Hi I'm Laurel
I was raised as a Lutheran pastor's kid. I have ten siblings and I grew up on Vancouver Island, in B.C., Canada. I went to university at Acadia University in Nova Scotia, and at McGill University in Montreal, Quebec. I was baptized into the church on July 16, 2011 which was one of the best days of my life. Soon I hope to be married to my best friend, Dan. I love to laugh and have fun. What matters most to me is my family and friends and the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Why I am a Mormon
I'm a Mormon because after being drawn to the church for years I finally met my fiance Dan and got the opportunity to learn about the church. The more I learned, the more I realized that it's the true church and that beyond that, it is an incredibly accepting, fun, life-loving, and energizing place to be. I know that the Book of Mormon is true. No one pressured me to become a Mormon, and no one's asked me to prepare this profile online. Quite the opposite: I'm preparing this because I want others to know about the amazing truth I've found in the LDS Church, and the joy and peace I've come to have, as I've learned more and more about the Atonement of Christ and the Restoration of his church here on earth. I'm a Mormon because I love life, I love to laugh, and I love people. I'm goofy, and I'll never stop being who I am. Something I love about the church is that no one pressures me to be anything other than who I am, period. The church is so unlike the stereotypes that are out there, that I wish I could share that truth with everyone. I suppose that's why I'm creating this profile. I hope to serve the church someday as a stake missionary. I've been praying about it and I'd LOVE to do it. We'll see what my calling will be...I'm excited to learn about it.
Could you talk about your baptism?
My baptism was amazing. It was a beautiful sunny summer day in Smithers, B.C. and I was wearing my white gown and the two missionaries who taught me presented me with my own leather bound, gold leaf Bible-Book of Mormon combination. I was baptized at a small LDS branch in Smithers B.C. but practically the whole church turned out for it (this was a Saturday!) and I felt surrounded by love. There were even some non-practicing LDS members and some non-LDS members of the community there! (It might've helped that I'd posted my baptism announcement on Facebook..the church embraces technology, by the way.) Anyway, I had the great treat of being baptized in a small branch surrounded by people I knew. The little children gathered around the front of the baptismal font and then the adults stood behind, and as I was baptized in the warm water, and came up from under the water a brief moment later, I felt absolute peace and harmony in my soul, and a joy that's hard to describe. I looked up and there were all these faces looking at me, the children's eyes wide with awe and excitement, and I thought, "I'm part of this family now. This huge, 14 million member family." Incredible. My baptismal gown was of course soaking wet so I went into the quiet ladies' room behind the font to change as the missionaries showed the people gathered a video about Christ's atonement for our sins. I remember clearly hearing the message through the walls as I slowly changed into my regular church clothes, my heart beating, a smile on my face I couldn't wipe away. I realized my life had just changed for the better, for now and for eternity. My hands shook ...in a good way! I have a picture of me, taken moments before my baptism, outdoors on the sunny lawn of the chapel. I am cleanly scrubbed, beaming, in my white gown, and on either side of me are "my missionaries," equally beaming. I treasure that photo because those boys changed my life...just like yours can be changed, too!
How I live my faith
I live my faith by attending church each Sunday. I do my best to obey the 10 Commandments but of course I always mess up and sin like everyone so then I pray for forgiveness and work not to repeat my mistakes! I live what's called the Word of Wisdom: I don't drink coffee or tea or alcohol, I don`t do drugs, and I don't smoke. Recently I taught little kids each Sunday in what we call `Primary`(what most people know as, `Sunday School.`). My class was full of rambunctious monkies aged eight and nine years and boy, did we ever have some interesting discussions about faith, God, and family life! My students kept me on my toes and taught ME things, each week. I also live my faith by reading the Scriptures and praying daily, and LOVING GOD and loving all those around me. That is the single most powerful thing I can do to live my faith. Plus, I love to laugh and enjoy life. On a side note, believe me, Mormons aren't dour...I'm living proof of that. (I often laugh so hard I snort, but that's a different story...)