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About Us: Monte and Elona Shelley

“You will either marry or give birth to your greatest challenges and teachers.” Over the years we have each learned many life lessons by our own experience (see table and pictures below). Below are several talks or articles we have written about the lessons we have learned. We can be contacted by email at or


1972 picture: Wedding Announcement picture for Monte F. Shelley and Elona P. Knighton

On her wedding day, a young bride told her mother that now she was at the end of her problems. Her mother said, “Yes, but which end?” Like this young bride, Elona and I would learn over the years that “some of God's greatest gifts come wrapped as unpleasant problems.”

The week after our wedding, Elona began teaching fourth grade and our first son was born shortly after the school year ended. While Monte was completing his BYU graduation requirements, we served as head residents in two young women dorms in Heritage Halls. During one summer we went to Guatemala to help set up the Church literacy program.

Click to enlarge.

1983 picture: Monte, Elona, and our six children.

At this time we were serving in a BYU singles stake that included the Elms apartments and houses near Heaps BrickOven restaurant. We enjoyed meeting young men and women who were BYU students or interested in dating BYU students. Over the years they sent us many wedding announcements.

During these years, we were enjoying the challenges and blessings of having nursery and primary age children. When we returned to our home ward, Monte served as a Scoutmaster and Elona as a Scout Advancement chair for about seven years. As our children became teenagers, we experienced new challenges and blessings. In the 1990s, Monte served in an MTC branch presidency.

Click to enlarge.

2007 picture: Monte, Elona, children and their spouses, and grandchildren

Someone said, "Grandchildren are the reward you get for not having killed your teenagers." We totally enjoy our 16 grandchildren.

(2009) Elona served as a counsellor in our stake Relief Society throughout the past four years and Monte has been serving as Gospel Doctrine teacher for two years now. Monte works at BYU in the Neal A. Maxwell Institute for Religious Scholarship which includes Book of Mormon research (F.A.R.M.S.) as a department.