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Hi I'm Jackson

I'm an artist, a music appreciator, an outdoor enthusiast, a missionary, and I am a Mormon.

About Me

I'm 18 years old. I love concept art; folk, electronic, and indie music; being outdoors; video games; and spending time with family. I specifically like lacrosse, long boarding, mountain biking, snow boarding, wake boarding, repelling and rock climbing. I just graduated High School. I used to work for a call center and a window cleaning company. I've been called to serve as a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Salem Oregon. When I finish my service in 2015, I will attend Utah State University in Logan Utah. I want to study Industrial Design.

Why I am a Mormon

I am a Mormon because I know that nothing else can make me more happy in this life and in eternity than being a faithful member of Christs church. Some one asked me the other day if anyone has ever questioned Joseph Smith. My answer is that everyone should! I personally have had my doubts about the gospel. The scriptures teach us that God loves us and will answer our prayers. I know that is true. Every time I have asked if Joseph Smith was a prophet or if the Book of Mormon is true, I have received and answer that yes, it is true. I know that this is Christs restored church. I know that Jesus Christ suffered our sins and pains and eventually died for us. Through him, we can be cleansed from sin and return to live with God and our families again. These truths bring peace, comfort, direction, purpose and happiness to my life.

How I live my faith

I am a full-time missionary. I spend all day everyday teaching people about the restored gospel of Jesus Christ.

How are the activities of the Mormon missionaries funded?

Jackson
Right now, I am one of over 80,000 of the Churches volunteer full-time missionaries. Before leaving on a mission, we save enough money to pay for our living expenses for two years (housing, food, clothing, etc.) which is usually between $10,000 to $12,000. If you are unable to pay for your own mission, then you may qualify for receiving help from the Church "missionary fund". This "missionary fund" consists of donations from other local Church members. Show more Show less

What do Mormons believe about “eternal life?”

Jackson
We believe that Gods "work and glory" is "to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man" (moses 1:39). Because of the Atonement of Jesus Christ, we all will overcome physical death and be resurrected. Resurrection means that we will become immortal and will life forever. Eternal life, however, is "a gift of God given only to those who obey His gospel" (Preach My Gospel pg 53). It is where we dwell with God and our families for eternity in an exalted state experiencing the life that God and Jesus Christ enjoy. Show more Show less

What are Mormon church services like? Are visitors allowed at church meetings? Can I attend church?

Jackson
Mormon church services are open to all who want to attend. Both member and nonmember are encouraged to attend. An average service will last 3 hours. It is broken into 1 hour segments: The first hour, called sacrament meeting, is spent together as an entire congregation. This meeting begins with a hymn (religious song), and a prayer. We then partake of the sacrament (communion) which consists of bread and water that is blessed and passed to the congregation by priesthood holders. The remainder of the meeting is spent listening to members of the congregation speak on specific topics that have been assigned before hand. The meeting is closed with another hymn and prayer. During the second hour, the congregation divides into different classrooms according to age. In this class, church doctrine is discussed in further detail with the intent of developing our testimonies in Jesus Christ. In the last hour, the congregation is separated by gender and age into different classrooms. In this last class; men discuss topics that help them become better priesthood holders, husbands, and fathers; and women discuss topics that help them become better wives and mothers. Show more Show less

What blessings can you receive from reading the Book of Mormon, the Bible, and other scriptures?

Jackson
Scriptures are tools that God has given us to help us through our lives. Through reading, pondering, and praying about the scriptures we can gain greater understanding and direction in our lives. The scriptures bring peace, happiness, and comfort as we study their message and strive to follow their teachings. Above all, reading the scriptures will strengthen our faith in Jesus Christ and help us grow closer to God. Show more Show less

Why do some call Mormonism a cult?

Jackson
A cult is essentially an unorthodox religion that is centered on a ritual or ceremony. While the LDS Church does believe that there are certain covenants and ordinances (such as baptism) required for salvation, the label "cult" is most often given to the Church because of a lack of understanding or by "Church opponents attempting to criticize or discredit the Church" (The Official Church Answer). Those who learn about our beliefs often come to realize how similar our teachings are to other mainstream Christian beliefs. Show more Show less

Why are only some Mormons allowed into temples? Is there something secret going on in Mormon Temples? What goes on in Mormon Temples?

Jackson
Mormon temples are not "secret", they are sacred. In temples, we make covenants (promises with God) and participate in ordinances that help us return to God. Since the covenants and ordinances you make in the temple are so sacred, only baptized members who are prepared to enter the temple can do so after it has been dedicated. We also preform ordinances, such as baptism, for those who died without the opportunity to accept the gospel of Jesus Christ. Both members and nonmembers are allowed to visit the grounds and to attend open houses before the temple is dedicated. Show more Show less

What do Mormons believe concerning the doctrine of grace?

Jackson
A prominent member of the LDS Church once said concerning grace that, “Jesus doesn’t make up the difference. Jesus makes all the difference. Grace is not about filling gaps. It is about filling us.” He then describes grace in further detail by saying: "I have born-again Christian friends who say to me, 'You Mormons are trying to earn your way to heaven.' "I say, 'No, we are not earning heaven. We are learning heaven. We are preparing for it (see D&C 78:7). We are practicing for it.' "They ask me, 'Have you been saved by grace?' "I answer, 'Yes. Absolutely, totally, completely, thankfully--yes!' "Then I ask them a question that perhaps they have not fully considered: 'Have you been changed by grace?' They are so excited about being saved that maybe they are not thinking enough about what comes next. They are so happy the debt is paid that they may not have considered why the debt existed in the first place. Latter-day Saints know not only what Jesus has saved us from but also what He has saved us for. As my friend Brett Sanders puts it, 'A life impacted by grace eventually begins to look like Christ’s life.' As my friend Omar Canals puts it, 'While many Christians view Christ’s suffering as only a huge favor He did for us, Latter-day Saints also recognize it as a huge investment He made in us.' As Moroni puts it, grace isn’t just about being saved. It is also about becoming like the Savior (see Moroni 7:48)." (His Grace is Sufficient - Brad Wilcox) Show more Show less