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Hi I'm Richard

I'm Richard; a student, a husband, a father and a Mormon!

About Me

I'm busy, but who isn't!? I'm a husband to a beautiful wife, and father to a beautiful little daughter. I'm studying at University for a degree in Environmental Conservation. So, for the time being, my wife works and I look after our baby daughter during the day and try to fit my studies in as best I can. I usually manage OK. I've always liked the outdoors so this choice of study was pretty simple. As a teenager I've given most outdoor activities a try: Kayaking, mountain biking, rock climbing, hiking, camping, shooting, fishing, flying, bird watching, wildlife photography... the list goes on. I still like time in the outdoors, and try to keep up with some of that list, but now my wild time is more likely to be a gentle walk in the woods with my family than a 40 mile hike across the moors like it used to be. But that's fine, because there is nothing i would rather do than spend time with them! I'm currently in my third year of study; I'll graduate in the summer, then start a Masters degree in the autumn. Then, hopefully, when that is finished, I'll be able to get a job that lets me spend some more time in the great outdoors. That's the plan at least! As long as I can still spend plenty of time with my family everything will be just fine.

Why I am a Mormon

I was born into the church. My parents were members and I grew up as a 'Mormon.' As a young child, that was all I needed to know. It was important to my parents so it became important to me. As a teenager I reached the stage where this wasn't sufficient. I needed it to be important to me as well. It took a while; I knew that I wanted it to be important, and so the best way to decide properly was going to be to learn everything about it that I could. So I kept going to church and church activities, I attended the study classes that the church organizes for teenagers, I kept studying The Book of Mormon, The Bible and other books to learn as much as I could. And most importantly I kept asking, in my prayers, I would always ask what was right; what was true. The answer didn't come all at once, it was slow and gradual; "line upon line". But there was one instance I still remember vividly. I was praying one evening, and I really wanted to know whether Joseph Smith really had been a prophet. And I got an answer. I heard or felt or discerned, one way or another, the words "You already know the answer." And as I recognized this the things I had been learning for years came flooding back; everything fitted in, everything worked and made sense. I realized that with all the knowledge I had gained, I had also already gained my answer. This was just one experience of many along my road of personal conversion. It wasn't the first testimony strengthening experience I had, it certainly wasn't the last. And it doesn't mean either that my belief or faith is perfect, sometimes I still need to be reminded that I already know answers, I just need to act on them. But little experiences like these have kept me here. It is important to me as well now, not just to my parents or other family members, but to me personally. Gods plan is for me to be happy, with my family, forever. That is why it was and is important to my parents, and that is why it is important to me and my family!

How I live my faith

I was born into the church, so living my faith is very normal for me. When I was 19 I went abroad as a full-time missionary for 2 years to teach other people about the church. It was a fantastic experience! Now, I might not serve in the church full-time, but there is still lots I can do. Being a good husband and father is one way I can live my faith. In the church many people have a 'calling', a role they are assigned to that gives them certain tasks and responsibilities. At present I have been assigned to lead some of the men in our congregation. This entails teaching classes, helping them to fulfill their own responsibilities, and trying to help when there is a need. In the church we try to regularly visit all our members in their homes, especially when they are sick or struggling in other ways. Another one of my responsibilities is to organize these visits. I meet with the other leaders within the congregation to discuss how to help the congregation as a whole, but also individual members who may need special assistance. I believe living our faith is not just about what we do or give though, it is sometime what we give up. This isn't always easy but sometimes is necessary. I used to work alongside everything else I do. My wife was on maternity leave at the time; I was in classes during the day then I would work a late shift several times a week. After a while I realized that this couldn't work. Not only was I struggling to fulfill my church commitments, but my studies were suffering, and I had very little, if any, quality time with my family. So my wife and I made the decision that we would be better off with a lower income but more time as a family, even if it did mean we had to tighten our budget. So I quit work. And it made a big difference. I have had much more time with my family, and it has been better time too. My studies have been better and I have had more time to keep up with church assignments too.