Here's the scoop on the new tracting plan (written by Renee from Drake's voice recording):
In "the olden days" they would go to the giant apartment areas, and would knock on doors one by one. Half of the people wouldn't be home and the other half said they weren't interested (at least that was Drake's experience with tracting his first year and a half in Poland -- and in the winter months, they would sometimes tract for 3 or 4 hours at a time). And I think that was his only time being asked in until this new idea
So a few weeks ago, President Edgren talked to Drake and Elder Jones about trying a new tracting plan. (He heard about this idea from the Czech Republic mission president at a recent mission president conference). Instead of just showing up at the apt. building unannounced, they would write up a little letter and drop them off in all the apt. mailboxes. The letter explains who they are, the message that they'd like to share, and the time and date they'd return. (Time being a range, since they are knocking on so many doors). Also, I think they wrote 2 dates (like Tuesday and Thursday), so if one didn't work, the other might.
This way the people were somewhat prepared for the strangers at their door and if they were interested, but might otherwise be gone, they'd find a way to be there.
They also had a new plan to keep track of what happened at each door. Before they would go through the building and wouldn't return unless they had an appt. (which never happened for him, but that was the idea). So for all of the people not home, they wouldn't get another chance to hear the gospel at their door.
Elder Jones took a record of what happened at each door. He said that out of about 100 doors, 60 of them opened their doors. He says that usually they spend a lot of time at the doors trying to explain who they are. This time, they already knew and would say, "Oh, you're the Mormon's?" and many would still decline, but they were generally more friendly about it. He said that one nice thing about keeping the record was that they felt like they were making progress and were moving somewhere instead of just wondering. Some said that they read the letter and would like to meet with them, but didn't have time (were about to leave or whatever). So they were able to make appt.s to come back. He said otherwise, they may have just said, "Sorry, we don't have time right now."
Since about 1/2 were not home that first time, they came back a second time (so many who would have been left out the way they used to do it) and they had 3 homes who wanted to set up meetings with them, which was insane to them because to get 4 appt.s in just two tries, after going a year and a half with only let in once? He says he's still in shock when people invite them in (wonders where the hidden cameras are, etc. :) )
Today he said that after going back to that building a third time and finishing up there, they chose another building last week and it ended up being a family building. HE said it was super noisy walking around and you could hear kids and babies, so that was fun -- because the idea of teaching the gospel to a whole family is probably their dream.
When the knocked on the doors the next day, they said that many families (about half) opened their doors and were really nice to them, saying "thank you," even though many weren't interested. Then they came to a door and saw a dad with his wife and two children standing behind him saying, "Wejdź. Wejdź. Czekaliśmy na Ciebie!" (or " Come on in! Come on in! We've been waiting for you!" Once again, he went into shock as they invited them to sit on the couch, offered them something to drink -- they were so excited to get teach the whole family a lesson!
He said it was pretty funny because they came back 2 days later to go to the rest of the apts. and accidentally went to this family's apt. again (thinking it was a different floor), but they talked some more and the man invited them again and then called them a few days later and said he was talking to some friends at work about the missionaries and he was wondering if he could give their number to his co-worker's brother :) .
So they are super excited about this progress. For a year and a half, never let in. Before this last transfer, he was let in 2 times (and was super happy about that). Just in this past week, they were let into a home every night that they went tracting -- 4 nights in a row!