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While our backgrounds and experiences are diverse, we share a deep commitment to Jesus Christ, to each other, and our neighbors. Watch these stories of faith in the everyday lives of Mormons. You can also meet Mormons here.
Our faith influences nearly every aspect of our lives. Beyond simply believing in Jesus Christ, we try to bring His teachings to life at home, at work and in our communities. Here are a few of the cultural priorities embraced by members of the Church around the world.
We are all spiritual children of a loving
Heavenly Father who sent us to this earth to learn and grow in a mortal state. As Mormons,
we are followers of Jesus Christ. We live our lives
to serve Him and teach of His eternal plan for each of us.
You may have heard that is a requirement as a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints to serve a mission. Right now I am serving a mission, but I was not required to do it. I chose to.
It was not a stipulation of my membership, it did not endanger my salvation. I simply had a desire to share what now means the most to me in my life with others. As I have done so I have come to feel great joy.
My joy comes in seeing them make changes in their life that bring them closer to God and free them from the burdens of guilt that come from sin. The Atonement of Christ has never been more real to me as watching the people I learn to love repent and feel true joy and experience real freedom that only the gospel of Christ can bring. I feel the pure love of Christ in our relationship and nothing else compares to that feeling. That is why I am on a mission.
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"Required" is an interesting word when it comes to faith and religion. In the Mormon Church no one is "required" to serve a mission. Church membership is not revoked for not serving a mission. In this sense, they are not required, yet serving a mission is encouraged at many stages in life and in many different capacities throughout the world.
Missionary service is a tremendous blessing, a challenge, and one of the main focuses of the faith. The life of Jesus Christ was the life of a missionary in many respects. Performing service for one another, preaching the glad message of the gospel, and increasing the faith and dedication of God's children are exemplified in Christ's life and mirrored by those in missionary service.
To dedicate a portion of one's life in service propels those who serve and those who are served into a better life. During my two year mission to Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and during my two year service mission with LDS Family Services, I was greatly blessed and strengthened. (I hope those whom I served found some value in my service as well.) That strength has taught me to better navigate this life, has kept my family relations intact, and has been the method of helping others overcome their trials as well.
Spiritually speaking, I don't find value in reflecting on what my life would be like without serving a mission. Instead, I rejoice in knowing that without that time in missionary service my life would be significantly less happy and productive. In my life, serving a mission has taken on many of the characteristics of a "required" act since I can't picture myself progressing very far without having served as a missionary. While not required to be a member of the Mormon church, missionary service has been a critical and welcome part of my life and growth spirituality. I will be forever grateful that I had the opportunity to serve missions, and look forward to serving in many more.
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What will the Mormon missionaries talk about when they visit my home?
I served a mission in South Korea for two years, so I can tell you. :) The missionaries will probably be as nervous as you are as they arrive at your home. The nervousness does not come from timidity or a lack of belief in the message they bring, but because they want so much to express their testimonies and the Spirit they feel to you.
The missionaries will likely introduce themselves and get to know you and your family. Though missionaries are called by God to preach His word, they come from largely every-day backgrounds and have lives likely much like yours.
After getting to know your family, they will likely ask what questions you may have about life or the Mormon church. Using the scriptures and their own personal experiences, they will seek to help you find answers. Don't be afraid of asking any question or thinking you may offend or sound silly to the missionaries. They are called to help and serve and are very understanding.
After answering your questions and sharing a spiritual message, the missionaries will ask you to act on the message. A soccer player does not listen to his coach during practice only to go home without kicking a ball, right? In the same way, the missionaries will invite you to read a chapter of scripture or seek for yourself that what they are saying is true. You don't have to just take the missionaries' word in what they say--a loving God is happy to answer thoughtful, earnest prayers seeking for the truth.
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