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Hi I'm Richard

I lived for 25 years in Northern Canada, travelling around the Arctic. I was baptized there in 1993 and now I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I was raised by wonderful parents; Mom was an artist and Dad was in the Royal Canadian Air Force. My early years were pretty normal; growing up on different air force bases - mostly in Ontario, Canada. A happy child with a lovely sister, too. I loved playing sports but also loved learning as much as I could about the world. Our family went to the United Church of Canada and I particularly enjoyed Sunday School, especially the New Testament with all the stories about Jesus. I continued to go to church as a teenager but, when I went away to university, all my new-found freedom had lots of temptations and distractions. I spent a big part of my time socializing with my fellow students and stopped going to any church. However, I continued to be interested in the big questions of life and spirituality - how did it all fit together? I studied philosophy and tried exploring lots of possibilities. I became adventurous to try new things; so much so, that I joined some friends on an adventure to Northern Canada and the Arctic. I ended up staying for 25 years! I particularly noticed that northerners were very spiritual in their own way - either going to their local church or through their Aboriginal traditions. In fact, I had never before met so many wonderfully warm and humble people - materially very poor but spiritually very rich.

Why I am a Mormon

When I arrived in the Arctic at age 23, I was not actively attending services at any church; but as I got older, I married and started raising children. I still had my testimony about Jesus Christ but I now felt a strong desire to find a church to help me grow spiritually and where my kids could attend Sunday School and learn more about Jesus. I tried different churches but felt something was missing. Ironically, I was very impressed by a colleague at work who was Mormon but I only had a vague understanding of his church - although I had never met such a wonderful, happy family. Oh if I could have what they have, I thought. Eventually, I was able to meet with two full-time missionaries of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints - and so many of my questions were answered! It took me a while to ponder their message but I took their challenge to pray sincerely and ask God if this was true. Well I was very impressed when I received a clear answer that: the Book of Mormon is true; the testimonies of the Witnesses are true and Joseph Smith is a prophet! Wow! My family and I were convinced and we were baptized as members of the true Church of Jesus Christ. I do know that families are extremely important in Heavenly Father's plan of happiness for us. I love my family and pray for all my family members to be blessed with spiritual experiences. I know that we can all help each other by being kind and loving to one other - especially as we follow the example of Jesus Christ!

How I live my faith

Eventually, after 25 years, I moved back to southern Canada to be close to my elderly parents. They never switched from the United Church, and have since passed away, but we had many interesting discussions about spirituality and the meaning of life. They would sometimes join us when we had the missionaries over for supper; it would be a nice get-together but sometimes people are comfortable in their traditions and it can be hard to change or even think about changing your way of life after so many years. Personally, I am very glad that I was baptized by the missionaries. I know the scriptures are true and I delight to read them regularly with my family. My wife and I are sealed in the temple, for time and all eternity, and we have a son born and sealed to us afterwards. Hopefully I will be able to be sealed, in the temple, to the rest of my family as well. My sister and I were both adopted at birth but now, thanks to Ontario changing its adoption law, we have each discovered our respective birth parents. I have now met with my biological siblings - a brother and sister that I never even knew existed! Getting to know them is very exciting - almost like my adventure to the Arctic when I was younger. One of the first questions that my brother asked was: "So, you're a Mormon . . . what's that all about?" My response was enthusiastic: "Yes, yes, I am . . . let me tell you all about it!" So another adventure begins and who knows where it will end up.