Mormon Parenting: Don’t call gay unions ‘marriage’

Published: Friday, May 24 2013 5:00 a.m. MDT

We should all care because changing the meaning of one of the most venerable words in history can also change what the word signifies and what it portends. We believe that this whole debate should begin and end with the priority of children and what is best for them, and we feel that children deserve a mother and a father. Not all will get them, and not all mothers or fathers will do the job well, but we can never lose sight of the goal and the ideal.

And in the LDS Church, we start deeper and farther back, with pre-existent children waiting for their turn in mortality. That turn requires the union of a man and a woman, and it is best served through a married mom and dad. And indeed, we believe that God’s very government and kingdom are based on eternal marriage.

Who is to blame for the momentum behind the redefinition of marriage?

Let us be completely clear on this. Gay couples are trying to redefine marriage with their “talk,” but heterosexual couples have redefined marriage with their “walk.” We have disregarded, degraded, diminished and discarded marriage with everything from recreational sex to no-fault divorce to cohabitation; and as a society, we have let our desires for selfish individual rights, options and “freedom” supersede our desires for the commitment, sacrifice and responsibility of real marriage. In doing so, we have forfeited the joy.

So even as we reaffirm what marriage means, and what it has always meant, let us each do our part to re-enshrine all that marriage should mean within each of our own homes.

Richard and Linda Eyre are New York Times best-selling authors who lecture throughout the world on family-related topics. Visit them anytime at www.EyresFreeBooks.com or www.valuesparenting.com. Their latest Deseret e-book is “On the Homefront."

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