Hi I'm Ron Schill
I'm from California, and my wife and I have nine children (five boys and four girls) and thirty grandchildren. My main hobbies are 1) my grandchildren, 2) world travel and new cultures, (3) cultural photography, and 4) making music. I served as an officer in the U.S. Air Force during the Vietnam era. Soon after, I decided to become a college professor and spend my career teaching, motivating and working with young adults interested in becoming leaders of change for the better. I taught at the Marriott School at Brigham Young University-Provo for thirty-two years and also at many different universities around the world. I retired from BYU and am now a professor in California. However, the most important things that I have learned in my life have come from my knowledge of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Why am I a Mormon? Not because I am perfect. I am far from perfect and have several areas of weakness, but I know that if I am humble and try to do better each day, the Lord will help me to change whatever is my weakness into strength. By learning and striving to live the teachings of the Gospel within the Church, I can eventually reach my full potential and become the best person that I can.
Why I am a Mormon
I grew up apart from the Mormon Church and I was once quite unsure about God and His plan for our life, and was very focused merely on the intellectual answers from philosophy and science as the only answers to the key questions of life. I can witness how much my study, prayer, Gospel understanding and efforts to live the Gospel, as taught by the Church, have impacted my life in numerous positive ways. It has been fantastic. My work and efforts to investigate, to learn and to live as closely as I can what the Church and Our Savior have taught us have been richly rewarded with immense happiness and joy. I am a Mormon today because during my life I have accepted the challenge and tried to do my part to prove for myself in practical ways, as well as spiritually, whether or not Mormonism is true and whether or not it delivers the promises that it makes to each of us. Life deals us a lot of different challenges. They may differ substantially for each of us as individuals, and yet they are very much the same no matter who we are or where we live. The teachings and plan presented to us by our Lord and Savior, apply equally as well, no matter who we are, what opportunities or challenges we face, or where or under what circumstances we live. The only real question for us is "when we will really start and how diligently we will try to learn and to prove for ourselves that what He has given us through His scriptures, teachings and through Prophets is the foundational truth for our life?" It is my testimony and witness that this effort is the most important thing that we can do during our life. I testify to you, my brother or sister, who may read this profile, that the Savior's work through this, His Church, is true and faithful, that I know by study, by faith and by many years of practical experience that it was the right decision earlier in my life, and that it will also be the most important effort you can invest in your own well-being and happiness.
Please explain the part prayer plays in your life?
It is the font of questions and answers on a daily basis, and my primary source of accountability. It is my opportunity daily to seek for direction and guidance in all that I do and say.
How has attending Church services helped you?
When attendance is sought through the Spirit, rather than as a duty, it is a feast of happiness, wisdom and answers. This has not always been easy, especially with our large family, when attending church was a difficult challenge in care and obedience. But staying the course, practicing forbearance and patience, training our children in correct principles, they learned to live church attendance. Yes, I have had to struggle some times with my own staying awake. We are human and can get distracted and complacent. But I know when I do my part, and seek attendance at services for what I can give to others and how I can benefit myself, I always come back rewarded. And that has not always been easy. I grew up in a family as a child that used Sundays for recreation and travel. It was a cultural shift for me to attend all church services, much less to keep the Sabbath day holy.
Can you think of a specific challenge in your family that Gospel Principles helped overcome?
Developing sound values in one's children throughout the teenage years. The Gospel of Jesus Christ was our template and model and was used on a daily basis as we worked through the challenges of parenting several children through these difficult times. Now that opportunity has shifted to assisting with our grandchildren.
Think about your everyday activities. What are things you act upon each day where you cannot see the end results? How does faith move you to action?
Working to deal with all people in patience and kindness takes great faith that these (patience and kindness) are the best principles to follow. When we practice impatience and harshness, there is an illusion in our minds of what the results will be, but it is always the opposite. I try to practice faith that when I follow the teachings of Jesus, I will receive the results that He has promised.
Why do Mormons go on missions?
Because we love others and desire to share with them that which means so much to us. My wife and I recently returned from the Michigan, Lansing mission. Why were we there--to share, to serve as a messenger of the Lord, to help carry forth His work to His children living in that area of the world. Our children have served missions around the world, and now our grandchildren do so. Our family is committed to follow in the steps of the Savior to go forth and do his work because of our abiding love for Him and all of his children
How can we develop greater harmony in our homes?
By practicing love, appreciation and respect at all times for everyone.
How has the Book of Mormon brought you closer to God?
By having the Spirit of God speak directly to me as I read, ponder and pray about the Book of Mormon. The Lord's spirit hovers over that book and comes forth to those who truly seek it as the words and paragraphs unfold--if not instantly, then later as we ponder and pray.
How does making right choices help us make more right choices?
The "proof is in the pudding." When we make wrong choices, we will become convinced through the results that they were wrong choices, whereas the opposite is true for right choices. We work at learning from our choices. Time is the test. It may take a while to result, but only truth leads to truth. Take what one chooses to do on Sunday morning. The Lord has commanded worship. If we choose to worship, and seek it diligently and with real intent, it will help us to make other right choices during that worship and following thereafter. It we choose to go to the beach, we gain short term satisfaction, but are unlikely to get much more than the ability to meditate there, without the help of messages and teachings from those called to serve us.
How I live my faith
In the Church in California I work with a congregation of young single adults in Sunday School teaching, counseling and encouraging them while they are serving in the military or attending college. The Church gives me very meaningful and relevant opportunity to practice charity and to serve others, and to do so on a daily basis. It is a Church of service, a Church for immersion of one's life, a way of life, a way of devotion to others, to one's family, and to the betterment of one's self---not just on Sundays, but every day and in every occasion. The quest for discipleship in life doesn't come easily, and it takes sacrifice and a lot of one's time, yet the blessings will far outweigh the work. In the Church we serve each other in "callings" that we receive from our leaders in our congregations, as well as through our daily life as brothers or sisters to all those around us in the world. There is no limit to the good we can do. In the Church we live by two important gifts that we receive. One is a personal testimony or inner spiritual witness of the truth of the Gospel, of the Church, of the Scriptures and of what we are doing. Second, is the gift of the Holy Ghost which each of us receives following baptism as a personal light to shine forth, light our way, and inspire and direct our lives as we live worthy of it. Living by faith in its fullness means living by direction from the Holy Ghost.