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Hi I'm John

I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I was born with cerebral palsy, which makes it more difficult for me to walk and talk. Despite my challenges, I was able to complete college and medical school. I currently work as a pediatrician, specializing in the needs of children who have been abused. I am also a certified geek, with a seemingly inate love of all things electronic. I spend much of my free time programming computers. It seems to be rubbing off on my children -- the six year old has decided that she needs her own computer. Just like daddy!

Why I am a Mormon

I was born and raised in the church, and have always been a regularly attending member. It would be easy, but incorrect, to ascribe my membership to my parents, my culture, habit, or some other social factor, When I formally joined the church (at age eight) I will admit that my parents weighed heavily on my decision. But that is not why I stay. Today I am a member of the church because I took Moroni's challenge -- I asked God himself if it was true, I received a personal confirmation from the Holy Ghost about the reality of the atonement of Jesus Christ, the mission of the prophet Joseph Smith, and the comming forth of the Book of Mormon. Being a Mormon gives structure and direction to my life. It enriches my relationship with my wife by giving us common beliefs and values. It promises me that my two darling little daughters will remain mine forever. In a world of shifting values and moral relativism, the Church is unafraid to call evil exactly what it is.

How I live my faith

I have had a number of assignments oveer the years. I currently lead the elders quorm (organization for adult men) in my ward. I have also served as a clerk, a sunday school president, and as a youth leader. I think my favorite church assignments involve teaching the gospel, particularly to adolescents and adults. I love the opportunity to explain the simple truths of the out Heavenly Father's plan for us, his children.

Do Mormons worship Joseph Smith?

No. Show more Show less

What do Mormons believe concerning the doctrine of grace?

Mormons beleive we are saved by grace. The fundamental miracle of Christianity is that Christ loved us before we did anything to deserve his love. Christ came to earth to show us a model life. Christ suffered and died to give us forgiveness and eternal life. Christ's inclination to benefit us before, or even in spite of, our faltering attempts to follow him constitutes the grace of Christ. We do not, however, believe that Christ's grace leaves us no part in our salvation, or that grace need merely be accepted to be operative. Salvation is a process of becoming something, and it would be a horrible violation for Christ to turn me into something I am not without my consent and participation. I believe that balance is necessary. To presume that I save myself with no works at all turns my Savior into a mere coach or cheerleader. To presume that I can be saved without my best works imples that Christ is willing to enable my sins. For me, the miracle of Christ's grace is that every person become what he or she most deeply wants to become. If I want more than anything to be like Christ, He will build me up to that stature. He admits no false aspirations, however. Wanting to want to be like him is insufficent. As I show, through good works, my genuine desire to be like my Savior, he promises me the strength and assistance to acheive that goal. Show more Show less

What is faith?

In my professional life, I consider myself a scientist. I regularly read and criticise the research of others. I am engaged in a meaningful (I hope) line of research of my own. Modern science rests on the experiment -- an orderly attempt to create experiences that will allow me to confirm or refute a particular theory. When it was suggested that certian photographic filters would better photograph bruises, I took lots of photos, with and without the filter. Then I gave both sets to a colleague who didn't know which was which. Most of the difficulty in science is measurement. How do you measure "good" pictures in a way scientists can agree upon. As a scientist I insist upon objective measures that anyone can see and repeat. in developing faith Alma invites me to a uniquely different experiment. I still have to set up the right conditions by reading, prarying, and "planting the seed." But the observation, the result of the experiment, is so uniquely personal that I could never measure it, document it, or even prove to another person that it exists at all! It seems to be our Father's will that life's most important knowledge be discovered anew by each of his children. He invites us to prepare for divine communication with him. Despite my inability to measure or demonstrate it, the familar voice of my Heavenly Father is the most real thing I have ever experienced. I cannot prove that I felt the voice. If you want to know, as I do, then try the experiment yourself! Show more Show less

Why do Mormons perform proxy baptisms in their temples?

We do baptims for the dead because we love them! Jesus Christ is the God over the enitre earth, and everyone who has ever lived upon it. Once we understand the wonderful gift he gave us in his atonement and resurection, oru first impulse is to share it. Sharing the love of Christ takes many forms. I raise my children in a home where they are loved and valued as a reflection of the love that Christ shows me. I served a full time mission, and seek opportunities to share my faith with people who have never heard it. I serve in the church for the same reason, to share the love of Christ with the already converted. Eventually our minds must turn to the huge majority of humantiy who lived and died never hearing the name of Christ, or never meeting someone with the authority to baptize. Becuase Christ declare that "... a man must be born of water and of the spirit..." one could conclude that a vast majority of our Father's children will never receive the joy I do through the Gospel of Christ. Modern revelation gives us a better answer. God's faithful servants, who have since died, continue their ministry -- preaching to those who never had the opportunity to receive Christ in this life. In temples on earth we perform baptisms on behalf of those who may have accepted it on the other side. By performing baptisms for the dead, Christ allows me to join him in providing for the happiness of all our father's children. Show more Show less

What do Mormons believe about the Bible? Do they regard it as Holy Scripture and the word of God?

We beleive the bible to be the word of God, as far as it is translated correctly. We read the bible regularly and value its message. We honor those brave individuals, not of our faith, who preserved for the world the eyewitness accounts of the ministry of the savior, the writings of the apostles, and the voluminous sacred writings of ancient Israel. Unfortunately, the Bible has taken a long journey to get to us, and is slightly worse for the wear. Nephi, a prophet in the Book of Mormon, tells us that "many of the plain and precious things" have been removed from the biblical text. Some of these errors were simple mistakes in transcription, others were malicious. Because of this, we read and value the Bible in the light of modern revelation. We read the bible; we cherish it. We read it alog side the Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants, and the Perl of Great Price, modern revelations on the same topics. Together they give us a fuller understaning of our Father and the mission of Jesus Christ. Show more Show less