“True to My Decision,” Ensign, July 2006, 69–70
I was 11 years old when I learned about the Church. From the moment I first entered the meetinghouse, I felt a beautiful spirit. I continued to attend for several months, during which time I turned 12 and started the Personal Progress program in Young Women. Two months later, on August 14, 1994, I was baptized.
It was surprising to the ward members to see a girl of 12 baptized by herself, without her parents. How did this happen? I asked my father if I could be baptized. He replied, “You’re an intelligent young woman, and you will know what decision to make.” I had already made the decision in my heart that I would never again be without the beautiful feeling I had when I heard the true gospel.
During middle school and high school I experienced wonderful and difficult years at the same time, because during adolescence a young person wants support from her parents. It wasn’t easy to be the only member of the Church at home when my parents did things that were at odds with the Church’s teachings. But I remembered what Nephi said, “If ye shall … endure to the end, behold, thus saith the Father: Ye shall have eternal life” (2 Ne. 31:20).
Years later my younger siblings were baptized, but my parents were not. The missionaries talked to them, but they did not want to be baptized. Their decision saddened me, but I knew I had set a good example.
When I was 16 I traveled to the temple in Orlando, Florida, and it was one of the most beautiful experiences of my life. I went by myself and was able to be baptized for my ancestors. Two years later, when I received my Young Womanhood Recognition, my joy could not be contained. I felt that our Heavenly Father was pleased with me.
When President Gordon B. Hinckley visited our beautiful island of Puerto Rico and spoke to the members, I had the privilege of singing in the choir. He urged us to go to the temple on the neighboring island of the Dominican Republic. I did, and in that temple I made a firm decision that I would be married for eternity to a returned missionary.
I reached this goal when I found a worthy priesthood holder who is a returned missionary. We were sealed in the Dominican Republic temple for time and eternity. We now have a baby boy, and I am serving in the stake Young Women presidency. My parents are still not members, but I am pleased with the example I have given them. I try to build on the good in my parents while forgetting their imperfections.
I know I belong to the true Church and that Jesus Christ is my Savior. My dream, which I pray for, is to be sealed someday to my parents and siblings. I love this gospel that has given me so much joy and hope in my life.