Chat With a Mormon Online
I grew up on the west coast of Alaska. After High School I served a mission in the Tahiti Papeete Cook Islands mission. When I got home I went to school in Washington, Utah and Idaho. After graduate school I joined the US Army Reserve and served for 21 years before retiring. My wife and I have four daughters and three young grandsons. Both my wife and I work in public health.
I was born to LDS parents and grew up Mormon. At about age 14 I needed my own testimony and started seeking for one. Although I have always been active in the church, I have had many opportunities to be "converted" since my first 14-year-old experience -- each time, becoming a little more certain. I find that the Gospel is always relevant and I continue to find new meaning in its teachings as my life's situation changes.
I love reading the Book of Mormon. The stories are so engaging. I like to think of the Book of Mormon as a map of how our life goes from the pre-existance through this life and to the eternities. The teachings of the Book of Mormon enhance what I can learn from the Bible. From the Book of Mormon, I get a clearer understanding of the reality of the resurrection, judgement and possibilities for an eternal immortal life. I also get a better understanding of what is expected of me, if I am going to call myself a Christian.
I started doing genealogy when I was about 14 years old. At that time lived in Alaska and I had to have something I could do indoors. At first it was interesting collect the names, dates and places and figuring out who I was related to in my families home town. It became even more exciting when I started collecting the stories and pictures. When I married and had children, I was able to share these stories on many occassions as our family faced life's challenges. Often, these stories helped us put our challenges in perspective. I think it is important that we leave a legacy of learning for a posterity, and hope that the stories of my life will be useful to my grandchildren and their families when I am gone. I also think that our journals is a good measuring rod of how we are living. If I don't have anything interesting to write in my journal for a period of time, it tells me I had better get on the ball and do something worth writing about.
Many people think the Holy Ghost only helps in times of danger or spiritual need. I have had those experiences as well but I think the Holy Ghost helps me on a daily basis in my family, work and other responsibilities. My work requires me to respond to a lot of situations that I have not really been trained for. It is amazing how many times I have been faced with a work challenge and then had a feeling of light and knowledge come to me, and in that feeling discovered the solution to the challenge.
Members often have several callings, and I am no exception. Currently my wife and I are ward missionaries, and I am a home teacher for several families in our ward. On Tuesdays and Fridays, I work at the Salt Lake Temple - one of my most favorite jobs. It is not uncommon to get a phone call to help with a variety of service and welfare projects or to assist by visiting and blessing members of our community. That is the formal way. On the everyday, my faith defines for me who I am and guides how I talk, how I interact with others and how I make decisions, whether I am aware of it or not.