on Faith
    -“Drawing on the Powers of Heaven” by Grant Von Harrision

    All of these books help a missionary understand the importance of using their faith/thoughts to obtain more power in the spirit and how to use that power for the benefit of the work.


  2. Willian Lima
    Willian Lima says:

    Hi, I’m willian and I’m from Brazil. A couple of years ago and before my mission, I had the chance to read “Raising the bar”, what a wonderful book! I would like to have a copy of this book to translate it unto portuguese. What can I do to achieve it?

    Please… send me a copy of it to help my boys here.


  3. Brother Masco
    Brother Masco says:

    Both of my sons really benefited from the article:
    The Challenging and Testifying Missionary by Alvin R. Dyer. They said it made a big difference in their attitude and work. This is best read when a missionary has been out for a time and feels like he is in a rut.
    Other excellent articles:
    Essentials for Missionary Success-Pres. Benson
    Missionary Work and the Atonement-Elder Holland
    The Making of A Missionary-Elder Ballard
    Top Ten Pitfalls Which Limit Missionary Effectiveness
    The 5 M’s of Missionary Work- Pres. Monsen
    I also have several others in my mission prep folder on my computer. For any who want let me know and I can email.

    Also excellent for temple preparation for missionaries is:
    Personal Preparation for Temple Blessings- Elder Nelson May 2001 Ensign
    The Most Important Step-President David Stanley New Era June 2000
    also read the section on temples in True to the Faith.

  4. David
    David says:

    I would add, Missionary Fitness: Prepare Your Body and Spirit for Service. It’s a book that helps prospective missionaries prepare physically and spiritually for their missions.

  5. dave hertz
    dave hertz says:

    Bro Masco posted on 4-26-2011: “I also have several others in my mission prep folder on my computer. For any who want let me know and I can email.”

    If the offer is still available, I would like your mission prep items emailed to me.

  6. Daniel Shumway
    Daniel Shumway says:

    Here is my recommendation for the two best mission prep books (and I’m really serious-these are “must read” books):

    Spirit of Fire (Millennial Quest), by John M. Pontius
    The Other Side of Heaven, by John H. Groberg

    These two books are semi-autobiographical, and tell the day to day story of a missionary in South Africa and a missionary in Tonga. You will really learn what a mission is like.

  7. Nathan
    Nathan says:

    Some of the ones that I really suggest are “The Continuous Atonement” and “The Continuous Conversion” both by Brad Wilcox. They both teach the power of the Atonement of Christ and God’s grace. Then there’s also “The Gospel of Second Chances” by Lloyd Newell. I took a class from both Brother Wilcox and Brother Newell at BYU and the books are amazing!


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