What Is a Church Community?

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 Serena

I'm a graduate student, and I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I mainly grew up in Michigan, and I loved playing soccer and basketball. During high school, I started running cross-country and track. Since the 6th grade, I have played the clarinet. I was an avid reader in those days. Now I read mostly textbooks and journal articles, but I still love a good book. I went to college for six years, earning bachelor's and master's degrees. Now I am in the midst of a PhD program. I've been married for a year and half and love sharing life with my best friend. He has introduced me to camping, backpacking, cycling, rock climbing, and canyoneering. I'm a novice, but I've enjoyed learning new hobbies and spending more time outdoors. I am the oldest of three kids, the only girl, and a cat-lover. Yogurt is possibly my favorite snack. I love most flavors of ice cream and still claim to be a "vanilla girl."

Why I am a Mormon

Throughout my childhood I was taught the principles of the gospel of Jesus Christ. While I generally don't remember my early years very well, I do remember my baptism when I was eight years old. I wanted to be baptized because I knew that it was important to follow Jesus. It was simply the right thing to do; the Holy Spirit gave me that confirmation. Years later, through a sincere desire to learn the truth for myself and prayerful reading of The Book of Mormon, my spirit was newly impressed by the truthfulness of the book. I have continued to take time to pray and read from the scriptures through subsequent years, and I feel closer to the Savior because of it. Christ has directed the restoration of his gospel in its entirety through the prophet Joseph Smith; he has since called other prophets to lead us back to him. As I have listened and tried to follow the teachings of prophets, who the Savior has chosen to lead his church in this time, I have felt love and heavenly direction in my life. It is wonderful to know that God is our Father and has a plan for us to be happy. This life is full of meaning and lessons to be learned because the Savior came to earth, lived and died for us, and lives again! He gives me hope that I can change for the better, however many times I seem to have fail. As I have made an effort to follow him, I have felt his grace and mercy offering strength, forgiveness, and peace. No other can provide the peace and joy that the Saviors offers, and this gospel teaches me how to come unto him and access these marvelous blessings.

How I live my faith

I try to be kind and look for ways I can help my husband, a fellow student, a friend from church, or someone who just moved in. Sunday, the Sabbath day, is special to me. I leave behind the seemingly endless amount of graduate work left to do and spend my time with family, at church, in choir rehearsals, and thinking about the Savior, the course of my life, and how I can be better. For the past year and a half, I've been privileged to teach the children in church the simple principles of the gospel of Jesus Christ. I don't think they realize how much I've learned from them!