Kingdom Proclaimers Report
Bible Truths Continue to Be Preached in Ireland
IN RECENT years the scenic country of Ireland has been the stage for considerable turmoil. At the same time, Irish people have responded favorably to the Bible’s message of hope brought to them by Jehovah’s Witnesses. The following experiences from Ireland bear this out.
■ In Dublin one of Jehovah’s Witnesses and his young daughter were sharing in the door-to-door preaching work. They met a woman named Cathy who was very busy with her many children. The Witness asked if his daughter, who was learning how to preach, might share just a brief message with her. Cathy agreed, and the little girl gave a clear, well-thought-out presentation. Cathy was struck by the youngster’s obvious sincerity and respectfulness, and she accepted the offer of a Bible tract.
Later Cathy reflected on her young visitor’s good preparation and manners. “I was impressed that a small girl could share such an interesting message without being precocious,” she said. “I decided that the next time Jehovah’s Witnesses called, I would listen to them.”
In the meantime Cathy moved to a small town in southwestern Ireland near the border of counties Cork and Kerry. Some time later Jehovah’s Witnesses called at her door, and she invited them in. She accepted a regular study of the Bible and now attends congregation meetings with several of her children. Cathy is grateful for the little girl’s genuine desire to share the good news with her.
■ In the area of Tullamore, the Witnesses had Bible discussions with a woman named Jean over a period of seven years. Sometimes she showed interest and accepted literature, but at other times her interest waned. One day, when a Witness named Frances and a companion called on Jean, they found her in a very disagreeable mood. “No matter what we said,” the Witness reports, “she got worse. Finally, she told us to get lost and slammed the door.”
Frances wondered if further visits would only invite a similar reception. ‘Perhaps it is no longer worthwhile to call on her if she is not really interested in the message,’ Frances thought. However, she discussed the matter with her husband, Thomas, and he was more hopeful. The next time they were in the area, another call was made on Jean. She was friendly and accepted copies of the Watchtower and Awake! magazines. Further calls were just as pleasant, and Thomas and Frances started a regular home Bible study with her.
Why the change? Jean explains that at the time that she was so impolite to the Witnesses, she had recently given birth and had just come out of the hospital. Because of breast-feeding her newborn and spoon-feeding her older baby, she was getting only an hour and a half of sleep a night. “The last thing I wanted to do,” Jean says, “was to talk about religion.”
Within two months Jean was attending all congregation meetings, and within four months she was sharing in the field ministry. Ten months from the time she began her Bible study, she was baptized. Now Jean’s own experience helps her in the ministry. She relates: “If I meet someone who is very rude, I try to be more understanding. I always make a note of it. Maybe the situation will change by the time I get back; the person may be feeling better and be more receptive.”