Sophomore Jaelynn Carlson finds opportunities and friends in her faith


‘Don’t ever be scared of showing your faith, because yeah people are gonna be rude, but it’s also your faith and no one can tell you what to believe in.’”

— Jaelynn Carlson

Something big in sophomore Jaelynn Carlson’s life is her faith. 

Jaelynn’s religion, Methodist Christian, has affected her life by opening her eyes to new experiences and people.

“After cheer season I’m going to be a middle school youth group leader,” Jaelynn said. “Which I’m excited about. [My church] opens my eyes to a lot more opportunities and things that I didn’t really know before.”

Jaelynn attends high school youth group, and regular church sermons, on Sunday nights at her church campus: Cornerstone. She has met so many people at her church–people she can relate to, people she feels comfortable with, and people who really make a difference in her life. 

“You can find those real people to talk to and have real, good conversations with,” Jaelynn said.

And these real, good conversations start with just walking through the front doors of her church.

“We usually go there and the first thing we do is hang out for a couple of minutes,” Jaelynn said. “Then we do worship time where we play music, and then [we] just sing for half an hour. Then we have a bible study where all the groups and ages are together, and we talk about something in the bible or just a topic.”

Outside of the church atmosphere, Jaelynn tries to surround herself with people that are like her church family.

“There’s a united prayer circle [at school],” Jaelynn said, “and it’s cool because a lot of people are there–the same people that have the same morals and values [as me].”

Jaelynn recognizes these people in following the same religion as her because they have openly said “this is my religion” through the prayer circle, but she also notices other people who are kind and selfless–she notices “there is something different about them.”

“There are definitely those people,” Jaelynn said. “And it’s not a lot, but there are those people who actually take a few seconds out of their day to just make yours better.”

These people haven’t openly said their religion, but sometimes it can be easy to recognize when someone believes in the same things as you.

“I feel that a lot of people don’t express that because they are scared of what others will think,” Jaelynn said, “but it is cool to see that there are others out there that do believe in the same thing that are nice and caring.”

Because faith is such an intimate aspect of people’s lives they may have a hard time talking about it, and Jaelynn feels the same way.

“For me, I don’t openly talk about it,” Jaelynn said. “I mean I’m okay to talk about it, but it’s kind of one of those things that I don’t like to talk about to people that I’m just getting to know because I feel like it can scare them away even though it really shouldn’t. I [always] tell them ‘Don’t ever be scared of showing your faith, because yeah people are gonna be rude, but it’s also your faith and no one can tell you what to believe in.’”