“8 Ways to Feel Like You Belong at Church,” Liahona, October 2017
As I sat in the church pew at the close of sacrament meeting, I felt the anxiety well up inside of me. Why wasn’t anyone talking to me? Would anyone invite me to sit by them in Sunday School? Did the bishop even know who I was? Everyone else chattered away, swapping funny stories and inviting each other to dinner—but I felt alone, until I realized that there were things I could do to help with the loneliness I was was feeling.
Going to a new ward or returning to church after a period of inactivity can be difficult, even uncomfortable. But if you’ve ever felt like you don’t belong at church, there is something you can do about it.
Here are eight things you can do to start feeling like you belong:
Introduce yourself to the bishop. If you want him to know your name, go tell him what it is!
Learn other people’s names. If you greet others by name, they will notice and likely learn yours as well.
Call your home and visiting teachers. If they haven’t been coming, let them know you need their service! It will bless both of you.
Serve other ward members. Your love for them will increase, and you just might make a new friend!
Participate in activities. Go to every ward activity you can—it’s a great way to get to know people outside of Sunday worship time.
Request a calling. If you desire a calling, let your bishop know. He will be grateful that you are willing to serve!
Invite people over. If you want to get to know people better, invite them over for dinner or a family home evening.
Ask and answer questions during Sunday classes. By participating, you will show confidence that draws other people to you. And your teacher will learn your name!