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Hi I'm David

I joined the LDS Church when I was a teenager, and it has blessed my life.

About Me

I grew up in Southern California. My wife Evelyn and I were married 35 years ago. We have three children, all of whom are now grown and raising families of their own. I have bachelor and master degrees in education, but professionally I am a software developer. I currently work as a project manager in the I/T department at the headquarters of the LDS Church in Salt Lake City. Today I live with my wife in Kaysville, Utah. I love to hike the mountains in Utah and to visit the beautiful national and state parks here.

Why I am a Mormon

I joined the LDS Church when I was 15 years old. The missionaries came to our door, and my mother invited them in. They taught me and my family about the Prophet Joseph Smith, the Book of Mormon, Jesus Christ, and the great apostasy that followed the death of Christ's original apostles, and the restoration of the gospel in modern times through Joseph Smith. What intrigued me most about the missionaries' teachings was the Plan of Salvation. They taught me that, not only is there a heaven to which we can go after we die, but there is a pre-earth existence where we lived as spirits with God. We are the literal children of God the Father. We lived with him and learned from him, and then he sent us each individually to this earth to receive a physical body and experience mortal life. When we die, our spirits leave the physical body for a time, and we have more experiences in the Spirit World, where we can learn more while we wait for the resurrection. Because of Christ's Atonement and his Resurrection, we will all be resurrected again and received our physical bodies. But in the resurrection they will be perfect and immortal bodies, like his. In the final judgment, there are not just heaven and hell, but there are degrees of glory. The highest degree of glory is the Celestial Kingdom, where Heavenly Father and Christ dwell. Because of Christ we can live again with Heavenly Father in his Kingdom, in our perfect resurrected bodies with out families forever. It all made perfect sense to me. It felt right. Though I had never heard such teachings before, they seemed familiar to me. When they missionaries invited me to be baptized with the rest of my family, I felt a warm, comfortable assurance in my heart that this was a good decision. And so I became a member of the Church. Three years later, I was at the age where young men are typically expected to server two-year missions for the Church. I wanted to be like those two missionaries who had taught me about the Church, and so I put in my application to serve a mission. However, I realized that it was not enough to feel good about something or want to emulate people you admire. When it came right down to it, I needed to KNOW that I was doing the right thing. Although I had learned much during the years since my baptism, I recognized that I needed more than just good intentions to sustain me for two years as a missionary. I felt an intense desire to receive a witness from God that I was in the right church, that what I had learned was the absolute truth, and that I was on a path that pleased him. I concluded that everything hinged on whether Joseph Smith was really a prophet, and whether or not he was a prophet centered on his claim to have translated the Book of Mormon by the power of God. In my mind, if I could know that the Book of Mormon was truly a book from God, I could know that Joseph Smith was a true prophet; and if he was really a prophet, then the church he founded is the true church of God. I took the promise to heart that is found near the end of the Book of Mormon. At the very end of the book it says "And when ye shall receive these things, 1 would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true ; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will 'manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost." Either the book is a fraud, and its author was a liar, and the LDS Church was an elaborate hoax, or the book is true, its author was a prophet, and the LDS Church is God's church. I was not willing to wager two years of my life based on a possibility that it was true. If I could not know for sure that the Book of Mormon was true, I would turn my back on a mission and on the Church. I had read the Book of Mormon once before, but not with the sincere desire to know if it was true that I now felt. So I began again to read the book. The first morning I picked it up and sat in a chair in my room, I prayed intently to God to tell me whether this book was true or not. I needed to know because I wanted to serve God in a way that would please him, and I did not want to be deceived. I then open to the first page and started to read the words. I instantly knew in my heart that this book was true. I cannot explain the feelings that I had, but as surely as I knew that China existed, though I had never been there, or that my parents loved me, though I had never been a parent, or that the sun would rise the next morning, though I could not see into the future, I KNEW that the people in the Book of Mormon were real people who had lived real lives and had written in their own language the words I was now reading in English. I KNEW that the only way this book could have come about was just as Joseph Smith said he translated it. I KNEW the Book of Mormon was true before I even finished the first verse on the first page. I continued to read that day and every day thereafter for an hour or more until I finished the book. And EVERY time I read, that same witness from God through the Holy Ghost penetrated my heart with convincing power. There was non doubt in my mind that the Book of Mormon is true, that Joseph Smith was a prophet, and that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the true church on the earth today. I served a mission for two years in Germany and bore my testimony to as many people as would listen to me. Since that time I have had many experiences, received answers to many prayers, and have since God's influence in my life that have confirmed what I came to know as a 19-year-old. I know more than ever, with a great certainty than ever, that Jesus is the Christ, that he knows me and loves me, that we have a living prophet on the earth today, who is the President of the LDS Church, and that there is continuing revelation. I know that God has heard and answered my prayers, and he will hear and answer yours.

How I live my faith

I have had many opportunities to serve in the church. Serving in the church gives me an opportunity to be involved with my neighbors in ways that I might not have considered on my own. I have particularly enjoyed being a teacher of both youth and adults in Sunday School. I love studying the gospel of Jesus Christ and then sharing what I have learned. I am currently serving as the chairman of a committee in my ward that is focused on family history research and going to the temple. We have a temple nearby, and I like going to the temple to worship Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ there. Part of my religion is being kind to my neighbors and reaching out to help others. From time to time I volunteer to work in one of the local Church welfare facilities, like the cannery in Kaysville, or in the Deseret Industries thrift store. Next to faith in Jesus Christ, a great emphasis for me is my family. I love my wife, my children, and my grandchildren. I married my wife in the Los Angeles Temple so that we would be married and sealed for time and all eternity, and our children and grandchildren and all of our posterity would be linked and sealed to us in heaven forever. My faith is centered in Jesus Christ as the Redeemer of the world and my personal Savior. It is only through Christ that I can be saved. I am amazed that he loves me enough to have sacrificed for me and paid for my sins. I do all I can to serve him so that he knows that I love him, though my love is imperfect and my actions are incomplete. I believe with all my heart that he can bring me back into the presence of our Heavenly Father.

Why don’t women hold the priesthood in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints? How do Mormon women lead in the Church?

David
Priesthood is the authority to officiate and preside in ecclesiastical ordinances and capacities in the church. In the eternal scheme of God's wisdom and order, gender is eternal, and men and women have separate but complementary roles to play. Because of our God-given natures, the Lord requires men to preside and women to nurture. in any well-ordered organization, authority is required to lead and to act in the name of the organization. The priesthood in the Church is that authority delegated to men. Because men are rather selfish and self-centered by nature, they need extra guidance and teaching to acquire compassion and selflessness. Serving in the priesthood is that schooling process for them. Women, on the other hand, are much more natural in their abilities to love and serve and teach. Priesthood is not required for them to emulate the Savior's commandment to love one another. Women lead in many ways in the Church. The Relief Society is the women's organization in the Church. Each congregation (ward) in the Church includes a Relief Society organization that functions under a presidency and staff that is made up entirely of women. Just as the ecclesiastical organization of the church combines wards (parishes) into stakes (dioceses), and stakes into the general Church, so the relief society has governing councils at the stake and Church level, all of which are headed by women in presidencies and boards. Similarly, the teaching of children in the Church is organized and lead by the women. Called the Children's Primary, there are presidencies, boards, and staffs made up of women at the ward, stake and general Church levels. There is a similar organization for the teaching and development of teenage girls, with women leading in at all levels. In the wards and stakes of the Church there are many ways that women and men serve together in teaching classes, working on committees, doing welfare projects, serving part-time and full-time missions, and on and on. All of these ways of serving in the Church for men and women are symbolic of the ways that men and women serve in the most important organization in God's kingdom, which is the family. By God's commandment and in his eternal order of the human family, which he has created, he directs the husband and father to provide for and protect his family, and for the wife and mother to nurture and care for the children and support her husband. They are to be partners in the business of life and family, to love and support one another, and to work together to build a righteous family. Each has a divinely ordered role to play, and each must help and support the other to be successful as a family unit. Show more Show less