Q. So I am 16, and over the last year I have been very interested in becoming more spiritually aware and have really wanted to join a religion I feel like I could follow and belong to. Well I would really enjoy becoming a member of the Mormon church, I find their religion to be something I believe strongly in, well from what I know of it currently (I’d like to learn more). From searching and getting to know the religion I have become very close friends with people that are members of the church, and I know they could help support me once I’ve become a member. Well any how I want to become Mormon on my own, the rest of my family is Catholic, but I feel like becoming Mormon is a choice I should make on my own. So my question being at the age of 16 what steps can I take to become a member? and what actions and rules/guidelines should I start doing as part of this journey.
At the age of just 16, you’re already thinking about your relationship with God? That is wonderful! It sounds like you’ve already connected with a community of latter-day saints and they have been teaching you. You want to know what it takes to becoming a church member and how to start on this journey. My friend Jodie wrote an article in January called, “How do I become a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints” and a couple of years ago my friend Jared wrote one called, “What does Baptism Entail?” I recommend you read both.
In general, I recommend three things to get you started:
- Pray to your Father in Heaven. You are His child and He loves you. As you continue to get to know Him, you’ll love Him back with your whole heart. Ask Him for help.
- Read the scriptures, including the Bible and the Book of Mormon. The Bible is a big and sometimes daunting book, so I recommend starting in the Book of John. It’s a nice introduction to the doctrines of the gospel and will help you understand the rest of the Bible. The Book of Mormon is a marvelous work and it’s great to start at the beginning with 1 Nephi. As you read, search for principles to guide your life by and listen to the whispering of the Holy Ghost.
- Attend church. [click here to find a nearby chapel] Go to learn from the sacrament speakers and Sunday school instructors. And go to be part of the faith community. They will welcome you because they love you and they need you. You will soon have many fast friends. If you haven’t already, you should meet the missionaries and ask them for an appointment.
You might be worried about how your family will react to you joining the church. I recommend being honest with them. If they will listen, teach them what you’ve learned. Invite them to come with you. Be respectful toward their beliefs. Above all, show them the kind of love your Father in heaven has shown to you.