Washington DC North Mission

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Washington, D.C.

Washington, D.C.

The Church

There are 4 stakes located in the Washington DC North Mission.  The Washington DC Temple (located in Kensington, Maryland) is also within the mission boundaries.  The church is relatively strong in the Washington DC area, and a CES Institute, Welfare Home Storage Center, and multiple FamilySearch Centers are also present within the mission boundaries.  Spanish-language wards are also present in the area.


As the nation’s capital, you can expect to find any food you would find anywhere else in the United States while serving in Washington DC.  Street vendors commonly sell hot dogs and soft pretzels.  However, many different cultures collide in the Washington, D.C. area.  You can easily find Hispanic, Asian, or Middle Eastern restaurants and grocery stores.  You can also find fresh seafood (especially crab) if you know where to go!  Expect to eat a wide variety of foods while you serve in the Washington DC North Mission.


Like most stateside missions, the majority of missionaries serve in areas where they will either use a car or a bicycle for transportation.  The transportation used will depend on the size of the area and leadership positions.  Washington DC is also home to an extensive public transportation system known as the METRO, that includes both an underground subway system running from Washington DC and into Maryland and Virginia, as well as a bus system that runs within the city.  It’s best to avoid major roads during rush hour, as the Washington DC metro area has some of the worst traffic in the country.

Washington, D.C. Metro. Image by Kkmd, CC-BY-SA-3.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

Washington, D.C. Metro. Image by Kkmd, CC-BY-SA-3.0 via Wikimedia Commons.


Crime levels vary within Washington DC, with the more affluent areas (such as in the Northwest part of the city) being much safer than the city’s poorer neighborhoods, which are mostly located in the eastern half of the city.  While overall crime levels in the city have dropped significantly since the early 1990s, robberies and thefts are still a common problem.  It is best to be alert to your surroundings.  Know how to get where you are going so you don’t get lost and end up in a potentially dangerous area.


As the United States capital, Washington DC is host to several monuments, museums (including the Smithsonian), and other tourist attractions.  Several events are hosted downtown each year, including the Folklife Festival, the Cherry Blossom Festival, and a large 4th of July Celebration. As the nation’s capital, a wide variety of cultures are present, and you will probably have the chance to meet and teach people from several different countries while serving here!

Local residents are quite passionate about their local professional sports teams – especially the Redskins, Nationals, and Capitals.  The teams and their successes (or failures) are a common topic of conversation among residents.

Local Lingo

“What it do?” = “What’s up?” or “How’s it going?”

Inner Loop/Outer Loop = refers to “the Beltway” = Interstate 495, which travels around the city. Inner Loop and Outer Loop describe the side of the beltway you are on and, therefore, the direction you are traveling.

The Hill = refers to Capital Hill or the part of D.C. where the Capitol building and the Supreme Court building are located.

The Mall = refers to the National Mall, an open park located close to several of DC’s prominent monuments.

Skins, Caps, Nats = abbreviations given to D.C.’s sports teams: the Redskins, The Capitals, and the Nationals. *Related: Httr = Hail to the Redskins.

DMV = term referring to the D.C., Maryland, and Virginia area.

NoVa = Northern Virginia

Kife = to take or borrow. “I’m gonna kife a piece of gum.”

Young Buck = used to refer to young men from age 18-25.

Additional Info

The Washington DC temple grounds are also home to a highly-frequented Visitors’ Center; sister missionaries are often assigned to spend part of their time working at the Visitor’s Center.  Many tourists that come during December, when the temple grounds feature elaborate Christmas lights as well as musical performances and nativity exhibits at the Visitors’ Center.

Washington DC is full of things to do, with many of the museums and monuments located in the city being free to visit!  The National Museum of American History, Holocaust Memorial Museum, and Museum of Natural History are among the most popular sites within the city.

National Museum of American History in Washington, DC.

Flag of Washington DC North Mission


United States
President Peter S. Cooke

11700 Falls Rd
Potomac MD 20854-2823
United States

English, French, Spanish
About 3 million
Roman Catholic, Baptist, other Evangelical, Irreligious
The summer months are hot and humid with frequent thunderstorms. All four seasons are present in Washington DC, with January and February typically being the coldest months. Snowfall is light to moderate during winter.
Silver Spring, Waldorf, Gaithersburg, Wheaton, Bowie, Potomac (Maryland)

Washington DC North Mission blog – http://calledtoserveindcnorth.blogspot.com/



Straight from the Washington DC North Mission:

*What items were hard to get or not available?


*What did you eat the most of?
“Fried Chicken, White Rice”

*What is the craziest thing you ate?
“Ox tail soup or chitlins (Pig intestines).”

“Hot sauce another couple had shipped in from New Mexico.”

*What was most surprising about the culture?
“That people were very humbled by their situations and circumstances. That allowed many to listen to the gospel but it also hardened the hearts of many. It was amazing to see how much poverty was in our nation’s capital.”

“Attitudes of women toward men (not present in their lives).”

*What advice would you give to someone going to the Washington DC North Mission?
“Love the gospel, love your family, love the people you serve, but most important, know that you are a son or daughter of our Heavenly Father who loves you. Your brother Jesus Christ loves you and knows you. This knowledge will help you in any situation you are in on your mission and in your life.”

“Be loving and compassionate.”

*What do you wish you had known before you served?
“I wish I had a more in depth knowledge of the scriptures. I wish I had studied Joseph Smith’s history as much as the Book of Mormon.”

“That I would need my rice cooker!”

*Other comments?

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