Members proselyting door-to-door

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slb1900
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Members proselyting door-to-door

Postby slb1900 » Thu Jun 06, 2013 10:39 pm

Hi everyone, I've got a question that I'd already resolved (mostly) on doctrinal grounds but there isn't much policy written about it as far as I've read. Our bishop for some time has been insisting that members go out and knock on doors to find investigators and teach them, since FT missionaries are strongly discouraged by area directive from doing so in my country. My missionary and pre-missionary experiences taught me that it's the FT missionary's authority, delegated by his placement in an area by the mission president, that gives him authority to preach the gospel; that is, to open the formal gospel "pathway to membership." As you can guess, I was surprised to see this program start moving forward, but my best counsel fell short because I can't find anything in CHI prohibiting members from knocking on doors to proselyte. Either I've been dead wrong this whole time or there's a gaping omission in the Handbook on the subject. Does anyone know anything about an official source I could rely on to see the picture more fully? Thanks. I should mention I'm ward clerk, so I'm not simply counselling for counselling's sake :)

lajackson
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Re: Members proselyting door-to-door

Postby lajackson » Fri Jun 07, 2013 6:42 am

slb1900 wrote:Our bishop for some time has been insisting that members go out and knock on doors to find investigators and teach them, since FT missionaries are strongly discouraged by area directive from doing so in my country. . . .

I can't find anything in CHI prohibiting members from knocking on doors to proselyte.

According to my experience (and Handbook 2:5.1), the members are responsible to find and prepare individuals and families for the missionaries to teach. The missionaries are responsible to teach them. Teaching works best with member assistance.

I believe that how a member finds individuals and families to teach is up to the member. Nothing (other than local law or code) prohibits a member from knocking on doors, but I have always found that members are more effective when they live the gospel and then visit with friends, neighbors, and coworkers to talk about it. Gospel discussions lead to increased interest and opportunities to invite missionary teaching.

Perhaps your bishop feels differently, but I think knocking on doors is about as effective for a member as it is for a missionary, about 1 in a 1,000 will respond positively. I could see where a bishop may be trying to encourage members to think outside the box or work outside their comfort zone in doing member missionary work, though.

I would prefer to knock on the doors of my neighbors, introduce myself and my family, become friends, and then work from that basis to help build the Kingdom. And if my neighbors do not presently desire the gospel in their lives, I would still wish to be a good neighbor and friend to them.

russellhltn
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Re: Members proselyting door-to-door

Postby russellhltn » Fri Jun 07, 2013 10:27 am

slb1900 wrote:since FT missionaries are strongly discouraged by area directive from doing so in my country.

I would want to find out why. If it's legal, then would the members going door-to-door create the same legal problem? If it's a safety issue, then is it safe for the members to do?
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slb1900
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Joined: Wed Oct 31, 2012 3:16 pm

Re: Members proselyting door-to-door

Postby slb1900 » Fri Jun 07, 2013 10:49 am

Thanks for both the replies.

russellhltn wrote:
slb1900 wrote:since FT missionaries are strongly discouraged by area directive from doing so in my country.

I would want to find out why. If it's legal, then would the members going door-to-door create the same legal problem? If it's a safety issue, then is it safe for the members to do?


Last year here in Mexico, the area presidency instructed all the full-time missionaries that door-knocking is near-prohibited due to ineffectiveness; they're only allowed to knock on a door if it's guaranteed revelation, and as a result missionaries are spending a ton of time with members and PM families to get more referrals. The bishop's line of thinking is that we're not giving enough referrals to the missionaries, so if we've already tried with all the people we know, we need to go out and find more people to give as referrals. If it were just mass fellow-shipping I wouldn't see it so strange, but the idea is to have the members learn the missionary lessons, knock on doors, and teach lesson 1 to the investigators, after which they send the address to the missionaries if there was a favorable response.


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