I once held similar views with great vehemence.
Yet my perspective has changed due to feeling compassion for those who are homosexual.
How does reading or hearing statements by Mormon Church Leaders like this make them feel about themselves?
Even Jesus said, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”
When the only intimacy you can imagine or comprehend is with someone of the same gender, how do they feel hearing such statements & being told there is something wrong with them.
Rather than condemning them to a lifetime of celibacy or excommunication we should be accepting of them, celebrating their differences & supporting them as equals.
I feel passionately that gay marriage is good for individuals & society. I believe, just as with racism in the past & the Church’s stance on mixed race marriage, which Brigham Young stated was punishable by death, the Church will change & accept it.
We need to raise the issue, otherwise attitudes remain stagnant & no progress is made. My attitude has changed & I’m now sorry I ever held the homophobic views I learned from Church leaders in the past.
Some accuse me of being angry about these issues.
Too right I’m angry. We all should all be angry when we hear or see intolerance & discrimination.
The Church I loved with all my heart is not what I thought it was.
The Church I gave my all too, including at least 10% of my income, two years of my life serving a Full-time proselyting mission, many, many countless hours in meetings serving in the Church including almost seven years as Bishop.
Never once did I ever resent being a member or serving my God. I would have given my life in the service of my God & His Church.
I’m saddened that anyone would consider I resigned as Bishop due to weakness, or sin or from lack of studying my scriptures.
The Church & Gospel I loved & lived for I would never leave unless I discovered it was not what it purported to be, the Church of Jesus Christ!
Resigning as Bishop due to discovering uncomfortable truths was the most difficult thing of my life. If it wasn’t because of my honesty & integrity I would have remained, but I would have been a hypocrite & faker.
Why do I speak up? Because I have compassion for those in the Church who are voiceless. Those who believe they are sinners & ‘less-than’ the other Latter-day Saints for the simple reason they have same gender attraction. These young people who often feel the only recourse to their miserable existence is to end their lives.
If I don’t speak up, who will?
I do not believe that Native Americans have dark skin because they are cursed or that an angel appeared to Joseph Smith with a sword and commanded him to take more brides, nor that Blacks are less equal to God.
I do not believe that God condemns homosexuals for same gender attraction or for being intimate with their partner. If there is a God I believe He would love all His children equally & celebrate love & intimacy in all its forms.
Just like past Church leaders claimed God condemned Mixed Race marriage in the past and later dissociated themselves from the racist doctrine, I believe this too will happen with regards to gays & lesbians; and probably in our lifetimes.
My conscience will not allow me to sit idly by whilst people suffer.
I campaign out of a desire for fairness, to promote the best in human wellbeing, & because I have compassion for others!
I invite all to question & consider everything they now hold as true, rather than limit ourselves to dogma.
Freedom exists when dogma ends!
Some people will fight against the uncomfortable truths regarding the Church, and continue to sincerely believe & worship in the only way they know how.
I have also held those same beliefs with great fervency & sincerity, determined to live my life to the version of reality I once perceived.
When I first studied the uncomfortable history & origins of the Church in great detail from various sources I too felt my perception of reality was threatened & recoiled in horror at the painful cognitive dissonance it caused. I realise now that the emotional/mental trauma arising from my beliefs colliding with conflicting & overwhelming evidence to the contrary was not an evil spirit, but just how the brain works.
I won’t argue with anyone, because I respect you, and realise everyone needs to discover the truth in their own time & in their own way.
The information is available.
I’m just glad I looked.