Comments about ‘Conference explores unique challenges of gay Mormons’

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Published: Saturday, Nov. 5 2011 11:17 p.m. MDT

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cymrul
West Valley City, UT

If I made the "choice" to be gay that means that sexuality is a choice so why don't some of you heterosexuals share with me why you chose to be straight. Maybe you can provide me with a point of view that could make me change my mind.

Buzzards
LEHI, UT

Listen I want to be nice, and loving, and accept all my brothers and sisters no matter what.
But lets get to the nub. The very core doctrine of the church, one could say it's reason for being, is the concept of the eternal family. Those who are not able to have this family in this life for reasons over which they have no control are assured they will have the ability to have every possible reward in the world to come. But that means that people who struggle but do not act on SSA will be attracted to the opposite gender in the next life. If it where not so, THE VERY PLAN OF SALVATION would be thwarted.
I would love to hear anyone tell me where the Great Plan of Happiness allows for eternal, exalted, same-sex relationships. I'll be waiting.

LetsDebate
PLEASANT GROVE, UT

@aumacoma 10:07 - you made me laugh with that post. Tell you what - find me a dictionary older than 50 years that defines the word "gay" as a homosexual person. When you get back on that one, we'll discuss who has redefined things to suit an agenda.

Midwest Mom
Soldiers Grove, WI

I think that an important point is being lost. Religious faith is not just a "lifestyle choice." It is either true or it is not. For example, families are eternal or they are not. If man-woman marriage is God's pattern for celestial families, then to allow gay marriage in the LDS Church would be a lie. If God doesn't care how people form their versions of what a family is, then the LDS Church is in error and the choice to remain temple-worthy would be merely a "lifestyle choice" with only social consequences.

ClarkHippo
Tooele, UT

For the most part, I have really enjoyed the comments I have read in connection with this article. Most of them have been well thought out, positive and thought provoking, so Thank You.

I am not gay, nor do I have any siblings or close friends who are gay, but from a distance I've seen the struggles and challenges which have been experienced by those in the LGBT community. I always want to make sure I am as respective and understanding to those different from myself.

I recently finished reading Larry H. Miller's biography "Driven" in which he briefly discusses the situation involving the "Brokeback Mountain" movie. Miller said in hindsight he wished he had handled it better, although it did give the opportunity to better understand the harrasement and bullying which gay and lesbian couples have experienced while attending at his theaters.

Reading about how these people have had popcorn thrown at them or have had nasty words said to them, I sat dumbfounded thinking, "Why do people need to bother others like this? I don't get it."

Utah Girl
Vernal, UT

@ Stenar. You know nothing of our family situation. We love our son very much. While we might not agree with or like his personal choices, we love him and accept him just as much as any of our children. We have children who have used drugs when they were younger, but no longer do. We have a son in prison. We have daughters who have had children out of wedlock. None of them is a perfect person, but we love all of them just the same. Our son was married and has 2 beautiful children. But he decided it was just not working for him, and he was unhappy. Why did this happen? Who knows. He was molested when he was young. Maybe that influenced him, maybe not. My point was that we all have choices to make. God has given us the directions, and we can choose to follow them, or not. Just as we love our son, God loves all of His children, regardless of the choices they make. Just as parents feel sorrow over some of the choices our children make, so does God. With choices come consequences.

Sneaky Jimmy
Bay Area, CA

The thing I find nauseating is the number of posters showing their Christianity by saying how much they love those that struggle with a lifestyle. It's so condescending and trite. Please stop listening to Glen Beck and Rush Limbaugh and start listening to Christ.

Robbie512
PROVO, UT

Mere existence does not imply virtue, i.e. you cannot argue that something is good, simply because it is innate. Moral arguments are inherently subjective. Hence, the reason such studies fall under the so-called soft sciences. Your opinion of morality is not equal to scientific fact.

Jon Fairborn
WASHINGTON, UT

P.S. I realize that the Doctrine & Covenants say marriage is not required for the celestial kingdom generally. But it IS required for the highest level, which Mormons are taught is the only place worth aiming for, and only within which will full family relationships be possible. Again, if marriage to a woman is required to get there, then no thanks. I realize it may boggle the Mormon mind that anyone would say that, but I assure you I'm being honest. And I'm not the only one who feels this way.

A voice of Reason
Salt Lake City, UT

The comments we see on the D.N. reflect the following accusations frequently.

Gay is okay, we have a right, etc. - the original issue in this case.

then we see these things follow...

You LDS aren't acting Christian on this.
You LDS aren't even acting LDS on this.
You guys aren't in line with LDS doctrine.
...and several other statements of 'I know who you are better than you do yourself'

Often times these statements are in response to LDS members saying "Gays have a choice, there is indeed help" (I'm not saying all statements are on the 'there is help' point, but there are plenty who do, and those responses are frequent, even on this article.)

So, here's where the fun starts:

They accuse us of not being something that is defined BY us, our leaders who say the same, or our God who has revealed the same. It's as illogical as saying- "You aren't yourself!"

While others merely stated "You can choose. We're not speculating whether people are born with inclinations, etc... but you do have agency and choice, we'll help make what we're calling moral."

This kind of logistical hypocrisy favors ignorance over peaceful public discourse.

mattrick78
Cedar City, UT

@Sneaky Jimmy It is difficult to assess someone's heart especially on these message boards. But to say that those who say they "love those that struggle" MUST be listening to Glen Beck and Rush Limbaugh could also be construed as condescending not to mention narrow minded. I don't think it adds substance to the discussion.

sharrona
layton, UT

@Sneaky Jimmy Please stop listening to Glen Beck and Rush Limbaugh and start listening to Christ.
(Jesus) said, 'For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh(Mt 19:5).

Exodus International is a non-profit, interdenominational ex-gay Christian organizatio E. I., promotes "the message of Freedom from homosexuality through the power of Jesus Christ." E. I. states reorientation of same-sex attraction is possible,] but warns its members not to go to counselors who claim they can help eliminate all attractions to the same gender.

15% Success: Conversion: subjects who reported that they felt their change to be successful, and who reported substantial reductions in homosexual attraction and substantial conversion to heterosexual attraction and functioning;
23% Success: Chastity: These were subjects who reported that they felt their change to be successful and who reported homosexual attraction to be present only incidentally or in a way that does not seem to bring about distress, allowing them to live happily without overt sexual activity.

JayJay
Sandy, UT

The philosophies of men run rampant in the comments to this story. I'm choosing to listen to the Lords representatives and not the philosophies of men.

Pagan
Salt Lake City, UT

'According to the LDS Church's Handbook of Instructions, "homosexual behavior violates the commandments of God, is contrary to the purposes of human sexuality, and deprives people of the blessings that can be found in family life...' - Article

Supporting facts:

*Survey shows some LGBT residents dont feel safe By Rosemary Winters SL Tribune 07/12/10
'A kiss between two men on the LDS Churchs Main Street Plaza that resulted in trespassing charges.'

*'Survey links gay suicides to religious message - BY KRISTEN MOULTON SL TRIBUNE 02/17/11

*Gay teen suicide linked to conservative climates By Rosemary Winters SL Tribune 04/18/11

*'Teens gay or straight more likely to attempt suicide in conservative towns' - By LINDSEY TANNER - Medical Writer - AP - 04/18/11

Glad these people are reaching out with...

'love.'

Pagan
Salt Lake City, UT

For those who claim you can 'change' your orientation....

Exodus International. 1978. A group very much AGAINST lgbtq, out of 800 people who tried to 'change' their orientation...

only x3...were successful.

That's a 'success' rate of... 0.4%.

The other 99.6%...? Did not accomplish what others said they could.

A possible result....?

*'Gay man says 'reversal' therapy did not change him' - By Lisa Leff - Associated Press - Published by DSNews - 01/20/10

'SAN FRANCISCO A gay man testified Wednesday in a federal same-sex marriage trial that the "reversal therapy" he underwent as a teenager to change his sexual orientation drove him to the brink of suicide.

Supported by...

*''Psychologists nix gay-to-straight therapy' - AP - 08/05/09

'The American Psychological Association slams technique that seeks to change sexual orientation.

'No solid evidence exists that such change is likely, says the report, and some research suggests that efforts to produce change could be harmful, inducing depression and suicidal tendencies.'

I take no issue with people who want to encourage OTHERS to try to change orientation. Never, themselves.

But it is my hope they are HONEST about the odds of such changes.

Kittycat
CRESTON, OH

The LDS church is definitely not alone in dealing with these issues. My denomination in another state is wrestling with the same issues, and there is much work to do in both of our churches. My hope is that the younger generation will lead the wave for change in acceptance of GLBT people in churches. Young Mormon celebrities in pop music and other areas can also play a role in publicizing and supporting causes such as bullying of gay Mormon kids and teen suicide/depression.

I've heard the term SSA bandied about on blogs and news reports. It makes being gay sound like a disorder. With more education about the issue, it will also change how people talk about the issue.

murray19
Murray, UT

You can not be active LDS and be gay. Just the same way you can't be active LDS and be an alcholic. If you belive in the church then you will resist the tempations or urges. Until you act on them you are just like everyone else trying to resist the tempations that are placed before you. We all have different urges and tempations that we struggle with. But if you are active LDS you can not be gay and act on those urges. The church is based on self declaration and free agency, so you have the agency to lie or to have yourself removed from the records. The LDS church is not a pick and choose what you belive in and keep only the commandments you want to. It is hard and we all make mistakes, thank goodness for repentance.

atl134
Salt Lake City, UT

@murray19

"You can not be active LDS and be gay."

Of course you can since...

"If you belive in the church then you will resist the tempations or urges. "

having those urges is what makes someone gay. You were still straight when/if you were/are single and not dating someone.

mattrick78
Cedar City, UT

Pagan: Here are some supporting facts:

I knew a guy who killed himself. He was a gay man living in a conservative Utah town. It would be easy to lump him into the gay suicide stat.

However, it was later realized that he killed himself (after a police standoff) because of a spat with a boyfriend.

Suicides (gay or straight) are more strongly linked with people who have emotional and mental issues.

Pac_Man
Pittsburgh, PA

'No solid evidence exists that such change is likely, says the report, and some research suggests that efforts to produce change could be harmful, inducing depression and suicidal tendencies.'

I think the church would agree that change is unlikely but there is evidence both in and out of the church that those who struggle are able to resist unwanted sexual urges and live a happy, healthy, and productive lifestyle.

No solid evidence exists because most people who struggle (and do no submit to these urges) do not want others to know. Their sample study is clearly unbalanced.

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