Missionary moments: ‘If I had opened my mouth’

James Smith of the Northern Kentucky Ward, Cincinnati Ohio Stake, believes in pass-along cards. He related the following experience:

"In July of 2001, I received a phone call from an old high school friend who had tracked me down through several mutual friends. During the course of the conversation, he asked, 'Why didn't you ever talk to me about your church?'

"I was startled, to say the least. His question brought a host of answers to mind. I was not the best example of an LDS youth back in high school. I was pretty shy, and much more. I said, 'I didn't think you'd be interested.'

"He informed that he had been searching for the right religion since he was 14 years old. He told me that if I had opened my mouth and spoken to him about my church, I could have saved him 20 years of searching. I was shocked, dismayed, humbled and very unsure of what to say.

"He readily forgave me, but admonished me for not opening my mouth. That conversation started my journey with the pass-along cards. If possible, I don't let an opportunity pass without giving one out."

Brother Smith reports he has passed out more than 4,000 pass-along cards in the three years since July 2001. He writes his e-mail address on the cards before giving them out.

Here is one recent experience from one who received a card and was baptized:

"About two years ago, I gave a pass-along card to a young man who was subsequently baptized and is now serving a mission in California. He e-mailed me the other day to tell how he and his companion were knocking on doors and met a man who exclaimed, 'I've been waiting for you!'

"Evidently, the man had been praying to have someone come share the gospel with him. He showed the missionaries a pass-along card that had my e-mail address on it, saying that he hadn't wanted to call for the Book of Mormon, but that he believed God would send someone to him." — Elder Wade Fillmore and Sister Joanne Fillmore