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Hi I'm Rick

I'm an engineer. I'm an attorney. I believe in evidence and proof. And I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I am a third generation engineer - my father was a chemical engineer and my grandfather was a locomotive engineer. After years of working as an engineer making computer chips, I returned to graduate school to get a law degree. Between engineering and the law, I have become steeped in the various processes that the world uses to discover truth. In the world of science, the process is called the scientific method, where theses are proposed, experiments designed and conducted, and results observed and analyzed. In the world of law, truth is found through discovery of the facts, listening to testimony, and weighing all the evidence. I firmly believe that all truth can be discovered according to these basic principles, regardless of our tendency to compartmentalize that truth with labels such as "scientific" or "religious." I find truth in all spheres of life - scientific, legal, and religious - using the compatible methods that have been taught me in these three disciplines.

Why I am a Mormon

I am a Mormon today because I prove all things, and hold fast to that which is good, as enjoined by Paul (1 Thess. 5:12). Some find that their education is a barrier to their faith, but Paul's injunction to prove all things speaks to both the scientific and the legal mind. But the proper experiments and instruments must be used to discover truth in any field. An example can help illustrate this point. When I worked in the field of microelectronics, the circuits we made were too small to be seen with our eyes. We used electron microscopes to discover the truth of what we were doing. If our equipment wasn't sensitive enough, very important facts would go completed unnoticed and undiscovered. However, other scientists search for truth in other fields of endeavor, such as in planetary physics. They use large arrays of radio telescopes. A radio telescope would have done me no good in discovering truth in the field of microelectronics. Similarly, a microscope is of limited use to a scientist in the field of astronomy. To discover truth, you have to use the proper instrument, and that instrument must be sufficiently calibrated and sensitive. Neither a microscope nor a telescope are appropriate for the discovery of religious truth. Yet there are experiments that can be conducted, and instruments that can be used. The Savior said that If any man will do [God's] will, he shall know of the doctrine (John 7:17). That's an experiment. Luke recorded the feelings of two men as they walked with Christ along the road to Emmaus. They said "did not our hearts burn within us, while he talked with us by the way, and while he opened to us the scriptures?" That's an instrument. Living the doctrines and being open to the promptings of our hearts provide solid experiments with solid results by which religious truth can be known - not just believed or hoped for, but known. A heart that is sufficiently sensitive and calibrated will discover truth that others might not detect.

How I live my faith

My faith has been a large part of my daily life - for all of my life. As a child this took the form of going to church meetings with my parents or participating in activities with other youth my age. My two-year mission to South Africa was the start of my dedicated service to both the Lord and my fellowman. Since that time I have served as a Bishop (pastor) of a congregation, in leadership positions with responsibility for several congregations at once, and in ministry positions for youth and adults. Such service opportunities have encouraged me to reach outside of my own Church to volunteer in the community, such as with the Boy Scouts, where I have met wonderful men and women of other faiths. I have taken training to assist the Red Cross with disaster assessments and shelter operations, and look forward to using those new skills to assist those who have faced loss - be it large or small. I feel that activities such as these are an extension of my faith that I can share with all those around me. The Savior said that "inasmuch as ye have done [it] unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done [it] unto me" (Matthew 25:40). I feel that when I serve my fellowman, I am in the service of God (Mosiah 2:17). I love to share the gospel of Christ in all that I do. I am fortunate to live in the south, where many people share that love of Christ, and where such things can be discussed openly. It would be an unusual day where I didn't have at least one comfortable opportunity to discuss with someone of another faith our mutual desire to more fully follow the Savior, Jesus Christ.