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Hi I'm Mark

I am a Soldier in the United States military. I am married and I have four very active sons. I'm a Mormon.

About Me

Both my wife and I are members of the Church. We have been married for 13 years and as a military family we have moved all over the United States; from northern New York to southern California and everywhere in between. It has given our family the chance to appreciate many different environments and people. But one thing has been constant; the restored gospel of Jesus Christ is the same no matter where we live. As a Soldier I have traveled all over the world and attended church services in several countries, and even though I may not always speak the language, the lessons and spirit of those services are always the same. Latter Day Saints across the world are linked by their common devotion and love for the Savior. Even though the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints was restored and formed in the United States, it is not an American church. There are more members of the church outside of North America, than there are in the United States and Canada. The church is growing by leaps and bounds in many areas across the world. It is growing because the Holy Ghost can and will testify of the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon and the truthfulness of this church. We simply challenge other people to pray and ask God if this is true.

Why I am a Mormon

I was born into a Mormon family. We went to church every Sunday, prayed as a family, read the scriptures together and I generally accepted what my parents believed. But during my senior year of high school I was forced by circumstance to live on my own and complete my education. As I studied and worked my way closer to graduation I began to question the values I had been raised with. “Was there a God, did He love me, was there a purpose to this life?” During this time of new found freedom and questioning I was challenged by a Sunday school teacher to read the Book of Mormon. Even though I was familiar with that book and had read the Book of Mormon out loud as a family, I had never read it for myself. I took up the challenge and each night before bed I would read. At first I didn’t experience any change, but after 100 pages of reading I came across an ancient prophet who was quoting Isaiah. As I read, “Surely he has borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows; yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed,” my heart was touched. For the first time in my life I felt a deep and abiding love for the Savior. In that moment the Holy Spirit touched my heart and I knew that God loved me, that he had a plan for me and that Christ died for my sins. I learned all those facts by reading the Book of Mormon. The Book of Mormon is another witness of Christ. God didn’t just love the people in the Middle East; he loves all of his children around the world and continues to speak to his children through prophets and apostles. I am a Mormon because the Holy Ghost told me the Book of Mormon is true and that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is God’s church. I love the peace and hope those facts bring to my heart.

How I live my faith

I have been in the military for seven years. Maintaining Christian values within the military is not always easy, but I know God wants me to do my best no matter where I am or who I am with. Soldiers have a tendency to be rough around the edges; foul language and lewd actions are common place, but as long as I have maintained my religious standards I have eventually been respected for them. When I went to basic training I would kneel every morning and evening next to my bunk and silently pray. At first the other Soldiers gave me a hard time, but I ignored the comments and kept my routine prayers. Within a few days the comments stopped. I also noticed that other Soldiers within our barracks room were kneeling next to their own bunks offering their own prayers. It only took a small act to give others the courage to follow their own convictions. This lesson has served me well in the military, where decisions can mean the difference between life and serious injury or even death. There is an old saying in the military, “Make the hard right, over the easy wrong.” It may not be easy or popular to do the right thing, but is always better than making a decision because of negative peer pressure.

What do Mormons believe happens to us after we die? What do Mormons believe about life after death?

Mark
Death is not the end. Christ said “I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live.” Death is the separation of our souls from our bodies and Christ has opened the way for all mankind to be resurrected, or to have their body and spirit reunited. Mormon’s believe that Christ has opened the way for all people to be saved from death. Christ was the first to be resurrected from the dead, he showed himself to his ancient apostles allowing them to feel the wounds in his hands, feet and side. He showed us the way and eventually all people will be resurrected from the grave. Show more Show less

What is the Law of Chastity?

Mark
The Law of Chastity is one of God’s commandments that protect us from unnecessary suffering. The desire to reproduce is a powerful urge that must be tempered and directed in our early years. No teenager is prepared to deal with the responsibilities of unwanted children, heartbreak or even disease. Sexual relationships between a man and a woman should only be exercised only by those who are legally married. The bonds of marriage provide the framework where intimacy has the greatest chance to flourish without worry or doubt. The Law of Chastity allows us to protect one of our greatest blessings, namely our virtue. When a man and woman can come to the marriage alter with their virtue intact, there follows greater confidence, commitment and love. Marriage is a wonderful institution and intimacy is a fulfilling part of that union. The Law of Chastity protects our hearts, souls and bodies until the time is right. Show more Show less