Monday, February 26, 2007

Chinese at restaurant. Mon, Feb 26, 2007.

02/26/2007. 798. I had lunch with the ward mission leader at a Chinese restaurant at a strip mall. We ordered, paid, sat down, put out some books on the table. The waitress came by a couple times, but didn't say anything about the material. On her third time by, she brought my main dish, and I asked if she liked to read in Chinese. She said yes, and I offered her a Simplified Chinese Book of Mormon, and the Simplified Chinese/English bilingual parallel New Testamant. She accepted those, and the English Book of Mormon.

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At 2/27/2007 05:30:00 PM, Anonymous helmuth hübener said...

Dear Bookslinger,

I love this blog! You are doing a great thing! Have you ever tried loaning a book, rather than giving it, as kind of a way to be able to follow up? Ala David Stewart's ideas here:

"The Book of Mormon Loan Program

Ezra Taft Benson taught that the Book of Mormon is a great sieve, and that the members of the Church are under condemnation for taking it lightly. He taught that the Book of Mormon is the standard we are to use in our missionary efforts. Nephi declared: “And if ye shall believe in Christ ye will believe in these words, for they are the words of Christ, and he hath given them unto me; and they teach all men that they should do good” (2 Nephi 33:10).

Most Book of Mormon gift programs fall short as distributed books are rarely read or followed-up on. Fortunately, there is a superior way to utilize the Book of Mormon which avoids the free sample mentality, ensures time-sensitive accountability, promotes follow-up discussion, and utilizes resources efficiently.

The Book of Mormon loan program involves offering contacts or acquaintances a copy of the Book of Mormon as a loan. The sharer asks for the listener’s opinion about the book, and emphasizes that he does not need to read the entire book, but just enough to begin to form an opinion. Copies of “23 Questions Answered by the Book of Mormon” or specific passages addressing issues of interest can stimulate reading. The sharer follows up by phone or in person at an agreed-upon time a few days later. If the individual is not interested, he returns the book. If the individual is interested, he can continue to read and discuss, with church invitation or eventual missionary referral as appropriate with the individual’s permission.

Most people feel an obligation to return other people’s property, and so loaning the book is more effective than giving it away. The loaned status of the book also promotes time-sensitive follow-up that is often lost when the book is given away due to the free sample mentality. The Book of Mormon loan program is non-threatening to the listener, and most members are surprised at how easy it is to implement."

It's also cheaper to loan. I try to buy a case of 40 or so BoMs every year to give/loan out and even that's a bit expensive! I am not saying you should change what you're doing; I wish everyone in the Church were doing what you are, or similar things. Just a hopefully-constructive thought/idea.


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