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Hi I'm Derek

I'm a Mormon living in Sydney, Australia.

About Me

I joined the Church as a 16 year old kid in Melbourne, Australia. I had some amazing members who took me in and taught me what it means to be a Latter-day Saint. 23 years later these people are still a significant influence for good in my life. I may have let them down, but they love me unconditionally and have always been there as a guide, friend and inspiration for good.

Why I am a Mormon

The simple answer is that I studied, prayed and learnt for myself that Joseph Smith did see Heavenly Father and Christ in a grove of trees by his house in 1820. It's really as simple as that . Over the years, through my mission, serving in callings within my local congregation, I've had experiences that have lead me to believe with more conviction that Christ lives, that he died for my sins and that as I struggle through this life with my many faults and shortcomings, there is hope. There is always hope.

How I live my faith

Living our faith is a constant challenge, while I fall short from time to time, Christ is a guide to help me always look in the right direction.

Why don’t women hold the priesthood in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints? How do Mormon women lead in the Church?

As a 16 year old kid I came from a single parent family. Mum was an independent thinking women. She raised my sister and I alone and she did a great job, we never went without. When I joined the Church I was confronted by what can be seen from the outside as a male dominated organisation. I learnt very quickly that wasn't the case, it's very much a team effort from the men and women. Yes, only men hold the Priesthood, this has it's origins in the Bible and was reinforced by modern revelation received by Joseph Smith. I was always encouraged by the Brethren (a term we use when we refer to the Priesthood) and their devotion to their wives. I saw this at a local level within my own congregation (Ward) and at a General level (the Prophet, the 12 Apostles and other General Authorities of the Church). One of the best ways to learn more about this is to read about the lives of the Prophets. I read the autobiography of Ezra Taft Benson, the prophet when I was baptised in 1988. While serving as an Apostle, he was serving as the Secretary of Agriculture in the US Government. This was in itself, Apostles usually serve in no other capacity during this period of their lives. Secretary Benson tells of the many late cabinet meetings with the President of the United States and other Cabinet members. He would often get home after midnight and Sister Benson would meet him with something to eat and he'd off to bed. Sister Benson would then read through his notes, make summaries and then head of to bed herself. Secretary Benson would then head off to work the next day and make decisions based on her summaries of his scribbled notes. Women hold many leadership position in the Church, yes these roles are primarily related to Women, Girls and Children. This in no way diminishes the seriousness of their role and the people they guide through the many programs they drive. At a local level, the Ward Relief Society President (a calling filled by a Sister) has responsibility for the spiritual and physical welfare of all the adult sisters within the ward (local congregation). She works directly with the Bishop and he takes her counsel and guidance on matters of physical and spiritual welfare covering the sisters. In my view, Sisters are a key component of any Mormon community, they provide balance and bring a degree of softness and caring that can sometimes be missing from the brethren. Show more Show less