Was the Referral a Hoax

Elder Plantin and his companion were given a referral – a referral of a white Baptist minister named Laurence.  When they first called upon Laurence and his family of seven, it appeared that the referral had been given to them as a hoax or just to see how the Elder’s would react.  The minister regaled them with a whole list of reasons why the Book of Mormon was false.  Unable to match Laurence with scriptural knowledge, the Elders bore humble testimony and left feeling very disheartened and unsure what they should do next. They kept visiting the family, but without any noticeable progress.  They decided to fast for guidance.  Shortly thereafter, Laurence and his family were evicted from their home and had no place to live.  The missionaries made a few phone calls and soon found a member who made available his caravan (travel trailer) and stable.


On the next visit to the family, Laurence told the Elders, “I believe that love is righteousness.”  He then promised to read the Book of Mormon and pray to see if it were true.  As promised, Laurence read the Book of Mormon.  He subsequently read the Doctrine and Covenants, Pearl of Great Price, Miracle of Forgiveness, A Marvelous Work and a Wonder, Jesus the Christ and Mormon Doctrine.  Then one day, he asked the missionaries “When can I be baptized?”  Soon after his baptism and ordination to the Aaronic Priesthood, the other family members gained testimonies and were baptized by Laurence.  He has since received the Melchizedek Priesthood.  He and his wife have accepted callings in the Church and they and their older children have received patriarchal blessings.  Laurence has found a new job and the family now lives in their own home.