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Hi I'm Skip Booren

I am a retired US Marine Corps helicopter pilot, father of 8 children and I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I enjoy spending time with my wife, our 8 children (all out of the house now) and with our 27 grandchildren (20 boys and 7 girls - i need more granddaughters to take care of me in my old age). We retired from the Marine Corps over 20 years ago, with the goal of establishing a family home so that our children and grandchildren would always have a place to go where they would know love and joy. We were fortunate enough to succeed in doing just that. We loved having our grandchildren come to visit. And then, in 2010 we felt prompted to move from the home we loved in Oregon to be closer to our kids in Virginia and that has brought great blessings to our lives that we never expected to enjoy. We recently felt prompted to make another change. Now we are serving a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the Georgia Macon Mission, with an assignment at the Marine Corps Recruit Depot, Parris Island, SC.

Why I am a Mormon

I am a Mormon because this is the one way I have found to experience true joy. For me, it all began as follows: One day while sitting in my dorm room at an expensive college I came to the conclusion that most if not all institutions of man, i.e. organized religion, schools, governments, etc were basically a waste of time when it came to passing valuable information from one generation to the next. As I thought this, I decided that only in the family could this be done right. This was quite an insight, given that I came from a pretty dysfunctional family. A few months later, I met the woman who has been my wife for over 40 years. The first night I took her out, she talked a lot about her family with a joy I had never encountered before. I can still see her face and how happy she was as she talked. Later that evening as I took her home late in the Wyoming night, the sky was filled with stars that seemed to never end. Off, a long way off, in the distance a thunderstorm was flashing bright lightning. I can still remember that image as well and the feeling that struck me, that the Lord was telling me that I needed to marry this young woman sitting next to me. This is all the more interesting, since marriage was the last thing on my mind at that time. I was only 21 at the time and had no thought of marriage for at least another 6 or 7 years, but the thought wouldn’t leave me. I knew I was supposed to marry her. Shortly thereafter I left Wyoming for the great NorthWest and found myself in Oregon. One day, I was in a car full of drunks driving down the road – not a bright thing to do. As we crossed the Interstate Bridge, the thought came to me that I was in danger of dying with these people. Just as quickly came the thought that, “No, you won’t die. You are part of a bigger plan. A plan written by Jesus Christ.” Remember, I was NOT at that time religious or spiritual in any way shape or form. A few weeks later, I was back in Wyoming and this time at my future wife’s home for dinner. While there, her mother told me about the Plan of Happiness and that families could be together forever. That idea struck my heart with great strength. I knew it was true. Within a month of arriving back in Wyoming, I was married. I decided to attend Church with my wife and met the missionaries that first Sunday. I invited them to our home. I knew I needed to learn more. When the Elders knocked on our door, I was reminded of the scripture given to me when I was confirmed a member of the Lutheran Church at age 12. It was Revelation 3:20. “Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.” I felt like I was inviting the Savior into my home. The Elders taught me. I made commitments, gave up vices, started reading, but really didn’t gain a testimony. After they had completed the lessons, they I was asked if I was ready to be baptized. I said sure, even though I didn’t really have a testimony. And so I was baptized. I can still remember the day. I started attending Church and it felt good, but there was no burning testimony. A couple of years later, I began to wonder why I didn’t have a strong and burning testimony. I started reading the Book of Mormon in earnest and praying. At first there was no answer until one day as I was riding a bus. The thought came with clarity to my mind, “Why do you wonder? You know it is true.” And so I did. That affirmation has been added to time and time again until I can truly say, Yes, I know with surety that the Gospel of Jesus Christ is true. I know we are children of a loving Heavenly Father who wants only for us to find the happiness He has in store for us. Because I know these things, I have come to appreciate the beauty and truth of the Book of Mormon. Because I know that great book came from the Lord through the efforts of a living prophet, I know too that we are led by a prophet today. My testimony and my marriage are so intertwined that I seldom can tell where one ends and the other begins. Every good thing in my life has come to me as a result of the two great events that took place within a matter of a few weeks in the Fall of 1970 – my marriage to my wife of 40 years and my baptism into the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. This is why I am a Mormon and always will be. To change would be to deny my life and who I am.

How I live my faith

I do this day by day, with daily reading the scriptures (Bible and Book of Mormon), prayer, and finding joy in serving others. These are principles I have learned as a convert to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Through my study of the scriptures I have come to love and appreciate my Savior Jesus Christ so much more than I ever had before.

Where did Mormonism and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints begin?

Skip Booren
I believe the doctrines for this Church, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints began thousands of years ago with the Lord's teachings to ancient prophets. That said, it began in our day with the calling of young Joseph Smith to be a prophet, like the prophets of old, men like Abraham, Moses Isaiah, etc. This started in the eastern United States, first in upper New York in the early years of the 19th century. Show more Show less

What do Mormons believe is the purpose of life?

Skip Booren
I believe the purpose of life is to return to my Father in Heaven. I look at life as kind of like going off to college. You leave the home you loved and those who loved you, hoping that you learned enough to make it in college. While in college, there are tests and challenges. So too is life, we have opportunities to prepare ourselves for the tests that will come. We are given chances to study, learn, and practice the things that will bring us happiness. Things like - learning to serve others, - learning to listen to the promptings of the Holy Ghost, - learning to pray for the joy and happiness of others, and - learning the joy that can come in families. Some of these things are easier to learn than others, depending on the desires of our hearts, the priorities we establish for our lives, and sometimes just what life deals out to us. We have agency or the ability to make choices and to experience the consequences of those choices. This is what I think life is all about. The Atonement of Jesus Christ makes up for ALL of our mis-choices, by giving us the opportunity to repent or re-direct our lives in a direction that is closer to our Savior, Jesus Christ. The plan of salvation or the doctrine of Jesus Christ, really is the Plan of Happiness. It has certainly been that for me. Even with the ups and downs that have come our way, since I gained my testimony of the truthfulness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ I have also known that I am a loved son of my Heavenly Father. Show more Show less