What Is a Church Community?

The video player could not be built.

Do you want to chat with a missionary?

We are happy to answer any questions you may have. Start a chat or call us at 1-888-537-6600.

Hi I'm Marc J.

I'm a medical student and a fledgling father. I like learning languages but wish I retained them better. I'm a Mormon.

About Me

As of writing this, I have begun my second year of medical school. I am married to a wonderful Korean convert who I met while attending college at BYU. While my Korean is pretty pitiful, I speak moderately good Cambodian from my mission to Cambodia (of course!). I studied Spanish in high school and took a class or two in Arabic in college but would not do very well talking to even a toddler in either language. I would like to polish up on all my languages, but I mainly need to master Korean. It's hard to have too many hobbies outside of medical school but I do enjoy reading nonfiction books, travel (meaning I look at pictures of foreign countries and tell myself I'll go there some day), racquetball, scuba diving (although I've only done this briefly in my life), and following a few professional sports, especially NBA. I'm a dual fan of the Phoenix Suns and the Dallas Mavericks. My dream would be to spend time in Asia and/or the Middle East on a volunteer medical mission. That dream will probably have to wait until I've been able to pay off my student debt first. I also have a daughter who is so strong-willed but also brilliantly funny at times. She was born on the first day of my second class in med school. She's made life a little more complicated but also much more lively. In an ideal world, I could spend as much time with my wife and daughter as I would like.

Why I am a Mormon

A blessing in this church that I tend to under-appreciate or misunderstand is the gift of the Holy Ghost. This is a gift that is given to someone when they have been baptized. It is more than just the ability to feel the the Holy Ghost in our lives from time to time. It is the privilege of having the Spirit with us at all times. This is such a valuable gift because the Spirit enables us to see and know things that we could not know otherwise. To me, it's like when I'm driving during a downpour, I would be concerned if my windshield wipers only worked intermittently or not at all. I would much prefer that my wipers were functioning continuously. That way I can see and know what is really going on outside. This is what it's like to have the constant companionship of the Holy Ghost, as opposed to the intermittent presence of the Holy Ghost. The gift of the Holy Ghost is a major reason why I am a Mormon. As an imperfect person, of course there have been times when I have not been as close to the Spirit as I would like because of poor choices I have made. It is these periods of "driving with broken wipers" that have convinced me that I need the Spirit in my life. I know that the Spirit is found in living this gospel and that it will lead us to follow Christ and to achieve eternal life. I'm always impressed by Peter in the account at the end of John 6. While others chose to walk away from Christ because they were offended by His words, when Peter and the apostles were asked by the Savior, "Will ye also go away?", he responds, "Lord, to whom shall we go? Thou hast the words of eternal life." I agree with Peter; I have found that the fullness of the words of eternal life as spoken by our Savior our found only in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The presence of the Holy Ghost has confirmed this truth to me.

How I live my faith

As a lifelong member of the church, I really haven't had any experience living any other faith than this one. But as I have grown, my faith has become more refined and my living of it has become more synchronized with what I know. Much of how I live is a reflection of how I've seen others whom I admire live, especially my parents. My parents did an excellent job of being an example to me and explaining to me the importance of obedience and doing the right thing, regardless of the circumstances. For the most part, I have done my best to live the commandments that I knew were true. Through striving to keep the commandments, I have often learned the validity (and divinity) of a commandment even before I understood why it was necessary. This habit seems to complement my scientific interests. I consider being obedient to commandments one of the best forms of trial-and-error testing I can perform. In addition to exercising my agency to experiment on God's word, I pray and research the scriptures and other good sources to help me understand the "whys" and the "hows" of this life. I believe that Heavenly Father recognizes my efforts to know truth and will assists me accordingly. I still don't understand everything about this life or every doctrine of the church to the extent that I would like. I am completely aware of research or individuals that make claims that disprove what this church believes. In these instances, I have weighed the evidence that they put forth with my own experiences and feelings. In all cases, my testimony of the Book of Mormon, of living prophets, of Jesus Christ and His atonement, and of a living, perfect, and loving Heavenly Father has helped to dispel any long term doubt or skepticism. I know there will be plenty more obstacles in the future that will challenge my beliefs but I trust that the foundation of spiritual knowledge that I have laid through prayer, study, and obedience will .help me get through them.