What Is a Church Community?
Loading.....

The video player could not be built.

Do you want to chat with a missionary?

We are happy to answer any questions you may have. Start a chat or call us at 1-888-537-6600.

Hi I'm Anne Victoria

I love learning, I feel great joy in my life and I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I have a master's degree in communications and a doctorate in political science. When working toward my doctorate I majored in American government and public policy and minored in public administration. I enjoy researching political communication. I am a professor and am married to a professor (although my husband's research field is very different from mine). We have four children who bring us much joy and keep us busy. I like to exercise by walking several miles each day. I also enjoy raising sunflowers and herbs in my garden.

Why I am a Mormon

I joined the church when I was 16 years old. My mother was searching for the right religion for her during my childhood years. So, I followed her to several churches as she explored different Christian faiths. Finally, when I was 13 years old, she converted to Judaism. I practiced the Jewish traditions with my mom for several years, but still felt a yearning for a greater spiritual awakening. When I was 16 years old, my father had to travel to Salt Lake City for a business trip and while he was there he visited Temple Square. He brought home a copy of the Book of Mormon. We used to do literary studies together (as he taught English and loved talking about literature and history with me). He came into my room with the Book of Mormon in his hand and said, "This is a Book of Mormon. Millions of people all around the world believe this book. We need to be aware of what others believe, so I think we should do a literary study of this book." I thought that was a great idea, so I took the book from my father and started reading. I had only read a few pages when the feeling came over me that the book was true. The feeling was so strong that I knew I had to join the church that went with the book. So, I looked up the word "Mormon" in the phone book and was directed to the real name of the church which is The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I called one of the numbers listed and the man I spoke with sent the missionaries to my door. A few weeks later I was baptized a member of the church. The gospel has brought so much joy to my life. I am so grateful that I was able to find the church.

How I live my faith

I am the activities chair of my ward (local congregation), so I plan the large parties and activities. I am also a visiting teacher.

What is being a Mormon like?

Anne Victoria
We call each other brother and sister because we feel that we are all children of our Heavenly Father. So, when you go to church, you will hear people refer to Brother Smith or Sister Jones. Our local congregations are called wards. Several wards make up a stake. In our wards we connect with each other in several ways. If you are a female, each month two of your church sisters will come to visit you and you will go out with another sister to visit other sisters in your ward. This is called visiting teaching. Also, two of your ward brothers will come to visit you each month. This is called home teaching. We have a lot of activities for the children and teenagers. We have our church meetings on Sunday and also have meetings during the week, especially for the teenagers. Our teenagers also tend to go to church camps and youth conferences during the summertime and have spiritual meetings they can go to called firesides on Sunday evenings. I am in charge of the parties and activities for my ward, so I plan out the ward Christmas party, the Halloween festival, the Memorial Day breakfast and other activities. Each ward may be different with respect to the parties and celebrations held, but members of each ward try to get together at various times during the year to celebrate and fellowship with other members of the ward. We don't have a paid clergy, so we all take turns giving the spiritual talks on Sundays. There may be times when you may be listening to one of the teenagers in the ward giving a spiritual message and other times when a senior citizen may be sharing the spiritual message. Over the course of time, you may receive spiritual messages from all of the teenagers and adult members of the ward. Even the young children have a special Sunday where they give a spiritual presentation to the ward. It's our belief that people grow through sharing these messages and people grow by listening to the messages shared. We have a fairly egalitarian belief system when it comes to the spiritual messages we give and receive on Sundays. We pay tithing, which means that we give 10 percent of our income to the church. This goes to pay for our temples and meetinghouses, etc. Once a month we fast by skipping two meals and we give the money we would have spent on those meals to the church to be distributed to the poor. During that Sunday we also have a testimony meeting where we can bear our witness about what we know is true to each other. In my family spiritual discussions tend to happen spontaneously. We could be talking about anything else and the conversation could suddenly shift to a spiritual analysis of whatever we are discussing. Show more Show less

What is the Mormon lifestyle like? How do Mormons live?

Anne Victoria
We don't drink coffee, tea or alcohol. We don't smoke or take harmful drugs. We spend several hours each Sunday at church (but it's a lot more fun than it sounds when I say it like that). We tend to pray a lot, in our families, at meals, at church, or any other time we feel like it. We try to dress modestly and we follow the law of chastity. When we marry in the temple, it is a marriage for time and all eternity, so we take marriage seriously. We focus a lot on our families and on service to our church. However, we also try to reach out to our neighbors and serve our community. Show more Show less