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Hi I'm Jana

I grew up in Virginia. I'm a student. I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I like to sing and dance and go hiking. I'm taking a clogging class with my older brother who's ten years older than me. I love music--playing the piano, playing guitar, singing, and listening to music that reflects whatever mood I'm in, be it Copland, Avett Brothers, Pink, Carpenters, or Bread. I'm home sick today taking it easy.

Why I am a Mormon

I grew up on the east coast in a Mormon family. From the things I've done in my life, it makes sense that I'm a Mormon. But I am not one to do something because other people think it's right. Throughout my life my testimony has been challenged, but I have concluded for myself that the gospel of Jesus Christ is true. I am a Mormon, not because it makes life easier, not because my parents forced me to be, and not because I believe God only loves Mormons. I am a Mormon because I love my family and I want to be with them forever. I am a Mormon because of the feelings I get when I read the Book of Mormon. I am a Mormon because of the feelings I get when I visit the Sacred Grove in Palmyra, New York, and when I go to the temple. I am a Mormon because of the love I feel when the Prophet speaks. I am Mormon because the things I know require me to make covenants with the Lord to keep His commandments. I am a Mormon so that when I am sick, I can raise my voice in gratitude in prayer to the Lord for all of the blessings He gives me. I am Mormon so that when I pay my tithing, I can know that the Lord will take care of me and provide for my needs.

How I live my faith

Right now in my congregation, I am a Sunday School teacher. When I taught two weeks ago, I taught about Job--such a powerful story, especially for us today. I love the Old Testament. I think it's kind of difficult for me to describe how I live my faith, because everything I do is because of what I believe. I wake up in the morning because I believe God has things for me to do. I plan my days out because it helps me prioritize the things that are necessary-daily prayer and scripture study, keeping contact with my family who is spread out across the US-with all the other good things I am doing that are good-work, school, chores, dance class, play practice, and friends. I eat cracked wheat in the morning for breakfast because that's what my Dad ate for breakfast every day on his mission in Japan. As a student, I pray about which classes I take, which projects I select, where I live, where I work, and what I do.

Why don’t Mormons have paid clergy?

You know, this is a great question. My Dad has served as a clergyman for most of my life. During those years, he has been a husband, a father of seven children (one with Downs Syndrome), an entrepreneur of new businesses, a member the of boards of several non-profit organizations, unemployed, a busy PhD student, and even a candidate for state delegate. But during all those times, never did the thought enter his mind to be paid for his countless hours of church service. He was always very careful not to leverage his church position in his work endeavors. We all knew that it was through his faithful, humble church service that he was able to accomplish so much with so little. Mormons don't have paid clergy because it's so much easier and so much more rewarding to do God's work when you do it because you know it's the right thing to do and not because you're paid to do it. Show more Show less