What Is a Church Community?
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Hi I'm Rachel

I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I'm raising three sons with a husband I actually like. I'm interested in design and applied arts, good ideas, and books.

Why I am a Mormon

My family has been Mormon for generations and I was raised as a Mormon. I feel a sense of home with the faith of my fathers. Still, the process of my personal conversion is ongoing. I've had a series of personal spiritual experiences, almost always related to prayer and the scriptures, that have led to my belief that this church is true. I continue to experience small miracles of conversion. The peace and direction I find through this gospel help me make sense of the world around me and give me hope for a brighter tomorrow.

How I live my faith

A big part of my life right now is raising my boys, so a lot of my involvement at church is helping support the "village" that supports my kids. That means I bring cookies to Cub Scouts, tend preschool children, or taxi kids to service projects and activities. All of the programs that my kids participate in through church are organized by volunteers, so I try to help them however I can. I love the values and examples my kids get through our church community. I also teach the teenage girls (14-15 year old's) in class on Sunday.

What is being a Mormon like?

Rachel
I'm a member of a book group with women of different Christian faiths and varying religious backgrounds. We have noticed that even though we have some doctrinal differences our values and lifestyle are pretty much the same. We are all trying to raise moral, caring children. We are all striving to find ways to build the community around us and show kindness to those who need it most. We are all working to have happy marriages. We are all seeking for truth and fulfillment. And we all like reading. We share much, much more in common than the differences that result from where we attend Church on Sunday morning. I think that being a member of the Mormon Church is a lot like being a faithful member of any other religious congregation. Show more Show less

What is a “testimony” that Mormons speak of?

Rachel
A "testimony" is the collection of reasons why we believe and what we believe. It can include beliefs about Jesus Christ, the gospel, the prophet, or the scriptures. It can be something you feel in your heart or truths you have come to understand through life experiences. On the first Sunday of every month, our combined meeting is designated a Fast and Testimony meeting. Most adults fast (or skip) at least two meals, designed to encourage spiritual reflection and contemplation, and then the 45 minute meeting is open for anyone attending to share their testimony, or thoughts and beliefs, with the rest of the congregation. The money that would have been spent on those two meals is donated and then used for those in need. The meetings where we share testimony in a more personal, casual way have been some of the most spiritual experiences of my life. It's a chance for a congregation to grow closer together and learn to love each other more. And any time people open up about what they really believe, it's a chance for true learning and acceptance to take place. Show more Show less

Are all Mormons required to serve a mission?

Rachel
At age 19 all worthy young men are asked to serve a two year mission. There are lots of other ways to serve missions in our Church. Young women can go when they are older than 21. Older couples (usually around retirement age) can choose to go. You can serve a part time mission from home. No one is really "required" to serve a mission. Hopefully choosing to go on a mission is motivated by a deep love for the gospel and a desire to share the joy and redemption of the gospel with others. Sometimes the idea of sending my sons away for two years makes me really sad! But I will send them wholeheartedly if I know they are choosing to go because they want to share a faith they truly believe. I want to raise my sons to be the kind of people who can sustain a faith, who can have personal spiritual experiences for themselves, who know where to look to find answers, and who have the integrity and strength of character required to share those beliefs. So I do hope they are becoming the kind of young men who will want to serve a mission at 19. Show more Show less