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Hi I'm Scott

I am a dragon-loving, fantasy-writing, Spanish-teaching, married father of 4, and I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I teach Spanish at a large community college and designed the online courses our department uses. I also write fantasy novels in my spare time. I enjoy the outdoors and in particular like to camp and hike at National Parks. I have a black belt in traditional Korean Martial arts.

Why I am a Mormon

I suppose the short answer is that my parents were members of the church. Still, there comes a time in your life when you decide to follow your own path, even if it ends up being one marked by those who went before you. When hiking I have often looked for trails that are less traveled and a little more difficult, because they are more rewarding in the end. I suppose this is why I chose to continue being a Mormon. Not as many walk this path, and it is certainly more difficult, however the peace it has brought to my life is reward enough.

How I live my faith

I try to do little things on a daily basis. I attend Sunday services and have volunteered in both Cub Scout and Boy Scout programs with the youth. Still, I look for success in living my faith in small daily activities that remind me who I am. I try to read scripture for 15-20 minutes, communicate with my Father in Heaven through prayer, and try to help someone every day. Some days I succeed, and others I don't fare as well, but I believe in trying to be a slightly better person today than I was yesterday. Also, I try to keep my focus on our true nature as eternal beings. When things do not go as I would have wanted, I remind myself that this life is merely a passing stage of our development. When chaos swirls around me, the knowledge that there exists a larger design makes it easier to embrace the changing nature of life and the world around us. When we realize and accept that this life is but a tiny part of an eternal plan, disappointment and difficulties can be put into the proper perspective. There have been many stories where a struggling individual is told "Remember who you are!" and it becomes a turning point in the story. I live my faith by remembering who I am, and who all the people around me are as well: children of a living God.

What is faith?

Scott
Faith begins as a hope, a hope that there is something better for us in this life and in the life to come. This hope leads us to search for something or someone to believe in. When we find that belief we must then choose to act upon it, and this becomes faith as we put our belief into action. The scriptures entreat us to believe in Christ and then do something: repent, be baptized, worship Him, be reconciled with God, etc. When we do something about our belief in the Savior, we are demonstrating faith in Him. As we use our faith to perform small tasks, such as reading scripture and praying, our faith becomes stronger. Eventually, we develop the capacity to attempt things we would otherwise consider beyond our abilities, because the Lord will prepare the way for us to accomplish those things that he wants us to do. Show more Show less

Are Mormons Christians?

Scott
Yes, if by Christian you mean a believer or follower of Christ. One of the prophet-writers of the Book of Mormon said, "And we talk of Christ, we rejoice in Christ, we preach of Christ, we prophesy of Christ, and we write according to our prophecies, that our children may know to what source they may look for a remission of their sins." This describes our church today as well. Christ is our central focus both as a church and as individuals. He is my personal Savior and Redeemer. I am a Mormon and I am a Christian. Show more Show less

What is the Book of Mormon?

Scott
Many are unaware that the Book of Mormon is subtitled "Another Testament of Jesus Christ" and that is what it is. The gospel of Jesus Christ was revealed to prophets that lived on the American continent and they made a record of it. The Book of Mormon tells of a small group of people led out of Jerusalem around 600 years before Christ and brought to the Americas. It complements the Bible and helps us better understand the word of the Lord. One of the more interesting passage comes in the final chapter where the prophet Moroni promises that those who study the book and pray sincerely about it can know it is true. This knowledge comes from the power and influence of the Holy Ghost through the fruits of the spirit such as feelings of love, peace and joy. I have done this, and while it is a different way of learning truth than we are perhaps accustomed to in this day and age, I know the Book of Mormon to be true as well as I know anything to be true. Show more Show less

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

Scott
Where to begin. There are so many things that testify there is a God. A starry night, a mountain trail, a swim in the ocean all fill one with an unequaled sense of wonder. The feelings one experiences holding a newborn will humble anyone. The complexity of everything around us begs us to believe that something more than just chance brought us here. One of the strongest testimonies of the existence of God is a basic code of human ethics. One can argue that ethics vary widely across cultures, and while that can be true, for me it is the existence of ethics itself that provide evidence of our divine nature as children of God. People generally believe that there are some standards of behavior to which we should all rise. It could be a concern for preserving the environment, a desire to help those less fortunate than ourselves or wanting to leave things better than we found them. The fact that we care about something beyond our own narrow self-interest says that we are a more than mere mammals. Despair and depression are evidence that we expect better, an expectation that has no logical basis without God. Perhaps it is strange to find God in the difficulties and challenges of life, but the very reasons some use to argue against God, tell me that He is real. Without God, why would we care? Why would injustice frustrate us? Why would the suffering of others bother us so? There is a light within us that, from God, that tells us these things should not be. Show more Show less

Can you tell me about Mormon customs: how you dress for church, what holidays you celebrate, etc.?

Scott
Customs vary depending on where you are from as the church is a world-wide organization. Since we live in the southern part of the United States we make sure to eat black-eyed peas on New Years for luck. Some of the things we do have in common is that we try to wear our best clothes to church. I wear a white shirt with a tie and slacks along with a dress sweater, while many other men wear suits or sports coats. My wife wears a dress or skirt and our kids dress up as well. Despite this, we know that the Lord looks upon the heart rather than the outward appearances and we would never turn any one away for what they wore. It is more just a collective effort to show through our mode of dress how important worship services are. As with other Christians, Christmas and Easter are significant religious holidays as they remind us of the birth, suffering, death and resurrection of Jesus, our Savior. While we don't ignore Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny, we do try to place an extra emphasis on the spiritual aspects of these sacred times. Secular traditions serve as a springboard to "true meaning" of these days. We also celebrate regional and national holidays. My family especially enjoys decorating for Halloween, and I have been known to put on zombie make-up and follow/chase older "kids" along the block. Our kids also have a pretty good time with the remote control rat. My wife loves a good haunted house even though the "monsters" usually end up chasing her in circles around me. Show more Show less