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Hi I'm Lorraine

I'm happiest when I'm in the basement of a courthouse reading old documents about my ancestors. I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I'm all the ordinary things--daughter, sister, wife, mother, and now even grandmother--and extremely grateful for each of those roles. One thing that would come out in any introductory conversation is my love for family history, because I'm really curious about people's families' backgrounds and would probably ask about yours.

Why I am a Mormon

I was introduced to the gospel of Jesus Christ when I was 17. The first thing I was taught was the "Plan of Salvation," where I learned that part of who I am had existed forever, that I was a literal child of Heavenly Father, and that I (and everyone else) had the ability to make decisions in all stages of existence. I was thrilled to learn that there was a modern-day prophet who had seen and conversed with the Father and the Son. Having been raised without a religious background, the subject had always been puzzling to me. The teachings I received as I investigated the Church made not only intellectual but also "spiritual" sense.

How I live my faith

When I was a fairly new member of the Church, the thought of teaching a class scared me to death. However, there is a scripture that says we can make our weaknesses become strengths. And now I really enjoy teaching. It's exciting to ask for guidance in order to try to make oft-repeated subjects interesting through new approaches. It's especially rewarding to receive that spiritual direction in very real ways.

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?

Several years ago, I was called to a position of some responsibility in my ward. Along with being a great opportunity to serve, it was also a tremendous weight to carry. At the same time, I observed even more closely the service rendered by the bishop and the burdens he shouldered, some of which could not be shared. I was happy in my supporting role and realized that it was the best way for me to serve. That calling also taught me a very important lesson. Most of the things I wound up doing in a leadership role were things I should have been doing as an ordinary member of the organization. You don't have to have the priesthood or even an official calling to be of service. And, after all, that's what it's really all about! The priesthood allows men to provide leadership when required and to bless other people's lives. Women can do the same things under the inspired direction of their priesthood leaders. A wise priesthood leader supports and encourages the women around him as they serve in their own callings. It's a beautiful balance, and we're all working together for the same goals. Show more Show less

Why do Mormons perform baptisms for the dead?

It is distressing to me when people misunderstand our motives behind this practice. We do it out of love and a desire to make blessings available to those who have passed from this life. We firmly believe that those individuals still exist as individuals in a different realm. They also retain their freedom to choose for themselves (that same freedom that so impressed me when I was first learning about the Church), which allows them to accept or reject the offering we are making in their behalf. Show more Show less

Are there restrictions based on race or color concerning who can join The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and have the priesthood?

When I first joined the Church, there were restrictions against some as far as the priesthood was concerned, but never for membership in the Church. That was a difficult challenge for me as I didn't really understand why that would be so. But I finally determined that it was simply one of the few things that had no immediate answers, one which I needed to set aside and have faith that I would eventually understand. When I was serving my mission in the early 1970s, the Elders taught a young man from one of the French-speaking islands. He was such a choice individual, and we were all thrilled to see him accept the gospel. I remember waiting outside with the other missionaries while he was being interviewed for baptism. During that interview, it had to be verified that the candidate for baptism who was a member of the restricted group understood that he would not be able to hold the priesthood at that time. After the interview, we were all anxious to hear how it had gone. The supervising Elder said that he explained to this precious brother that there were two groups of people in the Church who could not hold the priesthood--women and those of black ancestry. I was humbled and thrilled when the Elder reported that the only question our brother posed was, "Why can't the women hold it?" As I recall, this young man returned to his homeland not too long afterward. I have no idea what became of him. But I hope he remained faithful and eventually received the full blessings made available after the 1978 revelation making the priesthood available to all worthy males. Show more Show less

What do Mormons believe about "eternal life?"

When I was in my preteen years, probably around 11 or 12, I asked my dad what happens when we die. He told me we just cease to exist. That was pretty terrifying for a young person, especially late at night in the dark when the inevitability of that ultimate "black hole" became more imaginable. I remember going back to him a couple of days later, after I'd thought about what he had said, and asking what the purpose of this existence was, if we just entered stage left and exited stage right. It all seemed like a pretty elaborate charade if there was no other "back story." His answer was that our purpose in life was to leave the world a little bit better than it was when we got here. Not a bad philosophy. But the message of the gospel assures me that we will continue to exist after death, will all be resurrected, will have the opportunity to be with our family members after death, and will have other work to do following that change in scene. This makes so much more sense to me. And I'm now looking forward to meeting those ancestors whom I have been researching for so many years when it is my turn to exit stage right. Show more Show less