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Hi I'm Jay

I'm an average everyday guy ... and I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I grew up on a farm in a small (tiny) town in northern Utah. I'm the second oldest (and oldest boy) in a family of seven children. I love music, languages, cultures, travel, and cooking. I work as an Instructional Designer here in Texas. I have a beautiful wife and four great kids. I served a Laotian speaking mission in western Washington. A few years after my mission, I met and married my wife in Hawaii while studying for my Bachelor's degree. Since our marriage, it seems we've lived all over the western United States, but no matter where we've lived, we've loved the people we've gotten to know, and we've loved seeing new places, and trying new things. With my wife being from Hawaii, and my background in cultures, it's a given that I love all things Hawaiian ... except Hawaiian pizza. I love all kinds of music, from rock, to reggae, to country, to classical. I play guitar, and have a couple of great friends that I like to jam with whenever possible.

Why I am a Mormon

I was born and raised a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, but my conversion came much the same as it does for anyone born in or out of the church. I grew up knowing that my parents believed the things I was taught at church, but there comes a time when you have to know for yourself. My testimony of the gospel of Jesus Christ started out small, but over time and through the experiences I've had throughout my life, I can say without hesitation that I know that his is the true church of God. I know that Joseph Smith was a prophet and that he restored the gospel of Jesus Christ to the earth under the direction of Jesus Christ himself. I know that one of the greatest blessings I have as a member of this church is the knowledge that families can be sealed together for eternity ... not just for this life. That means that if I live worthily, I will be able to be with my family forever; not just as children of God, but my wife will still be my wife, and our children will still be with us. My Mom and Dad and my brothers and sisters will still be my Mom and Dad and my brothers and sisters. As I've gotten older, and as I've seen more of my loved ones pass away, this knowledge has been a huge comfort to me. Above all, I know that my Heavenly Father knows who I am and that He loves me. I know that He lives. I know that He sent His son, Jesus Christ, my Savior and Redeemer, to atone for my sins and that if I repent, I can be forgiven. I know that the Book of Mormon is a true book. It was never meant to replace to Bible. It was given to us as another testiment of Jesus Christ ... proof, if you will, that He really WAS here. I know that both of these books provide us with the word of God, and if we abide by their teachings, we can return one day to live again with our Father in Heaven and our families. I know all of these things because I've asked in faith; and the Holy Ghost has testified of their truthfulness to my heart.

How I live my faith

I currently serve as a member of the bishopric in my ward. I have many responsibilities with this calling, but the biggest one is overseeing the youth program, which includes both young men and young women, ages 12 to 18. It can be a handful at times, but I get to work with some amazing adult leaders, and some even more amazing youth. Having the opportunity to serve as a bishopric member is truly a blessing, although anyone who would want to be in a bishopric needs to have their head checked. :) Along with my calling in the bishopric, I also have the opportunity each month to hometeach four different families in our ward. My partner, John, is one of the greatest men I know. I love going out and serving with him each month. It's great to be able to visit with each of our families, sharing a gospel message with them as well as talking with them and strengthening our relationships as friends and neighbors.