LGBTQ and You

LGBTQ and You August 24, 2018

I’ve got some controversial things to say, and I hope you’ll listen. It’s about the LGBTQ community, and how we are treating them.

 

We have a problem

 

We have a problem in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and the Christian community at large. More specifically we have a problem in the hearts of some of the people in the Church. We teach that we are all children of God, and that He loves us and wants us to succeed. In fact, in Matthew 22: 36-40 says:

 

36 Master, which is the great commandment in the law?

37 Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.

38 This is the first and great commandment.

39 And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.

40 On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.

 

The Lord is very clear about how much His children matter.  But it seems that some feel comfortable excluding the LGBTQ community from those doctrines.

 

I have a transgender nephew. He was born my niece but decided a couple years ago that he was not happy living as a woman anymore. Since I’ve tried to get to know his new reality I am shocked at the amount of prejudice he deals with every day. It’s not an easy life. He tells me that there is a lot of violence aimed at transgender people, and I worry for his safety.

 

Where does the Church stand?

 

I’ve been on LDS.org, digging to see what the Church really thinks about the LGBTQ community. And you’ll be stunned to see what I have found! Not ONCE have they ever said that those of the LGBTQ community are less worthy of God’s love, or less important in ANY way. In fact, it’s so the opposite! I’ve found articles from Church leaders sharing how important it is to show love for anyone who is LGBTQ.

 

The Church even publicly supported the LoveLoud Festival in Salt Lake City, helping to raise money for the LGBT community. Elder Ballard said about the event:

 

“The reason that the Church supported the Love Loud festival, here in Utah, was to send a strong message that LGBT youth or anyone else should never be mistreated and if any were troubled, they should seek help from friends, family members, and trained professionals.”

 

The Church also donated $25,000 to help fund suicide prevention efforts among LGBTQ youth. There is even an official Church web site called Mormon and Gay, highlighting how to be kind and supportive and loving from several different angles, using actual people’s experiences to serve as an example of how to be loving and supportive. And the Church is actively campaigning for equal LGBTQ rights.

 

The Church members need to change

 

What surprises and worries me about this discovery is that we have recently heard on the news that suicide rates among youth in Utah are 3X the national average. And many people point to the Church as the reason for that. But the church has done so many supportive and loving things, and continues to reach out in love. So, it must be the members, not the doctrine that is the issue. Obviously, people are not listening to the Church, because all the info is there. I found it, you can too.

 

So now that we know that God loves us- ALL OF US, what is our excuse for continuing to discriminate or shun others for their life choices? We CAN live the commandments AND love all God’s children!

 

The Defining challenge of this generation

 

How we treat those who are LGBTQ is the defining challenge of this generation. Too many pious people are using sexual orientation as an excuse for very unchristian behavior. The other day I was listening to my favorite Podcast (Better than Happy with Jody Moore) and she talked about Lovability.

 

Jody pointed out to all of us that we don’t have to be or do anything to be lovable. That our very existence by itself is reason enough to be loved. That is beautiful! Unfortunately, we often attach levels of accomplishment to ourselves or others that must be met before we consider them to be lovable. And isn’t that exactly what many people do with the LGBTQ community?

 

Stop the unkindness

 

I’m so grateful for my transgender nephew. Before his transition I never thought much about what it would be like for those close to my gay friends. I never thought about why some parents are so unkind when their child comes out. But now I think I get it. They are worried for their loved one, and for how life is going to be unkind to them. They want the best for them and feel they must change them or society (and life) will hurt them beyond measure.

 

But I have news for you, if that is what you’ve been thinking. You need to realize that you are a gift for your loved one. God put you in the same family to strengthen and support and love each other. And if you are being unkind because you are afraid of how unkind life will be…. isn’t that an oxymoron? Wouldn’t it be better to stand next to your loved one and support and shield them as much as you can? Becoming the source of pain is NOT the answer.

 

You can make a difference

 

If you are finding yourself in that unpleasant place, where you realize you aren’t being as loving as you need to be, I challenge you to change. NOW. Don’t wait. I said earlier that how we treat the LGBTQ community is the defining challenge of our generation, because we are being judged by how we treat them. We profess to follow Christ. But He loves them and wants them to succeed. So, we need to be sure we are really following His example.

 

I have shown you that both God and Church leaders love the LGBTQ community. Now it’s your turn to look inward. Evaluate your attitudes and behavior and seek to operate from a place of love. If suicide rates in Utah are high, your actions can make a direct impact and bring the numbers down. Reach out in support and love. Show compassion and kindness. You will make a difference.

 

This article was previously posted on Abby’s page at LDSblogs.com.

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What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • TinnyWhistler

    This is gonna ring hollow as long as The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (since y’all aren’t going by LDS anymore) finds “the gay” so bad that kids of gay parents aren’t allowed in. So far as I’ve heard, the rationale is that y’all don’t want to put kiddo in the place of having to see their parents as horribly sinful people, so better to just exclude the whole family. Y’all are fine with “the gay” in a libertarian sense but don’t want it touching your churches.
    How can your church claim to care for LGBTQ+ people when your doctrine is SO rooted in family but specifically prohibits gay/bi people from ever having that? Patting your favorite token LGBTQ+ person on the head and telling them you’ll love them always even though their choices are filthy sin or loneliness is always gonna ring hollow.

  • ClintonKing

    Yes, it is quite the quandary that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints puts LGBTQ+ in. Reminiscent of Job’s paradox, in my opinion.

  • jock1234

    Perhaps this may be helpful to know. The Church shuns no one from attending, and never will. But to join (be baptized) the church, one cannot be an adulterer or live a swinger lifestyle. This would preclude those with other sexual difference such as LGBTQ persons as well.
    I hope this helps, as that’s my only intent…

  • TinnyWhistler

    What would you say is the difference between being baptized or not in the CoJCoLDS? What does that practically mean for one’s faith, spirituality, eternal destination, standing with God, and reputation within church culture?

  • jock1234

    Baptism means MEMBERSHIP in the Church. A beginning step only. Acknowledgement that further future progression is desired and admonished. Because where more is given, more is expected.

    I once actually talked a friend of mine out of getting baptized at the time, and instead to wait a bit. The reason being, that he was only looking at the Church as a Medium to “in his mind” find the perfect spouse. The problem was he drank & smoked, and was an on and off carouser. If he were to have joined under the auspices of his pretensions to be otherwise, he would have been disingenuous. He openly told me he thought he could not and would not be able abide the Church’s law/commandments well, so I told him it would be better to ‘wait’, to really change his way and heart, and only then to join the Church and be baptized. So he has not yet joined the Church as of today. He took to heart the belief and thought that “where much is given, much is expected”, which is only part of the Church’s theology.

  • TinnyWhistler

    Ok, but what does that membership and beginning step mean, practically? What more is given?

    It sounds, from your friend’s motivations, that there’s at least a perception of increased social status?

  • jock1234

    Membership & Beginning step starts with Baptism… Practically, it mean Placing oneself on a Beginning pathway that leads one to live more and more day to day like Christ – period.

    With regard to your perception of increased social status? Undoubtedly, in any Church, there may always be a minor few who may look at spiritual things and derive “somehow” some esteemed social status. I get your point… But, for the majority of true believers, there actually is no such reality or equivalence to an increase in social status. Again, to be forthright with you, I understand what you are saying. But, I go to Church, to be edified, not to move up a social ladder. And, that is how (not all) most members in the Church feel. To feel otherwise, would be counter-intuitive to the entire religious cause of our Church.

    Social status, is something that largely speaking, I already know of my self worth, and so consequently care little about. It comes naturally, do to existing. And, we’re encouraged to look at everyone as equal. Again, life is not a utopia, and clearly there will always be the few who do not feel that way – I’m not naive, but most feel the way I’ve portrayed. Do you understand my point?

  • Kiwi57

    It’s not obvious to me that jumping on the “blame the Mormons” bandwagon is all that controversial.

    What proportion of suicide victims are transgender?

  • Kiwi57

    Membership in the Church means that we have entered into a covenant to bear one another’s burdens, and to stand as witnesses of God at all times and places. Oh yes, and to obey the commandments, too.

    All of them. Not just the currently fashionable ones.

  • Kiwi57

    TW: “This is gonna ring hollow as long as The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (since y’all aren’t going by LDS anymore) finds “the gay” so bad that kids of gay parents aren’t allowed in.”

    Except that that is not what is happening.

    It’s got nothing to do with “kids of gay parents.” That is outright anti-Mormon proganda, and is false. It’s about

    It’s about children being raised by adults who are in marital arrangements the Church does not recognise. At the moment, that includes same sex and polygamous marriages. Other such arrangements may be added in the future.

  • TinnyWhistler

    So….kids of gay parents can’t join so long as they are kids. A teen cannot join your church. Because their parents are gay and married. Would the kid be allowed to join if the parents were just living together but weren’t married?

  • TinnyWhistler

    So there’s no obligation to see a non-member as part of the community and help them? That mutual “bearing of one another’s burdens” sounds like a significant social advantage within your church culture that’s being withheld from children who may want to join the church but cannot because the kid’s parents are gay.

  • TinnyWhistler

    “Practically, it mean Placing oneself on a Beginning pathway that leads one to live more and more day to day like Christ – period.”
    And that’s withheld from non-members? Is it a specific program that’s restricted access, or just general faith support?

    If I’m understanding you, membership vs nonmembership should carry no perceived change in social status because you’re supposed to see everyone equally. The tricky thing about social constructions though is that if they’re perceived, they do exist on some level, as stupid as it may be. That’s why race still has actual meaning in society: because people think it does and treat other people as if it does.
    If there’s a perception of change in social status associated with membership, maybe part of treating people equally needs to be figuring out why and working specifically to erase those reasons.
    Your friend seemed to think he’d have an easier time finding a partner if he was a member. Why? Are people more likely to see a member as a potential partner? If so, that’s an example of them treating people differently based on their membership and something that needs to change in the culture if you don’t want social status to be associated with membership.
    Are people more likely to assume people who are members or are trying to become members as more moral or faithful people? Why? If you want to treat people equally, you need to make sure that you’re not assuming better spirituality or morals of people who are members vs nonmembers.

    Regardless of the primary purpose that you or others have for pursuing membership, so long as members are assumed to be more likely to be moral or more likely to be better partners, there’s a change in social status associated with membership.

  • jock1234

    Well, TinyWhistler; if you are going to “assume” or others for that matter are going to “assume”, or my friend is going to “assume”, that is their prerogative. I cannot control yours or other’s thoughts. But I can control mine. Others can control their own as well. I’ll never try to control another mind or perceptions.

    Somehow, I perceive you are perhaps trying too hard to assume what others think or perceive. Can we agree that we will never, nor should we attempt to control others or assume we know all about their thoughts and perceptions? I’ve been to a lot of Churches. The Church which we are speaking of above, can never control others minds or make their assumptions for them, nor should they, right? But I sure as heck can attempt to control my own. And, largely so, I do. That is why I attend Church where I do, because more people there,” try harder” to emulate Christ’s ways. Are all members perfect, no. Nor am I. But more do try to emulate Him., from my point of view.
    I enjoy conversing. But, presuming we can’t control others’ thoughts, perceptions or assumptions, perhaps we should confine our back and forth to realms we alone can change about ourselves? Thanks and have a great day…!

  • jock1234

    May I weigh in here briefly? So there’s no obligation to see a non-member as part of the community and help them? Perhaps you are unaware, but the Church gives away millions of dollars in humanitarian aid and disaster relief, and assisting those who are members or non-members.

    This concern you have for children of gay parents. I cannot and will not pretend this is why the Church leadership has made this administrative decision. But my thoughts would be primarily because at 18 years of age, the child would then, be able to make a choice. A choice completely independent of the child’s parents. I would presume the number of children who would join the Church would be percentage wise very small. Likewise, I would presume the number of gay parents who would want to take their children to our Church also quite small. And, the number of gay members is also, presently quite small. So admittedly, while every person counts, why do you devote such gravitas on this subject, When their are nearly 20 million members and over 5 billion people on the earth? How do we reach every “one”, and simultaneously how do we make everything “kosher” for every single individual? I’ll answer that rhetorical question, we, you, all of us cannot possibly ever do such!

    One last thought please… While some ‘other’ Church’s doctrine changes like the wind, our Church’s doctrine will never do so. Policies can and do change, but not doctrine. Example; I can dislike the sin, but should love the sinner, according to Christ’s teachings, and I agree. And sometimes that is hard to do as humans. But the Church does not “adjust” the sin to fit into the Church’s doctrine. Case in point – Homosexuality may be ‘now’ legal in the land, but it has always not been legitimate in God’s eyes. One only needs to read their scriptures to know such. Are Homosexuals invited to come to our Church? By all means, and always have been. But they must change and make Commitments prior to Baptism/Membership, as we all must.

    You have a great day!

  • TinnyWhistler

    Whoops, you seem to have misspelled my name. It’s “Tinny” not “Tiny” 🙂

    I’ll take your comment to mean you don’t want to talk anymore so I’ll just reiterate that so long as social barriers are perceived, they exist. Treating people equally requires tearing down, not ignoring social barriers. Currently, the church treating people differently based on their sexual orientation or that of their parents is seen as a barrier by many LGBTQ+ people. Maybe ask them why that treatment leads to the perception of a barrier if you want the barrier to come down.

  • TinnyWhistler

    “While some Church’s doctrine changes like the wind, our Church’s doctrine will never do so. Policies can and do change, but not doctrine. ”

    The frustrating thing with this sentence is that you can always make it true by retroactively declaring any skeletons in your theological closet “policy” rather than “doctrine”, regardless of how it was talked and taught about at the time. It’s the ultimate defense against having to admit that something had to be changed. You can sloooowly move from “capital offence” to “contrary to church doctrine” to “we discourage not prohibit” to “you’ve misinterpreted what we said before,” all the while proclaiming that nothing has fundamentally changed! It’ll be interesting to see where the “doctrine” is in 50 years regarding LGBTQ+ people.

  • jock1234

    Sorry about the typo!

    No, enjoy conversing. Social barriers and perceptions are placed by people’s perceptions/thoughts. We can’t change people’s thoughts/perceptions they choose to have. The Church does not ever intentionally treat anyone differently! And I add emphasis with the exclamation point. Just because I or you, or another “perceives” that social status and perceptions and thoughts are all over the map – it may be true to an extent in society, but much, much less (or near zero) within the Church. Frankly, the Church is where we learn to not have those characterizations You, and any friends you have can come to our Church any time you want. To enter into a covenant at Baptism, to climb a ladder promising to be “more living like Christ”, is only for those who are really going to try to live like him..Otherwise, it would be considered detrimental to their souls, like my friend above who was wanting to get baptized.

  • jock1234

    There in lies the biggest problem perhaps.

    Put plainly, Homosexuality was forbidden and wrong since Old Testament times. Not since Joseph Smith. This Church would cease to be The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, if they ever sidestepped the way you are portraying! In 50 years the doctrine will be exactly the same, I promise that.

  • TinnyWhistler

    I mean, people (CoJCoLDS and not) used to use the Old Testament all the time to justify prohibitions against miscegenation, so it’s not without precedent 😉
    There’s also lots of the OT that we completely throw away as “but consider the culture it was written in” and “it really was progressive for its time” because it makes us feel icky to consider the process by which a man may be permitted to kidnap and rape a female prisoner of war. OT teaching isn’t a great yardstick from that perspective, which is why it’s often easier to just “We’re bound by the New Covenant, not the Old” the entire problem away.

    ” This Church would cease to be The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, if they ever sidestepped the way you are portraying!”
    I’m not 100% sure what you mean by this. If the church walked away from OT teaching or if the church allowed doctrine to change over time the way I laid out?

  • TinnyWhistler

    “The Church does not ever intentionally treat anyone differently!”
    Um, that’s objectively false. If two men were to walk into a church and say they are married and would like to become members, what would the reaction be? If a man and a woman were to walk into a church and say the same thing, what would the reaction be? If each couple just wanted to regularly attend, with no talk of membership, what would the reaction be? Would one couple receive more unsolicited life advice than the other?
    How are gay people told to react to their romantic feelings toward other people? How are straight people told to react to their romantic feelings toward other people? And so on. You get my point.

    I’m gonna resist the urge to point out that living like Christ involves never marrying and instead wandering around the country with an entourage of at least 12 other dudes and generally a bunch more people trailing along behind because I recognize that I’m being pedantic and silly :).
    I am gonna point out that when Jesus was confronted by a woman for not being willing help her because she was a gentile, he acknowledged her point (colloquially known as a “sick burn”), went back on what he’d previously said, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of Israel.”, and healed her daughter. It’s an interesting demonstration of how Christ reacted when he was told that his statement (can we call it doctrine if Jesus said it?) was unloving.

  • jock1234

    Miscegenation? Had to look the word up! There is no Church doctrine in my Church against that. It is very commonly known from independent studies (although I see this as irrelevant) that intermarriages create a higher percentage of friction between spouses and families and hence more divorces. But hey, that’s a subject that doesn’t ever come up in our Church.

    You said: “I’m not 100% sure what you mean by this. If the church walked away from OT teaching or if the church allowed doctrine to change over time the way I laid out?”
    Are you familiar at all with the grassroots beginnings of our Church? It would seem, to me, that you are not (no disrespect). We believe God personally (with Christ) appeared to Joseph Smith, and instructed him to “RESTORE” the True Church of Jesus Christ. Now, sure, you might scoff and say – oh sure he did!!! But, if that premise is based on truth (Obvious many would scoff), then, at least through the eyes of our leadership, can you not at least understand why our Church does not bend to common day changes made by Obama, or others, that openly legalize Gay weddings, etc.? You may not agree. But you now, should understand! And, if you don’t agree, “why” would you be interested in having those who don’t believe join our Church? Surely you now must understand both sides of this equation.

  • TinnyWhistler

    But there used to be 🙂
    And that’s my point. The doctrine has changed, basically by the road I mapped out in my comment above, over almost 200 years.

    Right, I knew that Smith was supposed to restore the church. I wasn’t sure what you meant by “sidestepped” since your statement seemed to imply that CoJCoLDS doctrine hasn’t changed over the last 200 years or it wouldn’t be the same church, and that’s just not true, so I asked for clarification.

  • TinnyWhistler

    Quite a lot! Thankfully, we know that that number goes down substantially when trans people are supported and accepted within their communities, including transitioning if they choose.

  • jock1234

    Let’s simplify here:
    A person walk into Church and wants to become a member, is interviewed and is a decent person, and is soon therafteer Baptized.
    Another person walks into Church and wants to become a member, is interviewed and admits he’s murdered his spouse and others as well. He would not be allowed to be Baptized.
    So, you tell me; Are they treated differently? Was that the Church’s fault? Was it their decisions and choices that encumbered them from being Baptized? You tell me. Or, from your point of view, should he be Baptized? I’m all ears…
    As for 12 Apostles, following Christ around the country? Do you know Christ’s whereabouts more than the rest of us?
    A Gentile and sinner treated good by Christ? What else would you expect. There is nothing unbecoming of that woman being Baptized! There is no reference in the Bible that says she ever was however, but our Church would welcome her into a Baptismal font, once she had repented with God.
    Tinny;
    You will NEVER convince me you are right. Likely, I’ll never convince you. That’s cool… But, I see no disdain, and I’m being 100% truthful, being held forth against the LGBTQ community, or their kids.

  • jock1234

    Well, it’s not even been 200 years since the Church was restored Tinny. Maybe 188 years. Doctrine won’t change like the wind does. Policies will always change with growth and known advancements of technologies, etc.
    Your example above? Miscegenation? That is, nor has never been a Church doctrine.

  • TinnyWhistler

    Correct! They are being treated differently! Sounds like your church has made murder one of the things that they will treat you differently over. However, you will be known for excluding murderers and you can’t get around that. Whether or not you want to be known for affording more rights and responsibilities to murderers is up for you to decide. Personally, I think excluding unrepentant murderers is generally an ok policy, but that’s just me.

    All I meant by the wandering around bit was to humorously talk about what Jesus did with his life during his time of ministry. The Gospels tell us he spent a lot of it walking around and talking to people.

    My point with the Canaanite woman was that Jesus originally told her no. He told her that he came not for gentiles but only for Israel. He told her that by asking for healing for her daughter she was like a dog begging for food that rightfully belonged to children. When she rebuked him, saying that even “dogs” can deserve food, he healed her daughter, despite originally telling her no.

    I’d encourage you to read some of what gay Mormons have written about their own experiences in their churches and how “fine, you’re gay, just don’t ever act on it” can be very very damaging.

  • jock1234

    Tinny, with regard to ” I’m not 100% sure what you mean by this. If the church walked away from OT teaching or if the church allowed doctrine to change over time the way I laid out?”
    I say this somewhat jokingly, but why not just start your own church? If you did, it wouldn’t take long for someone , and some groups to attempt to bully & shout you down as hypocrites and to change your Doctrine… Ironic – eh?

  • TinnyWhistler

    That’s why I don’t claim to have any special knowledge given to me by God: I know I can be wrong about things so there’s no point in claiming I have all the answers. 🙂

    I like to think that if the two greatest commandments are “Love God” and then “Love Others” and if the second is like the first then loving God looks like wanting what’s best for everyone. That means listening to what’s hurting them and what they need, not just declaring that I have the answer to issues that don’t actually affect me personally as someone who’s white, middle class, and mostly left alone about my sexuality.

  • jock1234

    All of the above statement, I’ve heard them all before. They are not Church Doctrine. They are people, often leaders speaking about their opinions. Joseph Smith ordained several blacks to the Priesthood too!
    Again, the point in case is Doctrine doesn’t change, policy? It can. You and I could fight it out on this issue, but you’re too deep into your side, clearly.
    I enjoy conversing with you though.
    I’m somewhat stunned you would give the “thumbs up” to Baptism/Membership to the murderer, and then say the Church is treating him differently…!?

  • TinnyWhistler

    “They are not Church Doctrine. ”
    And we’re back to defining whatever you don’t like as policy, not doctrine, to get around the fact that it WAS doctrine.

    Go back and read the statement from the First Presidency in 1946.
    “We are not unmindful of the fact that there is a growing tendency … toward the breaking down of race barriers in the matter of intermarriage between whites and blacks, but it does not have the sanction of the Church and *****is contrary to Church doctrine.*****”
    If your own highest governing body doesn’t know what the doctrine of your church is, who does?

    Joseph Smith did ordain blacks to the Priesthood. He just said they should be confined to their own species by law, when he was asked what he thought of interracial marriage.

    No, I didn’t thumbs up to membership. I said it’s for your Church to decide. I said that if you do decide that murder is something that people can be excluded for, you’ll be known for treating murderers differently at your church. I didn’t say whether that’s a good thing or a bad thing. It depends on what you want to be known for. I also said “Personally, I think excluding unrepentant murderers is generally an ok policy, but that’s just me.”
    Any time you exclude someone from membership for some reason, you’re treating them differently from members based on that reason. Like I said, it’s probably not bad to be known for treating murderers and abusers differently, at least unrepentant ones. I’ll let y’all decide how much stuff like that is forgivable when it comes to granting membership.

  • jock1234

    You do that!

    It looks to me that your specialty is not for assisting the LBGTQ community as much as it is to be an anti – Mormon.

    I can’t help you, you are too close to the sharks to be assisted further.

    So, I’ll say adieu to you, Tinny!

    By the way, most members of our Church have for the most part been previously introduced to the stuff you mention in nefarious detail. I mean who else would have that type of information at their disposal, unless they wanted to hurt or influence negatively. Well, been there and done that! I’ve learned that MOST of it is tainted – for the record. My suggestion would still be to start your own LGBTQ Church ( – :

  • TinnyWhistler

    No, I’m not trying to be anti-Mormon, I’m pointing out that your church doctrine HAS changed in the past, contrary to what you said, and I’m proposing that that’s not the end of the world. Churches are made of people, doctrinal statements are written by people, interpretations of doctrine are done by people, and people are fallible. Again, that’s not the end of the world, nor is it anti-Mormon. All churches have skeletons in their closets, because all churches are made of people, and like I said, people are fallible.

    “By the way, most members of our Church have all introduced to the stuff you mention in nefarious detail.”
    I’m glad that people in Mormon churches recognize that your church has advocated bad things in the past. I’d have assumed that’s the case since I assume people want to know their own church history so they can learn from mistakes.

    “I mean who else would have that type of information at their disposal, unless they wanted to hurt or influence negatively.”
    I mean, anyone who wants to can look this stuff up. It’s not hidden, and as far as I’m aware, the CoJCoLDS doesn’t claim that its doctrine is supposed to be secret or unknowable. Transparency is a good thing!

    “I’ve learned that MOST of it is tainted – for the record.”
    Yep, everyone has skeletons in their closets. Every church tradition has done terrible things if you go back far enough. What’s important is people learn from their mistakes and don’t assume that they’re’ infallible.

  • jock1234

    Say what you want…

    If you are an infallible person, you are welcome at our Church. But if you are so BULL HEADED that all you can spew out is anti Mormon crap – know now and forever, that we’ve heard that crap for 188 years now. And, so you’ll know: IT’S VERY UNIMPRESSIVE!

    OK, I’m signing off now. Going to the Church actually!!! A Happy place. Where at least I know I’m making a difference for positive results in this world, and hopefully that may even assist in the hereafter…

    I wish you the best Tinny! Hopefully, we are ALL trying – right?

  • TinnyWhistler

    Nope, I’m not infallible, as I’ve said at least 3 times in this thread. I’m as fallible as any other human.

    Please continue, as a church, to recognize your mistakes and maybe next time don’t take 183 years to apologize for things you get wrong 🙂

    Ok, have a nice day.

  • P. McCoy

    Slavery was permitted in the OT as well and Christians of MANY denominations used that fact to openly enslave,kidnap and denigrate Black people for centuries in this hemisphere as well as discriminate against them after 1865 the United States, 1888 in Brazil.

    Chattel slavery is no longer practiced here and God didn’t bring his wrath down on those who chose to abandon this OT reality. Thus there NO possibility of wrath to come down on societies that cease to persecute and discriminate against LGBT people.

  • rthomastn

    Please tell me if I’m wrong, but I really don’t think the Church recognizes relationships of a man and a women living together and having children together who are not married! Yet their children are WELCOME to go to the Mormon Church and be baptized, receive the Priesthood and participate in every way with their friends. How is this OK for those children yet a child living with his/her gay parents is excluded from all of that?
    Additionally, tell me when did the Church disavow the 12th Article of Faith?? Whether you like it or not, it’s DOCTRINE; it’s SCRIPTURE, and it clearly says “We believe in being subject to kings, presidents, rulers, and magistrates, in obeying, honoring, AND SUSTAINING THE LAW.” Tell me how the Church recognizes and SUSTAINS the LAW of the land, i.e., Gay Marriage. It doesn’t. Period.

  • Kiwi57

    TW: “Quite a lot!”

    By comparison with what?

    TW: “Thankfully, we know that that number goes down substantially when trans people are supported and accepted within their communities, including transitioning if they choose.”

    You may “know” that; but I don’t. I’ve certainly heard the claim made – by those with an axe to grind and an agenda to push; IOW, it’s a sales pitch. But I’m not buying what they’re selling, and I have also heard the opposite, namely, that those who suffer from gender dysphoria (formerly known as gender identity disorder) experience extraordinarily high levels of suicidal ideation and suicide attempts in all life circumstances – including after gender reassignment surgery.

    I’ve also heard that young children who exhibit gender dysphoria will usually grow out of it, providing they aren’t seized by well-meaning (or ill-meaning) individuals and indoctrinated into the LGBTQ+ ideology.

  • Kiwi57

    TW: “So….kids of gay parents can’t join so long as they are kids.”

    Point of order: there are no “kids of gay parents.” 100% of all human beings, living or dead, were produced by opposite-sex biological parents.

    There are children who are being raised by same sex couples; most commonly one actual parent and his or her “spouse.” The “spouse” is not a parent.

    TW: “A teen cannot join your church. Because their parents are gay and married. Would the kid be allowed to join if the parents were just living together but weren’t married?”

    If the child was being raised by their actual unmarried parents, yes.

  • Kiwi57

    RT: “How is this OK for those children yet a child living with his/her gay parents is excluded from all of that?”

    Very simply: for the family arrangement to be regularised in the eyes of the Church, all that would have to happen would be for the parents to marry. In the case of a child being raised by a same sex couple, for the family arrangement to be regularised in the eyes of the Church, they’d have to split up.

    In the first situation, the child’s Church activity provides an incentive for the parents to strengthen their family relationships. In the second, the child’s Church activity creates a tension between the values being taught at Church and the reality they are living at home. The stronger this tension becomes, the more likely it is to become a significant conflict. The Church’s policy protects children from being brought into the middle of that.

  • TinnyWhistler

    How can you square anything in that comment with adoption? Do you think that adopted kids are in a different category from bio kids? Because that really, really sucks and really hope that attitude isn’t typical for Mormon families, especially since you guys care so much about family, but I admit I don’t actually know anything about Mormon culture and adoption.

  • TinnyWhistler

    “By comparison with what?”
    Just about anyone:
    https://williamsinstitute.law.ucla.edu/wp-content/uploads/AFSP-Williams-Suicide-Report-Final.pdf

    “experience extraordinarily high levels of suicidal ideation and suicide attempts in all life circumstances – including after gender reassignment surgery.”
    That’s true. See the paper above. It’s also true that while transitioning doesn’t do much to change the LIFETIME suicide attempts (as in, before AND after medical transition) for people who want it, transition does have a positive effect on mental illness:
    https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=15&ved=0CEcQFjAEOAo&url=http%3A%2F%2Fportal.uned.es%2Fpls%2Fportal%2Furl%2FITEM%2FE2B94D3A1D86F2EDE040660A33701E9A&ei=eTpPU7K9HrLlyAGg84CYBQ&usg=AFQjCNFm5rngu75GhBIxhFpLK_v0Dj-xEQ&sig2=8aE8SozZSMQfJ7nOeJmCng&bvm=bv.64764171,d.aWc&cad=rja
    https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1158136006000491
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22145968
    There are a bunch more, I got you started and you can do your own homework from here 🙂

    Here’s the study people use to say transition doesn’t work:
    https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article/file?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0016885&type=printable
    This one compares post-op suicide rates to the **general public** and says the findings “should inspire improved psychiatric and
    somatic care after sex reassignment for this patient group”.

    “I’ve also heard that young children who exhibit gender dysphoria will usually grow out of it”
    It’s more the case that gender-nonconforming children tend to grow out of it. The fluidity of children’s perception of their own gender is why medical transition in childhood is a bad idea.

  • Kiwi57

    Thank you for asking. As an adoptive parent, I’m happy to answer.

    Every child is born to two biological parents: one father, one mother. That’s how parents come. No other combination is authentic.

    The purpose of adoption is not to provide adults with “fulfillment” or something; it’s to provide a child with a replacement family.

    Including two parents: one father, one mother. That’s how parents come. No other combination is authentic.

    People sometimes talk about “rights” in connection with adoption. In reality, it is the child, not the adults, who has all the rights. Inter alia, they have a right to a replacement family that is genealogically authentic.

  • TinnyWhistler

    I mean, that doesn’t really answer my question since you’ve stated that the “spouse” who is not the child’s biological parent isn’t a real parent to them, but rather just the spouse. So again, it seems like you’re seeing the child as having a fundamentally different and possibly inferior relationship with that parent because there’s no biological link. That kind of attitude still sucks for adopted kids.

    So you’re opposed to the adoption of children by single people as well?

    If a child has a right to a heterosexual household, is it better for that child to not be adopted than to be adopted by someone who is single or gay?

  • jock1234

    Most people throughout the history of recorded time have lived in slavery (I believe the figure is about 85% of recorded history of mankind has lived in slavery). But slavery also existed in the New Testament times. I think popping slavery into this issue of homosexuality serves no cause of noted worth here.

  • P. McCoy

    I agree to disagree .

  • jock1234

    Reference is: “7 Tipping Points That Saved the World” by Chris Stewart
    I’ve lent the book out or I’d tell you the page number. I concur the high number seems unreal. One of the best books I’ve ever read. And maybe it was 80%, maybe 88%, I can’t remember, but it’s in the book…—————————-
    I just located it, page 12. By best estimates, 100 to 110 Billion people have lived on the earth and by best estimates only an estimated 4.5% have ever lived under conditions that could be considered as “free”. So, by the book, it’s more like 95.5% not free, and not 85%!!!

    If you want to read an excellent book – read this one!

  • jock1234

    P.McCoy; It isn’t you. But “most” have NO IDEA whatsoever about how grandiose slavery has been throughout the entire world’s history. While you & I both despise any form of slavery. Let’s also realize that the Left primarily has attempted to sell the story of slavery by early America upon black slaves. And they did in the south, in particular. But Throughout the entire history of the earth, slavery has been very, very predominant (and that involves both whites and blacks as the slaves)!!! Slavery is NOT new…!

  • Chris365

    This is both not controversial and a bit much.

    We love you. Go and sin no more. God wants you to keep his commandments and he wants you to become like him through his son. That includes living your life as the gender you were born, not through surgery and hormone therapy (obviously the handful of birth defects not withstanding). We won’t bash you over the head with constant judgement, but if you keep asking for our approval of your choices we will keep telling you we disagree. If you keep insisting that you don’t have a choice or that we don’t have any choice other than to embrace your choices, we will also disagree.

    Beyond that, sure I love you as a person. I love you as a brother or sister. As a son or daughter of God. If you were in trouble, I’d do what I could to help you.

    But please don’t point a gun at your head and tell me the only way you can be happy is if I embrace your choices — that’s just as extreme as extreme surgery and hormones to change your body.

    By the way, it’s not like I and the people who agree with me go around running our mouths like this. But it’s more than fair that my viewpoint needs to be heard and understood as well. Disagree with it all you like — just like I disagree with many people who have embraced an alternate philosophy about their body or way of life.

    None of this is an reason to be cruel and uncharitable to others — and please don’t define my disagreement in stark terms as cruelty. I can do exactly the same — and in fact many of the philosophies inflicted on my children at school or in the media are cruel and confusing. I just patiently teach them that a lot of people they’ll encounter in this life are confused about themselves and what God wants for them.

  • Kiwi57

    TW: “I mean, that doesn’t really answer my question since you’ve stated that the ‘spouse’ who is not the child’s biological parent isn’t a real parent to them, but rather just the spouse. So again, it seems like you’re seeing the child as having a fundamentally different and possibly inferior relationship with that parent because there’s no biological link. That kind of attitude still sucks for adopted kids.”

    Not quite. The “spouse” isn’t the child’s biological parent, and also does not validly replace the missing biological parent. If the child is living with her mother, then she’s missing a father. Her mother’s female spouse is not a father.

    TW: “If a child has a right to a heterosexual household, is it better for that child to not be adopted than to be adopted by someone who is single or gay?”

    When there are no longer multi-year waiting lists for prospective adoptive families, I might be interested in revisiting that question. As it is, every child that is currently adopted by a single person or a same sex couple is one who would otherwise have been adopted by a father and a mother.