Yes, Twopekingguys, them darn kids these days. I’m sure you were just a model child :roll eyes:
I suppose that the age change was methodically thought over, and is intended to serve the purpose of retaining LDS return missionaries, increase the number of LDS men who serve missions, and increase the number of LDS men who marry LDS women.
That one year you have in-between high school graduation and your mission call is enough time outside your Mormon bubble to really start rethinking your allegiance. It’s not unheard of for a questioning 18 year old LDS man to talk to his bishop about doubts, just to be told that he should serve a mission; that it will strengthen his testimony. It’s also not unheard of for that one year window to cause an LDS man to reject a mission call in the subsequent year (again, thanks to having that year outside the bubble).
Concerning marriage, that’s more to do with LDS who attend LDS universities (and specifically the women). A woman who wants to serve a mission will typically go to college, graduate, then serve a mission, just to come back a single 23-24 year old, with her only recourse to any men still left over in her singles’ ward. Lowering the female age for mission service closer to those of men, I wouldn’t be surprised, has something to do with ensuring that more LDS female return missionaries marry LDS men.
These are just my 2 cents from a former LDS missionary.