What Is a Church Community?

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Hi I'm Melissa.

I'm a community education advocate. I'm a play-date professional. I'm a Mormon.

About Me

If the "M" in "Melissa" has ever stood for anything, it more than ever means "multi-tasker" at this stage of the game. I've accepted it, and I'm trying to gracefully embrace it, yet I quickly admit the graceful part doesn't always come through. Life's a journey, though, right?! So, I've got my ticket and I'm on board for a great ride! Some days you'll find me in a business suit; some days my jeans are my work uniform. Business office, civic club meeting, the elementary school or extracurricular activity site: they're all my opportunity to give my best to myself, my family, and my Savior.

Why I am a Mormon

For a brief moment in my life, I worked on Capitol Hill for one of the longest-serving, oldest statesmen in the history of the United States. By virtue of my work associations, people often assumed they knew me as a staunch political party devotee; what they later came to know as our relationships developed was that I take pride in declaring myself "Independent" and voting my conscience. The same has held true with my religious life for most of my life. I appreciate our Heavenly Father's trust in His children; I know that he wants us to find the great divinity within each of us as we strive to come to reacquaint ourselves with Him in this life's journey. One of the greatest aspects of the Gospel of Jesus Christ rests in the phenomenal call found at the end of the Book of Mormon for each person to truly study and seek to find his or her own testimony of real truth. We are asked to be independent and lose our ties; in doing so, we can come to find ourselves inextricably tied to joy among the freedoms found when one follows the path of our Savior. Why am I a Mormon? Amidst the chaos of life, I have chosen a solid foundation that grants me daily joy. Why would I want to be anything else?

How I live my faith

The Church of Jesus Christ is not about attending church once or twice a week and then going about personal business in a casual, unrelated manner that may or may not coincide with the Sunday sermon. Being a member of this church means living a lifestyle that brings safety to my family, love to our home, and hope to my life even amongst the ever-busy bustle of life's challenges. The basis of this lifestyle is serving others. For example, I have been paired with another woman and asked to visit 4 other women who are members of our local congregation. Some of them regularly attend church meetings; some of them do not. During each month, my parter, or "companion," and I make some sort of contact with those women through e-mail, phone, and, hopefully a visit. Sometimes we get together for lunch; other times, we might roll up our sleeves and do dirtier jobs with them. We've even helped a family move a few times. It's all about forming relationships that go beyond the casual phonecall; we are truly sisters in the gospel, and I think it's so great that we've been asked to be the ultimate shepherd's helping hands. Yes, it does take time and a bit of work on the scheduling side of things to make it work, since we all are at different stages and venues in our lives. However, having my children witness this service has made an invaluable impression on them, and it helps set the tone of love in our family's daily endeavors. The Church encourages families to get together once a week to focus on spending quality time together and discussing spiritual matters. I value this time with my children and my husband! We've found that talking about deeply meaningful issues with them from the time they were in diapers keeps the communication door open for a range of subjects.