What Is a Church Community?

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Hi I'm Andrew

I'm a husband, a father of 4, a Spanish professor, and I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I'm a father of four and a professor of Latin American and Comparative Literature at a university in the midwest. I love my family and love watching my children grow and develop into remarkable individuals. We love music, me listening, the rest of the family playing. As my children grow and have grown, I've especially enjoyed those moments in which their talents surpass any abilities I might have. In my work I study words, the words writers use to make art and the words that people use to make sense of the world in which we all live. I particularly appreciate exploring the struggles that artists have made to understand the big questions of life as they write novels, short stories and poetry. Literature, for me, is about forging connections between people, writers and readers and among communities of readers. I love that I get to participate in that process of building communities in my own small way.

Why I am a Mormon

I was born into the church, but as an adolescent I felt the need to know for myself whether I should continue as a Mormon. I found great solace in prayer and in the scriptures, especially the Book of Mormon. Over a series of experiences I came to know that God loved me as an individual and that that love was also expressed in the Book of Mormon and the Bible by real people who really lived, who really knew of God's love and wrote about it under divine inspiration. I feel connected to them, and I find their stories inspiring. As a person who studies the instability of language and the ways that it can be bent and twisted to create literature, I'm especially impressed by the power of scriptural language and by its ability to communicate absolute, transcendental truth.  I spoke a bit in the "About Me" section about how literature makes communities. The church is about community, about the ways in which our faith in Jesus Christ binds us together in fellowship. Part of being a Mormon is that understanding that we are all brothers and sisters and that we are committed to recognizing that kinship. That kinship extends far beyond the people we go to church with and see on Sundays, it connects us all as we love our families and help those who need our help.

How I live my faith

My faith is what inspires me to continue on, to do my best each day and to help me focus my efforts on helping others. There is joy in having faith in Jesus Christ, in having hope that we can be forgiven of our sins and failings, in the knowledge that we have divine help with our efforts to make the world a better place. In addition to the day to day of living the gospel, I currently serve as the bishop of my congregation. I watch over the members of the ward, ministering to their temporal and spiritual needs. I work especially with youth of the ward, helping to build gospel habits that will prepare them for lives of service. 

What is the purpose of the welfare services of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints?

When we are baptized, we promise to "bear one another's burdens, that they may be light". The welfare services of the church help us to seek out the poor and the needy and to help them develop the skills and habits that they need to become self-reliant. We know that everyone needs a hand up at some time in their lives and we try to give both that hand as well as the training that they need to be able to give that hand up to others in need. Show more Show less