About Moroni's Latter-Day Saint Page
Why I Do This Website
For nearly 2 decades, Moroni’s Latter-Day Saint Page has been the primary medium I’ve used to share my beliefs, opinions, perspectives and testimony of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, aka The LDS Church or The Mormon Church.
Back in 1996, while attending Weber State University, I was introduced to the Internet, Netscape, Telnet and online Talkers like "The Playground", "The City" and "The Resort". I met a lot of great people on these chat lines that used net handles, like Enlil, Farmer, Gecko, Sooosie, Mystic, SuzyQ, Unicorn, Mordaunt, SillieMae, Jellicle, Astyanax, and Jollybob. I chose to use the handle Moroni, after the last prophet from the Book of Mormon/the angel that directed Joseph Smith to the golden plates. I figured it would be a good way to meet other Mormons online, and to spark conversations. I was right. I met Mormons, prospective Mormons, recent converts, and people that wanted to correct my evil, misguided, sinister, horn-headed Mormon ways. All made for interesting conversation.
Since this type of original online social media predated profile pictures, or pretty much any picture that wasn’t made with ASCII symbols, some of us started using free webhosting sites, like Geocities, to put together personal webpages. These sites had low resolution photos and general "about me" information; such as family information and interests in music, education, careers, books, movies, and religion. I didn't know anything about website design (still don't really) so some of my tech-saavy friends taught me some basic html code so I could at least do text, graphics and links. I had small children at the time so many articles were written with a child on my lap pounding on the keyboard.
For my Geocities site, I include my family and school information and a little bit of info about the church. I included The Articles of Faith and a couple of pictures of Jesus and some temples. I also posted a couple of links to other LDS Pages. This was still the early days of the Net, when people were still confusing AOL for the actual Internet and there were not very many LDS friendly sites. There were some like Jeff Lindsey’s page, The New Jerusalem, LDS Gems, The Internet First Ward, and a collection of other pro-LDS sites on the PEARLS Directory. Even the Church’s official LDS.org site was still in its infancy.
Through 1997, I was having a lot of online conversations with people about The LDS Church. From our discussions/debates I’d get ideas for articles for the LDS portion of my web page. Some email conversations got turned into posted articles. Sometimes I’d get inspiration from something we talked about. Or an idea would pop in my head of something I thought was interesting so I’d turn it into a feature. For example, I’d keep looking up the same Bible references over and over to answer the same questions over and over peoples’ questions/accusations so I made myself a Bible verse cheat sheet. That cheat sheet became the "Bible References to LDS Beliefs" page.
Eventually the couple of pages turned into a couple of dozen pages, including the Bible References page, the online temple tour, and Trivial Mormon Trivia. The LDS Info page was using up all my free memory space. (Remember the days of limited memory?) So I decided to make it a standalone website. So I got another free account, this time at Tripod, and "Moroni’s Latter-day Saint Page" was born. Since I was "that angel guy" to my non-Mormon friends on the Talkers I used Moroni10 for the site ID, in reference to Moroni 10:14 "And again, to another, the beholding of angels and ministering spirits".
Tripod was handy because it was free, but it had some major drawbacks for the same reason. Free hosting websites don’t rank well in major search engines so the website was barely getting any visitors, maybe a couple of hundred visitors a year. And Tripod had a crazy amount of pop-up ads and on-page ads that I had no control of. It was a complete nuisance seeing inappropriate or brazenly anti-Mormon ads taking up space on my brazenly pro-Mormon website.
By the early 2000’s the Talkers were gone, I was no longer Moroni, and I didn’t do much with my website. It’s not easy to find time to work on sites when you’re still in school, working 2 jobs and rearing six young kids.
In 2006, I got a job that taught me a lot about search engine optimization. I told one of my coworkers about "Moroni’s Latter-Day Saint Page" and the issues I was having with Tripod. He had a web hosting account and offered to move the website there. So he secured the URL Moroni10.com for me and we loaded up the web-truck and we moved to Beverly. Well, not quite, but compared to Tripod the hosting I have now is The Ritz. And it has just enough unobtrusive ads to help cover the cost to host the site.
Having a proper URL, and using the SEO methods I learned, I began actively adding more content that I hoped people would find informative and inspiring. Though I hadn’t been Moroni in years, I still kept the website name for both nostalgia and because it’s a cool name for an LDS friendly site. I never served a mission so I joke this website is my penance for that. Since it’s re-launch in 2006, Moroni10.com has had a few major makeovers, including the most recent one in 2015, and has grown from a couple of dozen pages and a few visitors to over 350 pages and between 8 to 10,000 visitors per month from 150 countries.
Thank you very much for taking some time to visit my website. Whether you love it or hate it, share it or bash it, draw faith from it or mock it, I appreciate your willingness to read, see and consider what contributes to my testimony of Jesus Christ, The Son of God, and what I believe is His Church on the Earth in this day.
May God bless you and your family.
Kelly Bingham is a before lifetime member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He holds a Bachelor's in Communications with a minor in Sociology from Weber State University, in Ogden, Utah. He has written for local newspapers, online marketing agencies and private companies. Kelly's interests include history, theology, movies and he is a big 80's alternative music fan. Kelly was born in 1974, and has been married to his wife, Tanya, since 1992, and is the proud dad of six children.