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Hi I'm Mark

I was born in southeastern Idaho, but lived most of my life in Utah. I have been LDS (Mormon) all of my life.

About Me

I was born of goodly parents who taught me the difference between right and wrong. I married a wonderful wife, and we adopted two daughters who are now grown. I graduated from high school and earned a Bachelor Degree in Geography from college. I work for a government agency as a Cartographic Technician, which has to do with maps and mapping. My hobbies include collecting and looking at maps, hiking, exploring, and traveling. I love living in or near the mountains and enjoy the opportunity to see and explore areas where there are deserts and mountains.

Why I am a Mormon

Being a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has been a great source of blessings in my life. It answers the fundamental questions of life, such as: “What is the purpose of life?,” “Where did I come from?,” “Why am I here?,” and “Where do I go after death?” I needed to know these things from an early age because my father was killed in an accident when I was eight years old. I loved my father very much, and I could not bear the thought that I may never see him again. While mother taught me much about life after death, it wasn’t until I was in my teenage years when I felt that calming reassurance that what she taught was true. I will see my father again! My first real conversion to the restored gospel came from the challenge of a seminary teacher – to read the Book of Mormon from cover to cover. I took his challenge to read this book, which is another testament of Jesus Christ. As I neared the end of reading the Book of Mormon, I received an overwhelming feeling that what I was reading was true! The promise stated in Moroni 10:3-5 really works! It was so powerful that it brought tears to my eyes. I soon concluded that if the Book of Mormon were true, then Joseph Smith had to be a true prophet of God.

How I live my faith

Once I received an undeniable feeling or testimony that the gospel was true, I took great care to nourish this testimony and make it grow – much like nourishing a tender plant in a garden outside. This requires daily prayer and regular “feasting” upon the word of God, which include scripture study, weekly attendance and participation in church meetings, and studying the inspired words of modern-day prophets and apostles. Testimonies are strengthened “line upon line and precept upon precept.” In addition to nourishing my testimony, I strive daily to live the gospel by example and in my actions toward others. I use Jesus Christ as a model to follow – for he is the perfect example. If I stumble and fall short in doing these things, I strive to keep a positive outlook by picking myself up and continuing forward. I have a responsibility in the Church to oversee the needs of several families that are assigned to me and a companion, which is called home teaching. In addition, I am a leader over a group of Melchizedek (adult) Priesthood brethren that meet every week at church. Regular attendance to the temple also helps in reminding me of the covenants I have made and in doing work for our kindred dead.

What is the Book of Mormon?

The Book of Mormon is a volume of scripture that was written by ancient American prophets on plates of gold. It was later translated into English by the Prophet Joseph Smith and was first published in 1830. The Book of Mormon does not replace the Bible as the official book of scripture in the Church. Rather, it serves as a companion with the Bible in testifying of the divinity of Jesus Christ. It contains a fullness of the everlasting Gospel as taught by the Savior and his apostles. The Book of Mormon contains a great promise to all who will sincerely read, study, and pray about it (Moroni 10:3-5) – that they may know the truth of it for themselves. Show more Show less

Why do Mormons perform baptisms for the dead?

God loves all of his children and is no respecter of persons – no matter what time period they were born in. Jesus Christ Himself was baptized by immersion to fulfill all righteousness, and to set the perfect example for all mankind to follow. Since baptism is essential to enter the kingdom of God (John 3:5), it must be performed here on earth by those holding the proper authority. There are many souls, however, who lived and died that never had an opportunity to hear the gospel of Jesus Christ on earth. Because of this, Christ organized the preaching of His gospel in the spirit world following His crucifixion. Since there are no baptisms in the spirit world, they must be performed vicariously here on earth by those that have the proper authority. Baptisms for the dead are only performed in temples, and records (not official membership records) are kept of those who have been baptized to avoid duplication. Once completed, those in the spirit world have the choice to accept or reject their baptism. Show more Show less