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Hi I'm William

I grew up in a small town in Utah. I'm a student at Wake Forest Medical School. I believe in Jesus Christ, and I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I am the oldest in a family of 9 children. I enjoy reading, hiking, biking, art, basketball, volleyball, tennis, and riding horses. From 2007 to 2009 I served as a missionary for the LDS church in Russia. I speak Russian and a little Spanish. I have been married to my beautiful, smart, and talented wife, Hannah, since December of 2010. We both graduated from Brigham Young University in 2012, and I am currently attending Wake Forest School of Medicine in Winston Salem, NC. We love living in the Southeast, and we love meeting new people wherever we go. The gospel of Jesus Christ is a big part of my life, and it influences everything I do.

Why I am a Mormon

I was raised a member of this church. My parents and my grandparents are all members, and they strive to live by the teachings of Jesus Christ and His living prophets. Growing up I always went to church because that is what we did on Sundays. I understood the things we learned about and always felt that they were good. When I was about 15 years old, my parents asked me why I went to church, and if I believed the church to be true. I told them I wasn't sure, but that I liked going to church, maybe if only to be with my good friends who also attended weekly. My parents told me that I should pray and study the scriptures to find out if the church really is true or not. I studied the Book of Mormon daily and prayed morning and night for a witness that Joseph Smith was a prophet, that the Book of Mormon is the word of God, and that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is true. I did recieve that witness. I didn't see a vision or hear any divine voice telling me that these things are true, but I did feel an unmistakable witness from the Holy Spirit that they are true. The scriptures speak of people being pricked in the heart, pierced to the very soul by the Spirit of the Lord, and it is through that Spirit that I know that the Church and Gospel of Jesus Christ are true. I have felt the influence of that same spirit testify to me on occasion of the truthfulness of gospel principles, guiding me on my path from day to day. I may not have seen Christ during his day, but I know that He lives and that He suffered pain and death that all men might recieve forgiveness of sins and be resurrected. I did not see Joseph Smith's vision of the Father and the Son, or watch him translate the Book of Mormon, yet I know that he was a prophet of God and that the Book of Mormon is divine scripture. I know through study and through faithful obedience that by following the gospel of Jesus Christ as contained in the Bible and the Book of Mormon, all men can draw closer to God and prepare to return to His presence. These things don't play a passive or a simple role in my life. They have been the defining and the shaping elements in my life. They have helped me to overcome my weaknesses and mistakes and brought me closer to my Heavenly Father. I have seen time and time again the love of God and His power intervening in my life to bless me and my family.

How I live my faith

I try to live my faith from day to day by constantly seeking to serve others and to live more like Christ. It is a process of growth and improvement that helps me draw closer to Him. I participate in my church by visiting certain members of my ward on a monthly basis to share a spiritual message and to serve them in any way that I can. I also have the opportunity every once in a while to teach a lesson or give a talk on gospel topics during our church meetings. These lessons help me to study in depth and learn more about a given topic and to learn from participating members of the class.

Does The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints endorse political parties?

William
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day saints does not endorse any political party. To illustrate, my father is a democrat and my mother is a republican, and both of them are active members of the church. More than anything, the Mormon church endorses true principles. We believe that principles such as honesty, morality, integrity of character, kindness, charity, love, faith, and hope should shape the political decisions of individuals. Actions should be guided by true principles, and party alliances are left to personal opinion. Show more Show less

Do Mormons worship Joseph Smith?

William
Mormons do not worship joseph Smith. We believe him to be a Prophet of God, like Moses or Isaiah. We believe that he was called of God to restore the fullness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the earth, including the organization of Christ's church. We honor Joseph Smith for his loyalty to God and to His Son Jesus Christ, whom we worship. Joseph Smith didicated his life to bringing the gospel to the earth. Because of his teachings he was ridiculed and persecuted, and eventually he was killed for professing to be a prophet. The teachings that Joseph Smith restored have been a blessing in my life, as well as that of my family and many of my friends. For that reason we remember and honor Joseph Smith, but we do not worship him. Rather we follow his example of worshiping God the Father and His son Jesus Christ. Show more Show less

What is a ward/stake/branch?

William
A ward is a congregation, or a group of people that meets together on a weekly basis to worship and to study the gospel. Members of a ward support and serve each other and help each other to grow and draw closer to Christ. A ward is presided over by a Bishop and his counselors. Members of wards are given callings to teach or to serve or to organize ward activities and functions. Such callings are meant to strengthen and support the families and individuals in a ward. A stake is composed of several wards and is presided over by the Stake President and his counselors. Stakes meet together less frequently than wards, but have similar callings and purposes, to strengthen and support the members of the church though the organization of the priesthood. The priesthood is the authority to act in God's name to the blessing of the lives of His children. Branches are similar to wards, except that they are presided over by a branch president instead of a bishop. Show more Show less

What is the Law of Chastity?

William
The Law of Chastity is an important law of the gospel. We are all children of a Heavenly Father who loves us. He has given us our bodies that we might have enjoyable and fulfilling lives. We believe that our bodies are the temple of our spirit, and that we should treat them as sacred gifts from our Heavenly Father. We believe that immorality is damaging to our bodies and to our spirits. We also believe that infidelity during marriage or immorality before marriage degrades and destroys the family. For that reason we abstain from sexual relations of any kind before marriage. We also strictly avoid any form of pornography. By doing so we show our respect for God's children and the value he places on them. Show more Show less

What are Mormon Temples used for?

William
We believe that God loves all His children, and that He wants us to return to His presence after this life. We also believe that there are certain ordinances that we must perform in this life in order to do so (ie. Baptism, Laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost. - St John 3:5, Acts 8:14-21). In these and other ordinances, we promise to keep God's commandments and to be witnesses of Him, and He in turn promises blessings, the greatest of which being Eternal life in His presence. In the temple, we perform ordinances for the living and for those who have died without a knowledge of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Our Heavenly Father has prepared the way for all His children to hear of and accept His Son, but those ordinances must be performed in this life. In the temple we are able to act as proxy for our ancestors to recieve their ordinances and the blessings of those ordinances. One of the highest ordinances of the temple is the sealing or the uniting of a family unit for all eternity. Worthy LDS couples are married and sealed in the temple, ensuring that their family unit will be together in this life and forever afterward. Show more Show less

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

William
I very strongly believe that husband and wife can be together forever with their families. The gospel of Jesus Christ is centered around families. The priesthood of God, or the authority to act in God's name, is given to men to bless the lives of their families, to support, protect, and provide for them. When Christ gave the priesthood to Peter, he said "whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven." We believe that the very same priesthood given to Peter has been restored in our day, and that family ties can truly be bound together in heaven. My parents were married in the temple by that authority, and I believe that our family will be together after this life, and that we will rejoice in all that has been given us by our Heavenly Father. Show more Show less