Hello, my name is Rodrigo Moya Gonzalez and my story begins almost 51 years ago in a place in Chile known as Valparaiso.
I was born in a very difficult time for my country. There were many political and social changes happening. These changes made a profound division in our society.
My father worked as a truck driver for a tobacco company for a short period of after he got enlisted in the Navy and my mother after being forced to reject some scholarships to study singing in Europe, decided to become a music teacher. These are, I think, the reasons why I like machines and I enjoy music in its most varied styles.
My childhood was normal and full of discoveries. I am passionate about nature and knowing how things work around me.
My family was strictly Catholic. We went to mass every Sunday and participated in church activities. At seven years of age my younger brother and I were assigned to ring the bells to announce Sunday mass. I really enjoyed ringing those huge brass bells.
When I fulfilled my first communion in the Church (8 years old), the assigned priest gave me a bible as a present for my birthday. I was very happy to have a book in which I could learn more about God and his commandments. This was when my search for the truth began in a very subtle way. I read the Bible, and many questions began to fill up my little mind. These questions were never answered. I was always told that they were "the mysteries of God."
My younger years were loaded with new experiences. I was always close to spiritual things.
Once I made the decision to leave the Catholic Church, I began a search for something that would give me answers to my questions and concerns. I toured many religious denominations, but couldn't find what I was looking for.
At the age of twenty-one I was visiting my grandfather in Valparaiso. At this time, I saw two young Americans coming out of a house and taking notes on a yellow card. Going back a bit to the beginning of my story, I said that my country had political difficulties. The United States economically and strategically supported the Chilean military forces to carry out a coup in 1973. With this background, it was popularly known that the MORMONS were spies for the CIA and we learned that we should be really careful with them. Well, seeing these two young Mormons filled my soul with a patriotic spirit, and I decided to approach them asking for explanations about what they were doing in my country.
They introduced themselves as missionaries of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and said they had a message for me. Obviously, I did not believe them at first but I asked for more information about what they were doing. Well, the story becomes obvious. I was baptized a few months later, and my family followed the same steps.
At 23, I served a full-time mission. During the mission period, my mother passed away due to a very advanced cancer. This caused the inactivity of the rest of the family, three brothers and my father.
When I returned from the mission, I took care of myself. I started looking for a job and being able to become independent from the family bond. My brothers made my life a little bit more complicated than normal.
At this time I met Joanna, who was my wife for twenty years. We were sealed in the Santiago temple and we started to live a family life. Over time, I began to occupy some leadership positions in the Church. At the age of 31, I was called to be Bishop of the Javiera Carrera Ward, which I accepted but not with much enthusiasm.
In that same year, Elder Jeffrey R. Holland went to serve as president of the Chile area and by chance my wife was chosen to be one of the three secretaries who would attend the area presidency. Because of this, I had a closer relationship with this character, which spread over time. We continued our friendship here in the United States but we maintained a little contact. Many ups and downs and emotional conflicts caused the inevitable separation and later divorce. A few years before this event (2012), a friend pointed out the existence of the sealed part of the Book of Mormon. I did not give him much interest since I saw that my friend was already away from the Church. For some reason, I felt inside of my mind that I need to know more about it.
After my divorce (2017), I met a very special person, with very good feelings and great devotion to the Church. We got married and tried to do our best to make a home. At this point, I already knew about the existence of the Sealed Portion of the Book of Mormon. I had read it almost completely and felt a lot of contention within me. I never shared these things with anybody. I was afraid to be rejected or considered a person against the church. I looked for information related to Christopher Nemelka and that's how I got the videos posted on YouTube. After that, I got more books with which my understanding expanded much more.
I am grateful to all who have made it possible to obtain these truths. And I am very excited to become part of this work and contribute to eliminating poverty in this world. Thank you for giving me the space to share very briefly the story of my 51 years on Earth.
Rodrigo Moya Gonzalez