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Hi I'm Justin

I keep bees and chickens. I work in a medical device startup. I'm a Dad. I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I work for an orthopaedic startup company out of the Cleveland Clinic. I have a PhD in Bioengineering where I studied neuroprosthetics. The end goal of my research was to find ways to improve Brain-Computer Interfaces for restoring lost function in paralyzed patients and amputees. You might say I was trying to replicate Luke Skywalker's robotic arm. I'm the husband of a beautiful wife and the father of three cute, energetic kids. One of my hobbies is beekeeping. I love the smell of beekeeping and watching the bees and being aware of the flowers in bloom.

Why I am a Mormon

I was born into a mormon family. I'd grown up hearing people say, "I KNOW the church is true." Well, I couldn't rightly say that I, myself, KNEW that the church was true. So at age 13 I started to find out for myself if what I had been taught was the gospel of God's true church. So I read the Book of Mormon and took the challenge to pray and ask God if it is true. My answer took time in coming, partially, I believe because I was waiting for some great manifestation. My answer came to me in feelings of peace, of excitement in reading the Book of Mormon -- it became delicious to my soul. I can now say, that I, too, know this church is true. The Book of Mormon is another testament of Jesus Christ and is scripture as is the Holy Bible. Being a mormon has enriched my life socially, spiritually, and has helped me to start raising my kids to be good people, good citizens, good Christians.

How I live my faith

Currently, I am the second counselor in our bishopric in my church (we call it a ward) in Northeast Ohio. I get to work closely with the full-time missionaries and the rest of the church leadership. I love it! Sharing the gospel is the best. I used to be the ward mission leader (the best calling in the church). My wife and I also used to teach the 4 year old kids during sunday school (after sacrament meeting and singing time with the rest of the children). I like meeting the investigators and introducing them to members of the church. I love seeing how the gospel changes people's lives and I like being able to motivate the members to speak up and share their beliefs. I work hard to help new members and those investigating the church feel welcome. I also try to visit 3 families who attend our ward, once a month. This is called hometeaching. I live my faith by living the standards of the gospel: trying to keep my media choices, my language, and my behavior in line with the teachings of the Savior Jesus Christ.

Do Mormons practice polygamy?

Justin
No. It's been over a hundred years since only a small fraction of the mormon church practiced polygamy. Even when polygamy was practiced by something like 2% of the church, it remained an unpopular practice among the members. Many were relieved and pleased when the Lord revealed to Wilford Woodruff that the church should stop practicing polygamy. Since that time, polygamous practices have been condemned within the church and any found doing so are promptly excommunicated. Show more Show less

What is the Mormon lifestyle like? How do Mormons live?

Justin
Mormons live much like many people that you know except for possibly a few differences: we don't smoke, we don't do illegal drugs, we don't drink alcohol or tea or coffee. We refrain from premarital and extramarital sex. We believe that intimacy should be kept sacred and expressed faithfully between husband and wife. We do attend church weekly. We may have meetings with youth throughout the week. Some are involved with the Scouting program. We give 10% of our income to the Lord's church. We try to be true Christians by living Christ's gospel. We consider that families and our relationships are among the most important things in life. Show more Show less

Who was Joseph Smith?

Justin
He was the first prophet of our days. He was the prophet God called to restore the truths that were lost following the deaths of the apostles and the Great Apostasy. He was a 14 yr old boy when he was first trying to decide what church to join. God and Christ appeared to Joseph and told him to join none of them. From then, God guided and prepared Joseph to bring his truths once again fully to the earth. Show more Show less

Why are Mormons asked to donate 10% of their income to their Church?

Justin
We receive 100% of what we receive because the Lord blesses us with that. We give 10% back to the Lord's church to further the kingdom of God on the earth. By doing so, the Lord promises to open the windows of heaven and pour down blessings that there will not be enough room to receive them. Malachi 3:8 (I believe?). Show more Show less

What is done with the tithing that Mormons pay?

Justin
It's used to build churches, build temples, to pay for the cost of maintaining the physical infrastructure of the church (electricity, heating, etc.) Show more Show less

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

Justin
Much of the mormon church began just 20 minutes from where I live in Kirtland, Ohio. There the early church members were called to gather and it was there that they built the first mormon temple. Show more Show less

What does Mormonism teach regarding baptism?

Justin
Baptism should be performed by immersion by one having authority (i.e. holding the priesthood). Following baptism, one is confirmed a member of the Church by the laying on of hands and receives the gift of the Holy Ghost. Show more Show less

What do Mormons believe about the nature of God?

Justin
God consists of the Godhead: God the Father (who has a glorified, resurrected, perfect body), Jesus Christ (His son, who has a glorified, resurrected body), and the Holy Ghost (who is a personage of Spirit). These are 3 distinct, separate beings who are one God in purpose. Just as a team has one goal and works together, God is a perfect entity that is completely united in purpose. Show more Show less

What is the priesthood?

Justin
The priesthood is the authority to act in God's name. Essentially, it is the authority to perform ordinances or blessings that God deems valid. For example: the authority to baptize, to marry for time and all eternity, to bind in heaven what is bound on earth. Show more Show less

Why do some call Mormonism a cult?

Justin
A cult is a word for a religion that is unpopular or is regarded as unorthodox. So, a cult could be used to describe many churches depending on one's perspective. Most people, I believe, that know mormons would not call them a cult, because they've come to know a face to go with the word mormon and perhaps know more of our doctrine. Show more Show less

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

Justin
To be prepared is to not fear. Show more Show less

Do Mormons worship Joseph Smith?

Justin
No. Mormon's only worship God the Father and His son Jesus Christ. We don't pray to Joseph Smith, only God the Father in the name of Jesus Christ. We acknowledge Joseph Smith as a prophet. We give him the same respect that we do to the prophet Moses. Joseph's role as a prophet was an extremely important one in restoring the true church once again upon the earth after centuries of apostasy. Show more Show less

Are all Mormons required to serve a mission?

Justin
All Mormons are not required to serve a mission. The prophets and leaders of the Church have asked all worthy young men to prepare to serve a mission. Some are unable to serve due to health reasons, and some choose not to serve. Missionaries pay their own way. My mission was among the best two years of my life. I worked incredibly hard and experienced much disappointment and discouragement, but also much joy in seeing how the gospel changed and blessed the lives of people and families. I grew to love the area and the people where I served. I would strongly encourage any young man who is considering a mission to GO! Nothing can replace what I learned as a missionary in the Lord's service. Women may also serve missions if they so chose, though their mission typically lasts 18 months. Senior couples may also choose to serve a mission as senior missionaries. Show more Show less