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Hi I'm Ross

I grew up in Idaho and have lived most of my adult life in Utah. I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I am a retired clinical social worker and writer, having worked 36 years for LDS Family Services, a family service organization affiliated with The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. As hobbies I enjoy doing oil paintings (primarily landscapes and historic buildings), music composition, and watching movies, selected sporting events, and other forms of entertainment. My wife and I have been married for 44 years. We have five children and 19 grandchildren.

Why I am a Mormon

My parents and grandparents were all members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Like every other Mormon, however, I had to gain my own conviction that the church of which I was a member was true and not a man-made organization. That conviction came through study and prayer as well as participation in the programs and practices of the Mormon faith. The undeniable truth came from promptings and impressions of the Holy Ghost which confirmed in my mind and heart the truthfulness of such things as the Book of Mormon, the role of the Prophet Joseph Smith as an instrument in the hands of the Savior in restoring the fullness of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the doctrines and teachings of the Church, and the assurance that revelation is an ongoing process through the living prophet and leaders of the Church.

How I live my faith

I am presently serving as a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Nauvoo, Illinois. The early members of the Church who lived in Nauvoo between 1840-1846 were driven from their homes and followed their prophet leader, Brigham Young, to the Salt Lake Valley, from which many migrated to other parts of the West, establishing many towns and settlements. My wife and I host visitors at historic sites in Nauvoo and acquaint them with the stories of faith and courage exhibited by these early Church members as they practiced their religion in spite of great opposition. Opposition came from individuals in surrounding areas who did not understand them nor want to believe anything but the false rumors and stories that circulated about the Mormons. We also like to share our understanding and conviction about the restoration of the gospel in its fullness that led the early Church members to sacrifice their homes and possessions to seek religious freedom in the western rocky mountains. Nauvoo is an interesting place to visit. Several of the early historic homes and shops have been restored. Thousands of people visit this area each year, especially in the summer time. Two pageants were held this summer--the Nauvoo Pageant, and the British Pageant, both featuring musical talent and stories pertaining to the origin of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. In addition to hosting tours at historical sites, the missionaries who serve in Nauvoo participate in two stage performances--Sunset by the Mississippi, held on an outdoor stage during the summertime, and Rendezvous in Old Nauvoo, held nightly year around in the cultural hall. Wagon rides and carriage rides are also available. All sites and performances sponsored by the Church are free of charge.

Where did Mormonism and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints begin?

The Church began with the humble prayer of a 14-year-old boy, Joseph Smith, who wanted to know which church he should join. Following the admonition of James (James 1:5, New Testament), he prayed for an answer in faith, nothing wavering. In response, God, as He has done throughout biblical history, answered his petition with a remarkable vision in which the Father and Son appeared to him. He was told that the fullness of the gospel had been taken from the earth, and that he, Joseph Smith, was to be an instrument in the hands of God in restoring the Church as it was organized anciently with apostles, prophets, and teachers. In time, other heavenly messengers visited Joseph Smith and restored priesthood power and authority essential for ordinances of salvation such as baptism, the gift of the Holy Ghost, and healing of the sick. Additional scripture was revealed to Joseph Smith, i.e., the Book of Mormon and revelations pertaining to the restoration and organization of the Church. Show more Show less