Grandma Deleyne sent me an email today with a summary of an MTC devotional from President Uchtdorf. He said his missionary grandson is serving in a difficult area in Europe. Apparently he is grateful for lots of things — including the almosts. They almost marked a visit, they taught a great lesson and almost took a couple to church. I can relate to that! This week we almost took a lot of people to church! Unfortunately the fact that they did not go to church means we need to stop visiting several of them, but we also met a few great new people that I’m excited to teach this week. We are trying to teach Renata,* Davi’s daughter. We hope we can take her to youth activities this week and to church.
We also met a great young woman from a Spanish-speaking country (Colombia), Taynara. We taught her the Plan of Salvation and it went really well. She understood everything and accepted an invitation to baptism. I think she has a lot of potential. It was sad because we somehow forgot to mark her for baptism. I left the lesson thinking that we had marked her for baptism but then realized we actually said the day but hadn’t actually invited her because we got sidetracked inviting her to church. But I have high hopes for next week!
We had an activity about motivation to be a member missionary — and let´s just say that it did not have a lot of attendance. We ended up not doing the activity and just giving them the handout. We asked the people to write the names of their friends who weren’t members and then respond to a couple of questions about them. Would you like this friend to know about the gospel? Do they already have church materials — Book of Mormon, videos, family proclamation, etc. Then you can pray about those names and ask God which person needs an invite to a church activity, a Book of Mormon, your testimony, a verse from the Book of Mormon, etc. We also shared some counsel from President Kimball:
It is the responsibility of the members to provide the stake and full-time missionaries with the names of individuals and families to teach. Sometimes we forget that it is better to risk a little ruffling in the relationship of a friend than it is to deprive him of eternal life by keeping silent.
and a different quote about how the best-case scenario is that the members find the investigators and the missionaries teach them. There weren’t many people at the activity, but I shared a scripture about the sons of Mosiah. They were few as well, but they ended up bringing thousands of souls to Christ. You should feel free to try this activity as well! Writing down names and then praying about them with real intent is a great way to get revelation about how to do missionary work. Also see Sister Franco’s recent conference talk about missionary work — it is awesome! Lots of good suggestions.
Funny story: we were teaching Leonardo the other day. Suddenly he asked “Do you want bananas?” We said thanks, but you don’t need to give us bananas. “No no, a bunch of bananas for each of you!” “Oh, you really don’t have to, but thank you.” “No, no!” He left and started cutting bananas from his banana tree. He put two bunches of bananas in a sack and we said “thanks so much, we will have to work to eat all those bananas!” Then he got another sack of bananas. “Um, just the one grocery bag is fine. We live alone. We only manage to eat so many bananas!” He said “If you don’t take the bananas I will be sad!” Um . . . he said this several times and we ended up walking around with four huge palms of bananas!!! We wanted to give some of them to a different investigator but didn’t remember to take them to church. They were very green, so we tried cooking the green bananas like fried plantains the other day. Sister Anaya said she had done it before but they were too green for it to work out. So now we have a ton of very, very green bananas! Anyone have simple banana recipes that use lots of bananas? We are in need!
*Names of investigators are always changed to protect their privacy.