Chat With a Mormon Online
I am a 21 year old college student at the University of Utah. After finishing a full year of college at the Brigham Young University, I wanted to do something that no one had ever done before. I felt like I could change the world in Kenya, for no known reason, and contacted an organization called Koins for Kenya based about an hour from where I live in Utah. After a long meeting with the founder and Executive Director, I decided to take on the project of raising $13,000 to build a two room classroom building in the village of Dzivani, Kenya. I left for Kenya in March of 2010 and planned to live in Kenya for the next 5 months over seeing the building of this project, and I planned on living in the village where it was being built. I spent the next months living in a mud hut made of tree branches and palm leaves and using a solar generated lantern to use at night in order to cook my food over an open flame. While serving for Koins and Dzivani, I was able to not only build this school, but I also helped build three other schools in the area that were funding by American companies while I was living in Africa. After the school was buit, I named it after my brother Austin who has Down Syndrome, since he has been an unbelievable example to me of Christ like passion and love. I now work for a company called CrossFit and I am the project manager for all of our humanitarian efforts in Kenya. We plan on building hundreds of schools in this area along with our affiliate gyms.
I was never the one to preach and teach about my religion growing up. I actually didn't really know why I was a mormon through High School, but my conversion story is one that I will never forget. At the time, I was faced with many hurdles in my life and my family was having some serious problems. I had no idea what was happening and it was almost like I was just watching my whole life cave in on me. I left work one day and was prompted to go talk to my friend who had recently returned home from his mission in Sacramento. He was caught by surprise when I knocked on his door and I basically started crying right when I saw him because I was so over whelmed with doubt and how I was ever going to make it through. He was an unbelievable help to me and sent me off with a few talks he had read on his mission that helped him get through some tough times. I took the papers and drove straight up Millcreek Canyon in Salt Lake, which is one of my favorite places on Earth. After reading the talks and feeling like I couldn't sink lower than I was, I broke down and just asked the Lord if the church was true. I had an unbelievable feeling that overtook my whole body and from then on I have never doubted it for a second. I am a mormon because it is the only true and living church on the Earth. There is no doubt in my mind that everything I hear from the prophets and chosen disciples of the Lord that this is the true church and through the sacrifice of my Savior Jesus Christ I know I can be saved and live among my Heavenly Father and his Son once again with my family.
I have been given not only the gift of loving the Kenyan people, but I have been given the talent of music. I have been playing the guitar now for about eight years and have picked up many other instruments along the way. It truly is a remarkable thing to be able to practice and perfect talents, and then share them with the world. I have actually just now been able to really share this talent since I am partially doing it for work now. Not only am I the project manager for our effort of building schools in Kenya, but I also am writing all of the music we are using for our multimedia projects at my company I work for, CrossFit, Inc. It has been an unbelievable experience being able to write music that I love and having it touch the lives of people and stir the spirit of service in their very soul. The opportunity to share what God has given us with the world is something like nothing else and there is always a way to share the talents we have been given for benefit of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.
In my singles ward right now, I am the service project coordinator. With the work I have done in Kenya, this calling allows me to do what I love to do, which is service, and there is truly no greater happiness than serving our fellow men. I am planning many different trips to participate in food bank service as well as donations for clothing and sporting equipment for many of the villages in the Kenya service area where I am constantly working. I try and talk to as many people as I can throughout the day about my religion, as I am constantly on the move with my job at CrossFit HQ where I work for the Branding department overseeing everything we are trying to do in Africa as a part of our newly organized humanitarian effort. I try to be an example of how we should live our lives with hearts full of love and arms always open to every one of God's children. Keeping the commandments of the Lord has also brought me crazy amounts of happiness and I am so thankful that I can be an instrument in the Lord's hands as I serve in Africa.