Errand or mission? What's the difference? Is errand a common use?
Sep 3, 2018 4:31 PM
Answers · 6
There is a difference in tone and level. "Errand" is an everyday word. I run errands all the time. I need to pick up some things at the supermarket today; that's an errand. I need to return some books at the library today; that's an errand. A "mission" involves a major and important goal. Except as a joke, I would never say "My wife has sent me on a mission to find caraway sea salt Wasa thin crisps." It often suggests a military goal, particularly one where the goal is specified, but not the particular directions for achieving it. "Mission" is used for organizations, in a piece of jargon which I happen to dislike, the "mission statement." For example, "Our mission is to provide children from birth through age 12, living in homeless or low-income situations, with the essential items they need to thrive – at home, at school and at play." The oldest meaning of "mission" is the one found in the word "missionary." Missionaries are people who are sent long distances, to spend years of their life in a distant place; their mission is to get people to accept their faith.
September 3, 2018
A "mission" is a CONTINUING task by a group of people or an individual. You might hear people say, "Her mission in life was to help the poor and homeless people". Some organizations have a "mission statement", which is a written document outlining the LONG-TERM purpose of the organization. An "errand" is a SHORT journey to carry out a task or deliver a message. For example, people might say, "I have an errand for you. Can you go to the store and get some tins of soup". Some people might write a "list of errands". This would be a small list of EASY things to do that day. Hope this helps
September 3, 2018
Mission to mars, or to the deep sea. It is epic, but is used commonly to exaggerate eg. It was a mission to get out of bed on Monday morning. Errand is different. Eg. Before I go home I must go to the bank, then the post office, bring a book back to the library ... these trivial things are errands. You get it?
September 3, 2018
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