In the Mormon Church we all do something to contribute. Like I have mentioned in previous posts, we don’t have paid clergyman or professional organ players. Most members chip in their own time and talents to help our church run smoothly. In the past, I have taught gospel lessons to the women in our women’s organization called the Relief Society and have helped ensure that the women in my congregation are receiving needed fellowship from other women and that their temporal and spiritual needs are met. Right now I am in the presidency of our congregation’s Relief Society. I did not ask to do any of these things or campaign to be voted in. We are simply asked if we will serve in a certain capacity and we can accept or decline.
Sometimes the talents that we already possess are used to benefit others. For instance, if you play the piano or organ there is a good chance you will be asked to play for church services. Sometimes we get to learn new talents. For me, learning to prepare a lesson and teach it to a class was a new talent that I had to learn. Right now, most of my duties in my presidency are focused on planning activities for all the women in our congregation. This is also a new talent that I am learning. It takes up quite a bit of time and is sometimes quite stressful. So, why do I do it?
As Summer mentioned in her latest post, we are not just a ‘holiday church.’ We do come to church to be uplifted and to learn about Christ’s teachings but we also come to serve. We strive to be more like Christ through service and much of that service happens at church. By donating our time and various talents we are serving each other. Sometimes the service is spiritual, like teaching a gospel lesson at church or sometimes the service is more material like my friend that serves on my committee for activities—she decorates every time we have an activity to make it look fabulous and inviting (and she does an awesome job). By serving each other at church we allow other people the opportunity to learn about the Savior and feel welcome. It makes our congregation a real community because we depend on each other and learn to love each other. I really am glad that I’m able to serve at church in so many different ways, I have benefited from it tremendously by obtaining talents I would have never pursued otherwise but I hope that others have also benefited because that’s the whole point.