Church Scales Back COVID Booster Requirements for Missionaries

Missionaries will only need a COVID booster if their host country dictates it.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints updated its COVID-19 guidelines for young missionaries. Since COVID vaccines first started rolling out, the Church required missionaries serving outside of their home country to be vaccinated as well as to receive additional boosters as available. (Missionaries serving abroad have long been required to obtain vaccination against a number of illnesses, not just COVID.)

Now, while those missionaries serving outside of their home country will continue to be required to obtain a COVID-19 vaccine, they are only required to get a booster if the country where they are serving requires it and if “they qualify to receive it per local guidelines in their assigned mission.” The letter from the Missionary Department informing of the change notes that missionaries will be notified in their call packet if their assigned country requires a booster.

Senior missionaries who leave their home country will continue to be required to be fully vaccinated and receive a booster.

The list of countries requiring a booster largely comprises European states and other major global portals. As of March 24, the list included the following countries: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czechia, Estonia, France, Greece, Italy, Israel, Latvia, The Netherlands, Portugal, Singapore, Spain, and Switzerland. The United Arab Emirates had recently required boosters for entry, but it is unclear if that remains the case. (We also don’t send proselytizing missionaries there.) Greece and Switzerland are slated to drop COVID-related entry restrictions in May 2022.

The First Presidency updated COVID-19 guidelines for local Church members in February. The Church announced a plan to reopen all Church history sites without restrictions in March.

Missionaries should update their vaccination record in the Missionary Portal as appropriate.

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