Hi I'm Shannon
I was born and raised in Southern California. I live with my mom. We have a Doberman Pinscher. I go to a community college in my area but I can only take a couple of classes at a time due to a few medical conditions. I don't let the medical conditions get to me though. I love to hike, swim, dive, ride my bike, write, draw, and play music such as the recorder which is part of the wind instrument family, similar to the flute. I'm also hard of hearing but I don't let that get to me either, sometimes I sing in the church choir. My friends in church have encouraged me to join the choir so I did.
Why I am a Mormon
I have three main reasons why I am a Mormon. Firstly, it's because my mom was raised in the LDS church. So when my brother and I were born she wanted to raise us in the church too. She wanted us to receive our blessings when we were babies then get baptized at eight. However, I was born with medical problems, my bowels don't work properly and one of my kidneys got removed when I was a kid, just to name a couple. There were also some family issues such as my parents getting divorced when I was about nine. There were periods of going to church, periods of being inactive and even periods of going to two different churches at the same time. My dad had custody of my brother and I on the weekends, sometimes he would keep us until Sunday night. Once in awhile he would take us to a different church, instead of an LDS one but they were still Christian-based. He was probably trying to pull me away from the LDS church but instead he created the exact opposite effect. Now I know what other churches are like and I still want to be a Mormon. The church just seems to feel more comfortable. The second reason why I'm a Mormon is because someday I would like to create a family of my own. I would like it to be similar to some of my LDS friends' families. I don't want my future children to go through what I had to deal with. If they do, then I want them to have strong spirits to withstand whatever comes their way. The third reason is because even when I was inactive I could feel Heavenly Father's and Jesus Christ's love for me. The family ward still kept in touch with my family. We were never truly cut away from the church. Whenever I was really sick, I would receive a blessing and they've always worked. Without the help of the LDS church and the strength of Jesus Christ, I probably wouldn't be here today.
Could you talk about your baptism?
When my parents started the divorce process I was almost eight. My dad didn't want me to be baptized but after a year's worth of a battle my mom won. By the time she won, I was nine and it was time for my brother to be baptized. To this day I still can't get myself to be mad at my dad's negative behavior. I always think back to how blessed I was to be baptized at the same time as my brother. Both of us wore white and I got into the water first. Once I was out, it was his turn to go in. I am very grateful to have a mom that helped me get baptized. I am also very grateful to have the Holy Ghost as my companion from that day forth.
Please explain the part prayer plays in your life?
Prayer plays a huge role in my life. Without prayer, I don't think I would even be here. I have gone through a lot of physical and emotional pain while growing up. Talking to Heavenly Father and asking for His help has always worked for me. I know that the power of prayer is real. Now I pray for my family, loved ones and even friends' friends. Some nights, I would pray to Heavenly Father for almost no reason at all, just to talk to Him. I would talk to Him about how my day went, how grateful that it went well and hope that the same happens the next day. I'm still trying to get into the habit of praying to Him in the morning too. I've noticed that on the mornings where I do pray to Heavenly Father, they seem to be better than any other morning.
How I live my faith
After spending most of my teenage years being semi-active, I've started coming back to church around the middle of 2008. Part of the reason why I was semi-active was because I was going through a lot of medical problems. Once I got a few things fixed, I was able to come back to church. I'm in a Young Single Adult ward now. I've received some callings over the past few years. One of the callings pertained to being part of the Linger Longer committee, which meant I got to help out with the food. Another calling that I took part in was to be a greeter for Relief Society, which is a women's organization where we could give each other support, help fellow members by being there for them, build a sisterhood amongst the group and so on. As a greeter I get to welcome people and hand out fliers if there are any that need to be passed out. I've started to bring more LDS movies into the house. I also attend a lot of activities. One of which is Family Home Evening, or FHE for short. This is when a family spends some time together every Monday. It's a little bit different in the Young Single Adult ward, the congregation gets together every Monday evening and we do random activities that range from sports (such as soccer) to service (i.e. caroling at the old folks' home during Christmastime). When I'm working on homework, cleaning my room, getting ready for church or just need something pleasant to listen to I start the church music on my iTunes. I'm praying more often, I'm reading the scriptures more often and I even attend Institute. During the semesters I go to the day classes at the Institute and when the day classes are closed for winter and summer break I attend the Institute's night classes. The Institute is where we can take a break from college, work on our homework, take gospel classes to learn more about the scriptures such as the Book of Mormon and Bible. I visit the Temple whenever I get an opportunity.