What Is a Church Community?
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Hi I'm Jim

I'm from Kalamazoo, I try to make our community a better place to live, and I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I was born in Kalamazoo and have lived here most of my life. I'm an attorney in private practice and see my profession as a way to serve others. I believe one of the most important aspects of being a resident of A place is giving back to the community. So I serve on our local Public Library Board of Trustees, am a volunteer leader in our Boy Scout Council, and help with the fund drives at our Public Radio station. I want this to be a good place to raise a family, live, and work. I do my best to serve others as the Lord commands us to do.

Why I am a Mormon

I learned about the LDS church from a friend and tried to find out for myself if it is true. I received a personal witness that it is true, and that witness is strengthened for me day by day as I try to live my faith. Reading the life and teachings of Christ in the Scriptures, I am convinced that in living this religion, I'm doing what He would have me do. "As I have loved you, love one another. By this shall men know ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another."

How I live my faith

I've served in many ways at church--teaching children and youth, planning activities and growth opportunities for them, helping with record keeping, and in various leadership positions. For many years, I was the leader of our local congregation and tried to lead the people in becoming involved in the community. I also serve in unofficial ways--cleaning the building, substituting for absent teachers, visiting other members to be as supportive as possible, setting up rooms for meetings, feeding missionaries, and so forth. I agree with the sentiment of many that what one does to bless and assist others is the way to best live my faith. In fact I would say whatever service I've done for others has been my poor way of thanking the Lord for all He has blessed me with.

What is a ward/stake/branch?

Jim
A Ward is a local congregation; a Branch is a small congregation. A Stake is a group of congregations, like a diocese or a classis. The term "stake" comes from Isaiah's prophecy that as the tent of Zion grows, the stakes which hold it up will be strengthened. The term "ward" is like a political district in a city. Wards, branches, and stakes are usually geographically based. Show more Show less

What are Mormon church services like? Are visitors allowed at church meetings? Can I attend church?

Jim
Our services include Sacrament Meeting, at which we partake of the Lord's Supper, share sermons on Gospel topics and, one Sunday per month, in conjunction with a personal fast, share our testimonies. Because we do not have a paid ministry, services are led by lay members, and sermons are given by members of the congregation. We have an hour of Sunday School, during which we study the scriptures. We also have priesthood meeting for adult men and teen boys, Relief Society for adult women, Young Women for teen girls, and Primary far children under twelve. Our services on most Sundays last for three hours; there are short breaks between meetings. We like to sing hymns during our meetings; we sing traditional Christian hymns you may recognize, and hymns of our own. We do not have rock bands or shouting during our worship. Families attend together; sometimes this results in services that are noisier than at churches where young children are segregated. Our member are friendly and often visit with each other between meetings. If they know that you are visiting, they, will greet you and try to help you feel comfortable. You are certainly welcome to come and visit and worship with us! Come and see what we are like for yourself! Show more Show less