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Hi I'm todd

I'm a husband, dad, grandpa, rock n' roller, rascal, and I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I grew up in Southern California, just outside of Los Angeles. It was a great place to grow up. I've lived in California, Argentina, Utah, Idaho, Hawaii and Arizona. I currently live in Arizona, which I think is pretty ugly and unlivable in the summer. It's been a great place to raise a family. I work for a publisher in New York City. I have a terrific wife, 4 great kids (one is currently serving as a Mormon missionary in New York City), and I have a gorgeous 3 year old granddaughter who's full of life. My wife is really cool, and she tolerates my immature behavior well. She's my best friend. I like a good nap but I rarely get one. My favorite place in the world is the beach (especially beaches with waves for body surfing), but I have hiked the Eastern Sierra of California pretty regularly since I was a young boy. My family and I go and backpack there each summer. There's almost something spiritual about being on an unspoiled lake surrounded by 13000 ft peaks. I love to laugh. Comedy keeps life sweet. I also love music...everything from classical (especially Philip Glass) to the Pixies and the Ramones (have you ever heard Granddaddy? Oh man). And anyone who knows me will tell you that I love good food. Roasted corn on the cob in the summer with a little Cholula hot sauce, butter, and salt is the bomb! I wish I could grow a beard (I only have to shave once a week). I wear big ugly watches and stupid t-shirts that I think are clever, but in reality aren't.

Why I am a Mormon

I grew up Mormon in California, but I had very smart parents who understood the adage that "if you love something, set it free." One of the fundamental teachings of our faith is that we have free agency or the ability to choose for ourselves. As a young and rebellious kid, I went in search of my own religious answers. I found truth and meaning in every religion I explored, but I ultimately came back to the Church of Jesus Christ (Mormons) with my own personal convictions. I found all of the truth as I studied Christ's church, and I ultimately served a mission for our church in Argentina. My belief in and understanding of the Gospel of Jesus Christ hasn't prevented the pain, heartache and struggles that occur in life. But I have been able to apply the teachings of Christ and our church, and those tools help me get through difficult times. I'm very grateful for my knowledge that Christ leads and guides us today through a modern prophet of God. I have also been taught that I can solicit answers, comfort, and direction through prayer. That brings me strength. I'm grateful for our understanding of eternal families. I lost my dad a couple of years ago, and the knowledge that I'll see him again consoles me. The core teachings or our faith aren't wildly different from other Christian religions. They are centered on the teachings of Christ, but there is a fullness there that I didn't find elsewhere. But the story of how Christ's church was restored on the earth is indeed wild. Do I believe it? I believe very strongly that Christ restored His church through a young, uneducated, and inexperienced young man named Joseph Smith. If God's hand wasn't in the restoration of our church, there's no way it could have survived let alone thrived the way it has today.

How I live my faith

I wish I could say that I live my faith perfectly. I swear far too often. But I do try to do what is right for the most part. I am involved in missionary programs which provide me the opportunity to share my faith with those interested in learning about what we believe. I also love the chance I have every month to visit local members of my congregation in a program we call home teaching. During home teaching visits, my son and I get to share a message of encouragement. Sometimes it's advice from our church leaders encouraging us to be better families, fathers and husbands. Or perhaps it's a message about prayer. My son and I have grown close to those families we visit, and we care for them very much. I enjoy serving those that need help in our community, though I readily admit that I don't do it nearly enough. I'm also not always gung-ho and anxious to jump in and help. Life is very busy, and I can get sidetracked easily. But the feeling I get from serving (often alongside my own family) is rewarding, and it helps me to forget about myself and my own concerns and worries. It also usually helps me to be very grateful for my circumstances...that's easy to forget from time to time. I'm very blessed. My faith has made my life better in every imaginable way. I'm deeply grateful for all of the blessings that are mine.

What is being a Mormon like?

todd
What is being a Mormon like? That's an interesting question, so I'll give it a shot. I think many people believe that our faith prohibits us from doing certain things...avoiding alcohol, and tobacco for instance. Abstaining from sexual relations until we're married. It doesn't really prohibit us. I see that not just as something that prevents me from engaging in certain activities, but as a code of conduct of our faith that protects me from both physical, emotional and spiritual pain. I don't have to look far to see the pain of addiction around me, or the struggles associated with serious family issues. I have thought before, "well, one drink probably wouldn't hurt me." And you know what? It probably wouldn't. But I also know myself pretty well, and I recognize that I have an addictive personality. I'd rather steer clear of the temptation and not go down that potentially painful road. Another personal blessing due to my membership in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (Mormons) is the blessing of the Holy Ghost or the Holy Spirit. Through my membership in our church, I have the right to the comfort and companionship of the Holy Ghost. If I'm living properly, I am entitled to the Spirit to guide me and to comfort me in times of need. If I'm living the right way, I never feel truly alone, and that's a wonderful comfort to me personally. Show more Show less