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Hi I'm Rhonda

I grew up in a small mining town. Now I live in a huge metro area where I'm a college professor with a PhD. I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I love to travel, and my goal is to go some place new every year for the rest of my life. The wide world has so much to see, and I've seen so little of it! I spent much of my adult life as a graduate student, and I was blessed to have that opportunity. Now I learn from doing and experiencing. My job gives me a lot of fulfillment because it allows me to help others to reach their goals. So many of my students are juggling a complicated life, but earning a college degree can help them to manage that life more easily. I am blessed to be able to aid them in their journey, whatever it may be. My family and friends are my foundation and my inspiration. They lift me up if I'm down, cheer for my successes, and I am lucky to be able to do the same for them. I may not have the traditional family I expected for myself when I was younger, but I recognize that as children of Heavenly Father, we are all connected. I am humbled to find that though I am still single, I am hardly alone. I have a close network, and, in truth, a family I didn't expect but couldn't be more grateful for.

Why I am a Mormon

When I was in high school, I was in the band. I walked to school every day, lugging my trumpet with me. My best friend is Mormon and she offered me a ride to school each morning. The only catch was that she went to early morning seminary. I grew up Lutheran and I had a strong church background, so I thought, "Why not? I already know what I believe, and I won't have to carry my heavy instrument case!" After I began attending the seminary class, though, I was surprised to find that the many questions I'd had were being answered and the blurry concepts were becoming clear. In the Book of Mormon, I found a more complete testimony of the life of Christ. I see now that I was converted intellectually before I was converted emotionally. As my understanding grew, day by day, week by week, line upon line and precept upon precept, my faith began to grow too. When I went to my parents to ask them if I could become a member of the church, they asked me to wait until I was 18. My Lutheran minister, who had personally tutored me in Sunday School, asked me to reconsider. He wrote me a long letter attempting to persuade me to change my mind. I stuck to my convictions, in spite of some opposition, and I was baptized on my 18th birthday. My path toward greater faith hasn't always been smooth. At times, I let the demands of life take priority over church attendance. Now I have realized that the time spend at church in the teaching, learning, and fellowship refuels me in a way a few extra hours of sleep never could. In the most difficult trials of my life the church has been there to uphold me. When my father was dying in another state, I went there alone to care for him. When I arrived, I was able to contact the local church leaders there, and members of that congregation offered me love and support, though I was a stranger to them. The wonderful thing about this church is that the members are disciples of Christ every day, and I am proud to be one of them.

How I live my faith

I am a Sunday School teacher of a wonderful group of 11 and 12-year-olds. Each Sunday, I review the next Sunday's lesson material. This year, we are studying the New Testament, so I have the example of Jesus in my mind all week as I think of the lesson I will teach. The preparation and prayer that go into each lesson have given me the chance to gain a deeper testimony of Jesus Christ, his love for us, and the Atonement he provides to all. I also visit several women of the congregation each month. I bring them a spiritual message and, if they need help of any kind, I am there to provide it. In turn, I am visited by members of the congregation who provide the same loving service to me. We stay connected to each other and we take care of each other. Beyond that, each day, I try to follow the example of Christ that has been so ever present this year as I have taught my students.