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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Esquire
Springville, UT

@ Pac_Man, I've known of situations like yours, and while I would never judge because I am not in your skin, I would guess that you are in for some struggles, and I hope you are at least truly honest with yourself. I have to wonder....

friedeggonAZstreets
Glendale, AZ

All of you referring to our brothers and sisters struggling with SSA and are members of The Church of JESUS CHRIST of Latter-day Saints please remember what the 2nd Counselor, Keith B. McMullin, of the church's Presiding Bishopric said during The Evergreen Conference on September 18, 2010-"If someone seeking your help says to you, I am homosexual or I am lesbian or I am gay, correct this miscasting. Heavenly Father does not speak of His children this way, and neither should we. It is simply not true. To speak this way sows seeds of doubt and deceit about who we really are. It belittles, depreciates and disparages the individual."

"Elder Dallin H. Oaks explained it this way: The words homosexual, lesbian, and gay are adjectives to describe particular thoughts, feelings, or behaviors. We should refrain from using these words as nouns [or pronouns] to identify particular conditions or specific persons. . . . It is wrong to use these words to denote a condition, because this implies that a person is consigned by birth to a circumstance in which he or she has no choice in respect to the critically important matter of sexual behavior

murray19
Murray, UT

Just because i think about doing something or being a certain way doesn't I am that person. Until I act on the urge then I have to deal with the consequences. I refrenced an alcoholic because drinking in the LDS religion is also considered a sin. You wouldn't openly commit sins and be considered active. You are not a gay person until you act upon those urges. If I think about robbing a bank because I have the urge/need/want for more money does this make me a bank robber? And yes the church also looks upon theft as a sin.

publ1ius
ACME, MI

@Esquire

Why would you "have to wonder"? Couldn't the same standard of wondering whether someone is honest with them self applicable to everyone?

I would hope that people in general are honest with themselves.

Dixie Mike
Salt Lake City, UT

Perhaps I am missing something, but I did not see in the article the remarks of the current LDS Bishop, one of the speakers at the conference. Aren't his remarks worth printing in the Deseret News?

@Charles
the greater outdoors, UT

In reading through the pages of comments on this issue it's crystal clear that there are many LDS folks who really don't understand the plan of salvation, eternal gospel principles and the depth of the Atonement.

What role does homosexuality play in the eternal plan? Pre-mortal life? Earth-life? Here-after?

I submit that homosexuality has no role in the plan of salvation in any step of life. It surely didn't exist before we came to earth and it won't exist when one dies. So why should it be accepted, condoned, excused or tip-toed around on earth?

Is it any wonder why the entire church has been studying Gospel Principles for the past 2 years? Members don't know the doctrines of the gospel!

And some of you think that revelation works "up", it doesn't. Revelation works down. Christ to His chosen Prophet to the world. The scriptures are clear that homosexuality is an abomination. They are also clear that man and woman are to be married and multiply and replenish the earth. They're also clear that one has to obey the commandments to enter the Celestial Kingdom.

The doctrines are clear. Man makes a mess of them.

nyca411
Menlo Park, CA

Being almost middle-aged and single/never married, I can empathize with the struggle to be attracted to someone but not be able act on those feelings. People always say, "Well, if you're heterosexual, you at least have the HOPE of getting married." Yes, I have the HOPE, but it might not happen in this lifetime (which upsets me terribly.) But still, I'm not going to go sleep around if I can't get married, and I can't force a guy to marry me. I have to wait for it.

Also, I think it's erroneous to assume that Gays will be "gay" after this life. Were they "gay" in the pre-existence? No. Our spirits were formed perfectly in the images of our Heavenly Father and Heavenly Mother, with distinct genders. But our mortal bodies bring about many challenges that we have to deal with and overcome. So I believe that Gays who remain true to their covenants will not experience same-gender attraction in the next life-- thus they will be able to fully enjoy the blessings of marriage.

publ1ius
ACME, MI

"So why should it be accepted, condoned, excused or tip-toed around on earth?"

I am not sure what you mean by this because it does not matter. We should love all people despite our opinions about their personal life.

Christy
Beaverton, OR

"When we fail to resist these or other vices that the Church warns against, it does not necessarily make us bad people--it just prevents us from reaching our full potential."

This mindset is what ultimately drives some (many?) gay members away from the Church. It is saying that there is something inherently wrong with them, through NO FAULT of their own, because of something they have no control over, something they didn't choose. And to self-righteously tell them, that if they hope to stay in God's great grace, they will agree to live a life alone, while the rest of us - through NO CHOICE of our own - get make our own families and die surrounded by them.

It is the epitome of hypocrisy to say to someone, look, even though I got to marry exactly who I wanted to, and we have a family, YOU don't get to do that because God said so.

It's grossly unfair. It's ugly. And stop speaking for God.

publ1ius
ACME, MI

"This mindset is what ultimately drives some (many?) gay members away from the Church. It is saying that there is something inherently wrong with them, through NO FAULT of their own, because of something they have no control over, something they didn't choose."

The standards of the church don't just apply to gay members it applies to ALL members no what their issues are. Gay members think they are being singled out because they think they are the only ones struggling over something.

Truthseeker
SLO, CA

"Brother Miller got one thing wrong with me. I have not been a long-time
advocate for the cause...

Over the past year, I have felt promptings from the Spirit that I needed to
learn all I could about these issues. To listen, finally, to many of your
stories. Some of them Ive read in books. Some of them Ive read on the
Internet. And as I took the time to listen and as I took the time to learn, I
began to have a mighty change of heart.

But it was not without some pain. As you know very well, the stories that have
been written, your own stories, are extremely painful. Some have called it a
tragedy. I call it an atrocity, what has happened. And as I read these stories
and as I learned more about these issues, I began to see the emotional wounds
and the scars that many of you still have today. And I seem to ask the
question, Where did you get these wounds? and unfortunately the answer was,
In the house of my friends.

(excerpts from Bishop Kevin Kloosterman's talk on homosexuality)
last post

JSB
Sugar City, ID

I'm a Mormon heterosexual. I've had to deal with strong heterosexual desires all my life. But, I've made covenants and I must keep them even if my biological urges would have be do otherwise. That's the issue. God would have us live a chaste life even if there are strong desires to do otherwise. There shouldn't be a different standard for homosexuals than there is for heterosexuals who are expected to live a chaste life if they are in the church.

Christy
Beaverton, OR

"There shouldn't be a different standard for homosexuals than there is for heterosexuals who are expected to live a chaste life if they are in the church."

There shouldn't be, but there is! You, JSB, can marry and act on your 'strong heterosexual desires', with the blessing of the Church. Gay people are told they cannot, should not, to wait for the afterlife where there they will be 'healed'.

Let's get intellectually honest.

cymrul
West Valley City, UT

@ Marine Man,

The answer is:
Lesbian
Gay
Bisexual
Transgender
Queer.

I honestly don't know what the difference is between gay and queer, but that is what the "Q" stands for.

O'really
Idaho Falls, ID

Christy, there are so many many single heterosexual members of the church who can't marry. They have to use restraint just like homosexual church members do. There are an abundance of ways to live a happy and fulfilling life without having sex, even without having a partner. I've seen it over and over. Trust the ones that want to live a celibate life and are willing to do it. If they want to, who are you to tell them otherwise? That IS intellectual honesty...and emotional and spiritual, too.

Sneaky Jimmy
Bay Area, CA

@sharona
@mattrick78
Do you really not know how condescending you are? These organizations like Evergreen and Exodus have no long term success with changing orientation, because it cannot be done. Reap Pagans statistics. You can't pray the gay away. Yes, right wing advocates would point to these organizations as evidence that its a lifestyle choice and anyone can change if they really want to. I can only hope that someday you have to sit next to a gay person in church.

Sigfried
Payson, UT

Christy,
This is a discussion about people who believe in Mormon (LDS) doctrine and are gay. I don't understand what you are arguing for, since it seems you don't subscribe to the LDS belief system.

krissy
Sterling, VA

I have a strong sympathy for gay Mormons on multiple levels. I have many close friends who have stuggled, and ultimately left the church. I agree with some of their reasons and can relate. I was a single heterosexual in the church trying my best to live life to the fullest...it is not possible. Many of the "blessings" of the gospel are out of reach. The culture, which is a VERY big part of being LDS excludes you. I'm sure that some could argue different. Human sexual expression and companionship are very important to one's mental health. Being alone is very difficult. You cannot judge till you've been there.

I was fortunte to meet my spouse when I was in my late thirties and I chose to marry someone outside the LDS church. I am deeply grateful for the opportunity and my life and family is very full and complete in a way that was not possible before. There are many sides to happiness. The "gospel" cannot always provide that for someone who is gay and LDS. Many that are gay and LDS leave because they want somcething very conservative...companionship and family. I hope they get it.

NWCL INDP
Murray, UT

This has got to be a difficult story to run for the Deseret News, who has in the past ignored most news and talk about gay mormons. Even within our Church, there is a lot of movement to being more Christlike and showing Charity to our gay brothers and sisters. However, we still see and hear many un-Christlike comments and actions for Church members. May we all take a step back and realize that no matter where we are in our lives, we all need the help of our Heavenly Father, our Savior Jesus Christ, and our fellow brothers and sisters.

publ1ius
ACME, MI

@Sneaky Jimmy

I agree with you there. I don't believe in reparative therapy. But from a gospel standpoint, I believe and I have seen first hand that it is possible to minimize unwanted sexual urges whether it is directed toward the same or opposite gender. I also believe that non-sexual urges can be minimized too through the same process. Sexuality, like all other desires, is a natural but we should know that there are consequences when go beyond certain boundaries.

The whole "pray the gay away" battle cry is a little overused (not to mention annoying) because it is oversimplifies the process whereby an individual undergoes a "mighty change of heart." To undergo a change (and any change) requires more than just prayer and going to an Evergreen meeting.

Bottom line, we all have our freedom to choose. If someone wants to leave the church because they feel as if they don't belong, while unfortunate, I do not judge. Same as if I don't judge whether one wants to be a part of the church despite their struggles.

This conference should help members that we should be less judgmental, and more compassionate towards those who struggle.

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