Comments about ‘Mormon missionary work moving online’

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Published: Wednesday, July 14 2010 6:08 p.m. MDT

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bloggy

I've wondered what would happen to missionary work -- or church attendance, for that matter -- if we were to experience a pandemic. It's nice to know alternatives like the web exist for making connections and discussing faith. But I have a hard time believing that a face-to-face meeting won't be necessary at some point for most investigators, or for most church members as well.

Lee

Hallelujah! Please stop annoying people by going door-to-door and tracting. Let people contact you on the internet.
Just don’t collect names without permission or make unsolicited contacts on the internet.

John Charity Spring

This is an extremely dangerous idea. Facebook and similar sights are well known for their facilitation of improper behaviors. Indeed, countless marriages and family relationships have been destroyed by situations in which persons of the opposite sex developed improper on-line relationships which quickly led to immoral physical relationships.

Quite simply, exposing young missionaries to the dangers of Facebook could result in disastrous consequences. Facebook should be avoided at all costs by everyone who seeks to live a chaste life.

attentive

Are we to imagine that everyone has access to the Internet or is a member of Facebook?

Al Thepal

The Church has actually been moving away from tracting for some time, but in favor of working through members, at least in areas where their are enough members to do so. That is what my mission in Florida was doing. We still tracted a little, but mainly tried to work with members. This is the first I had heard of missionaries out in the field doing this, though (I know the mormon.org chat has been set up for a few years, but I think that is missionaries in the MTC).

It sounds pretty cool, if it could work. However, at least in third world countries, I don't see traditional tracting leaving any time soon. Either way, the work of God will continue to go forth, and no unhallowed hand will stop the work from progressing.

WWJD

this is a good idea. i'm glad the church is willing and able to find those looking for it by whatever means are the most convenient to the searcher.

Chad S

Good progressive move by the Church. Knocking doors is a 99.9% waste of time. I always favored places where people who were interested could contact me. Nothing worse than upsetting an individual's day by bothering them at their home or on the sidewalk.

L

While new tools are available, remember that these same tools are availabe to others as well.

From my limited experience it seems easy for people not to be "genuine" on the internet. It is easy to smile (LOL) when you are not smiling. You can pretend to be rich when you are not, you can say that you are somewhere you are not, you can act interested when you are not and in fact you can "waste" others time without much effort.

A number of years ago when a friend of mind would get a solicitating phone call, instead of saying he was not interested or just hanging up, he would put it on the speaker phone and say "tell me more."He would go on with his work and periodically he would say, "I don't understand,"tell me that again" or he wouls just say "Really","No kidding","yes" or just grunt a little.

I hope this is not the missionaries experience and certainly I'm no fan of facebook. I'll be interested to see how this turns out over time.

One thing for sure, given winter weather in Rochester, using the computer will sure be warmer

CJ

Great idea, I tracted for two years as a missionary in a small foreign country that had been tracted out at least 500 times before I got there, it yielded nothing and was a tedious fruitless experience. I left glad for the experience but felt the whole two years that I was totally wasting my time. I tried to convince my mission President that we needed to do public service and help people directly but he felt that was a waste of time, thankfully the thinking on all of this has changed.

Jonnux

My friends and I have joked about going onto World of Warcraft and other online games and running up to people and start proselyting them. It was always just a joke but it looks like it's becoming more and more a reality haha.

Brushowl

This is nonsense. People in cyberspace are don't exist. They are just holograms. Soon we will have church meetings on the computer. Missionaries need to get of their butts and be with real people.

Blueblood

Awful idea, I hope they watch the boys closely. Easy to get homesick or see/ read something they shouldn't. Missionaries in my mission got really really distracted by facebook. Hopefully it's supervised, very supervised.

davewhittle

This is a huge step forward for the church - inspired!

Actually, while face-to-face meetings are highly desirable, I know from personal experience that they're not necessary. In the early '90s, when I was representing IBM online from Austin, I became friends with an Illinois state IT executive. Our only contact was e-mail and occasional phone conversations, but he nonetheless became interested in the church after several of our exchanges, and our first face-to-face meeting occurred in the Nauvoo visitors center the day of his baptism.

The spirit is not limited by time, distance, or anything else, with the sole exception of hardness of heart.

Pianoman99

@. Lee
you know you dnt have to answer your door if they "annoy" you...duh!

davewhittle

John, nice satire. At first I thought you were serious, but naaah, you couldn't be. "Facebook should be avoided at all costs by everyone who seeks to live a chaste life?" RotF,L!

If you are serious, then by your logic, missionaries like me should have never been turned loose in Japan, where pornographic posters are often found pasted to lamp posts in full view. Facebook is tamer than most parts of SLC.

I applaud the church for their willingness to change their approach from the ineffective to the far more effective.

the truth

While you can gain information online,

find peolpe who wish yo meet with the missionairies

you can never have spiritual learning experiences via the internet,

ultimately there must be a meeting with investigators in person.


And it is QUITE DISENGENEOUS to claim missinaries are annnoying,

they come by MAYBE once a year to ask if you are interested in listening to them,


yeah, that is really being bothered or annoyed by missionaries,

what a bogus complaint.

Mc

"Facebook should be avoided at all costs by everyone who seeks to live a chaste life."

Facebook is no different that any other internet website in that it can be used for good or evil puposes. There is much good accomplished through Facebook including charitable events, connecting families and friends, and now, missionary work. Just because some people use it for evil purposes does not mean good people shouldn't use it for good purposes. As in all things you just have to use wisdom and be careful.

panamadesnews

To: JohnCharitySpring

It can be a good thing - it all depends how it is used. Many, especially young people, chat with their friends on Facebook. There are former mission presidents who chat with their former missionaries on Facebook. It is probably only a problem for those who are looking outside their marriage relationship because they are not happy. These are going to find someone else, whether on Facebook, or not.

my slc

Good hecks John, what century are you from?

You are on line; at least you know the power that the mass media has.

Good for the LDS Church.

I hated “tracting" way back when: the old days in San Diego circa 1973.

Sister Smith

We all know that the Internet is just an extension of the Devil`s workshop. No good can come from having missionaries "on line" rather than exorting those unsaved souls in person.

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