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Hi I'm Mark

I live in upstate New York, been married for 30 years, have 6 children, and work in a hospital. I'm glad to be a Mormon.

About Me

My interests revolve around five areas: --Sports: I enjoy listening to sports talk radio; joining Mike and Mike in the morning on ESPN radio is how I begin each work day. They make me laugh! I also enjoy playing volleyball, basketball, softball, and ultimate Frisbee on a recreational basis. --Music: I enjoy singing, listening to country music and pop rock from the 50s, 60's, and 70's, and dancing with the most beautiful woman - inside and out - in the world (i.e., my wife). --Employment: Using my financial, administrative, and organizational skills to support physicians and other health care providers as they use their training and expertise to heal others provides a very rewarding career. However, I don't know if I'll ever get used to the fact that surgeons like early morning meetings! I'm more of a night owl. --Family time: I enjoy being with my family, which includes five sons, one daughter, two daughters-in-law, and the most adorable one-year-old grandson in all the world. I'm known to him as Pops! Covering three different time zones makes it difficult to get all together these days but Google chat is wonderful, especially when we do 3-way chat! --Gospel activity: I get immense satisfaction and joy out of reading and studying gospel topics. I enjoy sharing what I've learned with others in classes and when I speak at church. I also find it a great blessing to be of service to those around me, whatever the need may be.

Why I am a Mormon

As a Catholic growing up, I was fairly active in my faith. I was an altar boy, attended Saturday morning instructions, and went to Catholic school beginning in 7th grade. During junior high I wasn't dissatisfied with my current worship experience. However, it appeared that most of my friends at school didn't take church too seriously and I lacked adult males who were stalwart religious examples. One of my older sisters became a Mormon when I was in the 5th grade. She was married two years later to a wonderful man, another Mormon. When I was in the 8th grade, they invited me to church youth activities. I especially enjoyed playing basketball with the other guys there. Non-Mormons were welcomed to play on their team, but to be eligible I had to attend a certain amount of meetings. As I attended church, I noticed that many men were there on a regular basis. This was foreign to my religious experience and made a great and lasting impression on me. My sister invited me to attend a discussion with missionaries from her church. I went. I began reading literature the missionaries provided, including excerpts from the Book of Mormon. This was the beginning of what has become a life-long love affair with this sacred book of scripture, Another Testament of Jesus Christ. As I studied, went to church, and prayed about what I was learning, the whisperings of the Holy Ghost witnessed to me that it was all true. Namely, Joseph Smith was a prophet, the Book of Mormon was indeed from God, the priesthood of God and Christ's original church were restored to the earth, and there was a living prophet on the earth. I asked my parents if I could get baptized. They said I had to wait until I finished high school. My sister and church leaders told me to obey them. I did but kept attending with with my parents' approval. They realized I was serious so gave me their permission. I got baptized in 10th grade, in 1973. This decision has made all the difference in my life.

How I live my faith

In that we have a lay ministry, I have had ample opportunities to serve in the church in formal capacities. I've taught youth and young children, served as a full-time missionary in southern Chile from 1977-79, organized and participated in multiple youth activities (e.g., a two-day trip to Kirtland, Ohio to visit historical church sites; a 5-day, 225-mile bike hike through the Finger Lakes region of New York state; multiple campouts, workshops, and dances; etc.), and held multiple priesthood leadership positions. These experiences have been most rewarding and have caused me to stretch and rely on the Lord since I've been asked to do things that in and of myself I was not qualified to do. But I've learned over and over again that with his help all things are possible. However, the most important way in which I live and have lived my faith has to do with what goes on in my home, both personally and with my family. Regular, even daily, scripture study and prayer serve as a foundation for me and my family. I've often reminded youth that just as we eat everyday to feed our physical bodies, we need to feed our spirits each day as well, and this is done through prayer and reading the scriptures. Serving in the church not only has blessed those whom I serve but it has made me a better husband and father. I'm especially grateful for the ongoing counsel and instruction I receive that help me in my family responsibilities and relationships. For example, as I've interacted with my children, often going through my mind are the following characteristics taught by the prophet Joseph Smith, and that I'm reminded of regularly, as being the way I am to teach and guide them: "... by persuasion, by long-suffering, by gentleness and meekness, and by love unfeigned; by kindness, and pure knowledge...." As I've labored through the years to be better at following these principles, I'm also forever grateful that my Heavenly Father exhibits them towards me.