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August 14th, 2013 by admin

20 Comments

When Pam Shorr decided to stop attending church, she doubted she would ever go back. She recalls thinking, “I really want to find who I am and what I believe. I just want to do my own thing for a while.” But eventually, Pam found herself prompted to return, and an inspired Relief Society president showed her the way. She describes her reactivation in the Church as difficult, terrifying, and inspiring. “When I returned,” she says, “I was ready for the whole thing, and I have never looked back.” Pam is interviewed here by her daughter, Krisanne.

August 7th, 2013 by admin

11 Comments

In the Lord’s Time

In the Lord’s Time

Peka Holmes

As a wife and mother in a part-member family, Peka draws on the inspiration of her mother — who was also a “single parent in the gospel” — to support her husband as he learns about the Church and teach her daughter what she believes. Issues of race have proven challenging for her non-white family, and Peka discusses how much she appreciates member friends who embrace her husband for who he is and not for what they want him to be.

July 31st, 2013 by admin

25 Comments

Cherish One Another

Cherish One Another

Cathy Stokes

Cathy Stokes is a firebrand, common-sense Mormon. A pioneering member who was baptized in 1979, Cathy’s willingness to speak her mind has shaped her faith and helped bridged gaps among members of the church. Cathy recalls some painful memories of growing up in Mississippi, shares a beautiful reflection on tenderness, recites her favorite hymn, and speaks of the abounding goodness of God and the strength of Mormon women.

July 10th, 2013 by admin

11 Comments

Threads Woven Together

Threads Woven Together

Callie Appelstein

Raised with little religion in her home, it was during college when Callie went to Hebrew University in Jerusalem that she first embraced her Jewish heritage and converted to Orthodox Judaism. Despite her full immersion in the Orthodox community and faith, Callie cultivated a private interest in Mormonism, particularly in temples. Callie eventually left Orthodox Judaism to join the Church and raise her children Mormon. Her rich spiritual journey has been thoughtful and deliberate.

June 27th, 2013 by admin

14 Comments

A Grief Observed

A Grief Observed

Julie Hall

Nearly two years ago, tragedy struck when Julie Hall’s 14-month-old son died before her eyes. She now understands what C.S. Lewis meant when he said sorrow is not a state but a process. Gently, slowly, and with great pains—and joys—Julie began a cathartic journey of discovery.

June 17th, 2013 by admin

6 Comments

Lindsay Hart is a woman of many talents, and she’s put them all to good use. As a Spanish speaker, she has helped build up Spanish-speaking branches in her area. As a photographer, she photographs children with terminal diseases for a non-profit she founded. She’s also acted as foster mother to her cousin. She’s working towards her own version of her personal best.

June 5th, 2013 by admin

5 Comments

Mohawk Junkie

Mohawk Junkie

Jessamyn Lau

Jessamyn Lau, a high school drop-out turned art student turned MBA, speaks about her philosophy of risk-taking and her confidence in being a daughter of God. Jessamyn’s non-traditional career path has led her from waitressing to teaching in China and now to building the field of social entrepreneurship. She’s proof that calculated risks can pay off. Her advice? Be bold. Be deliberate. Be prayerful. And try getting a mohawk.

May 16th, 2013 by admin

7 Comments

While growing up in Alberta, Canada, Elizabeth Bectell swore she would never live on a farm. But after graduating from college and serving a full-time mission, Liz found herself back in familiar territory. Now she’s a cattle rancher’s wife near Cardston, finding happiness in her choices, her family, her community, and her trust in a loving Heavenly Father.

May 9th, 2013 by admin

51 Comments

Playing From Her Heart

Playing From Her Heart

Tina Richerson

Tina knew from a young age that music was her life’s calling and she is a professional saxophonist in New York. It took longer for Tina to realize that she is gay, but a period of inactivity from the Church didn’t stop her from paying her tithing every month. It was appreciation and practice of Buddhism that led Tina back to the Church in her remarkable journey back into activity.

May 1st, 2013 by admin

11 Comments

Her Version of Having It All

Her Version of Having It All

Marie-Laure Oscarson

Marie-Laure Oscarson suggests that “having it all” means something different for everyone. For her—a mother, a university professor, and a convert to the LDS Church—it comes down personal revelation about specific life choices regarding her family, her profession, and her religion. Marie-Laure’s path has included the Catholic faith, French existentialist philosophy, a curiosity about the Amish lifestyle, and the Mormon missionaries who helped rekindle her faith in God’s love.

April 24th, 2013 by admin

17 Comments

As the co-author with her husband of the highly popular book, “The God Who Weeps,” Fiona Givens has thought deeply about the character of God and her responsibility to search out that true character in the scriptures. In this interview, she shares her personal reflections on how she searches for God’s true character, how her Catholic background has aided in her understanding of Christ’s importance, and how she passes that sacred knowledge to her children.

April 10th, 2013 by admin

6 Comments

“You Pass”

“You Pass”

Maria de Jesus Cristina

As a young wife and mother, Maria miraculously obtained a visa to leave Mexico and join her husband in the United States. However, the visa eventually expired and Maria lived for many years as an undocumented worker, trying to keep her family together and make a living for her children. Maria has now obtained a visa and is working towards her GED, while sending her children to college and serving as Primary president in her ward.

April 3rd, 2013 by admin

4 Comments

Yoga for Body and Soul

Yoga for Body and Soul

Joanne Dehlin

When Joanne Dehlin first tried Bikram Yoga, she didn’t love it—but she knew she needed it in her life. Now she is a certified instructor and director of her own yoga studio. She sees the physical, emotional, and spiritual benefits of yoga, as well as the sense of community it fosters. “If you are in that place where you can love others and have the light of Christ,” Joanne says, “you are connected. You honor other people.”

March 27th, 2013 by admin

8 Comments

“How Far Can I Soar?”

“How Far Can I Soar?”

Seraphine Kapsandoy Jones

Having suffered religious persecution and losing a parent at a young age, Seraphine Kapsandoy Jones has had her fair share of trials. But the 35-year-old native of Kenya says she doesn’t worry about things she can’t control. She focuses on her faith, goals, and opportunities to serve. Now, the doctoral student at the University of Utah helps inspire, empower, and motivate women to soar high.

March 14th, 2013 by admin

2 Comments

Kristen Cox balances her family life with a career in government, negotiating a busy world with the added challenge of blindness. Having worked under three governors in Maryland and Utah, she currently works under Governor Herbert in the Office of Management and Budget. Here she discusses priorities, support systems, and the challenge of learning to be content while driven to achieve. And how the gospel message of eternal perspective makes all the difference.

March 6th, 2013 by admin

25 Comments

Betty Stevenson grew up in an African-American community near San Francisco. After spiraling through abusive relationships, drug dealing and jail, she joined the Church. Betty served for many years as the Relief Society president of the newly formed Oakland Ninth Branch, composed of some of Oakland’s poorest neighborhoods, and she is the founder of an organization that hosts free football camps. In addition, Betty is raising her three great-grandchildren.

February 21st, 2013 by admin

6 Comments

Although a devoted mother to four children, Patty has seen each of her children walk away from the Church. The death of one of her adult sons, Kevin, left her desperate for the healing balm of the Savior. She’s found solace in her role as a temple worker and in immersing herself in the scriptures.

February 14th, 2013 by admin

7 Comments

Inspired by her childhood love of shrinky dinks, Garfield, Disney movies and bathtime, animator and artist Annie Poon has established herself as a premier paper stop motion animator. In fact, one of her films was acquired by the Museum of Modern Art in New York. In addition to capturing the most magical moments of childhood, Annie has turned her talents towards animating the most violent scenes in the Book of Mormon in her “Die Wicked Die” series. Annie’s new ebook, “Puppy’s Super Delicious Valentine’s Day Biscuits!” is available just in time for the holiday!

February 6th, 2013 by admin

16 Comments

A Champion for Diversity

A Champion for Diversity

Sui Lang Panoke

As the founder of a consultancy that prepares and promotes women and minorities in politics, Sui Lang Panoke is trained to find opportunities for organizations to improve their representations of these groups. She sees her love of the Church as complementary, not in contradiction, to her professional training. As a single mother and Relief Society president in her Washington D.C. ward, Sui Lang shares her testimony of the Church’s divine organization and the opportunities the gospel gives each member to grow in her own relationship with the Lord.

January 30th, 2013 by admin

16 Comments

Lisa’s Courage

Lisa’s Courage

Lisa Hansen

As the composer and lyricist of “Nephi’s Courage,” Lisa Hansen’s influence is felt in Primaries across the Church. But it is her work as the leader of a gay choir in Utah County that now occupies much of Lisa’s time. As a Marriage and Family Therapy graduate student at BYU, Lisa is a counselor for gay LDS youth and the author of a curriculum for LDS families of gay youth.

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