Mormon missionaries shine shoes, teach the gospel in Harlem

Published: Friday, Dec. 6 2013 3:05 p.m. MST

"Today was a very inspiring day for me in the mission field," Sister Diehl wrote. "While it was a wonderful experience to talk with so many wonderful people, my heart was touched in particular when a man who stopped by one of our tables and had a profound insight and said, 'I get it, this is like when Jesus washed the feet of his disciples to demonstrate we are all on the same level, we are all equal and we are all here to serve each other.'"

Having not made this connection previously, Sister Diehl expressed her appreciation for her opportunity to serve.

"Just when I heard that he said that, I don't even know how to describe it in words. It just really put it into perspective," Sister Diehl told the Deseret News. "Service really is the closest thing we can do to get closer to the Savior."

Since it was posted on Facebook, Sister Diehl's photo has been shared on other social media sites and blogs.

"It's quite incredible, I think," she said. "I think as a missionary, you hope that efforts aren’t going in vain. You never know exactly who you’re touching, and I think that project we did, it definitely let you see just how much you are affecting people," Sister Diehl said.

In addition to facilitating service and gospel discussions, the experience had a positive impact on the missionaries.

"When Elder Kerr and I were doing this activity, it was like riding a roller coaster," Elder Pickard said. "We had so much energy doing this. It's probably some of the most fun we've ever had together."

According to Elder Kerr and Elder Pickard, this won't be the last time they join together in service to spread the spirit of Christ.

"We probably will do a second shoe shine at some point," Elder Kerr said. "I'm kind of a relaxed person, but when we were doing that shoe shine, I've never had that much energy as a missionary. ... It was pretty amazing, and I think it was definitely Spirit-driven. I was talking to every single person I saw on the street and just had an absolute ball."

Email: spetersen@deseretnews.com

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