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Hi I'm Rachel

I grew up on a potato farm in Idaho. I went to Harvard College. I'm a Mormon.

About Me

Iin seven sentences of seven words each 1. I study China and U.S. foreign policy. 2. I am married to my dream man. 3. I was raised on a potato farm. 4. I went to Harvard. 5. I am obsessed with Breyers' ice cream. 6. I love mountains and wide open spaces. 7. I love being a Latter-day Saint!

Why I am a Mormon

Being a Mormon gives me a knowledge of my eternal identity -- where I came from, why I'm here, where I'm going. It teaches me that God is love, and that He loves all of his children equally, across all Time and Space. Time, because He speaks to men and women -- including me, if I seek Him -- in our day and he has sent prophets and apostles to lead His restored church now as in times of old. And Space, because as the Book of Mormon teaches, the resurrected Christ visited his people in the Americas as well as the old world and on the isles of the sea - and "the Lord doth grant unto all nations, of their own nation and tongue, to teach his word." Most importantly, being active in the LDS Church gives me an opportunity to better understand and develop God's love in my life, through worship, study, and service to others.

How I live my faith

In addition to attending church each Sunday, I also go to weekly classes on Wednesdays where we discuss the scriptures and words of our living prophets. I serve as a leader in the youth group of my church, working with six 12- to18-year-old young women. I go to youth group activities every Thursday evening, which I help plan and organize. I also sing in our church congregation's choir with my husband. I am in the process of reading the Old Testament start-to-finish (currently somewhere in 1 Samuel - wish me luck!). And I hope to start a blog about the edifying truths present in various world religions, and how they reinforce and strengthen my faith (I'll keep you posted!). In all that I do, I try to become more Christlike, while also finding peace in the knowledge of who I am: a daughter of God. Most fundamentally, I try to live my faith in the way I love others, because "God is love" (1 John 4:8).

Why do Mormons perform baptisms for the dead?

As I mentioned above, God loves all of His children no matter when or where they lived. Proxy baptisms, which are baptisms that Latter-day Saints perform in temples in behalf of their ancestors who have lived in the past but didn't have the chance to baptized during their lifetime, are evidence of that universal love of God. It would be neither just nor merciful if people were unable to be "born of water and of the Spirit" (John 3:5) like Jesus Christ was baptized (see Matthew 3:16) simply because they lived in a time or place where they were not able to embrace the gospel of Jesus Christ or be baptized by those with authority from Jesus Christ. Through proxy baptisms, a just and loving God provides an opportunity for all of His children to be baptized. Then, in the spirit world, they will have the option of whether or not to accept the baptism that is done for them. This ordinance was also practiced in the early Christian church. In 1 Corinthians 15:29 it reads, "Else what shall they do which are baptized for the dead, if the dead rise not at all? why are they then baptized for the dead?" Proxy baptism is another aspect of the true gospel of Christ that was restored in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints through the prophet Joseph Smith. It also provides an opportunity for us as Latter-day Saints to learn more about our ancestors and provide service in God's temple, a service that those who have passed away without the chance of baptism can't do for themselves. Show more Show less