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 Marlene

I'm a retired public elementary school teacher, mother of 4, grandmother of 11, and I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I didn't plan on a teaching career, but after the birth of my four children, I found myself divorced with no income or child support, and teaching allowed me to support my family and at the same time, have the same schedule (basically) as my children. Who knew that I would also love it and feel that it was such a rewarding life choice for me? It also afforded me the opportunity to read extensively, learn daily about the wonderful world we live in, and to meet such outstanding students, parents, and colleagues.

Why I am a Mormon

I was born into a Mormon family in Idaho. Pretty much the whole community was Mormon, but that is not why I am still a Mormon. My first husband was in the military, and as we traveled throughout the United States, I was exposed to many different religions and beliefs. At the time of my divorce and subsequent hardships associated with providing solely for my childrens' needs, I struggled with what I believed and what I had simply continued to do through habit. I reached a point where I decided to "test" the things I had been taught, and to determine whether there really was a God who cared about me, personally and individually. I never doubted that there WAS a God, just whether it made any difference which church I went to, or what set of rules I should live my life by. Others seemed very happy NOT being a member, why not me? It took me awhile, but I now realize that no other religion answers all my spiritual questions as the LDS doctrines do. No other church gives me the joy that attending the Mormon church does. No other church offers the opportunities for personal growth through service and by commitment to its precepts and teachings. Bottom line - I KNOW through personal testimony and revelations that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is the church God had restored to the earth through his prophet, Joseph Smith. I know that the church is led today by living prophets and the counsel I receive through televised conferences twice a year gives me the strength and guidance to continue in the struggles that arise. I live a fuller, happier, more selfless life when I live it as a Mormon!

How I live my faith

Every day the Mormon church provides opportunities for me to serve either my community at large, or my neighbors, friends, and other church members. Our church conducts food drives and collects thousands of tons of food for our whole region, not just members of the church. I pass out grocery bags to be filled and arrange to collect and deliver them to our local building. We make blankets for hospitals and shelters at old-fashioned quilting bees, feed meals to the homeless, or make "cold" ties for soldiers in Iraq. We teach our youth (and single adults 18-80!) to refrain from drug and alcohol use and to reserve sexual intimacy for marriage. We expect youth to do well in school, give them opportunities to speak publicly and to lead other youth in activities, and ask them to help plan weekly activities that are wholesome, uplifting, and just plain good fun. Currently I play the organ or piano for church services as needed, and my husband and I are serving a mission as housing coordinators for the Colorado Denver South Mission. That means that we make sure the missionaries who are sent to our area have clean, safe, and adequately furnished places to dwell in. My neighbors and friends know they can count on me to lend a hand or an ear when needed. They know I am a Mormon, and they know I am happy to have religious discussions with them, but they also know I respect their right to agree or disagree with my beliefs. They know I care about them regardless of their own personal religious or political beliefs.

What are Mormon women like? Do Mormons believe in equality of men and women?

Women of the LDS church are in most ways just like any other woman you would meet on the street. They are doctors, lawyers, teachers, nurses, business women, soldiers, you name it! But most women members will at some point choose to also be a mother, if that choice is physically possible, since we believe that it is through the family ties of marriage and parenthood that we can achieve the greatest growth individually, and the greatest happiness collectively. God's plan is for us to be born into a family that will nurture and support us throughout our lives. In an ideal family, the husband and wife both work together to protect and teach their children and are equal partners in any decisions or responsibilities. That said, we all live in the real world and are subject to the consequences of our choices and of those around us, and not everyone will be able to live in an "ideal" family. As a divorced woman myself, I am grateful that my Savior (and church) recognizes that everyone makes mistakes in this life, and His atonement assures me that we can be forgiven. I can go forward to create a new life filled with happiness and family joys, and leave the ashes of disappointment behind me. Show more Show less