Category Archives: Church

“Don’t count your days—make your days count.” Elder Jay Jensen

Hey y’all! I have been home from my mission for over a month and I am going to now be posting my mission updates for all to read. They don’t start from the beginning because I didn’t do them at the beginning so….they will be funny, sad, upseting, and joyous at different times. Don’t say I didn’t warn ya. And I hope you are ready for a ton of mission talk 🙂 I loved the 18 months I was gone and I wouldn’t trade those 18 months for anything in the world…no amount of money could’ve convinced me to not go. I was called by God and that was who I did it for. Because I love Him, I put everything on hold for 18 months.

Enjoy your reading! And if you have any questions, please feel free to ask at any time. I can get you answers. If I can’t I know who do. I will help you any way that I can.

100_4974100_4972100_1104100_3085

Advertisements

“The only thing needed for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing.” -Edmund Burke

Here are a few Q&A’s about the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (The Mormon Church). If you would like to learn more, you can speak to a missionary or me. I will also include some websites that you can find any information about the church. Some of the answers on my blog are from these websites.

mormon-org

Question:  Are all Mormons required to serve a mission?

Answer: Quite simply, no. The young men of the church have been strongly encouraged to serve a mission at age [18], and the sisters are able to serve at age [19], but no one is required to serve. We do it because we want to! Who in their right mind would give up two years and pay that’s right, missionaries pay their own way to go somewhere they had never been and do all that they do? We serve missions because we know that Jesus is the Christ, and we want the happiness that knowledge bring to be available to everyone! So no, Mormons are not required to serve a mission. It’s a personal choice to share the happiness and joy they’ve received from the Gospel.

Question: What is a “testimony” that Mormons speak of?

Answer: The word “testimony” is used frequently by members of The Church. When they use this, what they mean is they have knowledge that a certain principle or doctrine is true because they have studied it, and received a witness of it from the Holy Ghost. For example, to gain a ‘testimony’ of the Book of Mormon, you read it, study it, and ask Heavenly Father if it is true. He will typically respond with a feeling of peace or happiness. This feeling is the witness from the Holy Ghost that the Book of Mormon is true. Once you receive this witness, you have built a testimony of the Book Of Mormon. This process can be applied to any aspect of The Church, or your life.

Question: Why does the church have living prophets?

Answer: Without living prophets God can’t guide his church. He has always called prophets and always will.

mormon1

Question: What is the Book of Mormon?

Answer: The Book of Mormon is a Volume of scripture comparable to the bible. It is a record of God’s dealings with the ancient inhabitants of the Americas and contains a fullness of the everlasting Gospel. The book was written by many ancient prophets by the spirit of prophecy and revelation.

Question: How is the church organized?

Answer: “We believe in the same organization that existed in the Primitive Church, namely, apostles, prophets, pastors, teachers, evangelists, and so forth” (Articles of faith #6)
The Church is led by 15 apostles. The most senior apostle is the president of the Church, and he selects two other apostles as counselors. These three function as the First Presidency, which is the highest governing body of the Church. Twelve others form the Quorum of the Twelve — the second-highest governing body of the Church. Together, the First Presidency and the Twelve oversee the entire Church. Church members trace this organizational structure to the New Testament.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Question: What is The Word of Wisdom?

Answer: The Word of Wisdom is a code of health that Mormons live by. We believe that it came from God through the prophet Joseph Smith. Our bodies were created by God. He understands the workings of our bodies. He understands what is best for them and knows exactly what needs to be done to take care of them and make sure that they have the best chance of lasting for a long time. He wanted us to know this as well, so he gave us the Word of Wisdom. The Word of Wisdom teaches us what things we should put into our bodies and what things we shouldn’t–this gives us the best possible chance of being healthy that a person could have! In short, the Word of Wisdom teaches us what is good for our bodies: herbs, grains, wheat, fruits, little meat, etc. A pretty normal diet, if I do say so myself! God has also told us, very specifically, what things are harmful for our bodies. They are alcohol, tobacco, coffee, tea, and any illegal or harmful drug. I have lived by the Word of Wisdom my entire life, and I can testify from experience that it works! I have never been addicted to anything. I have always been healthy. And, best of all, I feel good every day! I know that the Word of Wisdom comes from a loving God, who wants His children to be healthy and happy!

Question: What is the Law of Chastity?

Answer: The law of chastity is a set of behaviors (and non-behaviors) pertaining to sexual purity. In a nutshell it is that unmarried persons are not to have sexual relations (of any kind) with one another outside of a legal and lawful wedding. Per the law of chastity married persons are permitted to engage in sexual relations but complete fidelity to spouse is required. Additionally behaviors like being involved in pornography (inside or outside of marriage) are a violation of this law. Relations between man and woman (husband and wife) should be of a type and fashion that are acceptable to both partners. Homosexuality is a contravention of the law of chastity and is forbidden of the Lord (regardless of a so-called marital agreement). The law of chastity also forbids masturbation as this is a misuse of sacred God-given power. The prophets and apostles (President Boyd K. Packer prominently among them) have spoken out ever increasingly on the subject of the law of chastity. There are numerous resources on the topic on LDS.org (key word: chastity). Satan’s main desire is to destroy families (in all stages) and he finds great success in deceiving mortals into abusing themselves and each other by violating the tenets of the law of chastity. Article of faith #13 states “We believe in being honest, true, chaste…”

Question: How is the Book of Mormon different from the Bible? How did Joseph Smith Obtain the “Golden Plates” or Book of Mormon?

Answer: The Book of Mormon is different from the Bible because it is another testament like there is the Old Testament and the New Testament, but it is the same because it is the same God inspiring what is written! At the end of the Old Testament times, there was a family in Jerusalem that left to travel to what is now called the Americas. They had part of the Old Testament, and brought it with them. This Jewish tradition – of keeping records of the families and the events of the Lord working in their lives – continued when the family traveled to the Americas. So just like the Old Testament is a record of the history of the people in that area, the Book of Mormon is a history of the family traveling to the Americas, and then what happened once they settled there. Like the Old Testament, these records were passed down through the families over time. So with the Book of Mormon, there was a man named Mormon who was named after a place, actually, where there was a river and people got baptized, and he consolidated these records into a “book”. That is why it is called “the Book of Mormon”.

Question: Do Mormons practice polygamy?

Answer: No. The Church does not practice polygamy although it did for a short while in the early years of the Church. (Please review your Bible history as it was practiced in ancient times.) It was not practiced at all until Joseph Smith received revelation asking the people to do so. Even then, only the more righteous members were joined in plural marriage, not everyone could participate. A later prophet received revelation that this practice should be stopped and so it was. This is just my personal belief and is not an authorized church response….If you will recall your history, persecution was rampant in the early history of our church and many people died because of their beliefs including many righteous male members. That left many women usually with large families with no means to make a living and no man to provide for the family. Through plural marriage these families were provided for and led by a righteous priesthood holder who could teach, care for, and protect the family. Later persecution was less, the Church had established itself in the West, and more jobs were available to women as technology began to affect society. Also, the Church was persecuted for practicing polygamy and if things hadn’t changed, God’s purposes to share the gospel throughout the world would have been hindered. Our greatest command has been to “go forth and teach all nations” about the Gospel Plan. Today, we believe in and practice monogamy, the marriage of one man to one woman.

Question: What do Mormons believe about family?

Answer: That families are the most important organizations in the world and that belonging to a family is one of the reasons we are on this earth. We believe that families can be together forever, and one of the purposes of temples is to make that happen. We do family history work and temple work for those in our family who died before they could go to a temple so that they can be linked together with us as families extending back through time to Adam. We believe that the blessings Heavenly Father has for His children though being parts of families are so necessary that He has asked us to do this family history research and temple work so that we can find our family members and connect them to us. Every person who has lived on this earth should have a chance to receive these wonderful family blessings, and family history research is how we find people who didn’t have a chance to receive them while they were living. We believe that everyone should have a chance to choose these family blessings, and so we do the temple work that will give them that choice, even if they have not lived on this earth for a long time. My first grandchild only lived for ten hours because she was born without a skull, but we believe because of the family blessings of the temple, we can be with her after we have died and we can know her and love her as part of our family. We believe that Christ’s sacrifice and atonement makes this possible, and we are anxious for others we know and love to have this great blessing as well.

Here are some great links to check out, some with more information about the questions and others have more information:

http://mormon.org/articles-of-faith

http://mormon.org/

http://www.lds.org/?lang=eng

http://www.mormonnewsroom.org/

http://www.mormonnewsroom.org/topic/organizational-structure-of-the-church

http://www.mormonchannel.org/

https://familysearch.org/

Good luck in your quest to learn more. If you want to obtain a free copy of the Book of Mormon, one can be sent to you at no cost. The Book of Mormon is always free, everyone should be able to access the Lord’s gospel for free, right? If you read it, you will gain a knowledge of it.

mormon

“The intensity of our desire to share the gospel is a great indicator of the extent of our personal conversion.” -Dallin H. Oaks

Here are some care package ideas for the missionary in your life, whether they be an Elder or a Sister.

Care package ideas for missionaries:

1.     Packages with FOOD 

  • Chocolate (note – chocolate may melt if sending to hot climates)
    • Aero
    • Reese’s Pieces
    • Smarties
    • M&Ms
    • M Azing
    • Almond Joy (mini snack sized bars)
    • Kitkat
    • Bounty
    • Snickers
    • chocolate coins
  • Candy
    • gummy bears
    • Baskin Robbins hard candies
    •  Skittles
    • Starburst
    • Sunkist Bars
    • Caramel
    • Rock Candy
  • Gum
    • Extra
    • Freedent
    • Carefree
    • Trident
    • Excel
  • Salty snacks
    • chex mix
    • power bars
    • fruit snacks
    • Hotrod
    • sunflower seeds
    • nuts
    • beef jerky
    • goldfish
    • ritz bits
    • popcorn
  • Drinks/Quick meal
    • Juice boxes, pop, water
    • ichiban noodles

2.     Packages with Clothing

  • shoes
  • socks
  • tights
  • leather dress gloves

3.     Practical Packages

  • razors or nail clippers
  • favorite soaps/shampoos that you can’t get in that country
  • favorite toothpaste
  • Floss
  • disposable lint brush
  • Mr. Clean Magic Eraser
  • pens
  • fabric softener
  • hair brush
  • sewing kit
  • pre-addressed and postage paid envelopes with stationery inside
  • stickers for trading for the back of name tags and for giving away to contacts with kids
  • insoles
  • lotion 
  • disposable towelettes

4.     For Sentimental/Special packages

    • Dip hand in paint and make hand print on paper – let dry and then write message on paper (is especially touching if the hand prints are little ones from nieces and nephews) 
    • Poems/stories/scriptures 
    • Pictures 
    • Make a P-day shirt with notes of encouragement and signatures from the ward written with fabric markers or paint 
    • Personalize a bookmark for scriptures 
    • Send pad of sticky notes all used up with messages that begin with “I’m proud of you becaus

    • e…” 
    • Make a mobile out of some of your missionary’s favorite things: picture of their pet, favorite candies, items representing favorite sport or hobby, etc. 
    • Write them a rap or a song and sing it to them by recording it on a cassette tape or video tape – do it for family home evening 
    • Make a paper chain (like the kind you make for your Christmas tree) and write little notes to your missionary on each piece of paper 
    • Write the next letter on cardstock and then cut it into a puzzle for them to put together

Some personal favorites of mine are the rubber duckies that they have at

 

http://mymissionarygifts.com/index.php?main_page=index&cPath=12_30

 

and the Build-A-Bear at:

http://www.buildabear.com/shopping/productDetail.jsp?

productId=prod80004&categoryId=cat110084&dressMeMode=false&embroidery=false&soundEligible=false&selected=

Good luck to anyone serving! It will be an amazing experience. 

Love,

Sister Carra Skye Miller

“And I give unto you a commandment that you shall teach one another the doctrine of the kingdom.” D&C 88:77

images

Ok, I know this is my third post of the day but I think this one goes hand-in-hand with my last post. I’m posting up a second challenge! This one isn’t for the Book of Mormon though, this is for the Doctrine and Covenants(D&C)! Let’s see who can read that in 31 days, we’ll see who is up for the challenge. It seems like when people think of LDS scripture they focus on the Book of Mormon (whence the nickname Mormons) and focus less on D&C or Pearl of Great Price. All scriptures are important, including the Holy Bible. We use The King James Version, by the way. Anyway, I’ll give you guys the schedule for reading the Doctrine and Covenants in 31 days.

Here is the Daily Routine:

  1. D&C 1-6
  2. D&C 7-10
  3. D&C 11-18
  4. D&C 19-20
  5. D&C 21-28
  6. D&C 29-33
  7. D&C 34-39
  8. D&C 40-43
  9. D&C 44-46
  10. D&C 47-51
  11. D&C 42-58
  12. D&C 59-62
  13. D&C 63-66
  14. D&C 67-72
  15. D&C 73-76
  16. D&C 77-82
  17. D&C 83-84
  18. D&C 85-88
  19. D&C 89-92
  20. D&C 93-97
  21. D&C 98-101
  22. D&C 102-104
  23. D&C 105-107
  24. D&C 108-110
  25. D&C 11-115
  26. D&C 116-123
  27. D&C 124-125
  28. D&C 126-129
  29. D&C 130-133
  30. D&C 134-136
  31. D&C 137-138

And there you go, done in 31 days. Good luck to everyone! I know you can do it. I’m not challenging you to memorize every chapter just to read it. And when you do, you will love it! I hope everyone at least atempts it, you never know what you can do when you set your mind to something 🙂

“There is a power in the Book of Mormon which will begin to flow into your lives the moment you begin a serious study of the book. You will find greater power to resist temptation” -Ezra Taft Benson

bomOk, this is more for my Latter-Day Saint followers. I challenge you to read the Book of Mormon with me in 31 days. I know it can be done! I’m posting the daily schedule on here so you can follow along. Imagine reading it in 31 days every couple of months. You can start on the first of a month and then be done on the thirty-first. It is definitely a testimony builder! Good luck to all of you willing to accept my challenge!

Here is the daily routine:

  1. 1 Nephi 1-10
  2. 1 Nephi 11-16
  3. 1 Nephi 17-22
  4. 2 Nephi 1-7
  5. 2 Nephi 8-17
  6. 2 Nephi 18-26
  7. 2 Nephi 27-Jacob 2
  8. Jacob 3-Jarom 1
  9. Omni 1-Mosiah 4
  10. Mosiah 5-13
  11. Mosiah 14-22
  12. Mosiah 23-29
  13. Alma 1-6
  14. Alma 7-12
  15. Alma 13-19
  16. Alma 20-27
  17. Alma 28-33
  18. Alma 34-41
  19. Alma 42-47
  20. Alma 48-53
  21. Alma 54-60
  22. Alma 61-Helaman 5
  23. Helaman 6-11
  24. Helaman12- 3 Nephi 3
  25. 3 Nephi 4-11
  26. 3 Nephi 12-19
  27. 3 Nephi 20-29
  28. 3 Nephi 30-Mormon 7
  29. Mormon 8-Ether 6
  30. Ether 7-14
  31. Ether 15-Moroni 10

Good luck! And just think of the many blessings that will come with reading the book, whether it be for the first time or if you’re reading it again. Each time you’ll receive great blessings.

“South Carolina Low Country” -Josh Turner

If you don’t know what the title of this blog is from than you probably don’t listen to country. But there is a reason why I picked those song lyrics for my title of the blog and the reason is this: I GOT MY MISSION CALL!!!! It came Saturday, January 26, 2013.

Here is my call letter :) there was nothing better than being surrounded by friends and family when I read where I was going.

As you can probably see, I’m called to the South Carolina Columbia mission. It’s pretty exciting! I leave March 6, 2013 for the Missionary Training Center and I will be there for a couple of weeks before I head out to my mission. I have been doing a lot of research about the State and I have learned a lot! For example, Josh Turner is from South Carolina. Now you know why I chose the title.

Now that it’s been almost a week since I opened my call, I have made a list of things I need to buy, here are some of the things on my list:

  1. Notebooks
  2. Shoulder bag
  3. Bath towels, hand towels, and wash cloths
  4. Shampoo, conditioner, toothpaste, etc.
  5. First-aid kit supplies: multi-vitamins, cold & allergy medicine, decongestants, fever reducer, anti-diarrhea, anti-biotic ointment, anti-itch cream, anti-fugal cream or spray, band-aids, 25-35% DEET
  6. Sunscreen and Lip Balm with at least SPF 30
  7. Small sewing kit
  8. Battery clock
  9. Laundry bag
  10. Batteries
  11. Watch
  12. Moleskin
  13. Skirts
  14. Shirts
  15. Shoes
  16. Water Bottle
  17. Eyeliner
  18. Stamps
  19. Envelopes

That’s not everything I have to buy but that gives you an idea of every day things that I’ll need. All of that and more has to fit in two checked suitcases and one carry-on, hope it’ll all fit lol.

Anyone who wants me to have their address or email, send it to me somehow. You can message it to me on Facebook, it’s the easiest thing to do. I’ll be leaving in 5 weeks so if anyone wants to keep up my blog, comment because I’ll need someone to update my blog while I’m on my mission.

Thanks everyone who has been supporting me in my decision to go on a mission, I can’t believe that in a little over a month I’ll be in South Carolina doing the Lord’s work 🙂 I love all of you guys!

“Patience is bitter, but its fruit is sweet.” – Aristotle

“The two hardest tests on the spiritual road are the patience to wait for the right moment and the courage not to be disappointed with what we encounter.” 
-Paulo Coelho

“Why is patience so important?” “Because it makes us pay attention.” 
-Paulo Coelho

Whoever Paulo Coelho is, he was correct. This has been such a hard week. Actually since the day I turned in my mission papers my patience has been on end. I know that it will come and I’ll be going on my mission before I know it but with each passing day I get kind of sad knowing that it’s not here yet. I turned in my papers in November and it’s now almost February. I thought I’d get my letter before my birthday and I’m really hoping that I do seeing as my birthday is in a week and two days. This wait is killing me. And the thing that makes it worse is certain people keep saying that I won’t get it and if I do they’re gonna hide it so I can’t go. And they keep telling me that I can do  more important things with the money I have saved for my mission. I don’t want to do anything else with my money and I know that I’m going on a mission. It’s what I’m meant to do. I know it and my Heavenly Father knows it. That’s all that’s really important. At least I know I do have support in other places. So many people at church are there, hoping I get my call soon. They are just as excited as me! One of them is like a second grandmother to me. She has been there for everything, even my high school graduation! I love her and her husband so much and when I go to the temple, she will be there with me and nothing makes me happier. She is one woman who has made me who I am today and I wouldn’t have made it this far without her. It also makes me so happy that so many people are making guesses as to where I’m going. I have a thing going on that whoever is correct will get yummy cookies baked by me. I have so many guesses to places all over the world from Washington to Korea. Hmm…well, the day will soon come where I will be sitting in my cousin’s living room surrounded by a few of my awesome friends and family to open my letter and find out when and where I’m going. Perhaps that day will be tomorrow? We never know. Anyone here wanna guess as to where I’m going?

Well if any of my readers want to know more about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints you can visit LDS.org or Mormon.org and you can visit my profile on Mormon.org here: http://mormon.org/me/4WPY

If you wanna make a guess on here where you think I’m going you can do so in the comments. Thanks for reading my blog everyone. Seeing how many people come here to read what I’m posting makes me feel so….important 🙂 thank you. It’s a pretty good day when 9 people view my blog and I want to thank all of my friends who support me with everything I do, you know who you are and I love you!

book-of-mormon2