I am a missionary in my church ward (congregation). There are several members in every ward who work with the official tag-wearing missionaries you usually think of as they teach the Gospel of Jesus Christ. We also encourage all members to share the gospel by inviting their friends to activities, and into their homes to learn about our church. We recently put on a fireside (a meeting to share inspirational messages) to remind the members how they can share the gospel through everyday interaction and conversation. Below is the "transcript" we used to outline the meeting. It does not have every word written out, but gives a general idea of what was said. If you use this for your ward, feel free to expand on the ideas in your own words. The first skit is meant to be funny because the member is not sincere when speaking of the church. The other skits show a member sharing what they believe in a friendly and open way . The comments in italics are meant to help with the discussion after the skit has been presented. There are also video clips to make it even more interesting. I hope you like it and can use it to inspire yourself or your own ward!
Ward Missionary Fireside
Introduction We would like to help you feel more comfortable introducing the gospel to your friends and inviting them to church activities. Watch for what goes wrong as this member invites friends to an activity. We will discuss it afterward…
What Not To Do Skit -Member, F1, F2
Member: My church leader told me I have to give out an invitation to this church activity. Can I give one to you so I can say I did it? (hands them invitation fliers) (insincere, meeting a quota)
Friend 1: Sure, I guess so. When is it? What are you doing there?
Member: I can’t remember. It’s written on there. You probably wouldn’t want to come anyway since you aren’t really religious. (making a judgment of the other person)
Friend 2: Well it’s true we haven’t been to any church before, but we have thought about looking into finding one.
Member: Oh, you should get baptized into mine. Then you could play on the volleyball team! It’s really fun. (Not Christ-centered)Friend 1: I thought only babies could be baptized. You can be an adult?
Friend 2: So what would someone have to do to get baptized?
Member: Take some lessons from the missionaries. Maybe they will knock on your door some time. (not using your resources)
Friend 1: So what do missionaries teach? What do you believe?
Member: (bored) “We believe in God the Eternal Father, and in His Son Jesus Christ, and in the Holy Ghost. We believe that men will be punished for their own sins and not for Adam’s transgression. We-“ (reciting memorized material, not engaging in conversation)
Friend 2: Wait. What is a transgression?
Member: Just a minute, I’ll tell you at the end. “We believe that through the atonement of-“ (not listening)
Narrator: The member recites all 13 articles of faith
-Friends look at each other confused, and check their phones as member recites-
Member: …we seek after these things.
Friend 1: You said something about the atonement. What is that?
Member: That’s the most important part! You don’t know what that is? You better come to church because you should know that. Anyone who doesn’t know about that can never be happy. (unkind, divisive, lecturing)
Friend 2: No thanks. I think we’re busy that day. (gives the invitation back)
Discussion What did you notice went wrong in this situation?... (use comments in italics as examples)
We should be excited to share what we have with others.
In reference to the story of his son sharing bandages with his friends after a brother used them to fix his injuries. “...He immediately and intuitively wanted to give to his friends the very thing that had helped him when he was hurt. That little boy did not need to be urged, challenged, prompted, goaded, to act. His desire to share was the natural consequence of a most helpful and beneficial personal experience… Sharing with other people things that are most meaningful to us, or have helped us is not unusual at all.”
Narrator: Let’s look at a situation where the member wants to share… A parent is picking up her daughter from playing at a member friend's home.
What To Do Skit- parent friend, parent member
Friend: Thanks for letting Sarah come over today. Your daughter always seems so happy and is such a good friend for her.
Member: Thank you! I’m so glad to hear that. They always have a good time together.
Friend: Your whole family seems happy and there is a peaceful feeling in your house. What is your secret?
Member: It’s not always peaceful, but we try to teach our kids and to be respectful and helpful. Our church teaches a lot about the importance of families and living like Christ so we spend a lot of time together.
Friend: Which church do you go to?
Member: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, but we are mostly known as Mormons. Have you heard of it? (ask them questions)
Friend: Yes, I have driven past your church on ______ Street before. My church doesn’t say much about families, but preaches from the Bible. Do you have the Bible in your church?
Member: Yes, we believe in the Bible. We believe that Jesus lived on Earth and died so that we can live together again as families after we die. Since we will be together forever, we focus a lot on making our families happy. (answer their questions without lecturing.)
Friend: Oh, that sounds really nice.
Member: I have a paper called The Proclamation on the Family that I can give you. It explains what we believe about families. Let me get it for you. There is also a short online video that talks about family too. I will send you the link. (use your resources)
Friend: Ok, thanks. I will watch it later.
Member: Great! I’d like to hear what you think about it. Will you let me know? (they know you will follow up)
Discussion What did the member do right?
There are many videos to share on lds.org and Mormon Channel. This is one you could share following a conversation on family.
Narrator: Following up is an important part of sharing the gospel. Watch how the member follows up and invites their friend to learn more.
Skit: Follow-up and Meet the Missionaries
Member: It’s so good to see you again. I hope you had a nice weekend.
Friend: Yes, it was nice but busy. It always goes so fast!
Member: I know, it seems like the weekend flies by. I know you were busy, but did you have a chance to read over the Family Proclamation I gave you or watch the video? (be friendly and follow up)
Friend: Yes I did. I really liked it!
Member: What did you like the most about it? (ask what they think)
Friend: I would love to have a family that feels so connected. I liked the idea of a family home evening. Do you do that?
Member: Yes, we have it on Monday nights. We try not to schedule things that night so we can be together, talk about things coming up for the family, have a short gospel lesson, and play a game. And we always have treats! Would your family like to come to our next Family night? (Invite)
Friend: Yes, that would be great.
Member: Would you mind if we also invited our missionaries so that they can share a gospel message with us? They are really nice, and would love to answer any other questions you might have. (introduce the missionaries)
Friend: I would not mind. As long as they don’t lecture me.
Member: Oh, they would not do that. They are kind and will respect your beliefs. So, does 6:30 on Monday night work for you?
Friend: I will check if we are free, but that should be fine.
Member: Ok, see you then!
Discussion What did the member do to encourage their friend to learn more?
Neil L Andersen said: “You won’t be of much help to others if your own faith is not securely in place.”
We can work to build our own testimonies so we will want to share with others, and feel more confident when we do so.
Show Video- Increase Your Testimony (Members talk about how their testimonies grew through the influence of the Spirit.)
Challenge to the Ward (Keep inviting until you get 5 "no" answers to invitations. Chances are before you get to 5, there will be a yes!... or pick one small thing you will do now to build your testimony.)
(Sister or Elder) Missionary Testimonies