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Hi I'm Jessica Carnes

I am a mentally ill woman. I am brave enough to say it. I am a Mormon.

About Me

I am a single woman with clinical depression, and I'm really sad that the public at large automatically assumes that makes me less of a human being. Because that is just as discriminatory as judging someone by race, sex, physical disability, sexual orientation, ethnicity, or religion. But I won't let the trial of mental illness and the world's judgment of it keep me down. After all, I have God on my side, and with God, nothing is impossible.

Why I am a Mormon

I was raised in the Church by convert parents, so I always knew about how nonmembers lived, whether it was my parents telling me about the mistakes they made before they joined, or the actions of my non-Mormon family members. I knew that a life without spiritual direction was not the life for me from an early age, but my testimony really started growing once I entered my teens and decided to learn for myself that the Church was true. I've had many ups and downs in my life, as we all do. Sometimes I've been more spiritual and sometimes less. But I have always known that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is the only true church. I know that Joseph Smith was the instrument in restoring it to the earth. I know that his current successor, Thomas S. Monson, is a prophet of God, and that his words are living scripture. I know that The Book of Mormon is, as it's translator Joseph Smith said, "The most correct of any book." But above all, I know that Jesus Christ is the literal Son of God. I know that He lives today, and I know that He is coming. I don't know when that will be, but I know that it will happen. I know that He suffered greatly for both my sins personally, and for the sins of the world at large. I know that He did it because He loves us beyond our comprehension. Just to know all of this fills me with such gratitude and love.

How I live my faith

Living your faith isn't just about attending church or reading the scriptures or praying over your meals. It's about following that little whisper that says "Give that friend of yours a call" and finding out that the friend was having a tough day and your call was just what they needed to feel better. It's making covenants to keep the commandments and always keep Christ in your mind and so much more. It's about falling on your knees when you can't go on and praying that God will give you the strength to get through one more day. It's about saying "yes" to your bishop when he asks you to serve in a calling that overwhelms you. It's about being humble enough to tell your bishop "I've committed a serious sin. What must I do to be forgiven?" It's about not giving up hope that the blessings God has promised you are coming. It's about watching a family member die and knowing that death is not the end of existence. It's about looking in the mirror at day's end and saying "I did my best" and knowing that God agrees, even if today's best wasn't an all time high point for your life. It's knowing in your heart that Christ's Atonement will right all wrongs and heal all hurts and provide a way to be forgiven from your sins, and acting like it. It's saying "That show is far too sleazy for the Spirit to stay around when I watch it." It's being obedient enough to not get that slinky top with a low cut back. It's having the faith to give ten percent of your income back to the Lord when your scraping buy financially. It's about dusting yourself off when you've fallen spiritually and getting yourself back on the right track.

Can you tell me about Mormon customs: how you dress for church, what holidays you celebrate, etc.?

Jessica Carnes
Skirts or dresses for the ladies, dress shirts and ties or suits for the men for church. We celebrate Christmas and Easter universally. We also celebrate national holidays as appropriate. Show more Show less