Okay, I'm back, mostly in lurking mode. But nice to be back.

Noel is correct that the spiritual conversion is key. However, most converts I've 
worked with (Stake Msn Pres/Ward Msn Leader for 10 years) have a testimony of the 
gospel, but as with the Peter prior to the day of Pentacost, they aren't yet converted.

It is extremely easy for new converts to sway in their testimonies. That is exactly 
when they need strong LDS friends to encourage them and remind them of their 
testimonies. Those little testimony plants are good, but the roots aren't deep yet.

And the more LDS friends a person has, the better they are absorbed. I know a 
wonderful black family in Alabama. A few years ago, they heard the discussions but 
chose not to join, because they didn't want to lose their old 
traditions/friends/habits. A year or so later, they took the discussions again. This 
time, the branch president assigned the members to take a turn having this 
investigator family into their homes each Sunday for dinner after Church. They were 
baptized within 2 months, and he has gone on to be a Ward mission leader, Elder's 
Quorum President, and held several other key callings.  His wife is no slouch either, 
having stepped up to several responsibilities, too. But this only occurred AFTER the 
friendships brought them into LDS culture, where the little testimony they had could 
nurture in the warmth of the gospel's light.

Gary Smith

K'aya K'ama
Gerald Smith
[EMAIL PROTECTED]   http://www.geocities.com/rameumptom/
Freedom Forever

I don't want to discount the need to provide a loving relationship for
new converts. My concern is that too many converts fail to take hold
regardless of the amount of friendship that is extended to them. It is
almost like they didn't have their roots deep enough when the sun began
to beat down upon them and they withered away. I think it takes both a
community and a testimony to keep a convert. A testimony that is strong
will be able to withstand the blows that are certain to come to a new


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