Stacking Wood in Kuopio
March 2009

“Stacking Wood in Kuopio,” Liahona, Mar. 2009, 47

Stacking Wood in Kuopio

In late summer of 1968 my missionary companion, Elder Ken Heaton, and I visited a part-member family in Kuopio, Finland. The mother and daughter were members of the Church, but the father was not.

At the wife’s request, we taught her and her daughter the discussions—loudly enough for the husband to hear from where he was in an adjacent room. When we tried to get him to join us, he said he didn’t have time. On one occasion his excuse was that he had a pile of lumber in the backyard that needed to be cut and stacked for winter.

“If the lumber were all cut and stacked, would you let us teach you?” we asked.

“Yes,” he replied. But there was so much wood, he added, that it would take him a long time before he could complete the job.

Several days later, after waiting for the father to leave for work, my companion and I returned to the home. With the wife’s permission, we spent the entire day cutting and stacking wood. We finished at 5:00 p.m., just before he returned home. We couldn’t wait to see his face, but we scurried away before he caught us. After riding our bicycles home and cleaning up, we pedaled back to the home at about 7:00 p.m.

“OK, the wood is cut!” we proclaimed. “Now will you let us teach you?”

He could only smile, nod his head, and join us in the front room. Several weeks later, after hearing the missionary discussions, this good brother was baptized and confirmed.

“The wood is all cut!” we proclaimed. “Now will you let us teach you?”