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Hi I'm Jane

I'm a college student. I'm a convert. I'm a nurse (in training). I'm a missionary. I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I just finished my freshmen of college at Brigham Young University in Utah. I enjoy dancing, singing, and being a dork. I am blunt, sarcastic, and love to laugh. I'm a convert to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and have been with the Church for 6 years now, but only 15 months as an official member. I have been called as a missionary for the Church and am serving in the Perú Huancayo Mission. I love science and am studying to be a nurse. Though I firmly believe that music and laughter are the best medicines. I love almost all types of music and dance. I am mainly a tapper and swing dancer but I love almost all styles. I am a granddaughter, daughter, sister, friend, and avid cat lover. While all of these things make me who I am the most important thing that has made me who I am today is my involvement with the Church. It is what has truly made me who I am. (I know it sounds cliche but it's true!)

Why I am a Mormon

I was raised in a small college town in California. My family is Roman Catholic but non-practicing. My father is even a self-proclaimed Agnostic. My grandparents would take me to Mass though and saw that I became baptized and received the Catholic ordinances. I started finding any excuse not to go to Mass though. Then when I was thirteen years old I was introduced to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints by a friend who invited me to Girls Camp with her. (A Church camp for Young Women) I found answers there to my spiritual questions and felt the touch of the Holy Ghost. I started going to Church regularly, saved up money to by scriptures, and had the desire to be baptized. My parents told me though that I could not be baptized until I was a legal adult, because changing religions is an adult decision. At first it was disappointing but now I am grateful for the opportunity I had to explore and learn more about the Church before I was baptized. I would love to be able to say that once I found the Gospel I never wavered in my faith and was completely dedicated to the Church, but I would be lying. I was thirteen and soon entered high school at a Catholic Boarding School over three hundred miles from home. I was one of two Mormon girls at the school and was introduced to all types of different ideas and beliefs. I started to doubt. I doubted whether I believed in the Church because I had a testimony of it or if I was just doing it for my friends, and even whether the Church was true. Through a year or two long process of reconversion I have regained my testimony. This doesn't meant that I still don't have doubts every now and then or make mistakes, but I have learned for myself that this Church is true. I know that I can rely on the Atonement of Jesus Christ when I do make mistakes and that my Father in Heaven knows me and loves me. This Church has given me guidance yet given me the freedom to explore the world, with an eye single to the glory of God.

How I live my faith

I live my faith in small and simple ways. I live it by the way I choose to dress, speak, and act. I live my faith by studying the scriptures and praying to my Father in Heaven. I live it by dressing modestly, avoiding profane language and gestures, and acting righteous. As I "choose the right" in my life I am living my faith, by small and simple things. I also have formal callings within the Church to teach Sunday School in my Young Single Adult Ward and as Visiting Teacher to some girls in my dorm. Every other week my fellow teacher and I prepare a spiritual lesson on a passage of scripture to present to our Sunday School class. As I have prepared my lessons I have seen that there is no greater call than teaching and that by teaching others I am serving my Heavenly Father and living my faith. As a Visiting Teacher I have the unique opportunity of getting to know girls or sisters in my dorm that I might not otherwise associate with which has helped me to see the value and worth of every soul to our Father in Heaven. This has led me to choose to serve a mission. I also volunteer at the Missionary Training Center and a local Hospital. While these volunteer opportunities are not necessarily Church related as we give loving service we are living our faith, for as one of the 12 apostles said, "Service is the definition of true religion." In these small and larger things I have lived my faith, by word and by deed.

Can a husband and wife be together forever? Do Mormons believe that families will live together in heaven?

Jane
In the Mormon Hymn book there is a song, typically sung by Primary Children, called "Families Can Be Together Forever". The lyrics say that "Families can be together forever, through Heavenly Father's plan, I always want to be with my own family, and the Lord has shown me how I can." I love this song because I know that in my own life my Father is my best friend. He is the one I call up when I need to talk, brag about a recent achievement, or get advice. He is always there for me and I love him with all my heart. I would be so sad if after this life we weren't together anymore. I miss him even now when I am away at college so the thought of spending forever apart from him is horrid. But the Lord has shown me that through the temple I can be with my family for time and all eternity, so I will always be with my Father and the rest of my family. This applies to future families too. So when I get married in the temple to my future husband we will be sealed together for time and all eternity. Then if and when we have children they will also be sealed to us. I love this because when I get married I want it to be forever, because I will love him and want to be with him forever and always. I also love it because it gives me hope that when I have family pass away that I will see them again. It is so hard to lose family members, I lost my Grandpa a few years bad, but knowing that families can be together gives me the knowledge that I will see him again. We will all be together again. Show more Show less

How can I know Mormonism is true?

Jane
You can know if the Church is true if you read, pray, and listen. If you read the scriptures and pray about whether or not they are true and then listen for the whispers or promptings of the Holy Ghost you will find the truth. God is our Heavenly Father and he loves us and wants to help us on our mortal journey. So if we pray to Him earnestly seeking to know the truth or what we should do in our lives, having faith that he will answer us we will get an answer. It may not come immediately, or in the way we want, but it will come. I would encourage you to read James 1:5 and Moroni 10: 4-5. Pray about them and God will help you if you sincerely seek it. Another important part is to read, read the scriptures even if your haven't gotten your answer yet. Sometimes the Lord answers us through the scriptures, sending the Holy Ghost to touch our hearts as we read a certain passage. I have received some of my answers to prayer this way but others are through thoughts whispered in my head or felt in my heart giving me my answer through the power of the Holy Ghost. So it is important to always be listening for it because it's voice is still and small but it can be powerful if we give heed unto it. It can bring us a feeling of peace, hope, comfort, happiness, joy, and love in a time of distress, sorrow, or chaos. The Holy Ghost is sent to attest of truth, and so through it you can know the truth of all things. When I prayed to know the truth, it confirmed to me that the Church is true. Show more Show less

What is the role of the husband and the wife in the family?

Jane
The role of the husband and the wife in the family are to be equal partners. One is not superior to the other. While women are primarily the nurturers it is not because the Church forces them to be so, but because it is in their nature to be so. While the husband tends to be the provider. These roles follow the traditional pattern of Western Culture they are not archaic or limiting to women. I am a feminist and have found the most equality and respect for women in the Church. In the Church women are encouraged to get an education, work, be an equal with men, but we understand that the most important thing is the proper raising of our children. They are the next generation and will have the greatest effect on the world to come than anything we can do in this life. They are God's children entrusted to our care for this short mortal life. A husband and wife are equal partners in doing this. Their roles and responsibilities are not set in stone, they can be swapped, reversed, and changed to fit the family. I have seen many women with children who work full time jobs. I love that in the Church I have that opportunity to be a mother and have a career. Women are seen as equals, as complimentary to men not subordinate. It gives us the freedom to explore, have our own opinions, and be the women we want to be. Show more Show less

What are Mormon women like? Do Mormons believe in equality of men and women?

Jane
Mormon women are strong, courageous, loving, and amazing people. I have the highest admiration for Mormon women, and not just because I am one. As I looked upon the Relief Society as a Young Woman I saw women who had done it all, had children, obtained college degrees, worked full time, served missions, and held all types of different callings in the Church. They are a symbol of determination and perseverance, even when times get tough. Some believe women to be "second class citizens" in the Church but they are wrong. Women are revered and respected in the Church. We are equal to men, not superior nor inferior. Just because we are equal does not mean we are the same. "Neither is the man without the woman, neither the woman without the man, in the Lord" (1 Corinthians 11:11) We are two different, but complimentary genders. I am a Mormon woman. I am a daughter of God and I know my divine nature. Everyone in this world is a child of God. It does not matter whether you are male, female, Caucasian, African-American, President, or beggar the Lord loves us all equally. So who are Mormon women? We are daughters of God, equal partakers of His love and blessings. We are strong, caring, loving individuals who do all we can to build up the Lord's kingdom where we are. Show more Show less

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

Jane
Mormon Church services are spiritual and family oriented. We start off with the main part of our meetings called Sacrament meeting which last a little over an hour. Children sit with their families and so it can be noisy sometimes but the Spirit is always there in the hymns we sing, the Sacrament which is distributed, and in the talks prepared by different members of the congregation (ward). Sacrament is like communion bread and water are distributed by priesthood holders to the members of the congregation and all are welcome to partake. After Sacrament meeting we got to Sunday School lessons which are assigned by age. After Sunday School we have different meetings. Young Women for women age 12 to 17, Relief Society for women age 18 and older, and Priesthood meetings for men 12 and older. Young children ages 18 months to 3 years attend Nursery and ages 3 to 11 years attend Primary. Each meeting last approximately 1 hour. Visitors are welcome at any and all meetings. If you can't attend for the entire meeting come to Sacrament meeting. I brought my Mom to Church with me and even though she left after Sacrament meeting she was still able to learn and gain insight into the Church. Children are always welcome, and if you are worried about coming alone, don't be. I attend Church every Sunday without my family (they are not members) and I never sit alone. I am always invited to sit with other families and if not I could always sit with the missionaries. We love visitors so stop by. Show more Show less

What is the priesthood?

Jane
The priesthood is the authority to act in God's name here on the earth. It is the power by which people are baptized, healed, and sealed together for time and all eternity, amongst other things. The priesthood is available to all worthy male members of the Church to help lead and bless the Church. The priesthood authority held today in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the same priesthood authority established by Jesus Christ. The priesthood is a blessing to all members of the Church, male and female. I am female and so while I don't hold the priesthood I have still been blessed by it's influence in my life. When I sprained my ankle I was able to call upon some of my friends, worthy priesthood holders, who were able to give me a blessing. Part of holding the priesthood is that God expects them to follow the example of Jesus Christ and use it to serve others with love, gentleness, and kindness. When they arrived at my dorm that night I could feel the love that they had for me. When I was baptized, I was baptized by a worthy priesthood holder. And someday I will be sealed in the temple to my husband through the power of the priesthood. The priesthood may be held only by men but it is not just for men. It blesses the lives of all, men and women, as we have it in our homes, and churches. I love the priesthood and I look forward to the day when I can marry a worthy priesthood holder and have that priesthood authority in my home to bless me and my family. Show more Show less

How are the activities of the Mormon missionaries funded?

Jane
Mormon missions are funded at the missionary's own expense. He or she pays to spend 18 to 24 months serving a full time mission to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The Church does not pay for missionaries to serve but each ward (congregation) has what we call a "Ward Mission Fund" to support missionaries on their missions. This allows able and worthy young men and women, and senior couples to serve full time missions even if they cannot fully support themselves financially. I am serving a full time mission right now. I am serving in the Perú Huancayo Mission. Before my mission I worked to save up money to support myself on my mission and while I already had money saved I did not have enough to cover my entire mission alone. My ward though, and others if they choose to donate, have helped me to fund my mission. While their help is generous and loving, in most cases it does not cover the majority of the cost for a mission. The majority of the mission is funded by the missionary and his family. Parents normally help to support their child on his or her mission but in some cases, like mine, where the parents aren't members the mission is primarily supported by the missionary. It is a lot of money, but it is worth it to go out and share the Gospel, something that has brought so much joy and happiness into our lives that we can't help but want to share it with others. I am happy to serve my Lord as a missionary and have gladly paid for the opportunity to do so. Show more Show less

What is being a Mormon like?

Jane
Being a Mormon is amazing. It has brought so much joy and happiness into my life. Some people think that our life is so boring or rigid because we don't drink, smoke, watch R-rated movies, etc. which is such a huge part of today's culture, but what they don't understand is that we have tons of fun, and remember it in the morning. Our standards rather than limiting us have allowed us to grow and excel. They keep us free from addiction and out of trouble allowing us to find true joy in life. There is a huge sense of community in the Church. We see each other as Brothers and Sisters in the Gospel and as such we look out for one another. We help those in need (in and outside the Church) and build each other up. We love to have a good time, but also know when to be reverent and serious. I myself have seen how a big classroom full of students talking sudden silences in an instant when someone stands to offer a prayer at the beginning of class. I have seen how at any moment, even at 10:30 PM at night, you can call on fellow members for help and they will come. I have seen in my own life how personal and group prayer, scripture study, and attending Church has helped me to find joy in my life. When I feel the Spirit enter my heart, I feel worry, doubt, and fear leave. I am left with a feeling of joy, peace, love, warmth, and happiness. Show more Show less