Investigators Falling from the Trees
January 2019

“Investigators Falling from the Trees,” Ensign, January 2019

Latter-day Saint Voices

Investigators Falling from the Trees

man sitting in tree

Illustration by Robert Crawford

To the young missionaries tracting the streets of Buenos Aires, Argentina, in 1995, the promise they had received from a member of the Area Presidency seemed odd: “If you work hard and are completely obedient, investigators will fall out of the trees to be baptized.” We found out about that promise a short time later.

My father was pruning one of the trees along the sidewalk in front of our home. As he was up in the tree pruning, he noticed two young men walking toward him on the street. As they passed under the tree, he called down to them in English.

My father didn’t really speak English, but he knew a few words, and he was curious. Who were these young men, and what were they doing in our neighborhood?

The missionaries stopped, wondering where the voice had come from. My father then climbed out of the tree to talk to them. Impressed by their message and manner, he invited them into his home.

My father’s previous experience with religion had left him troubled, but the message of the restored gospel spoke to his heart. He had lived through some tough times, and he knew he needed to change. He listened closely as the missionaries taught him, my mother, my grandmother, and me.

I was only 11 years old, but the truths they taught also resonated with me—and with my mother and grandmother. As a result, we were all baptized a few months after we first met the missionaries.

The seeds of faith that the missionaries planted in our hearts were soon nourished by fellowshipping from friends at church, additional gospel teaching, and good experiences with strong Church leaders. Because of the warm welcome we received, the seeds of our faith “fell on good ground, and sprang up, and bare fruit an hundredfold” (Luke 8:8).

The fruits of our faith that we enjoy today—nearly 25 years later—include a firm commitment to the restored gospel of Jesus Christ, the blessings of the temple, and a full and happy life with a new generation of family members united for all eternity.

We will always be grateful for two faithful missionaries who put an inspired promise to the test.