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David C. Dollahite

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  • Receiving the Eternal September 28, 2016
  • David C. Dollahite, born December 17, 1958, in Greenbrae, California, was first introduced to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints by a book when he was nineteen years old. It was a copy of the Book of Mormon, which one of his mother’s coworkers had given her. It now sat on his living room bookshelf. He felt compelled to read it, and in doing so had such a remarkable experience that he was intensely eager to learn more about it and to share it. In his first meeting with missionaries, he agreed to be baptized and asked if he, too, could serve as a missionary. He recalls the conversation that followed:

    “We are thrilled that you want to be baptized, but you will need to wait a year before you become a missionary.”

    “I don’t want to wait a year; I want to go right now!”

    “Well, you need time to learn the gospel and prepare to enter the temple before your mission.”

    “Okay. What should I do to prepare to be a missionary?”

    “You should go to BYU and take religion classes.”

    “Okay. What is BYU?”

    “It is a Mormon university in Utah.”

    “Okay. Where is Utah?”

    “In the Rocky Mountains.”

    “Okay. Where are the Rocky Mountains…?”

    Even then, with hardly any knowledge of the Church or Brigham Young University, his eagerness to serve the Lord was evident. David Dollahite did indeed join the Church and enroll at BYU. Early on in his education, he left to serve a mission in the Boston, Massachusetts area. When he returned, he earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees, then his PhD at the University of Minnesota.

    Dollahite taught for four years at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro before he joined the BYU faculty in 1993. He has also been a visiting scholar at the Dominican University of California, the University of Massachusetts Amherst, Stanford University, and Maharaja Sayajirao University in Baroda, India. He is a professor of family life, specializing in the effects of religion on the family and healthy marriage and family practices, especially those related to fatherhood. He is a co-director of the American Families of Faith Project, which has interviewed 200 Christian, Jewish, and Muslim families, resulting in nearly 40 scholarly articles and book chapters. In addition to those findings, and to the five books he has edited and the many articles he has authored, he has also written two less commonly known LDS hymns, “May Thy Face of Shining Splendor” and “As Families in the Latter Days,” both of which were performed in the LDS Music Festival in the Assembly Hall on Temple Square.

    A family life coach, David Dollahite helps men become better husbands and fathers and helps couples strengthen their marriages. His own family, formed  in 1983 when he married Mary Kimball, includes seven children and a few grandchildren. Dr. Dollahite has also served as the bishop of a BYU ward.

     

    David C. Dollahite, born December 17, 1958, in Greenbrae, California, was first introduced to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints by a book when he was nineteen years old. It was a copy of the Book of Mormon, which one of his mother’s coworkers had given her. It now sat on his living room bookshelf. He felt compelled to read it, and in doing so had such a remarkable experience that he was intensely eager to learn more about it and to share it. In his first meeting with missionaries, he agreed to be baptized and asked if he, too, could serve as a missionary. He recalls the conversation that followed:

    “We are thrilled that you want to be baptized, but you will need to wait a year before you become a missionary.”

    “I don’t want to wait a year; I want to go right now!”

    “Well, you need time to learn the gospel and prepare to enter the temple before your mission.”

    “Okay. What should I do to prepare to be a missionary?”

    “You should go to BYU and take religion classes.”

    “Okay. What is BYU?”

    “It is a Mormon university in Utah.”

    “Okay. Where is Utah?”

    “In the Rocky Mountains.”

    “Okay. Where are the Rocky Mountains…?”

    Even then, with hardly any knowledge of the Church or Brigham Young University, his eagerness to serve the Lord was evident. David Dollahite did indeed join the Church and enroll at BYU. Early on in his education, he left to serve a mission in the Boston, Massachusetts area. When he returned, he earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees, then his PhD at the University of Minnesota.

    Dollahite taught for four years at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro before he joined the BYU faculty in 1993. He has also been a visiting scholar at the Dominican University of California, the University of Massachusetts Amherst, Stanford University, and Maharaja Sayajirao University in Baroda, India. He is a professor of family life, specializing in the effects of religion on the family and healthy marriage and family practices, especially those related to fatherhood. He is a co-director of the American Families of Faith Project, which has interviewed 200 Christian, Jewish, and Muslim families, resulting in nearly 40 scholarly articles and book chapters. In addition to those findings, and to the five books he has edited and the many articles he has authored, he has also written two less commonly known LDS hymns, “May Thy Face of Shining Splendor” and “As Families in the Latter Days,” both of which were performed in the LDS Music Festival in the Assembly Hall on Temple Square.

    A family life coach, David Dollahite helps men become better husbands and fathers and helps couples strengthen their marriages. His own family, formed  in 1983 when he married Mary Kimball, includes seven children and a few grandchildren. Dr. Dollahite has also served as the bishop of a BYU ward.