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Hi I'm John Keeler

I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I grew up in a small farm town, did radar in the Air Force, a Mormon mission in Mexico, a Bachelor's in Hispanic American Studies and a Master's in Community Development and Organization. My wife and I spent a year bumming through every country south of Mexico. Then came 5 children over 10 years and later 21 grandchildren. I spent 30+ years as CEO of large non-profits in the southwest. We retired on the same day, traded our home for a retirement condo near the state university, filled it with 186 boxes, locked the doors, and headed out on an 18 month LDS mission. Our assignment was public affairs for Spain. Perfect fit! We met 42 years earlier in a class called "Cultures of Spain". Through all our lives the Church has provided such joy, direction and purpose. It motivated my 30 years in Rotary, and brought valuable foreign-residency experience to our children while we served a 3-year mission in Mexico. It has been our constant license to succor the weak, lift up the hands that hang down, and strengthen the feeble knee. Recently, cancer claimed my wife. Even so, life is full of silver linings, smiles, and things about which I get hyper-enthusiastic – such as more senior missions. Assignments are so varied, exciting and satisfying. I have remarried to a lovely specialist in international health. We are gearing up for new Church adventures.

Why I am a Mormon

I love how the Church encourages that I never stop exploring, how it places truth on a pedestal –regardless of source. I love how it promotes both revelation and reason. I thrill at what God shares and what he leaves for me to discover. Incidentally, I'm taking my 39th university-level course since retirement. I understand why Mormons tend to become more religiously involved as their education level increases. I love how the Church encourages me to be a person of action, that Jesus Christ serve as pattern, that God be my tutor, and that I learn to listen. He has responded, countless times, but only "according to the heed and diligence" I pay. The Church encouraged me to parent, nurture and educate several children. Today in their presence, plus a score of grandchildren, I find immense satisfaction. Listen, Obey, Harvest. How many times I have rediscovered that maxim! The Church taught me self-mastery through its injunctions to avoid alcohol, tobacco, coffee and tea, to be chaste and faithful to spouse, and to share time and resources with others. Watching a mountain of non-LDS friends, I have missed nothing that brings real joy. Just the opposite! I love how it resolves the age-old battle between grace and works, providing the perfect and logical blend. I love how it satisfies my deepest longings for kinship by assuring family ties beyond the grave. I love its view of heaven as many mansions whose glories vary. It is the widest and most merciful image I have ever encountered. Only the greatest of scoundrels finds no reward. Mormonism contains extraordinary claims and beliefs, but none is as astonishing as the very existence of God, or as implausible as the presence of humankind itself. Even incredible notions merit exploration. Study, ponder, pray, be humble and experiment on the teachings. These brought my total conviction – sometimes by divine revelation and sometimes by simply seeing results.

How I live my faith

Joy to a disciple comes from learning and service, not from material goods and worldly recognitions. I’m astounded by opportunities to spread happiness when I don’t care who gets the credit. I’m amazed at beauty found whether looking through someone else’s glasses, or walking in others’ shoes. It happens in organizations as diverse as The National Safety Council, Junior Achievement, and Rotary. It does not vary whether in the United States, Mexico and Spain, or residing in Monterrey, Malaga or Madrid.