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Hi I'm John

I was born into a Salvation Army home. My parents were Army Officers, and I grew up as a Salvationist; now, I'm a baptized Mormon.

About Me

I retired from work in 2003, having spent many years in data processing as a programmer, analyst, supervisor and manager. During my working years I had ceased going to church, although I grew up going to church every Sunday and playing in the Salvation Army band. When I questioned the Bible, and I was not challenging or disputing the Word, simply asking for clarification, I was always told to 'Have faith'. This was a tiresome and continued response to my earnest questions, and I eventually fell away from the church I had attended my whole life. I attended a few other churches, including Baptist, Methodist, Lutheran, Catholic, and others somewhat related in doctrine to what I had been taught, but never found a satisfying answer to my questions. Last year, 2 missionaries walked down my driveway. I had never investigated the Mormon Church, and although the Church name includes the name of Jesus Christ, I never assimilated that this Church held beliefs similar to those I had been taught. The missionaries showed me the similarities between what I 'knew' to be true, the gospel as the Word of God, the Plan of Salvation, Christ's atonement and my need to repent and believe in Christ - all things I believe and had no problem accepting. The message that baptism is an essential ordinance for Salvation was news to me, as was the laying on of hands and the gift of the Holy Ghost - all new to me. I have so very much still to learn, and I still have questions but now: I can get answers

Why I am a Mormon

I understand the restoration concept, the existence of a prophet being essential to the restoration of the Church. I believe that just as it was a need to have faith that Jesus died and was resurrected, so also does it require faith to accept Joseph Smith's testimony as to what happened to him, and how the plates were made available to him, and how the organization of the church was made clear to him. I decided to accept the premise of the restored Church, and if anything seemed contrived or artificial or pompous or self-serving, I would bail out. That was over a year ago, and so far I have seen no inconsistencies, no false witness, no act or behavior inconsistent with Christian principles, the very principles I embraced as a child when first learning about Christ at my parents' knees. In fact, just the opposite has been true. Everyone I have met and been exposed to in the Church has been friendly, kind, worshipful, and I have been both welcomed by these people, and find myself happy to be in their company. The real reason that I decided to become a Mormon, however, was that IN ADDITION TO the qualities I have just mentioned, there is a sincere effort to answer my questions, and to use the Bible as a source of reference. Now, for me as a Salvationist, there was no Bible other than the Old and New Testaments. In fact, the Salvation Army's FIRST Doctrine states that there can be no other Bible than the two Testaments. In becoming familiar with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, I had to accept the Book of Mormon as also being the Word of God. Consistent with my premise to accept the reformed Church, I allowed myself to read the Book of Mormon, again with an eye to inconsistencies, false promise, self-serving verbiage. I am a Mormon precisely because everyone I've met within the Church has Christlike qualities, qualities that make me PROUD to be associated with the Church. I am getting answers to my questions, and enjoy being a member of this Church.

How I live my faith

I bear witness every chance I get, contribute where I can, participate in Church activities, and welcome the opportunity for continued spiritual growth and learning. The Church has many aspects that I am unfamiliar with, including the concept of being 'worthy of a Temple Recommend'. I see the opportunity, in my witness and lifestyle, to be worthy of attending the Temple. My wife and I have been Sealed in the Temple, but apart from this act bearing witness to my acceptance of Church Doctrine I wish solely to be a witness of Christ, to the glory of God. I am not clear yet as to how I can help others see the beauty of God's plan. I am still learning, still getting answers to difficult questions. I am encouraged to find that there seem to be answers, to even the most difficult questions, and it is in this vein that I live my faith; questioning, praying, receiving answers, and moving on.