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Hi I'm Steve

I'm a Latter-day Saint - a Mormon. I grew up in another faith, but joined the Church when I was in college.

About Me

I'm a forty-something professional with a wonderful wife and five children. My interests include hunting and shooting, history, and amateur theater. I live in the north central US, where we have hot, humid summers and cold, snowy winters. Autumn is beautiful! I sing all the time and enjoy almost any kind of music. I read a lot and always have a book with me. I like to read history, fantasy and science fiction, crime fiction, and just about anything else. We do a lot with our very busy children. I've been in plays with them at our local community theatre, I have coached them in shooting sports, and we go camping together. My two oldest sons have each served two-year missions, where they could share what they love about the Church with others. One went to Brazil, the other to Boston. Before my wife and I were married, we were both missionaries - she in Bolivia, and I in Italy. We're glad that our older sons have served, and we hope that our other children will prayerfully consider missions as well. Professionally, I work in financial planning, helping people define their goals and make their money work for them. It's rewarding work, and in times of recession it can be difficult. But it is worthwhile to see people make decisions and move ahead. I've been happily married for almost 25 years. We believe that our marriage has the potential to last forever, not just until "death do us part," and we try to live worthy of that great blessing. She inspires me to be a better person.

Why I am a Mormon

I grew up in another church, but left it as a teenager. I just didn't feel as if God were really present there. I knew many good people who tried hard to live well, but the church itself seemed kind of empty. I used to say things like, "When I find a church like the one in the New Testament, I'll join it." I encountered the Latter-day Saints in college. I was a little shocked by Joseph Smith's claim to have seen God and to have been authorized by Him to restore the true Church - but I knew that if it were true, this was just what I had been looking for. I read a lot of books and studied, and I also prayed a lot - more than I ever had before. Most importantly, I became willing to totally change my life if Heavenly Father wanted me to. I received an undeniable witness from the Holy Spirit of the truth and importance of the Church, and I was baptized. I've been a member of the Church since 1986, served a full-time mission, and have done my best to remain faithful ever since. I have never been able to deny the testimony I received. I still know with all of my heart that this is the Lord's work and His Church, and He leads it through a prophet today. There is no knowledge more important to me or to my family than this.

How I live my faith

I attend my Sunday church meetings regularly, and I make sure my family comes to church so that we can learn and worship together. At church, I teach a Sunday School class for people who are newly baptized or who are investigating the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. It covers basic principles of our beliefs about God, our Heavenly Father, His Son, our Saviour, Jesus Christ, and church history and organization. I also enjoy socializing with the other Latter-day Saints in my congregation. We have a great local ward and we have a lot of fun together. We organize activities for adults, couples, and families. My days of being a full-time missionary are over, but I can still quietly tell people about my faith by honestly and openly answering their questions when they come up. Questions like "Why don't you drink alcohol at social events?" and "How come you don't have coffee in the morning?" give me an opportunity to explain some basic beliefs and practices of the Church. I enjoy hearing about others' beliefs and comparing them to mine. I find that both I and my friends come away from those talks with increased respect and understanding for each other. We help each other out a lot in the church. We all get used to it, I think, and I forget how extraordinary it is until I speak about it with others at work or elsewhere. They always seem amazed at the way we all pitch in to help each other and our neighbors out. This past summer, we had a severe storm in our area that left many of us without electricity and also knocked many trees down. My ward local congregation went into action. We delivered generators from families who had them and had power to those who had no power, to save the contents of their freezers and refrigerators. We went to the homes of those with downed trees and cut those trees up, clearing the roads, driveways, and yards not only of our members but of their neighbors as well. I spent a few hours swinging a chain saw in a friend's yard, and I know that if it's my tree next time the storm comes, he and others will be over in my yard. My non-Mormon friends tell me that people at their churches don't do that. Maybe it's just because no one ever asks. Ultimately, for me, living my faith is more than just social activities and helping others. It is my personal conviction of the truth of the church and its mission, of the reality of a loving and personal God who has a plan for me and cares about my earthly and eternal existence, and my desire to live a life that reflects my heritage as a son of God. I'm not perfect by any means, but I'm getting better every day as I remember who I am and why Heavenly Father has put me here on Earth. 

Can a husband and wife be together forever? Do Mormons believe that families will live together in heaven?

Steve
That's one of the greatest promises our Heavenly Father makes to us. My wife, Lynn, and I firmly believe that all of the effort and love which we have put into our marriage here on Earth will last into eternity. That bond between us is the most important connection we have here, and it simply makes no sense that we would be forced to give it up in heaven. We believe that, as the Bible teaches, "neither is the man without the woman, neither the woman without the man, in the Lord" (1 Cor 11:11). Show more Show less

Are Mormons Christians?

Steve
Mormons believe that Jesus Christ, born of the virgin Mary in Bethlehem, is the long-awaited Messiah of the Jews, the Son of God and the Savior of the World, and that "no man cometh unto the Father but by [Him]" (John 14:6). By any reasonable standard, Mormons are Christians in all of the fullest senses of the word. We depend on him for our salvation. We pray to the Father in his name. We recognize him as the Son of God and as God. There are some very subtle theological differences in "traditional" mainstream Christian views of Christ (most of which originated in councils held hundreds of years after the Savior's resurrection) and the LDS views, but I've found that most non-Mormon Christians and I have pretty much the same opinion of Jesus when we compare ideas. Show more Show less

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

Steve
 Yes, we do. We study it and use it in all that we do. In fact, we study it from cover to cover every four years in Sunday School. We greatly respect and cherish it, follow its teachings, and use it to learn about the Savior, Jesus Christ. Latter-day Saints recognize the Bible as a collection of the writings of prophets - inspired men with whom God communicated with and to whom He explained His Gospel. We also recognize that there were many more sacred writings that have been lost over the centuries, and that the writings in the Bible have been copied and re-copied, translated and re-translated, many times since those prophets first had their conversations with Heavenly Father. Thus, we don't believe that the Bible is necessarily complete, nor that it is perfect. If that were true, there wouldn't be so many different churches all claiming to have the right interpretation of the Bible. That's why we say, "We believe the Bible to be the Word of God as far as it is translated correctly." Show more Show less