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Hi I'm Stephanie

I grew up in Arizona. I teach special education. I love to sing. I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I have recently finished up a bachelor's degree in special education with an emphasis on severe disabilities. I am now teaching special education to upper elementary students. Working with these very special children has given me a greater understanding of what it means to be a child of God. I am very involved with music, I love the arts. I recently returned from serving a full time mission in Florida, chiefly in the Orlando area. I loved Florida, and the people I served will always hold a special place in my heart. I recently got married to the most amazing man for time and all eternity in the Mesa, AZ temple. I am loving life as a newlywed.

Why I am a Mormon

I was born into the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, the Mormon Church if you will. In fact, many of my ancestors were among the early saints who crossed the plains to Utah. But that's not the reason I am Mormon. Yes I was raised in this way, but we all come to a point when we have to know for ourselves, we can't just listen to our parents anymore. That started when I was 13, that was the first time I really prayed about the church, the Book of Mormon, and Joseph Smith as a prophet. I can remember it vividly. I was sitting in my room on a Friday night and decided it was high time I knew for myself. I offered a humble prayer and asked God if it was true. He answered me, through the most beautiful and amazing feeling, and I just knew. Have I had doubts along the way, of course. As a missionary my testimony was tried and put down and the work was hard and sometimes very discouraging. I got to the point where I needed to ask again, because if it wasn't true then it wasn't worth it to have people yelling at me. I prayed again, and the same overwhelming peace came over me. It came over me again and again as I testified of our Savior, his gospel, and his restored church.

How I live my faith

I attend church weekly and have served in various capacities within the church, as a full time missionary, leading the choir, and as a leader in the women's organization in my congregation. Currently, my husband and I teach Sunday school to a class of 12 year olds. Living my faith however, goes much deeper than attending church on Sunday, etc. It is a way of life, it is about how I treat those around me, what I choose to watch, read, and listen to, and how I dress. It's about doing the little things every day like studying the scriptures and praying to draw closer to my Heavenly Father.

What is the priesthood?

Stephanie
The priesthood is the power and authority of God given to man to do his will on earth. Any worthy male within the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has the opportunity to hold the priesthood. It must be given by one already holding the priesthood by the laying on of hands, just as Christ laid his hands on his apostles to give them the priesthood. Those holding the priesthood may then use it to serve God's children by performing authorized saving ordinances such as baptism, or by giving blessings of healing, etc. The priesthood is a sacred power and as is said in Hebrews, "No man taketh this honor unto himself." Show more Show less

Why are Mormons asked to donate 10% of their income to their Church?

Stephanie
The principle of tithing was introduced in Old Testament times. In Malachi the question is posed, "Will a man rob God?" Then goes on to explain that they have robbed him in tithes and offerings. We know that God has created everything for us, and therefore everything belongs to him. All he asks is for 10% of what he has given us for the building up of his kingdom. In turn, again in Malachi, he promises us that he will "open you the window of Heaven and pour out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it." The way I see it, you can't afford to NOT pay tithing because you miss out on all of those blessings. As I have paid my tithing I know the Lord has blessed me both temporally and spiritually. I have always been able to find a job when I need one and have had my needs taken care of. That's not to say that I always have luxuries, but I have always had enough for my needs in one way or another. Tithing money is used to take care of the temporal affairs of the church. Building new meeting houses, maintenance, lighting, printing materials, etc. We have a lay ministry, so the tithing money is not used to pay any of the leaders, teachers, or anyone serving in the church. Show more Show less

Why is The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints called Mormons or Mormonism?

Stephanie
The term Mormon was given as a nickname because we read from the Book of Mormon as well as the Bible. I have a deep love for both of these volumes of scripture. The Book of Mormon in no way replaces the Bible. They teach the same basic principles, it follows along with the pattern the Lord established in Corinthians, that "out of the mouth of two or three witnesses shall all my words be established." The Book of Mormon is a record of the ancient people living on the American continent. It gives an account of their history, their prophets, and dealings with God. The crowning event being when Christ as a resurrected being ministered among the righteous. The records were compiled by a prophet name Mormon, hence the title. Mormon's son, Moroni, buried the plates sometime after 420 AD and Joseph Smith was later led to where they had been buried. Show more Show less

What do Mormons believe about the Bible? Do they regard it as Holy Scripture and the word of God?

Stephanie
We regard the Bible as scripture. It is the word of God. This is sometimes confused and misrepresented because we do accept other books as scripture namely The Book of Mormon- where we get the nickname of Mormons from, as well as more recent words from latter-day apostles and prophets. I recently gave myself the goal to read the entire Bible from cover to cover. It has taken me a long time, but I know that my life has been greatly blessed by my devotion to read ALL of it. It has strengthened my personal faith in the Savior and in God's plan for me. I know that the Bible is the word of God, that it is applicable to our lives now as it was to those in the days when it was received. Show more Show less

What will the Mormon missionaries talk about when they visit my home?

Stephanie
As a former full time missionary for the church, when I would go into someone's home I would first get an idea of what their background was. Did they believe in Christ? Had they been or were they currently actively attending a church? Did they feel that God loved them? From their I would share about God's love for his children and how he has shown that to us by giving us a Savior, families, and prophets to guide us through this life. The unique part of the message that the missionaries share is that we believe that God has called a prophet for us again in these days and restored the Church that Jesus Christ established when he was on the earth. Show more Show less