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 Jan

Growing up I was a 'tomboy.' Now I love being a wife, mom and grandma. I wouldn't have it any other way. I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I love learning--about others, about life, about myself. I can't think of any better place to learn those things than in a family setting. It's not always easy, but it is so worth it. Many years ago I found myself divorced and a single mom with six children depending on me. This certainly wasn't part of my "plan." But I understand that we will all have our share of trials and joys. My approach to life became, "What can I learn from this?" I determined to keep my feet firmly planted in the Gospel of Jesus Christ and trust in God. For the past 16 years I have been wonderfully and happily married to an awesome man who was surprisingly willing to marry a woman with six children. He was divorced as well and had four children. Yep, that makes a total of ten children. We also had a son of our own who is now 14 years old. To date we have 24 grandchildren and growing! The funny thing is, when I was younger I wasn't your typical girl. I didn't babysit. I didn't like being in the kitchen. I loved to play softball and volleyball. As a matter of fact, at about age 17 I stood with my hand on my hips and like a brat said to my mom, "Face it, Mom. I am no Suzie Homemaker." Sometimes I still chuckle at the thought that I am the mother of so many. Me? But it's true! I have come to believe in the divine importance of motherhood. I was taught to believe I could become anything I chose, and I chose this. I admit some days I have to tell myself, "I can do this!" With the Lord's help I can.

Why I am a Mormon

My mother's heritage is of Mormon Pioneers. My father joined the church when they got married. I was baptized at the age of eight and I remember that day. I remember that I knew I was doing the right thing. It was a happy day for me. My parents divorced when I was about 13 and we gradually gave in to "inactivity" in the Church. I can count the times I went to church as a teenager on one hand. But, I have always had a testimony of the Church. I have always known that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God. In 1976 when I became pregnant with my first child, I knew I wanted the gospel back in my life and that I wanted its teachings to help me be the best mother I could be. I attribute my desire to have the gospel in my life to my maternal grandparents. Every summer I could, I would visit them at their home in Utah for several days. I loved being in their home. I felt something good and wonderful there. I came to realize it was the blessings of the gospel that they enjoyed in their home. My grandmother once said to me, "If it turned out that the LDS Church wasn't the Lord's church, there isn't anything in its teachings that are not good for your life." For over 30 years now I have been putting the principles and teachings of the gospel to the test. I have come to know that what my grandmother told me was true. My testimony has been strengthened one piece at a time--like a jigsaw puzzle. Being a Mormon has given me the opportunity to learn about the things that matter most in life--things eternal. I love that the Church encourages us to "seek out of the best books." The principle that "the glory of God is intelligence" is true. We are encouraged to study the scriptures. What better book is there than that? The scriptures allow me to learn more about Heavenly Father and His Son. After all, doesn't having faith in Jesus Christ require that we know Him and His ways? I learn about Him from the scriptures and I Iove it.

How I live my faith

Service is my faith in action and I feel like it is one way to show the Savior that I love Him and want to be like Him. Even though I grew up not liking the kitchen, I have learned to love making bread. Yep. Me! I love to give away a loaf or two. One day I felt the impression to take one to my neighbor. She was so grateful for the loaf and for the visit. She was diagnosed earlier that day to have some serious health issues. Imagine how I felt to know that perhaps the Lord had sent me to her door because He knows and loves her? A small thing, but it has taught me that "the one" is so important to Him. One of the ways in the Church that the Lord asks us to "feed His sheep" is by something called Visiting Teaching. Each month the women of the Church are assigned to visit one or two other sisters and to "watch over" them. Since the Lord is not here personally to do so, He gives us an opportunity to be His hands. Two other women are assigned to visit me. Over the years my life has been blessed by associations with women much older than I and much younger as well; With women who are like me and some who are very different than I am. These visits have been such a blessing of give-and-take. Great and lasting friendships have been built and I am so thankful to be a part of it. I recently had the chance to serve as a Cub Scout Leader with a dozen or so 8-year-old boys. Mormons support and participate in the programs of the Boys Scouts of America. It has been a blast to help these young boys learn while having great fun. They've kept me on my toes and I think young-at-heart. Recently my husband and I were asked to plan a Youth Pioneer Trek to take place next year for over 500 people. We will lead them a trekkin' through the mountains to learn about and appreciate the blessings of our heritage. I love that the Church offers so many ways to live our faith.

Does The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints endorse political parties?

The prophet, Brigham Young, said something like this. "Teach them correct principles and let them govern themselves." As members of the Church we are taught and encouraged to be educated about matters spiritual (eternal) and temporal (of the earth.) We are to seek answers and guidance from God about our questions and concerns. When it comes to political parties, candidates and issues, the Lord and His church will not dictate to us whom or what to vote for by public endorsement. We are given tools and mechanisms that allow us to seek, ponder and pray about such things--such as prayer and scripture. We believe in personal revelation and we believe that as we seek, He will answer us through promptings, feelings and impressions by the power of the Holy Ghost. Then, as agents unto ourselves, we are free to choose. This is an amazing principle to me. He is the giver of our rights, and he is also the protector of our agency--the right to choose for ourselves. He will never force us in our decisions. It is always a choice. His goal as our Father is not for us to be incapable of thinking and knowing for ourselves. His plan, and His love, empowers us to know and understand the truth as He does. When we are blessed to have an opportunity to participate in civic affairs affecting our lives, including choosing those whom we want to represent us, we have a responsibility to do so. Wise is the person who does so by seeking the direction of a loving and interested Father in Heaven. Show more Show less