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Hi I'm Matt

I grew up in Rockford, Illinois and joined the LDS Church at 19 years old. I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I enjoy Scouting with my sons, reading to my little daughter, and taking walks with my wife. A side hobby of my own is early baseball history (mainly the Dead Ball Era) and learning outdoor survival and off-grid living techniques. I am a professor at our local university here in Texas and received my PhD in business administration in Illinois. I love teaching, researching, and publishing about human cooperation.

Why I am a Mormon

I was introduced to the Church through a close friend and member when in high school. We had many gospel conversations and I felt the love of God as I would visit his home, work with him on school projects, and visit with his family. Shortly after the death of my dear father, I began college and parted ways temporarily with my high school friend. It was during that first year of college that I reflected on my life and decided that I wanted greater meaning and happiness. I sought out my friend and inquired how I may learn more about his Church. He referred me to the missionaries. As I met with the missionaries and additional Church members I began feeling the love of God once again as I had when in my friend's home. I accepted the invitation to be baptized and became a member of the Church. My transition into God's Church was like a train ride: full of bumps and jostles coupled with wonderful experiences. As the only member of my family, I strove to live the Gospel to be an example to my dear mother who saw the positive changes I made in life and gradually grew interested in the Gospel, as well. I left on a mission to Russia a little over one year after joining the Church. Why am I a Mormon? I choose each day to be a Mormon because it is the only way I have ever felt the love of God consistently and strongly. I have never been happier than when I have been active and engaged in the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I joined the Church because I wanted to be the best husband and father I could ever be. I have grown up feeling such strong love from my father that I wanted to experience that love with a future family of my own.

How I live my faith

Currently I am serving as a Sunday School teacher in the primary for 10-11 year old boys and girls in our Church ward. For me, the calling involves making interactive presentations so that the youth can internalize several Gospel principles in each class. As a covert to the Church a little over 15 years ago, it is rejuvenating to see such pure and worthy youth share their feelings and love for the Gospel and Jesus Christ. I strive and struggle to live my religion everyday in my own family through small things such as family prayer, scripture study, whole family activities, and service. I also try to talk about my faith and connect with others'.

What is the Church’s position on abortion?

Matt
Like many worldly values, the Church values the agency of mankind, but, unlike many worldly values, the Church recognizes that in situations involving the creation of life, there are other parties in addition to the mother (or parents) who should be respected in terms of there agency; i.e., the unborn child. Rape, murder, and other crimes are condemned by the Church (and many other societal organizations) because they involve taking the agency away of the victim: these crimes are committed against the victim's will. Consider for a moment the root motivation for abortion, other than in the cases where health is at risk or rape and incest (when the agency of the victim is taken away): inconvenience. People choose abortion because they do not want the inconvenience of pregnancy, having to interact with those that come to know they have a child, or parenting. Fortunately, there is the option of adoption which can bless both the baby and those who are biologically unable to have children. What is inconvenient to one person (the birth parents) can then become a privilege to another (the adoption family). Show more Show less

Why did your church previously practice plural marriage (polygamy)?

Matt
The answer to the polygamy question is based on an individual's faith to do all that the father commands. The scriptures are replete with examples of God's children being directed to one thing at one point of time and then commanded to do something else (perhaps even the opposite) later. For example, Moses was instructed to command the people of Israel "thou shall not kill", and yet at other times he was commanded to order the people of Israel to wage war against other nations. Like a parent admonishing children to avoid dating when they are young and then admonishing them to date when they are older, the Lord gives his children commandments that are time and context specific. The test for God's children is their willingness to obey all of His commandments. When we receive any commandment from Church leaders, we are to pray to God and authenticate its origin, and then faithfully keep that commandment until instructed otherwise. Overtime we will gain greater understanding of why various commandments are given. Show more Show less