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Hi I'm Brandon

I am a wakeboarder, adventurer, teacher, family man, and I'm a Mormon.

About Me

It's been a rough go, but I wouldn't trade it for anything. All of the difficulty that I've experienced in life each have taught me something and strengthened my relationships — especially with God. Stoked to be surrounded by good people. Bring it on. I can't help but pursue my passions. I somehow turned wakeboarding into a living. From hitchhiking off of the dock as a kid while working at a proshop, to coaching at a camp, online, and traveling to coach privately around the globe, to working for a wakeboard manufacturer and more, to now working as an editor for the magazine, I'll say I've pursued this lifestyle pretty hard. Something stirred in my blood ever since I first saw what wakeboarding was — and again when I experienced it for the first time. This, and any other of my passions, I am driven to pursue them relentlessly. To be completely honest, I believe that God has been a resource for me in all of my pursuits — and that this access to His help is not exclusive to me by any means. I have a wife and a son. We live in a small house on stilts over a lake in Florida. We're always up for an adventure! I also served a two-year mission for the Church in the Arizona Tucson Mission, which spanned from Tucson, AZ to El Paso, Texas. It may have been hands down the most important experience of my life.

Why I am a Mormon

It all started when I was very young. Be it the teachings of my family or an outside source, I don't know, but I always knew deep down that I had a Father in Heaven who loved me. I had experience after experience that reassured me of that truth. As I grew, all of those experiences started to add up to one great whole. That I had a relationship with God. I then began to recognize and understand personal revelation. I went through a stage in my life where I didn't want to be a part of the "churchy" aspect of religion, but I couldn't leave it. Every time I wandered, I felt the relationship that I had with God begin to weaken. I learned that I had to fight to keep that relationship close, and to keep the door of personal revelation open. I started praying more, reading the Book of Mormon, attending church, etc. The more I fought to keep the commandments, the closer I felt to God. I learned to repent of my mistakes and misdeeds. Through repentance I gained a better understanding of Christ and his Atonement. I came to know and recognize the hand of God in my life when I was living right, and when my heart was in the right place. I served a full-time two year mission in the Arizona Tucson Mission, which spanned from Tucson, AZ to El Paso, Texas. For two years I taught Gospel principles to anyone who would listen. I could go on literally for hours about the experiences I had and the lessons that I learned. I saw firsthand how God interacts with his children and how he communicates to me. Those two years changed my life. It put new perspective on everything. It all made sense. I have now recommitted my life to God, and I seek to be a blessing in the lives of others. Not a day goes by where I don't use some skill or knowledge that I gained on my mission. I know that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, and that this is His Church. I know it better than I know my own name. I have come to know and love God. Jesus Christ Lives. He is my Master, My Savior, and My friend. Of these truths I invite all to discover on their own, through prayer and personal revelation. "...and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost." -The Book of Mormon, Moroni 10:4

How I live my faith

As I explain the role that I have at church, I may stumble across some terms that may or may not be familiar to you. Directly below is a list of terms and their definitions that may be of help to you as you read. "Ward" - The local congregation defined by a geographical area. "Stake" - A group of wards (in my stake, there are 8 wards). "Calling" - A duty or responsibility to help and serve in the church that has been assigned to and accepted by a member of the church. "Sunday School" - We have three hour worship services. The second of the three hours is called, "Sunday School". During this hour, we divide into small groups to learn more about the Gospel of Jesus Christ from the scriptures. "Home Teaching" - Every member, with a companion, is assigned a few families to visit each month and deliver a gospel message, as well as make sure that their physical and spiritual needs are being met, and just be a friend to rely on when needed. My calling is to serve as the Second Counselor in the Stake Sunday School Presidency. Specifically, I help give direction to the Ward Sunday School Presidencies in my Stake, and in turn, they help coordinate and direct the instructors of the various classes during the 2nd hour of church. I also Home Teach a few families in my ward — which is always a good experience. I love serving and helping in any way that I can. It's great to just help people without expecting anything in return. The most fun part about it is that God helps out in the areas where I feel inadequate. So, I feel as if each calling that I have, God is my partner helping me accomplish everything that I need to. It's a great opportunity to learn.

Why is The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints called Mormons or Mormonism?

Brandon
There are a few reasons that we have the nickname "Mormons" instead of the official name of the church. One reason and probably the least important is that "The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints" is a mouthful. So, naturally, in a world of abbreviations and acronyms, any sort of nickname would have a tendency to stick rather easily. The name "Mormon" comes from "The Book of Mormon", ancient scripture that we revere as a companion to the Holy Bible. The Book is a collection of sacred writings from prophets of the ancient Americas. One of the last prophets to write in the Book was named Mormon. He compiled some of the sacred texts from previous prophets and put them together in one book. The Bible was similarly assembled. Because an ancient prophet named Mormon put it together and prevented the record from being destroyed, the Book was titled, "The Book of Mormon". Most people don't know that about The Book of Mormon, so the nickname "Mormon" was given to the Church. Over the years, the nickname stuck, and we have gotten used to being referred to as Mormons. However, we do not like to refer to the Church as "The Mormon Church," because it is not. Mormon was a prophet. We do not worship him. It is the Church of Jesus Christ. He is whom we worship and strive to become like. Now you know the inside scoop! Tell your friends! Show more Show less