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Hi I'm John

I'm a proud husband and father. I'm a recent MPH graduate. I'm a behavioral health analyst. I'm a Mormon.

About Me

For me, being a husband and father of two little children is my greatest role in life. It has entailed the hardest work and biggest sacrifices, but it has also brought me the greatest joy. In addition to family life I am just recently graduated from graduate school earning my Master's Degree in epidemiology. I hope to get involved in international mental health research and policy development. With my free time I like to go to the park with my kids, talk and eat ice cream with my wife--although we try to limit how much ice cream we eat each week--and if I get to it I like to wood carve.

Why I am a Mormon

To answer this I could provide a lot of different answers that all contribute to the reasons why I am Mormon--like all the good that has come from it in my life and the life of those I love, or how it all makes sense to me, or that I have felt that it is right for me, or even in part because my parents taught and showed me what it is like to be a good Mormon and testified since my childhood that it is true and from God--but ultimately for me the reason why I am a Mormon boils down to the fact that I know for my self that Mormonism, or more accurately the Church of Jesus Christ of Later-Day Saints, is true. I have experimented regarding the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon and have come to know, just as I know regarding the Bible, that it is truly God's word. I have prayed to God to know if Joseph Smith was truly one of His prophets like Moses or Abraham and I have received many spiritual confirmations in many ways and on many occasions that such is the case. All the fruits of this religion, many of which I have been able to taste, have provided an overwhelming witness and constant reminder to me of not only the truth and reality of our beliefs but also of the fullness of truth that is found in the Church of Jesus Christ of Later-Day Saints and unparalleled in any other place or religous faith. I have come to greatly appreciate and admire and learn from the faith of many others even outside of the Church of Jesus Christ of Later-Day Saints, but I still try to share with them my belief and witness so they can recieve greater truth and even the fullness of truth and goodness which I have come to know is found in this Church.

How I live my faith

I live my faith at home. I am quick to tell my wife and children how much I love them. I do my best to think of their needs and perspectives before my own. I know that "a soft answer turneth away wrath" and I try to apply this scripture during those challenging times of parenting. I have tried to simplify my life so that with my busy schedule of work and school I can have and make sufficient time to spend with my family. I support my wife in giving her time to get out the house at least once each week, where I babysit the kids, so that she can develop her own talents or just have a break from the rigorous role of mothering. I try to follow Christ's example by loving and serving all those around me. I take time from my studies to help others understand a difficult assignment if I have been able to understand it myself. I often pause in the hallways or computer labs to discuss with others how their days are going and see if there is anything I can do to help. I visit other members in my congregation monthly to see how there families are and I regular ask and try to find ways to help whether it be doing some extra yard work that they haven’t been able to get to or babysitting for free so that they can go out together. I have chosen a career path that focuses on lifting the burdens of others, particularly those faced with the heavy burden of mental illness. These are some ways in which I have lived and am trying to live my faith. I am trying to be better at these things and also find more ways to be more loving and kind, more pure and virtuous, more diligent and patient, more courageous and humble, more friendly and approachable, and ultimately more like Jesus Christ.

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

John
I believe there are two really important concepts for understanding this payment of 10 percent, or in other words our tithing, to the Lord. The first principle is understanding whose the 10 percent of our income really is. Is that money really ours? We might think so at times because we have worked for it, but who has granted us the ability and health to work? Ultimately all we have is God's and we are all indebted to him because of all that He has given us. With gratitude we give back to the Lord what is rightfully His as we pay 10 percent of our income back to His church. The second principle is that his prophets have revealed to us in these days that that that is how He, the Lord, wants it. The law of tithing isn't a new thing. It has been in the gospel for a long time, if not since the beginning. We obey the Lord's command as we pay 10 percent of our income to the Church. At times in my own life with a young family and going to school paying tithing has been hard. My wife and I however have been diligent in paying tithing and with that have come great blessings. There has always been bread on the table. Most of all we have felt greatly blessed with an increased spirit of love and devotion to the Lord in our home as we have diligently paid our tithing. The Lord continues to bless us and we continue indebted to his overwhelming love and service to us. Show more Show less

What is the difference between attending a Mormon Church and a Mormon Temple?

John
Our churches are places of regular worship where we meet every Sunday to gather as a congregation, learn of the Lord's teachings, sing songs of praise, offer prayers of faith, and renew our devotion to the Lord and to living His gospel. During the weekdays, church buildings are also used as gathering places for youth activities and sometimes additional study groups or meetings. All are welcome to come in and worship with us in our church buildings. On Sundays you will often see people wearing their Sunday best to gather and worship together. The temples fulfill a unique role in our worship and devotion to God similar to what role the tabernacle in the Old Testament fulfilled for the house of Israel. The temple is considered a holy place, even the house of the Lord, just like the tabernacle was considered. In the temple we are taught about God's plan for us, we make covenants or binding promises to follow Him and his plan, and we participate in sacred ordinances or ceremonies for ourselves and our ancestors. For example, in the temple we are married, or sealed together as we say in our church, for time and all eternity. The temple is a beautiful and sacred place. Just like with our churches, we want all to come and participate in the marvelous work and worship performed within the temple, however, we need to be living up to God's standards and be willing and ready to make greater covenants and commitments to the Lord before entering in. Show more Show less