What Is a Church Community?
Loading.....

The video player could not be built.

Do you want to chat with a missionary?

We are happy to answer any questions you may have. Start a chat or call us at 1-888-537-6600.

Hi I'm Jon Pennington

I grew up in Texas and California but am raising my family in Memphis, TN. I sell insurance. I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I have been happily married for over 20 years and am a proud father to three amazing kids. I was born in California in 1970. In my younger years, I enjoyed playing sports - track, baseball, soccer, football, swimming. I swam competitively in college at the University of California San Diego. Then, after a two year mission for the church in Guatemala, I transferred to Brigham Young University and swam one season there. While at BYU, I met my wife and we were married soon after. I moved to her hometown of Memphis, TN and have been here ever since. We are raising our family here. My kids love sports as well. My oldest does cross country for his school as well as varsity basketball. My daughter is a competitive all-star cheerleader which keeps us travelling to various locations, usually culminating in the World Championships in Orlando, FL. My youngest son has enjoyed many different sports as well. I have had several different careers over the last 20 years, but I am currently working as an insurance broker and love it so much that I hope this is my last career change. I am grateful for my wonderful wife who has always supported me and loved me in spite of all my weaknesses. She is an awesome mother, wife, and cheer coach.

Why I am a Mormon

I have ancestors that joined the church in the 1800's and left England and came to the Americas to be with the early members of the church. Many of them sufferred persecution and great hardships to make the voyage. I have a heritage of great men and women who sacrificed much for their beliefs, more than I will ever be required to do. Even though I was raised in the church, there came a time when I felt a desire to know for myself if the things that I had been taught all my life were really true. So, in some ways, I still consider myself a "convert" to the church. This complete conversion came the year after my high school graduation. I had always planned on serving a full time mission for the church and the time to do so was only a year away. I began to read, ponder, and study the scriptures more and more. I had a strong desire and hunger to know without a doubt of the truthfulness of the things that I would be teaching others. I knew that the key to this knowledge would be gaining a testimony of the Book of Mormon. If I could know for myself that it was truly written by prophets living anciently in the Americas who had prophesied and testified of Christ, then I would know that all the other things that the prophet Joseph Smith had taught were true. And, if all he had taught was true, then he was indeed a prophet called of God to restore these truths in the last days. Reading it from cover to cover during those few short months was an amazing experience. I could feel the Spirit testifying to me as I read that these were real people that lived anciently and that knew of Christ and his mission. It strengthened my testimony of the Bible and that Jesus Christ was indeed the Savior of the world. In spite of these feelings, I still prayed to find out it was true, and I received my answer. Within 6 months, I was on my way to Guatemala to serve a full time misison for the Lord for 2 years.

How I live my faith

I don't see my faith or religion as a separate part of my life or something I just do on Sundays. I try to live the things I am taught and that I believe in every day of my life. Of course, no one is perfect, and we all make mistakes, but my mistakes have helped me to become better. I have had the opportunity to serve my fellowman in various capacities over the years without monetary compensation. However, the Lord has blessed me in so many ways for which I am eternally grateful. I enjoy being with the young people of the church and hearing about their accomplishments and their hopes and dreams. They are challenged every day by the worldly things around them, but they hold true to their beliefs and stand strong. Because I served my mission in Guatemala and can speak spanish fluently, I am always looking for ways to volunteer or help the Hispanic community of Memphis and the surrounding areas. I served for many years with our Spanish-speaking congregation and was blessed greatly by their examples and their testimonies of the Savior. I am currently serving as a Bishop and although it is a very challenging and busy calling, it has been a great blessing to my life to get to know and work with all the members of the congregation more closely. I also have the opportunity to work with some amazing people that serve in leadership callings in the ward or congregation.