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Hi I'm Grace

I love nature, music, reading, my family, and being outside. I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I have been a member of the Mormon faith my whole life, having been taught by my parents as a very small child. I've lived most of my life in Southeast Alaska, an area where the Mormon community is small and struggling. Throughout my life, I have often had to stand alone in defending church standards in my school and community. Recently, have been attending Brigham Young University (an LDS University) in Provo, Utah since the summer of 2014. At BYU, I have been working towards a Biology degree, hoping to end up as a zoologist, or as someone who can work outdoors and hands-on with animals. While at BYU, I applied to serve as an LDS sister missionary, and have been called to share Mormon beliefs for 18 months in the Georgia Atlanta North Mission, starting on May 13th 2015. Never before has the gospel been so real or been such a blessing, never has my testimony in my Savior been stronger in my life than now as I prepare to serve the Lord and fellow men by serving a mission.

Why I am a Mormon

For much of my life, being a faithful Mormon has been difficult as a religious minority. Of the few members that were also youth (as I was when I lived in Alaska) in my area disregard the faith they have been taught by their parents and fall away, or simply do not care enough about the gospel to live it. Those that are not members, in my area, were often incredibly disrespectful about any beliefs that were traditional. I spent a lot of time feeling ostracized by my peers. This social situation and through other circumstances of my adolescence, I developed and was diagnosed with depression because I felt like the God that I had learned about all of my life had abandoned me, and was an unjust, uncaring, and unreachable being. Though a lifelong Mormon, my depression sunk me in doubt and withered my faith. As my misery increased, and I realized that my faith is what made me happy, and I realized that I needed the love of Christ in my life. I realized that only something as powerful as Christ's love and the Atonement he executed to redeem us from our mistakes could redeem me from my misery and restore me to happiness. Though I was still doubtful at that point in time, I knew that I previously knew that the gospel was true. It is in the adversity of regaining my testimony and basing my self-worth on God's love for me that I am still a devout Mormon today. I learned that the gospel is what brings lasting happiness. It is because my faith was tested by my depression that I have a strong faith and real understanding of why I am on this Earth, what God wants from me, and how I can truly become as Christ through the gospel. I am a Mormon because the truthfulness of its doctrines lift me up and make me want to be a better person. I am a Mormon because God's perspective helps me weather the hard parts in life. I am a Mormon because I know God wants to guide me back to Him. I am a Mormon because I know the Mormon church holds the restored fullness of the truth.

How I live my faith

I show my love for the Savior by following his commandments in small, daily ways. I very much enjoy the instruction and truth that I find in the Book of Mormon as I study it. I have taken on small responsibilities within the congregation, such as youth leadership, or as a visiting teacher (someone who is called to watch out for and be responsible over a set of specific women). I also love doing family history. I have spent many hours indexing (digitizing handwritten records, that makes the information on them globally accessible), and finding names of my ancestors to share with the temple. While at BYU, I am lucky enough to walk 15 minutes to the Provo temple, where I can do ordinances for those who have not had the opportunity in this life. I have also spent a lot of time teaching others how to index and to find names of their ancestors through familysearch.org. I also enjoy doing service, and have long been a member of many service organizations like NHS in high school. Recently, I have been preparing to serve a mission, meaning I will devote 18 months of my life to teaching the fullness of the gospel to others. In doing so, I have taken 4 years of religious classes in high school, and a 2-credit class every semester at BYU. I also prepare by reading Preach my Gospel and living faithfully and obediently.

What are Mormon church services like? Are visitors allowed at church meetings? Can I attend church?

Grace
What is the most different about Mormon church meetings is that the Bishop (the leader of the Mormon community) assigns different members to talk. This way, people in the congregation have the opportunity to learn while they are preparing to speak, and the congregation can hear new and multiple fresh insights on ageless doctrine. Once a month, there is no schedule for speakers. Instead, people voluntarily go to the pulpit and take a few minutes to share their testimony (what they know to be true, why they are faithful, how they have learned the truth, etc). This affirms the truth of the gospel both in the heart of the speaker and those listening to them profess their beliefs. Unlike other religions, our church after the meeting all together as a congregation has two more hours in which we can attend two hour-long classes that are based off of and taught for different groups/ages/demographcis. This allows members to get instruction specific to what they are experiencing at that time of their life. Additionally, there may be activities during the week which are optional to attend; these activities bring friendship and unity among the members. Show more Show less