JACKSON COUNTY, Ore. — Coronavirus, or COVID-19, forced some local church missionaries from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to come home early and self-quarantine.
Returning home after completing a full-time 18 or 24 month church mission is normally a big deal and a highlight moment for many missionaries, but 20-year-old Rogue Valley residents, Jacob Johnson of Ashland and Meg Gebhardt of Medford, were sent home along with all foreign missionaries before their missions were completed.
“It all happened super quick. There was even some points, everyone was scared too, like there was a point we went to go visit a family and they were ‘We’re a bit less willing to receive you guys because of this,” Johnson said.
“So, it was this very out of the blue thing that none of us were really mentally, emotionally or spiritually prepared to do,” Gebhardt said.
Johnson returned from serving in Brazil and will start school in Idaho in the fall.
Gebhardt will wait until the end of April to find out more about if she will be able to return to Mexico in the future.