Tuesday, August 13, 2013

July YouTube Update

13 July sisters vs elders

The decline in missionary calls posted to YouTube that began in May continued through July but the decline highlights the tremendous size of the surge.  Prior to President Monson’s October announcement, the number of calls would have been considered historic.  In “Temporary MTC opens, LDS Church projects 47 percent increase in missionaries,” Church officials reported that the number of missionaries serving would reach 85,000, a 47% increase from the prior year due in large part to the lowering of the age that missionaries can begin service.  As pictured in the graph, “Mission Calls Posted to YouTube,” missionary calls to men fell from 75 in June to 54 and calls to women fell from 62 to 58. 

The surge peaking does not imply that the number of missionaries serving has peaked.  As long as missionary calls in the coming months exceed the calls issued in the previous year’s corresponding months, missionaries serving will continue to rise.  As a reminder the YouTube data has a weakness: it over reports the increase in applications after President Monson’s announcement.  The next two graphs show month to month comparisons of the number of calls posted to YouTube for the past two years.  The lower line representing calls before the announcement should be higher.

13 July Sisters

13 July Elders

July appears to be a bad month for missionary calls.  The numbers fell from June to July in 2012 as well as 2013.  The number of calls issued to sisters remains significantly above the number of calls issued the previous year and should remain higher than the previous year at least until November, the first month that calls could be issued after President Monson’s announcement lowering age requirements.  Likewise, the number of calls issued to Elders remains at high levels.  Again, November will be an interesting month. 

13 July Calls by Region

The graph, "Three Month Moving Average of the Location of Mission Assignments," shows a three month moving average of the percentage of calls read on YouTube to seven geographic regions. They are the regions reported by the Church on the “Facts and Statistics” page of the “Newsroom” with one exception. I divided the North America region into two groups: the United States and the rest of North American (North American not US). As demonstrated in the July graph, the influx of applications has not precipitated major changes in the percentage of missionaries called to each region although calls to the United States have risen since January and calls to Europe and South America have declined.  A similar trend in calls by region occurred the prior year but this year’s trend is slightly bigger. 

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