Tropic of Capricorn Canvassing (Rockhampton, Yeppoon)
The canvassing roadtrip push into Queensland was a long time coming. Beginning mid-March, the team worked Yarra Glen and Healesville, VIC, then Moss Vale and Bowral, NSW. Between setup and pulldown responsibilities at NNSW Big Camp, we went forth across Mid North Coast territory.
Finally, on an overcast day in mid-May, two fully loaded cars with trailers departed Rollands Plains for Yeppoon, QLD. Two days and 1,200 km later - we arrived!
Yeppoon book stats
Results from three profitable days in Yeppoon, Taranganba, Cooee Bay and other suburbs:
- 167 Path to Peace
- 52 The Great Controversy (including 8 small editions)
- 37 Health and Peace
- 14 Peace Above the Storm
- 3 Lessons of Love
There was someone in the house - I could tell. Dogs were barking. I went through a gate in the fence and a dog from inside the house ran out and started going for my ankles.
I called out, trying to get someone's attention. At the last minute a lady came to the door.
"I'm so sorry!" she exclaimed. "Just heard the dogs going crazy and realised there was someone here."
Once she'd seen Wholesome Homemade I asked what she liked to read.
"True stories about people - true things, and self help books," she said.
"Here are two that I think will be perfect for you," I replied.
Out came The Great Controversy and Health and Peace. This lady was really interested in Health and Peace. She'd just given up smoking. Everyone in her family had been praying for her and she'd been shocked to see how prayer had made her smoking habit so easy to give up.
"That's a testament to God's power!" I exclaimed.
The lady liked The Great Controversy as well. She hugged both books to her chest.
"I could even give this to people afterwards so that they get something out of it," she said. "But first I'm going to get something out of it. I feel like this one [Health and Peace] is made for me."
Lunchtime in Cooee Bay, Yeppoon
Ella and I walked into a yard just on dusk and met a young guy emerging from under the house. Jimmy had a big fuzzy beard.
"Follow me up here," he said, after seeing The Great Controversy.
At the top of the stairs Jimmy called out to an older lady; possibly his mum. He held up the books as she came out of the house. The lady had a very quizzical look on her face which betrayed the question on her mind - what are these guys doing? I briefly explained the books and work we do, then answered some of her questions.
"We're pretty spiritual here," she replied, after I closed on the books.
I asked for a general donation instead, and she was happy to give $10.
Jimmy had disappeared during this exchange. As we headed back to the stairs, he showed up with $6 and another friend, Yaz!
Jimmy, it turned out, was keen on all the reading books. I tried to narrow things down. He really liked The Great Controversy, and thought of another friend who would benefit from Health and Peace. We left him with those titles and gave Yaz a Path to Peace.
Yeppoon church service
On Sabbath we shared testimonies from during the week, and preached about five basic canvassing principles applied to the Christian life and working for Jesus.
From left to right: Emmanuel, Liesl, Jylan, Kayla and Ella.
Rockhampton book stats
Approximately half of the city was covered in two weeks of canvassing:
- 558 Path to Peace
- 123 The Great Controversy (including 45 small editions)
- 62 Health and Peace
- 51 Peace Above the Storm
- 19 Lessons of Love
I was canvassing by myself for the first time this trip. Russell started talking with me at the top of his stairs and I showed him all the books.
"What church are you with?" I asked, after realising he was Christian.
He attended Assemblies of God. I said I was a Seventh-day Adventist Christian, and asked which books interested him.
"How much for the three of them?" Russell queried.
"Between $40-80," I said.
He came back with a $50 donation, so I left him with Wholesome Homemade, The Great Controversy, Peace Above the Storm and Health and Peace.
Russell was grateful. "Thank you very much!"
Ella canvassing on a sunny Rockhampton afternoon
On my last stretch this morning I knocked at a house where I thought nobody would be home. I left a doorcard and started walking to another person's yard. Then a guy came to the door!
He was big and scary looking, rough. This isn't going to go well, I thought.
When I canvassed him, he wanted the cookbook and The Great Controversy.
"I don't really have any money," he said.
"Oh well, you can have have this small Great Controversy," I replied.
"How do I get more of these books?" the guy asked.
I gave him the Eastward website and he was going to order two more big books.
An Aboriginal guy stuck his head out the window as I walked up to the door. I introduced myself, and skipped the cookbook to show Health and Peace. He was really nice and worked in the health industry with young Aboriginal people.
After I showed him The Great Controversy we talked for ages. This man wasn't a Christian but believed in Jesus to some level and said he was spiritual. He went to get his wallet.
"If only I'd known you were coming. I only have $17. I'll have to walk to work tomorrow - but that's ok," he said. Then he found another $3.
"I really want to give you more than that," he told me.
He gave me $20 for The Great Controversy and Health and Peace, then started reading the books right then and there! The man also thought they'd be helpful for the kids he worked with. He was totally keen on reading The Great Controversy.
Preaching in Rockhampton
Similar to Yeppoon, the team shared experiences, items and sermonettes during the Rockhampton Seventh-day Adventist Church service. Kayla, pictured, shared about book in the hand and God's outstretched arm of mercy.