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Hi I'm Grant Holyoak

I'm a student of economics and sociology. I am passionate about literature and movies. I'm a Democrat. I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I'm 22 years old and am currently in my third year of college. I participate in Undergraduate Research there while studying Sociology, Economics, and Statistics. My sociological research specifically focuses on my home state's unauthorized immigrant population and use of natural resources. Besides the incredible school atmosphere, the best parts about school are the supercharged victories of our basketball games. I have multiple interests and add to my favorite things to do constantly. I love to read, write, hike, play Ultimate Frisbee, go camping or boogie boarding, and watch movies. I recently married my beautiful wife in the temple: the best decision I've yet made in my life. It wasn't easy to choose to get married while still in school, but we grow more and more grateful for that choice every day. I love adding "important books" to my list of works I have read. My favorites include: Darwin's Origin of Species, Sinclair's The Jungle, Goldman's The Lord of the Flies, and (surprisingly) Brooks' World War Z.

Why I am a Mormon

There are hundreds of reasons that I could use to answer this question. I do have a deep and personal testimony of the gospel of Jesus Christ. I believe the Book of Mormon is true. I believe that Joseph Smith was a prophet and that he was key in restoring the fullness of the Gospel in this dispensation. I am grateful to live in an age in which God has again called prophets to lead and direct His work on the earth. The world is increasingly confused about what is right and what is wrong, and I'm grateful for direction that God gives His prophets to tell us what He expects from us today. Above all, I acknowledge Christ's position as the merciful and loving Savior who suffered and died so that I could live with my family and friends in the life to come. His sacrifice was heroic and all-encompassing, and by His grace I can return to live with Him in a state of peace and joy forever. I'm also a Mormon because it promotes a style of living that simply makes sense. The world would be a much kinder, simpler, and loving place if principles and advice from the Lord were constantly adhered to. Consider the problems that would be solved if everyone paid fast offerings, maintained food storage, and stayed out of excessive debt! I accept these commandments and their simplicity has blessed my life. I am deeply thankful that I can claim the blessings of the Temple. I know that I will be blessed to live with my loved ones forever and that those beyond the veil are grateful for the work I do for them. I know that there is no way to return to God other than through the ordinances received in the Temple. I accept the gospel wholeheartedly. I am proud to be a Mormon.

How I live my faith

Having been a Mormon all my life, I have filled many callings in the church. As a young man, I served in Aaronic Priesthood leadership functions in the Deacons, Teachers, and Priests Quorums. Each of those callings was an opportunity to unite with my priesthood brethren and seek to bless the lives of members in our ward. We developed close friendships that last to this day. I also served a full-time mission in Chihuahua, Mexico from 2011-2013. That was a wonderful opportunity for me to represent my Savior Jesus Christ as I spread the good news of the gospel to my now beloved friends in Mexico. Aside from Church callings, I strive to live true my beliefs on a daily basis. Even with my busy schedule filled with work, school, and family responsibilities, I make time every day to read in the Bible and the Book of Mormon. This time that I spend every day with my scriptures is sacred to me, and provides me with insight and direction as I go about the business of the day. I've made it a rule of my life to always say "yes" when I receive a call to serve others, whether inside the church or outside of it. Christ was, for His entire life, a servant of His fellowmen. I believe that I can best follow His example by doing the same, and doing my best to increase the well-being of my brothers and sisters wherever I meet them.

Why do Mormons perform proxy baptisms in their temples?

Grant Holyoak
We believe in following the commandments of Jesus Christ in all things. One of his commandments is that all men and women should be baptized in order to take upon them His name, join the Church, and be eligible to receive the Gift of the Holy Ghost. Baptism is a saving ordinance that allows us to return to God in the next life. Unfortunately, due to the fact that many have not had an opportunity in this life to be taught the gospel, billions of God's children have died without the opportunity to be baptized while they were living. The person's spirit, which left their body during death, has the chance to learn the gospel truths in the next life. Many of them will wish to join the church and commit themselves to Jesus after learning gospel truths in the Spirit World. But a body is necessary to perform physical ordinances. Thus, the temple is a sacred place where members of the church can perform proxy baptisms for those who have died without the opportunity to do such work for themselves, especially their ancestors. This is a labor of love that is performed with the utmost respect for the individual who has died. Their spirits are free to choose whether or not they would like to accept the baptismal covenant and their attendant blessings. Show more Show less

Does The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints endorse political parties?

Grant Holyoak
Absolutely not! As referenced in my introduction, I'm proud to self-identify as a "Mormon Democrat." My identification as such is surprising to some people both inside and outside the church, but I have found much that is good and honorable in the platform of my political party. One of our religion's foundational beliefs is that we believe that "if there is anything virtuous, lovely, or of good report or praiseworthy, we (should) seek after these things." I don't agree with everything that the party as a whole promotes, but I doubt that any fully-informed person does. The Church recognizes the importance and benefits of a politically, culturally, and economically diverse membership. A prominent church leader, in 2013, stated: "The diversity of persons and peoples all around the globe is a strength of this Church." I believe that I bring a valuable perspective to the church when I respectfully contribute to political discussions by stating my point of view. Show more Show less