Mormon missionaries—properly referred to as missionaries for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints—are representatives of Jesus Christ who share His gospel with the world.
Missionaries have been teaching about Jesus Christ since long before He came to the earth. The Old Testament describes missionary efforts of prophets such as Noah and Isaiah, and the New Testament is filled with records of Jesus Christ ministering, teaching, and atoning for the sins of the world. After His death, the Apostles continued to remind and invite people to follow His teachings.
It is no wonder we continue the practice of missionary work today.
Samuel Smith served as the first missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in 1830, just two months after the Church was organized. Since that time, the Lord has sent over one million men and women to serve and help people all over the world.
No matter where they serve, missionaries all have the same basic responsibilities: to love, serve, teach, and baptize. The intent is for all people everywhere to have an opportunity to learn about Christ and follow His example of faith and baptism.