Shining moments: Sharing joys of life

Those who know Sharon G. Larsen say she is witty, charming and bubbling with the joys of life. But above all else, they say she knows people, and she knows how to help people have fun. "She enjoys life too much to sit around," says her husband, Ralph.

For all her effervescence, Sister Larsen has been appointed as national vice president of Lambda Delta Sigma, the women's sorority of the Church.The news comes as no surprise to many of the elderly in her Farmington (Utah) 9th Ward. They have been recipients of her genuine caring for years. What concerns them, however, is how the appointment will affect their yearly Christmas rides around Temple Square.

For the past half dozen years she has invited the homebound members of her ward to tour Temple Square and enjoy the lights from the comforts of her convertible.

The rides have proven popular and are now an annual procession. Several times during the holiday season she will pick up her neighbors, wrap them in warm blankets, turn up the heater and turn on Christmas music.

She then rolls back the top of her '94 Lebaron as they inch their way around Temple Square, enjoying the lights as they go.

Her family has also been the object of her caring. A few years ago the Larsens installed a juke box and an old-fashioned soda fountain - complete with gooseneck dispenser and black taps - in their basement. Through the years, mixing sodas and washing glasses behind the counter have created a pleasant atmosphere where the Larsens could participate with their teen-age children during their weekend parties.

"She can teach the gospel while making a soda in such a way," said her husband, "that the kids don't know they have just heard a sermon."

This penchant for fun followed Sister Larsen into the classroom where she volunteers as an instructor at the Ogden Institute on the Weber State University campus. Unknown and without reputation, she had only four students enroll in her first class. But friends told friends, and by semester's end, the class was nearly full.

"She is the type of person," said an associate at the institute, "that I would like to know better and have as a personal friend."

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