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Hi I'm Andrea

I'm a product of a Lutheran grandmother, a Michigan farmer, a Swedish immigrant, a Wyoming cowboy and a teacher.

About Me

When taking a photo I like to look for the perfect angle and just the right light. Sometimes it's hard to look at life the same way. The realities get in the way. As I work on my technique I have learned that it's all in your point of view.

Why I am a Mormon

I took the time to look at different faith from different angles. Each one has its strengths and weaknesses. But some really stand out and in the end I decided on the LDS church. From every angle I found answers to my questions. I could not ignore the radiance I witnessed in every aspect from doctrines to personalities.

How I live my faith

Another lady and I visit three women monthly to fellowship and encourage them. Our visits are a chance to serve in small and simple ways. On Sundays I teach a sunday school class for youth. My students are seventeen and eighteen. We discuss the scriptures in ways that will help them to put into practice the principles they have learned. I give service in my homeschool community. We all contribute to enrichment activities for the kids. Last year I helped coordinate PE activities for the 5-8 year olds. They liked soccer and running games. I am a mother and an example of my faith to my children. Each one is different and needs my special attention. I try to spend time reading, singing, and gardening with the little ones. The older kids and I do school activities and practice life skills like cooking and cleaning. I live my faith as a wife, a daughter, a granddaughter, an aunt and a cousin and a friend. People are what matter to me. I try to be a good listener and a good friend.

What is the Mormon lifestyle like? How do Mormons live?

Andrea
While there is no one recipe for a happy life this is what we do. In our family we wake up early and eat a wholesome breakfast of oatmeal and orange juice. My husband reads the Book of Mormon in Spanish with my three older kids. They are learning Spanish this way. Before my husband leaves in the morning we all gather to pray together. One of my kids makes bread to be baked before lunch. Another one unloads the dishwasher. I feed the baby. Then we all get to work on our educational goals. I manage the education of my children at home because I believe that education is the foundation of all success in life. The older children are responsible to complete a list of assigned tasks. I help the younger children to understand their assignments and to stay focused. After lunch we often go to a nearby gym to exercise, the library or to piano lessons. I make dinner every night with vegetables grown by a local farmer. We get milk from a local dairy. We are passionate about the connection between quality food and a productive mind. Before we go to bed we all gather as a family to pray together again. I read to the children and help them say their bedtime prayers. The evidence that this lifestyle is producing happy children is in their smiles. Show more Show less

What do Mormons believe concerning the doctrine of grace?

Andrea
The Bible says a man is justified by grace without the deeds of the law (2 Tim 1:9). It also says that salvation comes by repentance(2 Cor 7:10)which takes work. Sins(evil works) prevent us from inheriting heaven. Jesus paid for the sins of all. Not only can we not repay him but nothing we do will get us to heaven, therefore only by his sacrifice can we hope for salvation. Focusing only on the grace that saves gives the impression that if there is nothing we can do to get to heaven, then we should only confess our sins. This idea can be easily twisted to grant permission to sin. The law is still in effect. (Rom 6) Sin results in death and all of us will account for our life to God. Focusing only on works can lead to both proud perfectionists and discouraged sinners. Christ condemned both types. He also freely forgave those with sincere hearts. The Lord will look at our works and our hearts and instantly know if we allied ourselves with Him or with the world. We need to resist temptation in this life. Grace, which is sufficient for any sin great or small, will work against the law. Those who choose a life of sin will receive a reward for their choices when their hearts condemn them. Those who choose good deeds will also be rewarded even if they were not perfect. I believe that at the final judgment, Christ will use the atonement to mitigate the effects of sin in behalf of the sinner. Maybe some sins will be covered but not others and yet the person be “saved”. (1 Cor 3:9-15) Show more Show less

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

Andrea
The Scriptures, including the Old Testament, New Testament, The Book of Mormon, The Doctrine and Covenants and The Pearl of Great Price are inspired of God and are the revelation of God to man, the authoritative rule of faith and conduct. They are the word of God written by prophets for the benefit of all God's children. Show more Show less

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?

Andrea
The priesthood is the authority to organize the church as a body. Women act under the authority of the priesthood in many responsibilities. We are invited to give advice in councils at all levels of the church organization. We are present for all ceremonies and ordinances. We don't feel neglected or put down. In every way women are nurtured as mothers, protected as women, and respected for their spiritual gifts. Show more Show less

How are the activities of the Mormon missionaries funded?

Andrea
We save up the money to serve a mission (as in a private donation). Sometimes the money to serve comes from a reserve designated for a college education (my father's situation). Sometimes the money comes from the monthly donations of the congregation to that specific cause. Many of our missionaries have a vested interest in the work they are doing because they sacrificed their own personal money in order to go. Show more Show less

Who wrote the Book of Mormon?

Andrea
The Book of Mormon is a compilation of centuries of records. The editor of all the records was Mormon, the second to last writer in the book. His son added a few words and hid the book in a hill. As you read the book you will hear different "voices" as many different people record their story. Unfortunately it is not a history book so you will not see as much about daily life as you might like. However, there are interesting political and social commentaries in the book along with the spiritual history. Surprisingly it ends in genocide. Show more Show less

Why don’t Mormons have paid clergy?

Andrea
Money corrupts. Show more Show less

Who chooses the Mormon prophet?

Andrea
God reveals divine truths to mortals who demonstrate personal righteousness and in the case of prophets gives them authority to speak in His name for the benefit of all His children. Modern prophets prepare people for Jesus' second coming to the Earth. Show more Show less

What do Mormons believe about the nature of God?

Andrea
He is merciful and will comfort us abundantly in our trials and forgive freely as we repent. He is also just and will reward us perfectly for our efforts as well as punish those whose motives were evil no matter the rationalization. Show more Show less

What is the priesthood?

Andrea
The priesthood is God's power on Earth. The priesthood is held by worthy men in the church and they primarily operate in their own homes unless ordained to a specific leadership responsibility. Women operate under the direction of the priesthood but they are not ordained. The priesthood power has blessed me throughout my life. I am led by a prophet, who acts by the priesthood to lead the global church. The prophet has the same priesthood authority as my husband but his assignment is much broader. I am grateful that my husband uses his priesthood to give healing priesthood blessings and baptize and confirm my children. The church is organized locally by the priesthood power. My Bishop has blessed my life by organizing Sunday worship services, giving me an assignment to teach the youth, and distributing my offering to the poor as needed. Young men ages 12 to 18 use the priesthood to bless and pass the sacrament. I appreciate their reverent use of the priesthood power they hold. These are just three examples of the blessings I receive from the priesthood. God reveals His will directly to the priesthood leaders. The missionaries operate under priesthood authority to teach the gospel to those not of our faith. I see God's priesthood power manifest directly to meet my needs at home and in my local church. God is the owner of the priesthood. We are just assigned to use it in specific ways. I know that God organized the church by the priesthood and that He directs it personally. Show more Show less

What is the purpose of the welfare services of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints?

Andrea
We care for the poor in our church in two ways. In addition to tithing, we can donate an offering to the poor. Second, we have many "bishop's storehouses" that function like a food pantries. These are ways of offering temporary relief. The real solution is not in giving out fish but in teaching men to fish. We teach people to grow gardens, staff employment search centers and ask our members to search out and serve those in need. When local people solve local problems people learn not to rely on "handouts." Our idea of Zion is when everyone is helping and no one is left needing something. Show more Show less

Is it true that Jesus appeared in North America after his crucifixion and resurrection according to the Book of Mormon?

Andrea
I believe he did appear. He was there for three days during which he gave specific sermons. Each one is recorded in detail in the Book of Mormon. If you want to know what he said you can read his words in the book 3 Nephi on the website: scriptures.lds.org His communication style is unique. His message is precious. They are proof in and of themselves of their authenticity. Show more Show less

How can I find someone to talk with, in person, about the Mormon religion?

Andrea
You can find a Mormon anywhere...just ask around. We live in your neighborhood, we go to your school, we are employed with you and our kids are on the same sports team. Our church services are open to visitors at multiple times every Sunday. Most college campuses have a student center for our youth called an "institute." You'll spot us by the big smile on our face and the warm, firm handshake. Show more Show less

What is a ward/stake/branch?

Andrea
A ward is a great big family. We spend so much time socializing with our church "family" that sometimes we don't have much time left. The older members of our ward are like our grandparents. They hug our kids and offer support. The younger members are like our kids -- they all mix and mingle together. A ward fills in the gaps when a person comes in who doesn't have a lot of family support. Show more Show less