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Hi I'm Alyssa

I'm a Mormon. I grew up in Washington State. I love watching birds.

About Me

I am a graduate student working on my PhD in Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology. Although I now live in the Midwest, I am a Pacific Northwesterner at heart! I love the outdoors, the mountains and the environment. I love to have fun and try new things. I’m engaged to my best friend. I’m grateful to my parents who always encouraged me to try new things and have always loved me for who I am (forgetful, oblivious, and accident prone) and taught me the importance of hard work and perseverance. I would have to say that besides the gospel, my family is the most important part of my life and in many ways it is because of them that I am who I am today. I love to do too many things and have so many hobbies that I’m really not exceptional at anything. I love to bike, run, hike, backpack, knit, sew and I attempt to paint and draw. I would have to say that out of everything though sleeping is probably my numero uno favorite activity. I love taking beautiful pictures of cells on a confocal microscope. So I guess you could say that I’m really an artist at heart who utilizes biology as her medium.

Why I am a Mormon

I was baptized when i was ten and I can say that at the time I didn’t know it was 100% true, all I knew is what I felt as I met with the missionaries and went to church. I felt good, happy and at peace. Throughout the years the knowledge part has come, through faith, diligence, hard work and experience. I read the entire Book of Mormon all the way through when I was a freshman in high school and my knowledge began to grow from there. Something so wonderful about this life is that we have the ability to choose for ourselves. God will not force us to choose anything. What he will do is let us have experiences and opportunities where we can choose to work to increase our faith or let it diminish. I’m grateful that with each trial or experience I chose to move forward and as I did that my desire to believe has slowly become a knowledge. I can say now that I am a Mormon because I have chosen to be. I have gained so many answers through the peaceful promptings of the Holy Ghost that it’s the only obvious and clear path for me. I know God is our Heavenly Father. I know Jesus Christ was His Only Begotten Son and is our savior and that the Holy Ghost can and does bare witness of these truths to our heart if we are open and desire to know and then act upon them. There is a prophet of God on the earth and the gospel of Jesus Christ has been restored to the earth. These are some of the many things I have come to know and will never be able to deny ever again.

How I live my faith

I think something that surprises people is how much living the gospel is an integral part of our lives. Everything I do, I hope, reflects on the knowledge I have of the gospel. Service is a huge part of who we are. We serve because He served us and one of the ways we get to do this is through church callings or assignments. The organization of the church is based on a lay ministry which means we don’t get paid to do what we do (not even the bishop who is like our pastor or minister gets paid) and just because you are asked to do something (like teach Sunday school or be the bishop of the ward) does not mean that we will be doing that forever. Eventually you will be asked to do something else. For example, someone who was once the Bishop of the ward might next be asked to work with the youth in the ward. Right now I am called to be a ward missionary. I love this calling because it enables me to work with the full-time missionaries who serve in our ward. I get to help teach the restored gospel to those who are just learning about it for the first time. I also get to meet new people and help and serve them in whatever capacity they need.

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?

I think it’s important to remember that the priesthood is not a position it’s an eternal power given to men from God to act in his name in righteousness, charity, love, and service (among other things). Without the priesthood of-course, our ordinances would be in vain, but just like men are given this gift to act in the name of God if they stay true, worthy and righteous woman are given a very special gift of bearing children. The priesthood is necessary to bind families together for eternity, but the woman is necessary in order to bring those families into the world in the first place. Bringing God’s children to the earth and binding all of God’s children together forever are the main part of His plan of happiness for us and go hand in hand. “Nevertheless neither is the man without the woman, neither the woman without the man, in the Lord.” 1 Corinthians 11:11. With that said, there are plenty of opportunities for women to lead in the church. The women’s organization in the church is called the Relief Society and is headed by a woman president and her counselors (under direction of the prophet of-course) and the Primary (children’s group) is headed by a woman president and her counselors. Both areas have great influence within the church. Show more Show less