What Is a Church Community?
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Hi I'm Rick

I'm a computer specialist, a musician, a husband and father, and I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I am a husband and father. I work in the software industry, specializing in CAD and Geographic Information Systems work. My career has always centered around the engineering and technology worlds. I am a veteran, and served in the USAF for 9 years. I am a part time musician, and really enjoy performing and playing. I also teach - I've taught band for elementary kids as well as engineering software at the Community College level. I am a Scouter, and have been involved with Scouting ever since I could choose to. I have a wonderful wife, and 6 children - and 2 new children-in-law and 3 grandsons.  

Why I am a Mormon

So, where to begin? How do you share your beliefs in a reasonably concise and complete manner? I guess by trying, so here goes. I believe that I am a man, created in the image of God. We are Spirits that existed before we came to Earth, and we came to Earth to gain a physical body and gain mastery over it, that we may eventually return to live with God, our Father in Heaven, with our families eternally. I believe we are responsible for the things we do, and don’t do. I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints called Mormons by many. I was not born and raised in the Church. While in High School, I was baptized. At the time, it felt right to me. I had little idea of what it all really meant. As I have grown older, and learned and studied more, my belief in the precepts taught have grown stronger. Over the years, I have felt the confirmation of this many times. I believe this feeling is from the Holy Ghost testifying to me. I believe all men can experience the same confirmation if they desire. It is simple. Read the Book of Mormon and prey to know if it’s true. If you sincerely want to know, you will feel it. If the Book of Mormon is true, then the Church is true. It’s pretty simple. Yet it’s something that no one else can do for you. So, does that mean I am a slave to my Church and its leaders as many suggest? Are we mere automatons following our book of rules? Not at all. We should study the principles in our own minds and seek confirmation from the Holy Ghost. That is how we gain a testimony of the principles. We live it, experience it, study it, and ask the Holy Ghost for confirmation. I follow the teachings because I believe them to be true, or at the very least, trust those who set the rules - I believe they are called by God. I am a free man and choose my own path in life.

How I live my faith

I spend much of my time working with youth. I am a strong believer that showing love and serving youth will prevent a lot of potential problems, as well as being an investment in the future. I've been a leader in Boy Scouting for most of my adult life, and I don't see that ever changing. I can't think of a better way to develop character in young men. It builds self-sufficiency, capabiity, confidence, citizenship, and so much more. I also use my technical skills to serve. I work with a lot of audio visual and computer activities. In some cases setting up multimedia presentations and others it is setting up and running sound systems for various events. It's a way I can share the skills I have to further the Gospel.

What is a ward/stake/branch?

Rick
Wards or branches are the local geographically defined congregations. In some ways we think of the ward or branch as our local community. The ward is presided over the bishop (for branches, it is a branch bresident). The bishop is called, and serves completely voluntarily. The bishop serves as the spiritual leader of the ward. He has 2 counselors that are called to assist him. The ward is the group that we meet with regularly, and tend to become some of our closest friends. In the ward, we try to watch over each other and help and support each other. A goup of wards are grouped into stakes. Each stake is presieded over by a stake president who is the spiritual leader responsible for the combined geographic area. Show more Show less

Why is self-reliance important to Mormons? Why do Mormons talk about emergency preparedness?

Rick
Emergency Preparedness is important to us for a number of reasons. From an obvious standpoint, there are natural disasters that can occur at any time, and planning for these by putting away food, money, water and learning skills to survive can help us take care of ourselves and our families. On a deeper level, while we may not be involved in a major disaster, but could be involved in a personal disaster - losing a job or a financial hardship. Our preparation can help us through these as well. From a personal standpoint as well, being self reliant is being responsible for ourselves. It is a physical way we can be accountable. An even greater benefit of this preparedness is that it allows us the ability to help others in times of need. Maybe it is my neighbor who has had the personal disaster. It is much easier for me to help others when I have prepared for myself. Show more Show less