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Hi I'm Areil

I'm a Washingtonian, a student, a globe-trotting international volunteer, and I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I was raised in a very large, happy, Mormon family. There are twelve kids, 4 boys and 8 girls, all from the same two parents. Such ambitious parents! Big families provide numerous natural friends, so we have tons of fun together. My family is super great. Even when there is a large distance between us, we feel the closeness of our family connections. Growing up, our family moved around a lot because my dad's jobs or family emergencies would take us elsewhere. Being raised that way caused an interest in other cultures and people to take root in me. Following that desire to learn, I was able to come into contact with some great international volunteer programs. I spent the better part of the last 5 years of my life either doing humanitarian work in third world countries, or teaching English with a volunteer group in more developed ones. Volunteering has become a major part of who I am and I love it with all my heart! There is nothing quite parallel to the joy of volunteering. On top of that awesomeness, I have now lived in or visited 20 countries within the Americas, Europe, and Asia. It has been absolutely amazing.

Why I am a Mormon

I was raised a Mormon, but as I grew up I knew that I needed to decide for myself. Reading the scriptures, praying, fasting, and living the principles I was taught helped me to gain a testimony of the gospel of Christ. Often, as I have been travelling in a new country with a new group of volunteers I have felt lonely. However, every time I attended church meetings, or prayed, or read the scriptures I knew that I was not alone. These things helped me to know that my Heavenly Father was mindful of me. They helped me to know that He sent His son to provide an atonement, so that He could understand what I was going through and help me on my way. Each of these instances strengthened my belief that this church is true.

How I live my faith

Living my faith is a daily decision. I think the clearest way to do it, is to try to emulate the Savior's example. As I strive to be a good person -working, going to school, being an upstanding citizen, and expressing kindness- I find that it is easier to keep the commandments. These things help me to remain motivated in my desire to serve in the church. They show that I am trying to be a disciple of Christ. There are so many wonderful opportunities to serve , uplift, and be uplifted in the church, even when I am simply leading the music in a meeting. It is so fun to find ways to express and live my faith.