This story is part of our Book of Mormon Testimonies collection.
Forty-one years ago I was in my final year at the University of Otago in New Zealand when my evening was interrupted by two missionaries of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints—the first two members of the church I had ever met. I listened to them as they bore witness of the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon. They then left me with a copy of the book with specific passages marked out for me to read, promising to return in two days’ time to take me to a “special discussion” at their chapel. For the next two days I did not go to my classes but lay on my roommate’s bed, reading this book. I could not put it down. On the appointed day of the “special discussion” my roommate’s mother saw me with the Book of Mormon in my hand and asked, “Are you serious about this Mormon business?” I replied, “Yes,” and at that moment this warmth, no heat, completely enveloped me from head to toe. I had never experienced anything like it, but it served to confirm my feelings of the past two days that this book was divinely inspired. It was true!
That same evening, the two missionaries returned as agreed and took me to the beautiful Dunedin chapel that looked out over the city. There I was taught more about Joseph Smith and the First Vision and they shared with me the expectations for members of the Latter-day Saint faith. Immediately following this discussion, I was invited to be baptized that very evening. Because of the testimony that I had received of the Book of Mormon I did not hesitate and said, “Yes.” That night, in front of four young missionaries in a remarkably simple ceremony, I was baptized and then confirmed a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. There were no photos taken but that night is etched in my mind.
That evening I knew nothing about the church, its history, traditions, language or even all the expectations of a member but I had the foundation of my testimony of the Book of Mormon and of Joseph Smith as a prophet. I have never regretted my decision. I have since been a part of many congregations all over the world and I have enjoyed learning about my new-found faith. Threaded throughout all this time has been my ongoing testimony of and love for the Book of Mormon as I study it. It is one of my most cherished possessions.