What Is a Church Community?

The video player could not be built.

Do you want to chat with a missionary?

We are happy to answer any questions you may have. Start a chat or call us at 1-888-537-6600.

Hi I'm Koko

I'm a lawyer, a former U.S. Marine and a swimmer. I'm a Mormon.

About Me

The first thing that most people ask me "Is that your real name?" Well, the answer is -- yes! Of course there is a story behind it as there is with most of us. As you can see from my photo, I am not a 400 pound, Samoan rugby player from Hawaii -- just a gringo from Arizona married for almost 30 years to my Florida girl sweetheart who I met in college. She won the coin toss of course as to where we would live and so we have raised our family here in the Sunshine State. As you might expect, we love to do all things outdoors -- especially activities that involve water (after all, we are surrounded!).

Why I am a Mormon

By learning about my heritage and my ancestors, I discovered that I am a seventh generation member of the Church dating back to the days when my ancestors played with the Prophet Joseph Smith's children in Nauvoo, Illinois in the late 1830's. Their accounts and journal entries left behind for their posterity including me shared the struggles they faced and the trials and tribulations they experienced as they crossed the plains and settled the Rocky Mountain West. Their experiences have given me a greater appreciation for their faith and a desire to carry on in my own life and enjoy the "shade of the trees of faith they planted for me." I continue to be a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints because of the personal witness I received of its truth and the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon which I read and re-read for the first time as a foreign exchange student to Paraguay, SA during one summer in high school. That witness removed any doubt from my heart and mind and helped me establish the course of my life that I have followed for this past half century.

How I live my faith

Like many members of the Church, I too served as a full time missionary after my freshman year in college. I was called to serve the people of Ecuador and developed a great love for them. I have continued to give voluntary service in the Church from helping to clean up after hurricanes to helping members research their ancestors. I have been given an opportunity to teach youth and adults as a Sunday school teacher and as a member of the Stake Presidency (a leadership assignment to preside over several congregations). My favorite teaching assignment was when I taught the high school age youth at early morning seminary (6am before the high school day began). Their dedication and desire to study the scriptures rather than get that extra hour of sleep inspired me to do the same. I still rise early each morning to study the scriptures and start each day with personal prayer. It has helped me to develop a personal relationship with my Savior Jesus Christ and my Father in Heaven.

How are the activities of the Mormon missionaries funded?

The Lord's law of finance is referred to as the Law of Tithing which is the one tenth of our increase (our interest or income) that we give back to the Lord. It is a beautiful and simple law that is summarized in 23 words in the scriptures. Compare that to the thousands of pages of the U.S. tax code which seeks fairness! The law of Tithing is fair and requires us to develop and exercise faith whether we give the widow's mite or the millionaire's millions as a tithe. Tithing you see requires faith, not means. Tithing and a generous fast offering -- used to help the poor and those in need -- is the way that every member of the Church can help fund the activities, temple construction, and supplement missionary work that individual missionaries and their families pay for themselves. Show more Show less