Posts Tagged ‘convert’
December 4th, 2014 by admin
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.
July 16th, 2014 by admin
As a young woman, Jamillah Ali-Rashada prayed that Allah would let her live to raise children. In return, she promised that she would serve others for the rest of her life. She’s kept that promise by trying to be a vessel for the Spirit and its guidance. When Jamillah joined the LDS Church three years ago, she found her path leading to new and profound avenues for serving God’s children. “I have been purposed and called to this for such a time as this,” Jamillah says.”If that is the work and the service that I am supposed to perform, then it is my Heaven.”
November 20th, 2013 by admin
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
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.
July 17th, 2013 by admin
Maria Lucia Batioja balances being both a convert to the church and an immigrant to the United States from Argentina. She tells her story of being a young girl playing in the orchards on a small farm in Argentina, her courageous decision to come to the United States and join the church, and her continual effort to build a life for herself in a new country as a mother, a Latin American, and a Mormon.
July 10th, 2013 by admin
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.
May 1st, 2013 by admin
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.
March 6th, 2013 by admin
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.
September 14th, 2012 by admin
Elizabeth Perry’s evangelical upbringing caused her to loathe The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. An eating disorder she developed in college helped soften her heart. An LDS boy from her high school introduced her to the Church; she later embraced the gospel, then married that boy.
September 5th, 2012 by admin
Crystal came from a tumultuous upbringing, passed from foster home to foster home before settling with her grandparents as a teenager. It wasn’t until she was a young single mother that the missionaries knocked on her door and brought a whole new light into her life. Now she is a successful cellular molecular biology professor, a devoted mother, and advocate for women. Crystal embraces every opportunity to teach others the joys of science, of being a woman, and of the love Jesus Christ has for them.
August 8th, 2012 by admin
Janice was born into a Christian Palestinian family, but didn’t gain a deep appreciation for her heritage until she was a young adult. Now, as the Curator of Education for the Arab American National Museum in Michigan, Janice has daily opportunities to educate others about her culture. Balancing her Arab identity with her spiritual life as a Mormon, however, has been a challenging and isolating journey, even with the Lord’s continual presence in her life.
June 14th, 2012 by admin
As one of her polygamous father’s 47 children, Vilate Nielsen was never lonely. But as a young adult, Vilate chose instead to join The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints which she felt has manifestations of truth that were absent in the religion of her childhood. Although she’s had to get used to not having her large family around her and sometimes being lonely, Vilate today wouldn’t exchange her church membership for anything.
June 4th, 2012 by admin
As the 19-year-old daughter of a Communist leader, Rostya defected from Czechoslovakia in 1969 after the country was invaded. Although raised atheist, a powerful conversion experience while living in Brazil has led Rostya to a lifetime of dedicated service to the church abroad, culminating now in her position as Director of National Director for Public Affairs for Czech Republic. From Prague, Rostya vibrantly describes her life of faith and revolution.
March 5th, 2012 by admin
Trained as a doctor, Jenny Sato abandoned her medical practice when she left her native China to marry her Japanese husband. Now in Yokohama, Jenny is engaged in volunteer work and lending her varied talents to the expatriate community there. She focuses on her new membership in the Gospel and her 12-year-old son.
January 13th, 2012 by admin
Jana Riess was baptized in her final year of study at Princeton Theological Seminary. Her career plan to be a Protestant pastor derailed by her conversion, she now is an editor for a religious publishing house, teaches college, and writes about religion. Her most recent book, Flunking Sainthood, is a memoir about a year’s journey through spiritual practices.