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Ward Attendance


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  #1  
June 27th, 2011, 03:58 AM
Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Oklahoma, USA
Posts: 1,652
Hi everyone, I really could use some advice. To make a very long story short, I'm having trouble going to church. It has nothing to do with questioning the church. I love the church and everything about it. But a year and a half ago, DH and I movie from our home branch to a new ward. We were excited, but when we got there te first Sunday, I didn't like it. Don't get me wrong, the people were nice and welcoming. But I just missed my home branch where I knew everyone. I also was embarassed by Jayden's toddler tantrums. I hated that everyone was turning around to look at the new couple who couldn't control their kid. We went a couple more times but only ever stayed for Sacrament. After that, I nut kept making excuses to not go. We moves again about 6 months later, but to a new ward. I didn't even want to go. It was a good 6 months before we went for the first time. By this time Jayden was Nursery age and screamed when we left him. Again, attendance was very hit and miss. My grandma lives in our home ward and I would be excited when she invited us to go to church with her sometimes. I always readily got up those Sunday mornings. I love being in my home branch, which is now a ward. But I just can't make myself love the ward we should attend. I know and believe the church is the same all around the world. But I love and miss and need my ward. My mother recently passed away and it has only been through the Lord and my knowledge of where she is that I have gotten where I am today. I miss her more than words can say. I need the church more now than ever. I have a strong desire to be back at church. I just want my ward though. I try to tell myself to get over my ridiculous feelings, but I can't. Not right now at least.

I welcome any and all opinions and encouragement. Can I attend my home ward regularly? I need them.

P.S.
DH does not mind other wards like I do, but he loves our home ward like I do. He desires to be back in church, but won't go without me. I feel so terrible because I have not only broughr myself diwn, but my family as well. Please help me, ladies. I need and want the Church back in my life.
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  #2  
June 27th, 2011, 05:32 AM
Butter's Avatar Heather the Mama Duk
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: San Antonio TX
Posts: 28,853
Honestly, you're going to have to just go. Other people is NOT the reason we do or do not go to church. We go for ourselves and to be obedient to God. I have found that a ward is only as good as what you put into it. I absolutely loved my previous ward. We moved back home and I don't love this ward and I fought it for a good year and a half. Once I finally let go and said we live here and this is our ward against now everything changed. I love going to church again. The difference? I changed my attitude.
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~Heather, wife to Jamie (15 years; June 5, 1998) and mom to
Ani - 14 (February 15, 2000), Cameron - 12 (October 3, 2001),
Fritz - 7 (July 11, 2006), and Adrian - 5 (June 19, 2008)
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  #3  
June 27th, 2011, 08:21 AM
geogeek's Avatar Marsi's Mommy
Join Date: May 2009
Location: In yonder mountains
Posts: 9,339
I agree. There is always the lack of comfort when moving to a new ward. I have been fighting the urge to not go to church for a year now. I agree with Heather that it is you that needs to change your attitude. I am within 6 months of moving and I am hoping that I will have a better attitude with my next ward because I hope that having a child will not make me inactive. It seems like you still have a testimony, you just need the attitude of going to meetings. It will be hard. The adversary WILL tempt and try you more than you have been tried before. It took me until I went to Missouri where there were so many tornado victims still attending church and having an extremely needed relief society meeting for me to change. It was followed up by a needed trip to the temple and a surprise visit of a general authority to sacrament meeting last Sunday. Reading Helaman chapters 1-8 also helped me understand my personal reasons for not wanting to go to church. But, it won't be easy, but it will be worth it.
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  #4  
June 27th, 2011, 03:13 PM
Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 2,705
I struggle with bouts of not wanting to attend church as well, and it's difficult, but I never regret the decision to just power through and go. Honestly, my best suggestion to you is to pray, and ask the Lord to help you feel more comfortable in your new ward. He wants you to be at church, He wants you to be happy there, and He has promised to help us accomplish everything that He's asked us to do. God won't leave you high and dry...He will help you have the desire and motivation to go to church if you ask Him for it.

I do think it's best that you start going regularly to your new ward, because I feel that if you go with an open mind then you will soon find wonderful people there and a sense of belonging. I believe that there are people in your new ward who could really benefit from your talents and the talents of your husband. All that being said, I think if you feel that you simply cannot go to your new ward, then going to your old ward is better by far than not going to church at all.

Oh and don't worry about people judging you for your son getting worked up...that happens ALL THE TIME. I served in the nursery for 2 years and I understood that tantrums are just a normal part of childhood. All of the kids threw them at some point or another, I don't care how good the child was. Usually it takes a good 4 weeks for most kids to get used to being in nursery...and usually they just cry for like the first 10 - 15 minutes anyhow. I know it's painful to go through the adjustment period though. I think making church attendence a regular habit will be such a blessing for Jayden. You will be giving him a wonderful gift by making the sacrifice to go to church.
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  #5  
June 27th, 2011, 07:43 PM
Brittanie's Avatar just me
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Littleton, CO
Posts: 43,568
I agree with the other ladies.

Here's the thing, the bishop and the leaders of a ward have authority over those living withing the physical boundaries of their ward. So if you went to your home ward, the bishop would not actually have authority over you and therefore his mantel to care for your spiritual abilities would be limited. It's one of those small obedience things that don't seem to matter but build up over time that is an issue here. The Lord has set up His church a certain way.

I promise that when your son acts up people are not condemning you. Like Elsa said, every child does it at one time or another. I think when we don't know anyone, our own insecurities manifest and we think that everyone thinks the worst of us. I just went to my own new ward last week, and it was awkward no doubt, but it'll be okay.

As you pray for the Spirit to help you through this I know that you will come to love your new ward too.
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  #6  
June 27th, 2011, 08:37 PM
Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 5,281
Sorry you are having a rough time. I agree with the other ladies though, you are just going to have to start going. Blending in takes time! Who knows you may begin to really love your new ward, but you have to give it a fair shot!
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  #7  
June 28th, 2011, 04:13 PM
Butter's Avatar Heather the Mama Duk
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: San Antonio TX
Posts: 28,853
FWIW, if I look at someone with a toddler throwing a tantrum, I'm not thinking anything negative about the parents. I'm feeling for them and a little glad it's not MY toddler... this time (it's usually my toddler lol).
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~Heather, wife to Jamie (15 years; June 5, 1998) and mom to
Ani - 14 (February 15, 2000), Cameron - 12 (October 3, 2001),
Fritz - 7 (July 11, 2006), and Adrian - 5 (June 19, 2008)
Smaller on the Outside

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  #8  
June 29th, 2011, 12:02 PM
Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 3,757
I know how you feel. When I move to a new ward I struggle. Like the others said it's all in your attitude. Remember, people are not judging you like it seems they are.

You need to be in your own ward. When you attend your own ward not only you will be blessed by others but others that are in your ward will be blessed by what you have to offer to them. I have been in many wards in the last 7 years and I have meet some really neat people that I will be friends with for life. I don't keep in touch with them as often as I do with those in my current ward, but I know they are there. It's usually people that I have served or served with that I have become good friends with.

I hope you are able to find the strength to go to church. You and your family will be blessed for doing so.
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  #9  
July 1st, 2011, 03:55 PM
Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: My heart belongs in Washington DC
Posts: 6,415
I know how hard it is to go to a new ward where it feels like everyone is judging you. My ward here in Utah is vastly different then the ward I went to in TN (I just moved too) and I honestly can't wait to get back to TN so I can go to a ward where I feel more comfortable.

The only advice I can think of, is to just go. I would pray before you do though, it's helped me in the past.
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"The Lord compensates the faithful for every loss. That which is taken away from those who love the Lord will be added unto them in His own way. While it may not come at the time we desire, the faithful will know that every tear today will eventually be returned a hundredfold with tears of rejoicing and gratitude..... These experiences, while often difficult to bear at the time, are percisely the kinds of experiences that stretch our understanding, build our character and increase our compassion for others."
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