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 Alan Howell

I'm a Mormon. I have lived all my life in Idaho. I was raised in a part member family, my father being of another faith.

About Me

I was raised in a small community, located on the central, eastern border of Idaho in a high mountain valley. I enjoy sports and out door activities. My wife and I recently celebrated our 38th Anniversary. We have two children, a daughter and son. We have 6 grandchildren. My wife and I own and operate a small business manufacturing Acoustical panels, installing specialized wallcoverings, and millwork applications. I enjoy most sports, but get disallusioned with the selfish arguments over the pay structure and somehow the heroes these people seem to think they are. My heroes remain our Missionaries, members of our Armed Forces, our EMT's, and those that have responsibility for our protection and way of life. My earliest memories include a lot of activities in support of the LDS Church. Being baptized at age 8, I was active in the church until about 15. Because of influences from my father and his family, I moved away from the church until about 19. I always felt a little empty during this time, not quite whole. I met my future wife on a blind date and realized I needed the LDS Church to help me be a better person, be who I needed/wanted to be. That has been a long road and the journey continues. As I've gotten older, I still learn a little more, "grace by grace" as promised. I wonder at the comments by people that used to be active members when the say they know it all, when I'm still learning at the age of 59. It's my birthday today, my gift will be your interest.

Why I am a Mormon

Although being active in the church from my earliest memories, I went to church because of my mother and my maternal Grand Parents. Following their example and living off their testimonies, I remember sharing a testimony of the Church, saying all the right words, but not really having the faith to understand the meaning. Everyone, regardless of religion, at some point needs to take a leap of faith for their own personal conviction. To believe, then to know for a certain that God lives and Jesus is our Christ and Savior is a priceless gift; to then stand and bear testimony and witness of things not seen, but certainly felt. One of the precious activities my wife and I do monthly is to travel about 2 hours to attend our Temple. The quiet peace I feel is hard to explain in words, but the powerful directive that is instilled into my being to be better, to grow, to study, to understand, to seak my ancenstors remains a constant and is always there. I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon) because of the things that I am continually taught. I am a better husband, father, son, brother, and friend.

How I live my faith

I currently serve as the High Priest Group Leader in our Ward. I have specific custodial responsibilites to the health and well being of 14 High Priest and their families, as well as some 40 other families that the head of the families are widows or members that do not hold the Lord's Priesthood. I keep track of these people directly or through dedicated Home Teachers. I do this at the direction of our Ward Bishop and Stake President. I have a Home Teaching assignment and visit 3 families hopefully monthly. I do not take the opportunity to visit each month, but I do make several phone calls each month. These people have become dear friends and these visits are something I look forward to doing. In addition, I serve on our Counties Economic Development Association, currently holding the position as Board Chairman. We have responsibility to be a resource to existing businesses, municipalities, new startups, and to help further educate the patrons of our County. Above all and the top priorities in my life are: I am "Husband" to my Wife, no other title I have or will ever have will supercede that fact and responsibility. I am Father to my children, son to my parents, brother to my two sisters and two brothers. Because of the Sealing Ordances of the Temple, all the physical possessions I have will be dust and I'll still have the opportunity to have my family with me in the Eternities.

Are all Mormons required to serve a mission?

Alan Howell
The basic answer is No. There is a strong tradition, request to serve, almost a commandment if you hold the Priesthood; but, ultimately, it is your right to choose. I never served a mission because I wasn't prepared to serve; much to my eternal regret. The lack of not serving a mission has not held me back from the Saving Ordinances of the Temple and from serving in the Church, having served in many administrative positions. Ultimately, my wife and I will serve together where ever the Lord chooses to send us. Not out of social expediency, but because we want to. Show more Show less