Professional Pursuits

December 4th, 2014 by admin

3 Comments

Trail Blazing in Belgium

Trail Blazing in Belgium

Linda Vergauwen

When Linda Vergauwen joined the Church in Belgium in 1978, neither she nor her friends and family knew anything about Mormons. Today, Linda is a pillar of the Church in Flemish Belgium and the principal of an elementary school, proving that she has earned her community’s trust despite her membership. Linda describes the challenges of raising children in a community where the Church is small and growing slowly, going to the temple with no preparation, and the joy that comes from a life of dedicated service to the Savior.

October 29th, 2014 by admin

10 Comments

“Prayer Changes Things”

“Prayer Changes Things”

Willie Mae Wright Douglas

Willie Douglas has weathered some storms. She has been part of many of the tumults in America’s history over the last fifty years. She battled racism while working to integrate her place of employment in New Orleans. She lost one of her sons to fatal illness during the AIDS epidemic. She fled her home in the face of Hurricane Katrina–and then returned to New Orleans to help rebuild her city. But Willie’s faith has sustained her throughout. In the words of her favorite hymn, “The world may crush you, but you don’t have to fret / My God remembers when others forget / One thing I know, yes, I surely know / Prayer changes things.”

October 9th, 2014 by admin

5 Comments

Choosing Good and Making Change

Choosing Good and Making Change

Bethany Brady Spalding

Bethany Brady Spalding takes her knack for dissatisfaction and turns it into life-giving action. Whether she’s planting gardens for at-risk children, directing community health programs, or sharing scripture stories with her own daughters, Bethany tries to build positivity and partnership. Bethany is a co-author of the book, ‘Girls Who Choose God: Stories of Courageous Women from the Bible.’ She believes that telling women’s stories is vital for our spiritual health.

October 1st, 2014 by admin

12 Comments

Choosing God and Abundance

Choosing God and Abundance

McArthur Krishna

McArthur Krishna did not expect to be where she is. And the path she took to get there was an unusual one. McArthur lives in rural India, an overnight train ride from the nearest LDS Church congregation and a world apart from her former life in Washington DC. But her unique experiences have confirmed to her the importance of maintaining her personal relationship with God and trusting in His ways. The result, she says, is an abundant life filled with vibrancy and delight. McArthur is a co-author of the book, ‘Girls Who Choose God: Stories of Courageous Women from the Bible.’ Writing about women who choose to follow God is one way that McArthur feels actively connected to her faith.

September 24th, 2014 by admin

6 Comments

All Here Together

All Here Together

Bianca Morrison Dillard

In her work as a filmmaker, Bianca Morrison Dillard sees storytelling as a way to build community, and a way to help people feel heard and understood. Her views are shaped by what she sees as the essence of the Gospel of Jesus Christ: “Love and inclusion. Everything that is virtuous and lovely and of good report and praiseworthy.” Bianca talks here about honoring the nuance and complexity of individual lives–one of the goals of her current project, the documentary film ‘Far Between,’ which features personal stories about what it means to be gay and Mormon.

August 18th, 2014 by admin

9 Comments

Aspiring Mormon Women

Aspiring Mormon Women

Naomi Watkins

Just when Naomi Watkins thought she was done with school forever, she felt the Lord redirect her path. Now she wants to encourage other women to find that inspiration for themselves. To help with that goal, she founded Aspiring Mormon Women, a non-profit organization intended to support and celebrate the educational and professional aspirations of LDS women. “God does not place limits on us,” Naomi says, “and learning to listen to and follow the Spirit are paramount skills to develop.”

June 12th, 2014 by admin

7 Comments

We Are Made for Love and Light

We Are Made for Love and Light

Rachel von Niederhausern

Rachel von Niederhausern has always had a passion for humanitarian work, but she wasn’t sure what she would do with an MBA until she realized she was meant to be a social entrepreneur. “I care about social change and I love serving people,” explains Rachel. She has co-founded two non-profit organizations and is now on the board of Family Humanitarian Experience, which empowers communities of developing countries through village-driven, sustainable projects. Rachel talks here about how she’s managed to meld her education, talents, and interests with her family life, including how she encourages her four children to discover joy in service, and how her own life of service helps her find peace of mind.

April 18th, 2014 by admin

4 Comments

An Advocate of Faith

An Advocate of Faith

Laura Asioli

Laura Asioli made two important life decisions before she was ten years old. She decided she wanted to be baptized in the LDS Church, and she decided to become a lawyer. Laura says that as she studied law, she often felt the Spirit confirming to her that justice and divinity are closely intertwined. Today she is a solicitor practicing compliance law in the City of London. In this interview she reflects on balancing her Italian and English cultures, navigating a career while raising her two young children, and realizing that sometimes unexpected blessings come about after unexpected failures.

March 11th, 2014 by admin

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Bérengère Doby s’est toujours considérée comme altruiste, et elle cherche des moyens de mettre son amour en pratique. Son enfance dans le sud de la France a mené à sa service missionnaire en Suisse et puis une carrière en santé. Récemment elle a mis à côté sa carrière en podologie pour élever ses enfants. Dans cet interview, Bérengère parle des leçons qu’elle avait apprises en tant que missionnaire, qui l’ont préparée au mariage, à la maternité, et à une vie de service.

March 5th, 2014 by admin

1 Comment

To Always Serve and Love

To Always Serve and Love

Bérengère Doby

Bérengère Doby says she has always had an altruistic personality, and looks for ways to put love and into practice. Her childhood in southern France led to her mission service in Switzerland, and then a career in health care. Now she has put a career in podiatry on hold to raise her children. Bérengère talks here about how the lessons she learned as a missionary prepared her for marriage, motherhood, and a life of service.

February 27th, 2014 by admin

37 Comments

Raquel Cook’s biography so far might read like an adventure novel—living and working in Korea, meeting the Dalai Lama and Mother Teresa, studying at Oxford University, surviving the violence of 9/11 in New York City—but she’d rather you wrote your own adventure. Now a professor of education, Raquel reflects on her unique path and how she encourages her students to get out and see the world. And she explains how her study of world religions helped her better appreciate her own Mormonism. “There is truth everywhere,” Raquel says, “and there is happiness everywhere, and there is beauty everywhere, and people are good. Ugly is rare. People are just beautiful and good.”

January 31st, 2014 by admin

7 Comments

Finding A Lifeline

Finding A Lifeline

Rhyll Anne Croshaw

For twenty-seven years, Rhyll Crowshaw and her husband have been working through the effects of his sexual addiction. With the help of therapists, bishops, introspection and prayer, Rhyll has developed the strength she needs to keep herself safe. She now also helps other victims of sexual addiction feel safe through her organization S. A. Lifeline.

January 24th, 2014 by admin

6 Comments

The Art of Homemaking

The Art of Homemaking

Daryl Van Dam Hoole

Daryl Hoole’s first book, The Art of Homemaking, was published in 1967 and lasted on the shelves of Deseret Book for 25 years. The unofficial spokeswoman for home culture in Mormonism for the second half of the 20th century, Daryl has been in demand as a speaker for women’s groups throughout the United States and Canada. She served on the Primary General Board, is the mother of 8 living children and grandmother of thirty-six.

December 12th, 2013 by admin

6 Comments

As a molecular physiology professor at UNC Chapel Hill, Sarah Street is interested in the big questions of how the brain works: What is perception? What is reality? What is agency? In addition to having implications for how people of faith process spiritual experiences, but Sarah hopes her work can also show that people’s emotional experiences have impact on their physical health.

November 20th, 2013 by admin

33 Comments

Rescued From Exploitation

Rescued From Exploitation

Stephanie M. Larsen

Stephanie comes from four generations of women who were trafficked for the purpose of sexual exploitation. Her own mother was sent into the trade at age twelve and had her first child when she was sixteen. But Stephanie’s mother broke the pattern by refusing to exploit her own children, allowing Stephanie to grow up outside the sex trafficking industry and join the Church in high school. Stephanie is now a wife and mother and the founder of two non-profits, Child Rescue and Backyard Broadcast, and she is an activist fighting against human trafficking.

November 14th, 2013 by admin

14 Comments

Kat S. is a family therapist in New York City and a Jewish convert to the LDS Church. She is also the semi-anonymous blogger behind the popular Tumblr page “Just Say Amen Already,” a light-hearted look at her Mormon experience. Kat says she was prompted to the task of making us laugh at ourselves. Here, she talks about the healing power of laughter and the beauty she finds in life and the Gospel.

October 23rd, 2013 by admin

9 Comments

Tis A Gift To Be Simple

Tis A Gift To Be Simple

Rachel Whipple

From Our “Sisters Speak Out” Series: Rachel Whipple doesn’t own a dryer or an air conditioner. Why? Because she believes that being a steward of the earth means making do with what she has and providing for herself and her family wherever possible. Rachel also grows her family’s food, bakes their bread, cans, sews, and rides her bike almost everywhere. She speaks movingly about the need for a revival of provident living, government’s role in sustainability, and our responsibility to the poor.

October 4th, 2013 by admin

17 Comments

Coded in the DNA

Coded in the DNA

Suzi Fei

Suzi Fei is a devout Mormon, wife, and mother. She’s also a computational biologist and an enthusiastic career woman who says her natural inclinations to pursue a profession often brought anxiety and loneliness while growing up in the Church. But her life changed when she met her biological parents, and Suzi began feeling more comfortable in her own skin. She encourages women to embrace their natural talents and spend more time trusting in God and less time worrying about cultural expectations.

September 12th, 2013 by admin

44 Comments

From our “Sisters Speak Out” series: On March 17, 2013, Kate Kelly launched OrdainWomen.org. Her efforts to draw attention to the possibility of female ordination have drawn both impassioned praise and criticism, but Kate feels that the example of her parents, the experience of her mission, and her training in human rights law has made female ordination a flag she’s prepared to carry.

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.

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