Texas Houston Mission


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Description

The Houston metropolitan area is divided into three missions, of which the Houston Texas mission covers the actual city and suburbs north of it.  The city, which is the fourth largest in the United States, is very diverse, with around 90 languages spoken and around 6 million in city and surrounding metropolitan area (2.1 million in the city proper).

Downtown Houston. By University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston Office of Communications [CC-BY-SA-3.0] via Wikimedia Commons.

Downtown Houston. By University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston Office of Communications [CC-BY-SA-3.0] via Wikimedia Commons.

The Church

Currently there are two stakes in the Houston Texas mission. The church is growing a great deal.  In the past ten years, many wards have split and more church meetinghouses have been built as a result.

The Houston temple is located north of Houston, within mission boundaries, allowing missionaries to attend often.

Houston Texas Temple

Houston Texas Temple

Missionaries do a good deal of tracting as member referrals are relatively few (Church members make up around 1% of the total population of Texas).

Food

Because of its proximity to Mexico, Houston offers a lot of authentic Mexican food.  Tex-Mex, a blend of Mexican-American cuisine and American food, is widely available.  Shredded cheese, beef, pork, beans, spices, and Mexican-style tortillas are heavily used.

Tex Mex

Tex-Mex meal of tacos, refried beans, and rice.

You can get a wide range of ethnic foods because of the diverse cultures.  Vietnamese food is popular because of the amount of Vietnamese residents.  They operate many “you buy, we fry” seafood restaurants.

Houstonians also love classic American barbeque.  Members of the church often serve the iconic Mormon cultural foods, such as funeral potatoes and Jell-O.

Transportation

Missionaries travel using cars and bikes.  Within the city, they also use public transportation, which includes buses and the METRO system.  Missionaries also do a great deal of walking.

Safety

Downtown Houston is less safe than the surrounding suburban areas, especially in certain areas and after dark.

For more information: http://www.houstontx.gov/police/cs/stats2.htm

Customs

The country western culture of Texas shows in Houstonians love of rodeos and barbeques.  One of the most popular events is The Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo, complete with barbeque cook-offs, major artist performances, and carnival rides.

Houston is home to diversity.  The city has two Chinatowns and a Little Saigon.

Texas is also known for its love of the arts, including opera, ballet, music, and theater.  The Houston Theater District is ranked second in the country, behind New York City.

Houston Theater District

Houston Theater District

Texans are especially famous for their Texas pride, as you will notice many large Texas flags hung up in the houses.  Remember the popular Texan phrase: “Everything’s bigger in Texas!”

NS_30Rodeo2

Texas is infamous for its rodeos

Local Lingo

“Ya’ll” –You all

“Howdy” — informal, friendly greeting

Essential Equipment

The heat and humidity can get pretty intense so it’s important to bring a durable water bottle.  There are lots of mosquitoes so bug spray is essential as well.

Flag of Texas Houston Mission

Profile

United States
President Mark A. Mortensen

16623 Hafer Rd
Houston TX 77090-4401
United States

Chinese, English, Spanish
2.145 million (2012 estimate)
Christian, including Catholic, Baptist, Methodist; Islam
Humid subtropical: hot, humid summers with averages of around 90 degrees F and up to 90% humidity; mild winters (43 to 63 degrees F) with rare snowfall. Some flooding and tornadoes common.
Houston

Experiences

*What items were hard to get or not available?

“We could get anything.”

*What did you eat the most of?

“Cheap pizza.”

“Rice, beans, tortillas.”

*What is the craziest thing you ate?

“Warm raw hamburger stuffed inside warm mushy green bell peppers.”

“Menudo (cow intestines in soup).”

*What was most surprising about the culture?

“It was the Bible Belt. An overwhelming number of people sought us out to Bible bash.” —Anson

“Each area I served in had its own culture; however I was called Spanish speaking so the best part was getting to experience lots of nationalities cultures.” —Rachel

“We have so much Texas pride” —Waisha

*What advice would you give to someone going to the Texas Houston Mission?

“Be prepared for heat, humidity and bugs!” —Waisha

“Be humble and learn your scriptures inside and out.” —Anson

“Don’t be afraid because of the language barrier.” —Rachel

 *What do you wish you had known before you served?

“I wish I had known the scriptures better.” —Rachel

 *Other comments?

“I expected and lived my life to receive miracles, and they did occur, often daily.” —Anson

 **Did you serve in the Texas Houston Mission? If so, we would love to hear your advice and your stories! Please contact us at editor@missionhome.com.**