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Hi I'm Katie Folkman

I live in Washington--the state. I am a wife, a mother, a grandmother and a math teacher--and I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I was born in Idaho, raised in Utah and have lived in Washington state for 18 years. I lived at home with my family while attending college, but worked one summer in Yellowstone National Park and one summer on a dude ranch near Dubois, Wyoming. I Iove living in the West! I married a man I first met when we were in the seventh grade together. We have six children and I was lucky enough to be a stay-at-home mom while the children were growing up. For the past thirteen years I have been a junior high math teacher. No, I am not crazy. I love junior high kids. It is such a blessing to see them learn and grow and to spend my time in such a positive environment. I have also been an instructional math coach and have had the privilege of observing and collaborating with my colleagues in our efforts to improve our teaching strategies and to increase student engagement in our classrooms.

Why I am a Mormon

I became a Mormon because my family has been part of the church since its inception in the early 1800's. The church has been the fabric of my life and has always been my guiding light. I could not pinpoint a one moment in time conversion to the church for me. My conversion has occured over a life time of experiences that have allowed me feel loved and valued. I would like to share a couple of those experiences. I remember in high school wondering how a boy of fourteen--Joseph Smith--could have possibly had the faith to pray and then see God and Jesus Christ. As I was pondering this question, I realized with clarity of thought and rememberance that my faith and prayers at fourteen were the most faithful in my life to that point. I knew that I was closer to my Heavenly Father at age fourteen than I was just a couple years later. I was humbled and wanted to reach that high point of faith again. When I was nineteen years old, a boy I had dated, written to on his LDS mission and also corresponded with while he was in Viet Nam was killed in Viet Nam. I was devasted. I remember going to the mortuary to see his body. His body was there in front of me, but he was not there. I knew at that moment that his spirit was alive and that although I could see his body, the boy I loved was somewhere else. Later, as my husband and I raised our children I experienced moments of stress and even fear. Employment was not always stable for my husband, our children had health issues, raising a family is at times chaotic and stressful. At a point after we had moved our family, my husband lost his job. We had tripled our house payment in the move, our oldest son was on an LDS mission and we had five children living at home. My fear was making me physically ill. One night as I prayed, I felt an enormous sense of peace come over me. I realized that the Lord Jesus Christ could always give me peace. That knowledge has been an incredible gift that I cannot imagine living without.

How I live my faith

Currently I am serving as the Relief Society President of my ward. (An organization within the church just for women.) I coordinate visiting teaching--a program where women are assigned to teach and friendship other women in our congregation. When help is needed, the visiting teachers are often the first call that is made by the sister in need. One of the sisters I visit is now a dear friend to me. She joined the church a few years ago and I find strength in her testimony of the Savior and her committment to the church. We are also both teachers and have lots of stories to share. I also help our bishop--the leader of our congregation--administer the church welfare program. When members of our congregation are either unemployed, under-employed, ill or otherwise in need I offer help with food and clothing. I can send someone to the Bishop's storehouse (a kind of food bank) with a food order. It is a privilege for me to help people when they are under stress and in need of help. One of the highlights of my week is the Sunday worship service--we call it Sacrament Meeting. At that meeting baptized members take the sacrament--bread and water--to renew covenants they made at baptism. We are able to enjoy music by our ward choir as well as congregational hymn singing. The sermons in our meetings come from members of our congregation. The diversity of the speakers as well as the strength of their testimonies often touch my heart and spirit. I am uplifted by what I hear and feel at sacrament meeting. I come away wanting to do better and also feeling closer to the Savior. I think of this meeting as a time to 'fill my buckets'. After sacrament meeting I attend an adult Sunday school class where we study the scriptures each week. After Sunday school the women attend a Relief Society class. Gospel lessons are taught. A variety of sisters take turns teaching the class. We break into discussion groups, share ideas and heartfelt testimonies. I love Sundays!