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Hi I'm Lauren

I'm a West Coast, Southern-Belle Hybrid. I'm a mother, a dreamer, a work in progress. And I'm a Mormon.

About Me

Growing up, my family moved around quite a bit. I've called southern California, Utah, North Carolina, Texas, and northern Florida home. As I'm naturally very shy, this was difficult for me at times, but looking back I'm glad for the strength and even insight it has given me in my adult life. I graduated from university with a BA in English, so obviously one of my favorite things is to read. I also love to write and I like to claim I'm writing a novel, but if I'm honest with you, not too much progress has been made on that lately...that tends to happen with a toddler in the home--especially not when you're expecting another baby in a few months! Aside from my daydreams of writing the next American novel, I also love music, photography, a well-thrown party, discovering new places, and a fresh baked cookie (especially if it's chocolate chip). But most important to me is my husband and daughter. I look forward to new adventures with them and our new addition after my husband graduates from dental school in a year.

Why I am a Mormon

As a teenager, I wrestled with my faith and had many doubts. There were several times I considered leaving the faith I had been in since I was born. I often doubted God's existence, or His concern or knowledge about me. There was one doctrine of the Church that kept me from completely severing ties during these tumultuous times though, and that was my hope for eternal families. It was too beautiful a concept for me to wish out of my mind. And I remember times begging the God I didn't know was there to please let that beauty be a reality. I had many friends and family who were wonderful, happy, caring examples to me while I struggled with my beliefs. One summer, I began to pray outside, in a quiet place that God would grant me the faith and happiness that I saw in them. It had been so long since I prayed, it was difficult for me to recognize God's influence and Spirit in my life, prompting me. It took a year before I got what I felt was a solid answer--it was the next summer, on vacation with my family. Many people talk about warm fuzzies in their chest; I think God had realized over the past year that subtleties weren't going to get through my thick skull. I was once again kneeling earnestly in prayer, asking for the same things I had nearly a year before, when suddenly I felt like my whole body was full of light and love. It was one of the most powerful and sacred experiences of my life. I felt as though the knowledge was placed in my brain, "God is real. He knows and loves you. You are forgiven. Go and do better." I began working on reforming myself. I still have a long way to go, and will probably always be a work in progress. There are times when doubts still seem to be whispered in my ear, but those doubts cannot chase away that experience and the knowledge that it gave me. I am Mormon, and I wouldn't have it any other way.

How I live my faith

In our church we have a program called "visiting teaching." This program is designed to help the women of a congregation fellowship, befriend, and serve those that they might not typically reach out to. I serve in our congregation as the visiting teaching coordinator. Essentially, I assign who visits who, and at the end of each month, I record if any one got visited, as well as any concerns or struggles a sister in our congregation might be having. It all sounds very clinical and impersonal when written down. When I first turned 18 and became a part of the program I had another word for it: forced. It seemed so unnatural to just all of a sudden be some lady's new "friend." But as I have listened to and read the experiences of sisters in my own congregation, I am impressed by the service and love rendered unto ladies and families who once would have been considered strangers. I have come to see visiting teaching as the heart beat of our women's program in the church. It provides everyone with a friend, a lifeline, an angel. It gives each sister a chance to serve and love each month, and a chance to act as an instrument in the hands of our God. Although I struggle to find the time some months, I know that I and many others are blessed by this program. I think that is one of the beautiful things about the programs we have in the church; they are tools we can use to develop and put into practice a more Christlike love for our fellowman, everyday.