QLD to NSW: Canvassing Roadtrip Report
Few things are more satisfying and enjoyable than canvassing in an unfamiliar place. It's the early morning and late afternoon walks exploring territory, and the sweet fellowship with local believers. Anticipating a searching soul around every corner, finding them, then looking at maps to discover that corners are running out! Read about a fiery experience the team had in Gympie.
From mid-June, the team travelled through Biloela, Hervey Bay, and Gympie in QLD. We paused for Music Camp in July, then resumed canvassing around Lake Macquarie in August. Both Lakeside and Dora Creek Seventh-day Adventist Churches had asked Eastward Missions to help promote their evangelistic campaigns: Better Health, Better Spirituality around Morisset East and iDiscover REAL Answers around Dora Creek, Cooranbong, Toronto and other towns on the lake.
Book stats: June 12 - August 31
- 3,020 Path to Peace
- 782 Wholesome Homemade
- 551 The Great Controversy (including 190 small editions)
- 213 Health and Peace (The Ministry of Healing)
- 215 Peace Above the Storm (Steps to Christ)
- 62 Lessons of Love (Christ's Object Lessons)
I met Dan renovating his house just on dark. He totally cut me off on the cookbook canvass.
"Just so you're not wasting your time when you get to the end," he told me.
He didn't know about the other books I had! We had an awesome conversation about faith and Christianity for about half an hour. Dan's pastor had been helping him through a really tough spot with his faith. Dan had doubts about denominations; how if someone didn't belong they'd burn in hell forever.
"How can that match with a God of love?" he questioned.
We spoke about hell and eternity. I shared my thoughts and he really enjoyed the chat.
Then I brought it back to The Great Controversy.
"For what we've talked about, this book would answer so many questions," I explained.
Dan was very thankful. It was an opportune time to meet him just when he had these questions about God's character.
- Andy (Gympie)
Andy canvassing in Gympie
It'd been a hard day. Everyone was super mean, abusing me, telling me I was crazy. Then there was one guy... I was walking up the driveway as his son left the house.
"Dad! There's someone here for you," he yelled over his shoulder.
I waited at the door then showed the books to his dad, Andrew.
"What is faith?" he asked me.
I could tell straightaway there was some animosity, but Andrew was really searching for answers. He believed there was a God but couldn't understand why the world was this way. We had a good chat about evolution and creation.
"A few years ago I had all the answers to your questions and would've shut you down straight away," he said. "Now - I'm thinking about it."
We started talking about the Bible. Andrew didn't believe a book from God could be written by men.
"How could a book written by so many authors over such a huge timeframe give a coherent picture?" I asked.
"Wow. I don't have an answer for that," he said.
Then he brought up the Catholic church.
"How can they control people?" he questioned.
"The Great Controversy talks about that," I replied.
Andrew had really opened up and was a lot warmer by this point in time. I could tell he was struggling financially though.
"If I left the book with you, would you read it?" I asked.
His face lit up.
"Yeah of course I'd read it!" he exclaimed.
We made a deal. I gave him The Great Controversy and wrote my email address in the back, and Andrew agreed to send me a message as soon he finished reading it.
- Josh (Gympie)
Kayla and Sienna canvassing in Windermere Park
I showed Wholesome Homemade to a lady at the door. She really, really liked the book and said it was beautiful, then asked who we were.
"Seventh-day Adventist," I told her.
"You're vegetarian! I'm trying to learn vegetarian cooking," she said, excitedly.
I showed her The Great Controversy too. She loved what we were doing.
The lady couldn't find enough cash for the cookbook but decided to get The Great Controversy instead. When I surveyed her, she enthusiastically told me about attending Adventist cooking demos years ago. She couldn't stop thanking me for The Great Controversy.
"I'm going to get stuck into this tonight," she told me.
- Kayla (Gympie)
Team dropoff in Cooranbong
I met Tony, a French guy. I showed him the cookbook, but he reckoned that he was pretty much a chef anyway.
I went straight to sharing The Great Controversy with him. I told Tony all about how the book covers the French Reformation.
He was holding both books in his hands: Wholesome Homemade and The Great Controversy. Tony passed back the cookbook.
"I already know how to cook so I don't need this one," he said. "The reading book would probably have some good reads in it."
Tony bought The Great Controversy.
- Michael (Bonnells Bay)
Grabbing a handful of stock on a busy day in Toronto
I'd knocked on this door an hour or so before, but no-one was home. Someone had passed on the address for a special visit, so I went back again and saw a car in the driveway.
Before Mark even heard about the cookbook, he told me, "I know you! I've got your flyer. This looks really interesting and I'm going to come along."
Mark was a spiritual person and attended the Salvation Army church.
"Do you like reading?" I asked.
He pointed over to a giant thick book in the corner. "I love reading! Detective stuff - history," he said.
"Have you seen this book here - The Great Controversy?" I asked. "It goes along the lines of history."
Mark took the book, had a look and gave me a donation because he was really interested. He played piano and guitar so we connected on music as well - he even played for me on his really old grand piano.
- Rachel (Brightwaters)
Liesl canvassing near a Morman temple
Terry's family was falling apart. At first he brushed off the books. Cooking wasn't his thing. He wasn't really into history. But he held onto the message books after giving back Wholesome Homemade. Terry flipped through them as I was talking - he was a very distracted guy!
"This one here sounds right up your alley," I said. "Health and Peace is a blueprint to gain and maintain mental, physical and spiritual health."
"What else does it do?" he asked.
I explained more, and Terry gave me some change for the book. Then he wanted to keep talking because he had lots of free time. I offered to pray for him.
"Maybe after reading this book and you come back I might want a prayer," he said.
- S'tar (Mannering Park)