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Hi I'm Richard

I'm a retired Police Chief, a father and grandfather; and I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I was born in 1962 in Georgetown, Guyana and moved to the UK whilst a baby and was one of five children. I was brought up in the County of Buckinghamshire, England and had a happy childhood. My mother was a traditional housewife and brought us all up in a loving and Christian environment. My father worked as a Police Detective and was my hero. Once all of us were attending school my mother qualified as a teacher. In 1980 I joined the police and during my career I received nine Commendations for bravery and outstanding police work. My work also took me to America, Canada and Europe where I lectured extensively on restorative justice and neighbourhood policing. My work operationally led me to specialise in Tactical Firearms (SWAT) and I worked within that specialisation for many years. I eventually became a Tactical Firearms Commander responsible for the management of pre-planned and spontaneous firearms incidents. In general policing I was promoted to a senior leader and became the Local Police Area Commander for the town of Aylesbury in 2007. However, my greatest achievement was to marry my wife Gill in 1984 and having two wonderful daughters. My girls are both married now and I have two wonderful grandsons; my family is my life!

Why I am a Mormon

As a young single man I lived a very hedonistic lifestyle. I had a great job in the police and I was part of a group of single friends who liked to party a lot. I worked hard and played hard. When I hit my twenties I became uncomfortable with my lifestyle and realised that there was something missing. I suspected it was religion so I returned to my Catholic roots and, although I loved the people, to my surprise I did not feel that this church was the direction I should go. So I then tried another church, and worshiped with an evangelical congregation, and felt exactly the same. I then met a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and through her met the Missionaries. As soon as they opened their mouths I instantly recognised that this was it! This was what I was looking for … I felt it and I knew that what they were telling me was true. Interestingly enough when it came to baptism, and a massive change of lifestyle, I never felt compelled or pressured. I carefully thought through what I had gone through and felt that I had been led to this Church for some reason; and I decided to find out what that reason was. I’m so glad I chose to be baptised and I can trace back all my subsequent happiness to the decision I made in 1983.

How I live my faith

I have enjoyed my membership in the Church and have served in many leadership and teaching positions, including as a Bishop. I love to live my faith and have involved myself in many community groups and voluntary service. This includes work as a respite carer to a disabled boy, mediation for people involved in disputes and picking-up litter in my neighbourhood; which I really enjoy! I am always on the look-out for opportunities to serve others and in 2010 launched a ‘Ten-a-Day’ Blog which encourages people to do ten random acts of kindness everyday.

What is The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints' attitude regarding homosexuality and same sex marriage?

Richard
We are all sons and daughters of a wise and merciful God. He loves homosexuals and heterosexuals equally; He does not have favourites. But this does not mean he is always happy with the decisions we make in life. God wants all his children to be happy so has given us a number of commandments to live by and has told us if we live these commandments we will find joy. He knows that some commandments will be difficult for us to follow, but ultimately, if we persevere, we will gain an understanding of why the commandment is necessary and how it can bless our lives. God’s moral laws concentrate on marriage between men and women and then the intimate physical relationship that follows. He wants that intimate and physical relationship to be special and therefore has set us boundaries. Any intimate and physical relationship outside of marriage, including same gender relationships, will not lead to true happiness. God fully understands the powerful nature of sexual desires, but expects us to harness this desire and keep it within the bounds He has set. If we are not blessed to meet a suitable partner in this life, or if our attraction is with someone of the same gender, God would prefer us to remain celibate. He can more easily bless us in these circumstances and allow us to have a satisfied and fulfilling life without sexual intimacy. Ultimately it is for the individual to choose, but true happiness can only be achieved through obedience. Show more Show less