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Hi I'm Elwood M. Porter, II

Why am I a Mormon? Because I've found answers to the purpose of life in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

About Me

I'm a husband and father of four children-one of whom died at two days of age. I enjoy reading, travelling, continuously learning from all good books, particularly the Scriptures, horses, and a host of many other interests. I am never bored with myself because of wondering what else I could be doing. My family is very important to me. Photography is a hobby I've enjoyed for years. I hold two B.S. Degrees-Sociology and Political Science, and a Black Belt in Kempo Ju-Jitsu, and am also proficient in other Martial Arts-Judo, Karate, and Tai-Chi. I am an active member of The General Society of Mayflower Descendants and Society of Mayflower Descendants in the State of Wyoming. This is a patriotic and hereditary organization of people in the United States of America who have traced their lineage through one of the Mayflower Pilgrims of 1620. I've also been actively involved in Scouting for much of my life.

Why I am a Mormon

I'm a Latter-day Saint, commonly referred to as a Mormon, not only because I was born into this Church, but also because I am committed to its teachings and way of life, and have been committed since I was taught at my parents' knees. Every facet of my life is affected by the teachings of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. This Church embraces all traditional values which Americans hold dear: thrift, honesty toward God and fellowmen, respecting womanhood in all aspects that word entails; upholding the government of the United States of America through embracing patriotic values such as love of country, respecting symbols of our country-the flag, national anthem and other patriotic hymns, voting, respecting rights outlined in our Bill of Rights, especially Amendments 1 and 2; demonstrating respect for others and expecting others to respect me in return. Mormons and love of country are inseparable. We also recognize Americans of other faiths love their country too! I continue being a member of this church because I'm content and happy here. This religion is "home" for me. I'm comfortable being a member of this church; will never leave it for another, and invite others to investigate it, provided they are honest in their inquiry.

How I live my faith

I keep Church standards 24/7-striving to constantly maintain high personal standards. This means I don't have to feel guilty during the other six days of the week for my behavior. I serve as Ward Clerk, which means I'm responsible for the accuracy and maintenance of member records, take meeting minutes, and provide the "grease" to keep local ward "machinery" running smoothly. Everything of a business nature (paperwork and finances) goes through me.

What do Mormons believe happens to us after we die? What do Mormons believe about life after death?

Elwood M. Porter, II
Latter-day Saints, nicknamed Mormons, believe that God, Our Heavenly Father, revealed to the Prophet Joseph Smith, that we (all God's children) lived with Him prior to our advent into mortality. That existence is referred to as the Pre-Earth Life, and we are, first, spirit offspring of God. Before birth into mortality, our spirits enter our physical bodies, hence, we are dual beings-spirits and mortal beings. Death is merely the separation of our spirit from our mortal body. The physical body is laid in the grave, while the spirit continues existing in the Spirit World, to await the resurrection. Ecclessiastes 12:7 (KJV) addresses this issue as recorded: "Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was:and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it." A spirit and the mortal body it inhabits, closely resemble each other; thus, if disembodied spirits knew each other during earth life, they would recognize each other in the Spirit World. Show more Show less

What are some things that tell you there is a God?

Elwood M. Porter, II
Look and observe life around you--examine your physical body-its intricacies and marvelous parts functioning together to keep you alive! Examine all other living organisms-Someone created all them, as well as the planets and stars of the universe, and, that Person is God. Man, can't replicate any of the aforementioned creations, but we do admire them greatly. What keeps the planets and stars in their orbits? Certainly NOT mankind, for it's out of our power and ability to do so. Who created the seeds from which a multitude of fruits, vegetables, flowers, trees and sea life develop from? Not man, but God! When we observe the many creations around us, we immediately feel insignficant in comparison to them, yet, Man is God's greatest creation, and all the wonders of life, this earth, the stars, planets, etc, were created to "gladden the heart and to please the eye of man." Show more Show less

Why do some call Mormonism a cult?

Elwood M. Porter, II
Webster's Dictionary has several definitions for this word-as it does for many English words. Definition 1 states: "a particular system of religious worship, especially with reference to its rites and ceremonies"; Definition 3 states "a religion or sect considered to be false, unorthodox, or extremist". To be fair minded, individuals should keep both meanings of "cult" in mind. Negative critics of the church focus on definition 3. The honest seeker of truth would also admit that definition 1 applies to ALL religions of the world.Interpreting #1, therefore, means that under Christianity, Catholicism, Methodism, Lutheranism, Mormonism, etc, are also cults--so too, are Hinduism, Buddhism, Islam, and so forth. Dishonest critics focus on definition 3 to promote their own agendas and blind the honest seekers of truth who're searching religion and churches to find answers to their question of, "Which church is right?", the same as Joseph Smith wondered. Show more Show less

Do Mormons worship Joseph Smith?

Elwood M. Porter, II
No. Joseph Smith was called by God to serve as His prophet until Joseph's death in 1844. In this church, a prophets' calling is for his lifetime. Joseph Smith is highly regarded and respected by church members because of his organizing the church in 1830, and the many revelations he received from God during his lifetime. For his many contributions, Joseph Smith was still only a mortal man, who functioned as God's prophet-God's spokesman on earth while he llived. Joseph Smith did not create this church-Jesus Christ did under the direction of God the Father, whose Son Jesus was and yet is. Church members vernerate and worship God the Father and His Son, Jesus Christ, who is the Savior and Redeemer of the world. We do not worship Joseph Smith, but instead, respect him for the prophetic office he held. Show more Show less

Do Mormons practice polygamy?

Elwood M. Porter, II
Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon Church) do NOT engage in polygamy today, but if they do practice it, they are immediately excommunicated from the church when it is discovered by church leaders. Members of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints DO practice polygamy, but, they are NOT members of the first church cited in this answer. It is true that polygamy was practiced during early church history by a small number of church members under authorization by church leaders-less than 3% of church membership entered into polygamy. The Lord instructed his prophet, Wilford Woodruff, to end polygamy in 1890, which was done. Since 1890, the standard for active Latter-day Saints (Mormon) is one man married to one wife. Show more Show less

What is the Law of Chastity?

Elwood M. Porter, II
The Law of Chastity governs sexual relations between men and women who're church members. This law, or principle, is taught by parents to their children from infancy to adulthood. It prohibits sexual relations between single men and women of all ages, and married couples are expected to restrict their sexual relationships to their spouses. All members are expected and encouraged to abide this law throughout their lives, but, any who violate this law can obtain forgiveness from God and if married, from their spouses through repentance and abstaining from extra-marital sexual relations for the rest of their lives. All active Latter-day Saints strive to maintain this high standard. Show more Show less

How are modesty and chastity related? How can parents teach their children to be modest in dress, language and behavior?

Elwood M. Porter, II
Modesty is defined as a high regard for one's dress, behavior, speech and thought. Chastity refers to abstention from initimate relations among single men and women, and if married, restricting sexual relations to one's spouse. The two are closely interrelated for single and married individuals. Teenagers, "tweens", young adults, and adults who engage in "loose" (substandard) standards of speech, dress, behavior, and thoughts make themselves vulnerable to violating chastity. God regards the human body to be the temple for one's spirit, therefore, the body should be kept clean-both inside and outside. Unchastity defiles the spirit AND the body, and that makes the violator feel unclean when chastity is lost. Parents can best teach these principles through proper example to their children first, then teaching the principle together WITH their example. Modesty and chastity are protections for your spirit and body against appetites of the flesh. Show more Show less

What do Mormons believe concerning the doctrine of grace?

Elwood M. Porter, II
Grace is defined as divine help or strength given to men and women by Jesus Christ because of His love for us, and His love toward His and our Father in Heaven. For example, many Christians say "grace" over their meals before eating and drinking those meals. We ask God, through the saying of grace, to bless the food and drink for our nourishment and sustenance, because we, of ourselves, don't have the power to bless the meal for our betterment. We humbly recognize that only God can perform the requested blessing upon the meal. A scripture states that "we love him because He first loved us." Where and when did that love begin? During the Pre-earth Life. Because of the Fall of Adam, all mankind sin and fall short of the glory of God. In order to cross that gulf between sin and eternal glory, we need Jesus Christ's grace-divine help- through Christ's atonement of sin, in the Garden of Gethsemane and the cross. But, grace isn't freely given. A price is attached to it. That price is our faith in Jesus Christ, repenting of our sins, making restitution whenever and wherever we can when we have sinned, or offended another, then obeying God's commandments to our very best efforts throughout the remainder of our lives. At Judgement, we will find out how we've fared in the school of lfe and the gospel. God's grace is then furthered and extended to each individual. If God judges an individual worthy to receive a kingdom of glory, but is just a bit short, Christ makes up the difference. Show more Show less