Manti Journal-4 2007


Before I get to Saturday part-2, I wanted to mention something that happened on Thursday night. Aaron Shafovaloff lives here in Utah and often street preaches. He will walk around with a sign and talk about how Joseph Smith had 30 something wives, how some of them were as young as 14 and others were already married to other Mormon men.

It usually doesn’t take long before a Mormon will challenge him on what he is saying and then he will direct the conversation onto more important subjects. He also carries a little folding step stool so that once a crowd gathers, he unfolds the stool and stands in the middle of the crowd and preaches. Some times Mormons will ask him questions and he will ask them to speak up so that everyone can hear them. He handles the crowd very well.

Early Thursday night the crowd was very small so Aaron started to preach. It wasn’t long before he had a small gathering around him and was going at it pretty good. There were four Christians on the street who were new to the Manti experience and they were obviously uncomfortable with the situation. Before Aaron started preaching, they had asked him about his “style” of preaching and he politely and Biblically defended it. Once Aaron started preaching, they asked Bill McKeever what he thought about Aaron’s preaching. Bill said, “Oh, Aaron? He’s with us at MRM.” The guys were surprised because Bill doesn’t preach like that himself and is one of the more respected ministry leaders.

After the evening was over, Aaron went into Miller’s Bakery (a popular after-pageant hangout) and ordered some food. As he was in line, the four guys came over to him and told him, “You were right, man. You were right.” These four guys basically apologized and expressed their appreciation for his ministry. They had the opportunity to watch him during the evening and see how he draws a crowd that gives other Christians an opportunity to peel people off of the crowd and talk in smaller groups. Aaron doesn’t yell for the sake of yelling, doesn’t insult the people and his compassion is obvious to see.
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