Minerva Kohlhepp Teichert, King Benjamin’s Farewell Address,  BYU Museum of Art, not for commercial use.


Mosiah 2:14–21

For Younger Missionaries


  • If we can encourage others to serve their neighbors, how might that influence their reception of the gospel?
  • How does seeking help from those who are not members of the Church help us develop love and understanding of others so we can better serve them?
  • How do we best remember that while there are many in our ward boundaries who are not members of the Church, they are “members” of our Ward for purposes of service and outreach? If we can encourage nonmembers to serve their neighbors, what blessings are they in a position to receive?


There’s a friend named Nancy who lives in a ward in Connecticut. Nancy teaches the 9-year-olds in Primary, and they’re big enough that they are just jumping off the walls. And it’s all she can do to keep order. She was looking ahead and noticed that the week after next it was a lesson on the Good Samaritan. And she thought, “My friend Susan has no interest in religion. But she is the best good Samaritan I have ever known.” So she called Susan up, and Nancy explained that she teaches this lesson every Sunday to these 9-year-olds, and the week after next it’s on the Good Samaritan. [She said,] “Susan, frankly I have never met anybody who is such a wonderful Samaritan as you. Is there any way that you could come and teach this lesson for me, because it’s really got to sink into these kids.”

And Susan said, “I’ve never taught 9-year-olds before, but geez, if you think I can help, I’d love to.”

So they set a time, Susan came over, and they planned together how they would teach this lesson on the Good Samaritan. And Nancy had all kinds of experiences from having done that herself, that she could add to the teaching plan. And then, when that was finalized, Nancy said, “Now there’s one other thing, Susan, that you’ve got to be aware of. In our church, after we give a talk or teach a lesson, we typically end by giving our testimony. What we mean by testimony is, we describe the feelings that we have and the belief that we have, that the things that we were talking about are true. And so when we come to the end of the lesson, I’m going to give my testimony about the truth of what we’re going to talk about. And Susan, if you feel like you’d like to do that, I’d love to then have you give your testimony to these kids.”

And she said, “Well, let me think about it.”

They gave a wonderful lesson to those kids. Nancy gave her testimony to the kids. And then Susan stood up and gave her testimony that the things that they had taught were true. And as she did so, she started to cry. When the kids were gone, and they were putting the furniture back in the right place, Susan said, “Nancy, I never lose my emotions. That never happens to me. Why did I cry?”

And Nancy said, “Susan, it’s because whenever you say something in a testimony that is true, the Spirit of God comes into your heart and tells you that what you said is true. And it has such a powerful impact that it causes your emotions to do what they did.”

And Susan said, “Can I tell you, I’ve never had an experience like this before. If you ever need anybody to help you teach these kids, would you call me?”

And again, when people—when we think that they need the Church, almost all of them decide they don’t need the Church. That’s why they don’t come. But instead, what we say is, “Could you please help me, because I have this to do,” and invite them to join with us to serve the Lord in the true Church, they will feel the Spirit just as we feel the Spirit.

My oldest son, Matt, is a first counselor in the Cambridge Second Ward bishopric in Boston. When he calls people to serve in callings in the ward, he always calls them to two positions. The first one is the normal calling, and the second one is “You are called so that, over the next year, I want you to bring two nonmember friends to come and serve with you in this assignment.” And oh, my goodness, the impact that has had on the spirit of the ward, and the number of people they are finding to build the kingdom is just extraordinary. So all of you are members of young single adult wards. I invite you to invite others to join with you in serving the kingdom of God in your wards. And I promise you that they will feel the same Spirit that you feel as you serve our Heavenly Father (Clayton Christensen, “Try a ‘Front-Line’ Approach in Sharing the Gospel,” LDS Business College Devotional, January 24, 2012).


Wilford Woodruff


  • Like Pres. Woodruff, can you receive direction from God about your missionary efforts?
  • Do you always pray for that direction?


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