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Hi I'm Darlene

I grew up in Florida. My dad's a minister. I'm a Mom to 3 and Nana to 2. And I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I was born "up North", but grew up in the South. When I was younger I had "itchy feet". So I joined the Air Force and was stationed in Japan. I joined the Church while stationed in South Carolina. I went to BYU as a theater major and served in the Utah Air National Guard. I became a Medic in the ANG. I moved to Los Angeles where I hoped to become a paramedic (and to check out Hollywood)and served in the Van Nuys ANG. When I couldn't get into a school there and decided I did NOT want to be in the TV/Movie industry, I moved to Tallahassee, FL. I finally became a paramedic and was then called on a "Welfare Services Mission". I was married for 7 years. The day 16 years ago my now-ex put bruises on a 2 yr old and a 5 yr old, I went to a shelter for battered women and divorced him. I have 2 girls and a boy. I'm a Nana to a boy born in Jan and one in April. I love to read, do jigsaw puzzles, garden, camp and knit. I'm a ham radio operator. I have a good life.

Why I am a Mormon

I was taken to church as a child. I had 3 questions I asked everyone. No one had an answer. "It's a mystery". This continued into my teens. Then some things happened in my parents' church that turned me totally against religion. I wanted NOTHING to do with ANY church. I investigated other beliefs. I had experiences that NO on could explain. Promptings that kept me safe. But ministers told me those experiences were of the Devil. One day the missionaries knocked on the door. I tried to put them off by telling them my dad is a minister. They asked me what I believed. So I told them to "get in here". And then I asked THEM my 3 questions: 1) Where did I come from before I was here? Did I just pop into existence? 2) What happens to people whom are not baptized that lived and died without even KNOWING about Jesus. Can't send them to heaven, they weren't baptized and we HAVE to be baptized. Can't send them to Hell because it's not THEIR fault they were put in China or Africa. 3) If my sister commits ONE less sin than I do, she goes to heaven and I got to Hell??? I think they grinned. And then THEY ANSWERED the questions!! I made them show me, IN THE BIBLE, where the answers were. I read not only the scripture they pointed out, but all of the verses around it. I did not want anything taken out of context. I had a problem with more scriptures and a Prophet. I read the Book of Mormon and prayed about it. I read Matt. 7:15 that councils "beware of FALSE prophets". Why wasn't it "beware of PROPHETS", if there were to be no more prophets, why the "FALSE"? Was Joseph Smith a prophet or an impostor as my parents said? Was the Book of Mormon another testament of Jesus Christ? I prayed and I got an answer. No flashing lights, no loud voice. Just a still quiet feeling in my heart. I KNOW Jesus is the Christ and he organized this Church. I KNOW that Joseph Smith was a prophet and he translated the Book of Mormon. Rats! That meant that I had to attend church again. And I did.

How I live my faith

I've held many positions in my 36 years in the church. I've been both a full-time missionary and a local missionary, taught adult, youth and children in Sunday School. I've taught an early morning (before school) religion class for teens. I've been the president of the Young Women's association, served several times as a camp director for them and as a nurse for their camps as well as the First Aid instructor. I've also been a councilor in both the women's and the children's organizations. I've been involved in Scouting. My son is an Eagle Scout and when my daughters were younger, they were involved in Girl Scouts. I'm also a Ham Radio Operator and work with our area Emergency Preparedness training group. We have the ability to go and set up radio relays in emergencies. In fact a group went to AL after the tornadoes hit there this past spring. I guess the way I most live my faith is that I don't give up because of adversity. And being divorced from an abusive man has brought many trials into my life. Only prayer, reading the scriptures, listening to uplifting music and Church talks has kept my head above water during these intense trials. I've kept myself solvent only because I pay my tithing and had no debt. I can't explain how I've lived the last 10 months unemployed - except that I pay my tithing and the Lord has poured out blessing on my head. The first blessing is that for years we've been counseled to stay out of debt. I heeded that advice and only have normal monthly bills to pay for. I've been blessed with money when I've needed it from odd jobs, a friend slipping me some money and telling me to get myself something. I felt prompted to NOT spend it. I had just enough to pay tithing on it and to be able to unexpectedly cover my car insurance. (Someone owed me money for working, but couldn't pay it.) I'm now blessed to be working - I'm keeping my 3 month old grandson. I have some income and he's where his mom can continue nursing him during the day.

Are all Mormons required to serve a mission?

Short answerNo. I served a mission. I fasted and prayed for many days and over the course of several months about going on a mission. In the end, I felt that it was what the Lord would have me to do. I was a Welfare Services Missionary in the country of Colombia. I had the opportunity to not only teach the gospel of Jesus Christ, but to teach reading, math, writing and health to the good people of that country. Choosing to serve a mission is an individual choice. My son chose to not serve a mission and got married instead. While I would have had him choose to wait on getting married and instead, serve a mission THEN marry, I'm not upset with him for choosing to not serve. He has had no sanctions place on his membership because he did not serve a mission. Show more Show less