Hi I'm Susan Johanson
I am a mother of six: two daughters and four sons. I am a grandmother of four: three grandsons and one granddaughter. I have lived in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, Colorado, Utah, California and Florida - and in Spain for 18 months. When I first attended college from 1975-78 I was a drama major. I finally earned a degree in elementary education in 2004. Now I am the CEO of an engineering company that my husband and I started. I guess you could say that my life direction has changed a time or two. One of my favorite sayings is, "Life is what happens while we're busy making other plans." When I was 11 spent a summer with my maternal grandmother who taught me to hand-piece quilts. I still love to quilt. I also enjoy working on my family history (genealogy), reading, eating in fine restaurants (don't do this too often though), doing theater work in my community, giving hugs to my friends, singing, and working with the Boy Scouts. When I was a teen my family worked a HUGE garden every summer. After sharing with friends and neighbors, we still preserved 100's of jars of fruit and vegetables every year. Today, I do not enjoy gardening. As a matter of fact, I am the only person I know who can kill a cactus (and I have done so - not on purpose, though). I have been married to my best friend for over three decades - and loving it!
Why I am a Mormon
When I was 8 years old, my oldest and favorite cousin was walking along a country lane near his home when he was struck and killed by a drunk driver. I was devastated. Although I faithfully attended my Baptist Sunday School every week, and Bible school every summer, my minister could not assure me that I would ever see my cousin again. Nothing in the teachings of my church gave me comfort. Four months later a pair of suited young men knocked on our front door one morning. Mom invited them to come back when Dad was home that evening. They did. These 2 Mormon missionaries explained that they belonged to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. They talked about Christ - how he was born of Mary in Bethlehem - how he is the true and only begotten son of God our Heavenly Father - how he lived in Heaven with God before his mortal birth, and that we all lived there too - and how he resurrected so that we can all be resurrected too. They taught that Jesus is the Savior of everyone on the earth - those who have lived before, those who are living now, and those who will be born to live here in the future. They taught that our purpose in life is to live the gospel of Christ, follow his example in all things, and keep his commandments so we can return to live with God, Christ, and ALL our loved ones in Heaven forever. Wait! Here was the answer that I had been looking for. My cousin was still alive - not on earth, but in that spirit paradise waiting for the rest of our family to join him there. Right then I knew that this Church was the right one. It had the answer I needed. Later I discovered that the organization is the same as the Church that Jesus set up when he lived 2000 years ago - apostles, prophets, pastors, teachers, and all the same ordinances (like baptism by immersion by one who holds authority from God like John the Baptist did). But, on that day over 40 years ago I knew I had found the truth. That truth has not changed. Neither has my conviction.
How I live my faith
Every day I live my faith because being a committed member of the Church of Jesus Christ means that we follow his example every day - not just Sunday. To me this means studying the scriptures daily and praying regularly with my family. It also means finding ways to serve my neighbors. I have had many opportunities to serve in Church as well as in the communities where I have lived. Currently I teach the 7-year-old class in Sunday School. In the past I have been a family history consultant and genealogy library volunteer, a secretary in our women's organization, president of the children's organization, and a teacher for our teenage girls, among other things. I also served for a year and half as a full-time missionary for the Church in Madrid, Spain. I am active in the BSA scouting organization, being Wood Badge trained. I am a unit commissioner in my district and serve as the advancement chair on our troop committee. All four sons, and my husband, are Eagle scouts. When our daughters were in Girl Scouts I served as the cookie chair one - our living room was wall-to-wall cookies, but we sold enough to take the entire troop to a three-day Disney experience! One night each week is set aside as Family Night - and everyone is home. We spend the time discussing gospel topics, playing games, and enjoying one another's company - and we always have a special desert that night. We often invite friends and neighbors to join us. Our house is always open - and everyone is welcome to visit.