By
Morning Joe
updated 5/1/2013 10:20:38 AM ET 2013-05-01T14:20:38

Romney opened up on his own religious ideas to the largely Mormon, 120 student-body, celebrating matrimony, missionaries, and making babies.

Failed Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney doled out words of wisdom on winning at a commencement address this weekend at Southern Virginia University: get married and make babies.

“You only live one life. Don’t spend it in safe, shallow water. Launch into the deep. If you meet a person you love, get married. Have a quiver-full of kids if you can,” he said. “Give more to your occupation than is expected of you. Serve God by serving his children.”

Having a “quiver” of children is praised in the Bible.

Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord,
the fruit of the womb a reward.
Like arrows in the hand of a warriors are the children of one’s youth.
Blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them

Modern quivers hold roughly five arrows, though older quivers are sized to hold as many as 15 arrows.

On the campaign trail, Romney was well-known for his folksy speech. In June of last year, he spun a tale of a strapping young man. “I, figured he had to be in sport, but he wasn’t in sport,” Romney said, to much media guffawing.

Romney opened up on his own religious ideas to the largely Mormon, 120 student-body at Southern Virginia, celebrating mission years and public service.

“Mission years are the best years, because they are the hardest years,” Romney said. “They are living life to the fullest, beyond oneself, beyond comfort. Serving God takes us into the deep waters of life.”

The former Massachusetts governor and co-founder of Bain Capital also advised graduates not to worry about getting rich, or working too hard.

“I don’t think God cares whether you get rich…life on this Earth is about learning to live and work in a place where God does not make everything work out for good people,” he said. “The best advice I know is to give those worldly things your best but never your all.”

With an eye to modernity, Romney also joked that the American dream was no longer about home ownership, it was the dream of getting your kids out of the home you own.

Romney was given an honorary doctorate by the school. It is only his second public address since losing the 2012 election.

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