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Hi I'm Derek

I was a missionary in Bulgaria, student in Jerusalem, intern in the White House. Now, I'm a father, a farmer and I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I grew up in, and currently live in, a small, close-knit community in central Washington state. I lived for 2 years in Bulgaria and grew to love the people. While studying at BYU, I spent a semester at the BYU-Jerusalem Center then finished my university studies as an intern in Washington D.C. Each of these experiences has broadened my horizons. I married an amazing, beautiful, spiritual giant. She and I, with lots of help, raise 6 very intense, usually energetic, really fun children. I farm; not because I'm particularly good at it, but because I like, and appreciate, the people with whom I work, and I love the lifestyle. I enjoy keeping our organization operating efficiently and ethically. My life has been enriched by so many people. I sincerely believe that each of us can affect another person's life for good. Many of my friends and family share my faith; many do not. I am grateful for my association with each of them. I have a wonderful life!

Why I am a Mormon

I'm a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints because I love knowing I can follow a living prophet who testifies of my Savior, Jesus Christ, and who is a constant source of truth in our ever-changing world. I look forward with great anticipation for the future. We live in an age of endless opportunity. Everything of lasting value in my life is enhanced because of my membership in the Church. I love the Plan our Heavenly Father provides as a road map leading to happiness in this life. Even though the commandments of God are sometimes difficult to keep I'm grateful for the peace that comes when I keep them and the liberation that comes through sincere repentance. I've never followed the counsel of our living prophet and regretted my decision. I know my family will be stronger and more secure when I truly live the Gospel (or in other words--live my religion). More than anything else, I want to live eternally with my family. I'm a Mormon because the authority to "seal" or "bind" a family together forever has been restored, and exists on the earth in our day (Matt. 16:19, Eph. 4:30). Through sacred ordinances in holy temples, we have the sublime hope that we can live together with our family through eternity. This knowledge keeps me focused on the important role I play in my family's eternal progression.

How I live my faith

Actually living my faith is much more difficult than writing about how I live my faith. But, let me attempt to break my life into three categories wherein I strive to "live my faith." First and foremost--in my family--I love to spend time with my family. We make a concerted effort to read from the scriptures each morning at 6:50. We have dinner at 5:45, and except for harvest time, I'm usually there. My boys and I wrestle and play catch; my girls and I read stories and go on daddy/daughter dates. My wife and I try to make quality time to do something together (date), on a regular basis. Second, we live in a wonderful community where a number of our neighbors give freely of their time and resources to build and strengthen our community. Between grid kids, basketball, soccer, and baseball coaching, I've served on a number of school committees and enjoy organizing service projects, my favorite one recently was helping revamp the local Methodist church where my grandmother is a long-time member. Third, as a member of the church we have lots of opportunities to serve each other. In our congregation we each have responsibilities on a voluntary basis. I visit various families monthly and strive to meet their needs. Currently, I serve as the Bishop of our congregation, sort of like a pastor or minister. I was asked to serve in this capacity for about 5 years after which time, somebody else will be asked to assume the Bishop's role and I will serve in whatever position that person requests. During these 5 years I continue to work and participate in the community as time allows. Living my faith is challenging and rewarding. Service, sacrifice, and obedience are time-tested and proven, but that doesn't make them easy.

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

The simple answer is "no." The Church does not endorse political parties, but the Church encourages engaged and active participation in our political, governmental and community affairs, both locally and nationally, as circumstances allow. I've enjoyed politics from an early age, and while I look to the Church for guidance on moral issues I don't expect them to back a certain candidate or political party. Those are decisions I take full responsibility for as an individual. Show more Show less