March 21, 2016

Switzerland Zurich Mission

Here are free resources about the Switzerland Zurich Mission:

*Other Mission Pages: Switzerland Geneva Mission.

Switzerland Zurich Mission Address

Here’s a recent address for the Switzerland Zurich Mission. We try to keep this information up to date, but it’s a good idea to check the mission address with several sources, including your mission packet or the mission office.

This mission does not currently exist.

Phone Number: N/A
Mission President: N/A

Switzerland Zurich Mission Map

Here’s a link to the mission map for the Switzerland Zurich Mission (LDS). To access the official, up-to-date LDS.org map for the Zurich Mission

Videos with Switzerland Zurich RMs

Here are in-depth YouTube video interviews with returned missionaries from the Switzerland Zurich Mission.  We interview hundreds of returned missionaries each year, so check back regularly to see new RM interviews. Coming soon..

Videos about Switzerland

Here are LDS-friendly educational videos about Switzerland. We scoured YouTube to find the best quality videos about Switzerland, that are free from inappropriate music, immodesty and profanity.

places  history  food  Time Lapses  LDS Church  Mission Calls

Switzerland Zurich Missionary Blogs

Here’s a list of LDS missionary blogs for the Switzerland Zurich Mission. This blog list includes the missionary’s name, URL and when their mission blog was updated.

*Send your missionary a gift (mission-specific shirts, ties, Christmas stockings/ornaments, pillowcases, etc.)

none found yet

Switzerland Zurich Mission Groups

Here are Switzerland Zurich Mission Groups- for LDS missionary moms, returned missionaries, mission presidents and other alumni of the mission.

  1. Zurich Switzerland Mission Group (392 members)
  2. Schweiz Mission Zürich – Hurst/Cracroft era (1983-1989) Group (216 members)
  3. President Dietmar & Silvia Matern – Switzerland Zurich Mission Reunion Group (60 members)
  4. President Buckner & Debbie Buckner – Switzerland Zurich Mission Group (33 members)
  5. Schweiz Mission Zürich Group (4 members)

Switzerland Zurich Mission T-Shirts

Here are T-shirts for the Switzerland Zurich Mission!

Shirt designs include Switzerland Zurich Mission logo/emblem shirts and Called to Serve shirts. The shirts make great gifts for pre-missionaries, returned missionaries and missionaries currently serving. LDS Mission shirts come in all sizes: Small, Medium, Large, Extra Large, up to 4XL.  The mission designs are printed on white shirts and are shipped to you.

*Simply click on a shirt design to view the details and submit an order. The designs on mission t-shirts may also be printed on other LDS mission gifts, including: Switzerland Zurich missionary aprons, Christmas stockings, ties, pillow cases, teddy bears and Christmas ornaments.

*Click here to browse Zurich Mission gifts

switzerland-zurich-lds-mission-shirt-1 switzerland-zurich-lds-mission-shirt-2 switzerland-zurich-lds-mission-shirt-3 switzerland-zurich-lds-mission-t-shirt-4

Switzerland Zurich Mission Presidents

Here’s a list of current and past Mission Presidents of the Switzerland Zurich LDS Mission.

  1. 2010, Mission consolidated with Germany Munich/Austria Mission to create the Alpine German-Speaking Mission.
  2. 2007-2010, Dietmar G. Matern
  3. 2004-2007, Brent L. Buckner
  4. 2001-2004, Neil M. Hahl
  5. 1998-2001, John Hamilton Holbrook
  6. 1995-1998, Richard W. Lohner
  7. 1992-1995, Alan P. Johnson
  8. 1989-1992, Keith K. Hilbig
  9. 1986-1989, Richard H. Cracroft
  10. 1983-1986, Clayton R. Hurst
  11. 1980-1983, Douglas G. Bischoff
  12. 1977-1980, Dean T. Worlton
  13. 1977, Joseph B. Wirthlin
  14. 1974-1977, Gary E. O’Brien
  15. 1974, Switzerland Mission renamed Switzerland Zurich Mission.

Switzerland LDS Statistics (2016)

  • Church Membership: 9,072
  • Missions:
  • Temples: 1
  • Congregations: 37
  • Family History Centers: 17

Helpful Articles about Switzerland

Coming soon..

Switzerland Zurich Missionary Survey

Here are survey responses from Switzerland Zurich RMs, to give you a snapshot into what it’s like to live in the mission.

*Click here to take a survey to help pre-missionaries going to your mission.

When did you serve?

  • 1999-2000 (Rachel)
  • 2008-2009 (Emily)
  • 1998-2000 (Jim)
  • 1997-1998 (Brae)
  • 1994-1996 (Jeff)
  • 1985-1987 (Bob)

What areas did you serve in?

  • Winterthur, Olten, Dornbirn (Austria). (Rachel)
  • Bern, Burgdorf, Stuttgart, Luzern. (Emily)
  • Zollikofen/Bern, Wollerau, Burgdorf, Kloten, Loerrach. (Jim)
  • Soloturn, Dornbirn (Austria), Gossau, Basel. (Brae)
  • Freiburg, Lorrach, Wil, Luzern, Thun. (Jeff)
  • Zurich (2x), Aarau, Langentahl, Bern Basel (2x), Rebstein. (Bob)

What were some favorite foods?

  • Rocolett, yogurt, cheese, bakery rolls, Zopf, spetzli. (Rachel)
  • Döners, Rösti, Fondue, Zopf. (Emily)
  • Raclette, Fondue, Schnitzel, Bratwurst, Spätzle, Swiss chocolate, Rivella (drink). (Jim)
  • Raclette, Fondue, Dönner Kebaps, Appenzeller Cheese, Milch Brot. (Brae)
  • Raclette, fondue, rosti, zopf, local bratwursts, and various pastries. The curry chicken was especially good too. Every town was open late, past 5 PM, one night a week. They would have vendors selling their food or crafts. They always had something delicious. (Jeff)
  • Roesti, Spaetzli, Raclette, Schnitzel & Rivella. (Bob)

What was a funny experience?

  • We took a train out to a small village in our area. It only took about two hours to knock on every door in the village, and were only let in to two or three. Plus, the few people that would talk with us, I had a hard time understanding their “country” accent. When we went back to the train station, we found out there wasn’t a return train for another six hours! We walked through the forest (on a path) to the next village, knocked those doors and still had to wait two hours for a train back to Winterthur. The local bakeries were delicious, of course. (Rachel)
  • We were going door to door when my companion (who always has to pee) needed to go very urgently. It finally came to a point where she couldn’t hold it anymore and there were no public restrooms around. The next door we went to, an old lady answered from her window. We presented ourselves and asked if we could share a message with her. She said no and my companion yelled up as she was closing the window if she could use her toilet. The lady poked her head back out and yelled back down, “Is this a trick?” My companion yelled back up, “No, I just really have to pee!” After some hesitation the lady let us in so she could use the bathroom, but I’m pretty sure the whole street could hear my companion yelling that she had to pee. (Emily)
  • In my last area, I had two companions. We said a companionship prayer and then personal prayers. Two of us finished first and the third appeared to still be praying. We turned out the light and within minutes heard him snoring, still in prayer position in a bear-like pose. When we woke up, he was still in the same position. (Jim)
  • When my companion forgot to put her skirt on and we didn’t notice until we were almost to the train station with just her black slip on. (Brae)
  • We stayed at a hotel the first night. It included a continental breakfast. One of the missionaries I came with said we needed to leave a tip. We later learned you don’t need to leave a tip in restaurants in Europe, at that time. (Jeff)
  • I don’t usually talk in my sleep, but my greeny trainer said that during my first month there I would talk in both English & German and he couldn’t understand either one. (Bob)

What was a crazy experience?

  • I was always convinced that the tram in Zurich going up to or down from the mission home was going to break and we’d either fall to our deaths or be stranded on the side of the hill…but I wasn’t worried enough to walk, apparently. (Rachel)
  • One time at the train station, we were super early for a train so we went down stairs for a slushy (we had just discovered them earlier that week). Something happened that we got delayed and ended up having to run for the train. We got on just fine, and as we were trying to find a seat (the cars were very full, we got to the end of the cars and looked out and the engine was facing away from us attached to another set of cars. My companion panicked thinking the cars we were on weren’t attached so she bolted out to run for the other cars. Just as we reached the doors of the other cars, the train started to move, My companion saw the doors we had just left were still open (yes those cars were attached) and jumped in. I ran to catch up and barely caught hold of the handle and jumped onto the bottom step. But by that time the momentum was so strong that it was pushing me out of the train so with one hand on the handle and the other holding a slushy, there was no way I could get in (my companion already went to sit down without looking back). Suddenly, I felt someone shove me into the car. As I was pushed in, the lid to my slushy flew off and behind me and half my slushy went with it. I quickly went in and sat down to catch my breath. A minute or two later, I went to the bathroom to clean up from the sticky mess that was all over my hand and arm and noticed the door was STILL open. As I went to close it, I saw the lid on the middle of the floor inside the train. It was as if someone made a wall that pushed me and everything inside the train at the last moment. I closed the door and immediately the train began to stop and announced for someone to check for an open door (delayed signal system I guess). Embarrassed, I bolted into the bathroom and waited there for at least 5 minutes after cleaning up hoping whoever checked would be gone… they weren’t. So I quickly sat down with my companion, finished my slushy and threw away the cup before whoever it was could make a connection between the blue slushy all over the door and my cup… not to mention my soaked and died sleeve. I feel sorry for whatever poor angel was sent to save me that day and the new blue tint to their robes. But I am grateful they were there. (Emily)
  • A old man was upset we were in his apartment building knocking doors and pulled out a gun and started waving it around, yelling at us in Swiss German. I thought we should stay and keep knocking doors and my younger companion said, no, it’s time to go. (Jim)
  • Jumping onto moving trains. (Brae)
  • We were walking along the side of a mountain, from one small town to the next. I had my bicycle closer to the downhill slope so that my bike would go down the hill and not me. Well, my companion had his body closer than his bike to the downhill slope. He slipped and went down the mountain side, about 100 feet or so. He was fine, just a few scrapes, but the memory has been something I will always have. (Jeff)
  • While in Zurich, my companion and I were out tracting when the gentleman who answered the door had a gun pointing at us. He had us come inside, which we had no choice but to do. We told him who we were and explained what we were doing and he finally put away his gun. We found out that he had been in Paris the previous weekend and was robbed on his visit to purchase some antiques. Hence his paranoia. Why he pulled a gun on us I still don’t know. Needless to say my companion and I did not do any more tracting that day. (Bob)

What was a spiritual experience?

  • When an investigator realized he really DID want the gospel in his life, and that his wife has been so patient in waiting for him to realize this. (Rachel)
  • Oh so many spiritual experiences! One in particular I shared with my Sunday School class just last week. My companion and I were teaching this lady named Evelyn. Her husband’s family were very active in the Catholic church (brother-in-law was a priest, sister-in-law was a nun, etc). We had been to her house a couple times and were trying to figure out what to teach her all day. Nothing was coming to mind. about 15 minutes before our lesson with her, my companion said, “Let’s just teach her about the Holy Ghost.” I was hesitant because how much can you say about the Holy Ghost? It’s like a 5 minute lesson tops! But since I didn’t have any better idea, I went with it and we taught her. She listened quietly to everything we had to say. After we were finished, she told us that she had asked every priest and pastor from any church she visited about who or what the Holy Ghost was and no one could answer her questions but that we had answered everyone of them without her even asking them. We told her that if she had anymore questions that we hadn’t gotten to or that she thought of while we weren’t there, she could find them in the Book of Mormon. She said she did have more questions, but that she didn’t have any more time. So we left after that. The next week we met with her again and she said she had found her answers in The Book of Mormon. It was an incredible experience! (Emily)
  • We were working with an investigator whose husband was against her investigating The Church. We had tried for weeks or months to get her to come to church, but he wouldn’t allow it. We decided to fast for her on a Saturday, and particularly for his husband–that his heart would be softened. The next morning, she showed up at church, and we knew the Lord has heard and answered our prayers. (Jim)
  • Feeling God’s love for the people. (Brae)
  • Feeling the darkness that surrounded the people when I was about to land in the country. And then having that feeling go away on the plane ride home. The other three missionaries I traveled with experienced the same thing too. (Jeff)
  • The first three weeks of my mission were spent in the Mission Home in Zurich. In the evenings I would go out with one of the AP’s. On one of those evenings we went tracting. We were not having much success. We decided to say a prayer and ask to be guided to where we should go next. As soon as we had finished praying, we both had the impression of which apartment to visit. The lady who answered the door had just been praying. Our visit went very well. The spirit was so strong. As I remember my German was improved by the Spirit so I could present the first vision to her and be understood. (Bob)

What are some interesting facts about the Switzerland Zurich Mission?

  • It’s Switzerland…mountains, villages, meadows, museums, trains to everywhere, cheese, chocolate (even though the locals don’t eat chocolate much, but that didn’t stop me). (Rachel)
  • Every canton you serve in has it’s own dialect and personalities. For example, Bern canton is one of the hardest dialects to understand. They sound like a Scottish person trying to speak both French and German at the same time. They also use the “old style” of speaking, using “euch” instead of “du”. But they speak slower than any other canton (which everywhere else will point out and make fun of too). But Zurich and Basel are fairly mild in their dialects, but speak super fast. Over in St. Gallen, they speak fast too and over emphasize their ‘k’ and ‘ch’ a lot more than anywhere else. Basically, to understand any dialect, you have to disconnect yourself from the rules of German language and listen for similar sounds and use whatever bits you catch to start understanding the context of what they’re saying. Also, The Swiss are very proud of everything they have, particularly their landscape and they show it by keeping things surprisingly clean. (Emily)
  • We had four lands in our mission: Switzerland, Germany, Austria and Liechtenstein. We could only serve for a maximum of 18 months in Switzerland, and then had to serve in either Germany or Austria for the remaining time. The Switzerland Zurich Mission was consolidated with the Vienna and Munich missions about five years ago and became the Alpine German-Speaking Mission. (Jim)
  • The most missionaries we had at one time was about 88. It was a small mission. One in seven people we met were not Swiss, from a different country. Elders had to start or end their missions in Austria or Germany because we were only permitted 18 month visas. (Brae)
  • On any food product, three of the four national languages told the ingredients of what the food was. (Jeff)
  • Switzerland has four national languages: French, Swiss German, Italian, and Rhaeto-Romantsch. Chocolate is a major Swiss export. There are 208 mountains over 3,000m high. There are more than 1,500 lakes in Switzerland. (Bob)

What was the weather like?

  • Cold in the winter, warm and humid in the summer, rainy in the spring and any other random time. (Rachel)
  • The weather was normal. They have nice, warm summers and cold, snowy winters. (Emily)
  • Very similar to here in Utah. The winter of 1998-1999 was one of the coldest and snowiest in 30 years. (Jim)
  • Four beautiful seasons. (Brae)
  • The weather was like any other place with four distinct seasons. Humidity was moderate. Rain was average as well. It kept the mountains green year round. (Jeff)
  • The two years I was there, Switzerland experienced the two hottest Summers and the two coldest Winters in 30 years. The normal weather is supposed to be similar to Utah, meaning four distinguishable seasons of moderate heat and cold. (Bob)

Any things you really like about the area/people?

  • So welcoming and loved to “practice” English with you. 90% of the time, their English was better than my German. (Rachel)
  • The Swiss people are so friendly and courteous. But they won’t waste your time. If they’re not interested they will say it. If they have questions, they’ll ask them. The Germans are also courteous, but not as openly friendly at first, but once you build that relationship with them, they are incredible people. The landscape is beautiful! Don’t forget to look up and around and enjoy where you are and marvel at the beauty God has created! (Emily)
  • The beauty of the country, the pride the people have in their culture, the food, the mountains. (Jim)
  • Amazing and inspiring people. Glorious landscape. Scrumptious food. Excellent public transportation. Interesting history and old town and buildings. (Brae)
  • I loved connecting with people the most. These are the memories that I will always hold dearest to my heart. (Jeff)
  • The scenery is absolutely amazing no matter where you are in Switzerland. The transportation is setup so you can get anywhere by bus, tram or train. The members were very kind and generous. (Bob)

Any packing/clothing advice?

  • Dress in layers. Always take an umbrella, ALWAYS. Sisters: legging are a MUST in winter! (Rachel)
  • Sisters, don’t dress like a nun, wear colors. People will thing you are either a nun or Jehovah’s Witness if you don’t. Remember some lighter shirts that don’t show sweating because walking all day in the summer will make you sweat… badly. And it’s embarrassing to still try talking to people when you look like you need a shower. Bring p-day clothes you can hike in too. You will go on a lot of hikes if you’re in the southern or eastern parts of Switzerland. (Emily)
  • Pack as if you were spending two years in Salt Lake City. (Jim)
  • Four seasons, so take a long, heavy coat and no nylons for sisters in the summer. (Brae)
  • Whatever the mission president says to bring. (Jeff)
  • Don’t take a lot of books. If you are not arriving in mid-winter, buy your winter coat in Switzerland. Pack light. (Bob)

What blessings did you receive from serving a mission?

  • Closer relationship with the Savior; stronger testimony; understanding of teaching gospel concepts; understanding of church authority; sense of accomplishment; overcoming personal struggles; closer to family members. (Rachel)
  • I met so many incredible people and saw so many different things. But mostly, I came to understand who I am and I saw God’s plan in an entirely different and more complete way. I came to understand how personal each and every principle should be applied. I came to understand that every part of the gospel is true and applicable. Every story from the scriptures are true and still relevant. That miracles do still happen today. That nothing that directs our lives is coincidental. (Emily)
  • Too many to count. Love of the Lord, love and appreciation of a foreign land and culture, gospel knowledge, strengthened testimony, greater appreciation for family, etc. (Jim)
  • More than I can recount at one time, I’m sure. Such a close relationship with God. A sincere love of the people or companions. A stronger belief in Gospel Principles. Learned how to deal with rejection, ridicule, disappointment. Saw the beauty of someone’s life change for good when they believed and accepted the Gospel. Made lifelong and eternal friendships. Saw miracles happen to others and myself. Gained an appreciation for growing up in the USA as well as having the Gospel in my life since childhood. Privileged to know and be inspired by my mission president and his wife, President and Sister Lohner. Realized several reasons why I was sent to that mission and when. Learned to speak another language. Learned to work with different people and personalities. Got to see such a beautiful country as well as parts of other countries in my mission boundaries. Learned how to teach gospel principles. Got to devote all my time to serving the Lord. (Brae)
  • A stronger testimony. (Jeff)
  • I learned to rely on and believe in the power of prayer. (Bob)

What are some skills you gained?

  • Personal accomplishment; how to interact with strangers in a positive way; understanding of another language; self-discipline. (Rachel)
  • I gained confidence. I learned how to just get up and start speaking when I need to. I can now speak in church without petrifying stage fright. I can speak a new language and have learned that I’m capable of learning others as well. (Emily)
  • How to relate well and empathize with others, foreign language, how to really study the scriptures, leadership skills. (Jim)
  • These were mentioned in the blessings question. (Brae)
  • How to communicate my ideas to others. People skills. (Jeff)
  • Patience, understanding, kindness, restraint, brotherly love and faith. (Bob)

What do you wish you knew/did at the beginning of your mission?

  • Eat. More. Yogurt. And bread, and chocolate. (Rachel)
  • I wish I wasn’t so afraid of messing up at the beginning. I was so afraid of getting something wrong with the language or custom that it stopped me when the spirit told me to go. The time is too short for fear. And even if you mess up and make a fool of yourself, you will probably never see most of those people again so what does it matter other than you tried to do the will of God. I regret letting my pride and fear keep me from opening my mouth. (Emily)
  • It is important to take time to enjoy every moment and not take yourself too seriously. Have fun. Love your companion. It’s not your time, but the Lord’s. Write in your journal every day. Work hard and play hard. (Jim)
  • I wish I had the missionary prep classes and the Preach My Gospel book that is available now. I wish I would have labeled my photos with dates, people and places and taken photos of the more common things. I think missionaries need a “post-mission” set of classes too. So think on that and develop a curriculum for that. Especially give the newly returned an opportunity to have discussions, not just lectures. (Brae)
  • Love the people. Connect with people. Don’t worry about those that don’t see things your way. They might not be ready to accept the gospel now, but they might in the future. Free agency is what it’s all about. Love the people where they are. Work hard and smart. Use members. They will give you more than you think they will. (Jeff)
  • I wish I knew more about the scriptures. (Bob)

Any advice/testimony for pre-missionaries going to Switzerland?

  • Don’t stress about the language; study diligently and prayerfully and it will come, little by little, day by day. I know everyone says that, but I didn’t take that as comfort, and it should be. Do what you should be doing, and it will come. Study. Every. Day. Don’t take that study time for granted. It will be your strength. (Rachel)
  • Just because your companion is older or has been out in the field longer does not mean they are always right. Follow the Spirit. He’s the one in charge and knows what needs to be done better than any person. If you’re having problems at all, talk to your mission president. He’s there to help you and guide you. (Emily)
  • You are the luckiest missionaries in the world. Have no regrets. (Jim)
  • Americans aren’t called to my old mission anymore. And my mission doesn’t exist anymore. I’m saddened by this. But if they were, I’d say that it’s a tough mission. You get a lot of rejection and don’t get to teach much. So realize the other blessings from that mission and be there to strengthen the church members, who will also inspire you. (Brae)
  • Read the scriptures and have a growing testimony of them. Go on exchanges with the missionaries in your area, especially if they are teaching a discussion and don’t be afraid to share your testimony. (Jeff)
  • Read Drawing on the Powers of Heaven (Amazon). It is a great book on prayer. Attend Seminary and be diligent in scripture study. (Bob)

What was a funny language mistake?

  • Durchfall does not mean something fell through (like an appointment), it means diarrhea. (Emily)
  • I was asking for directions, in German, to a German citizen. I realized after using the Swiss-German word twice, I had to use the German word, and then he understood me. (Jeff)