Tag Archives: homosexuality

LDS Church Files Brief in Support of Colorado Baker in Supreme Court Case

Image result for jack phillips masterpiece cakeshopEarlier this year, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints placed its name on amicus friend-of-the court brief in a large transgender case, citing The Family: A Proclamation to the World as a core doctrinal statement, as well as noting the unchangeable and eternal gender of men and women. Now, this week the Church joined with other religious organizations, 86 senators and representatives, legal groups and creative professionals to show support for the Colorado baker who, due to religious convictions, chose not use his professional skills to support a same-sex wedding. This case arose when Masterpiece Cakeshops’ owner, Jack Phillips, was sued after respectfully declining to decorate a wedding cake celebrating a same-sex ceremony for two men.

In a news release, ADF Legal stated that:

The Colorado Supreme Court declined to take the case after the state’s Court of Appeals affirmed a Colorado Civil Rights Commission decision from May 2014. That decision ordered Phillips and his employees to design custom wedding cakes that celebrate same-sex marriages if the shop designs wedding cakes for opposite-sex marriages. It also required Phillips to re-educate his staff, most of whom are his family members—essentially telling them that he was wrong to operate his business according to his faith. He must also report to the government for two years, describing all cakes that he declines to create and the reasons why. As a result of the ruling, Phillips has lost an estimated 40 percent of his business. (Link)

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Elder Holland: How to Distinguish Between the Sin and the Sinner

Image result for elder hollandWe are facing one of the most complex challenges of our generation: How do we stay firm and grounded in the doctrine and standards of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints while simultaneously loving family members who are living lifestyles that include serious sexual sin? How do we lead with love and compassion while being loyal to the commandments, warning against sin and not condoning actions? How do we teach children and youth who are finding it increasingly difficult to discern sin and sinful behavior when their peers and the media say it is acceptable and in fact, very good? And, using Elder Holland’s words, “How do we distinguish between the sin and the sinner?” These concerns and questions are in the hearts and minds of many members of the Church right now. They are ones that prophets and apostles have answered time and again, but are so often misunderstood that they are in need of frequent repetition. Continue reading

Mormons Who Experience Same-Sex Attraction Need Our Love

Mormon DiscussionWhenever same-sex attraction and/or same-sex marriage is discussed, the focus tends to be on those who are already seeking/living in a same-gender relationship (a.k.a. gay and lesbian). But there is a forgotten group that experience homosexuality and who feel like they don’t fit into either side: that is members of the Church who experience same-sex attraction (SSA) and fight their temptations every day. They work so hard to obey their parents, church leaders, and God. They are on a roller coaster of emotions as they strive to live the commandments and discover their place in the Church and within God’s plan. Some days they are doing great; they have hit a milestone in their journey and are feeling on top of the world. Other days, they might feel low, hated, or feel like they can never improve, never be loved or accepted. And in all of those moments, we, as members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon), as children of God (literal brothers and sisters), need to offer our unconditional love, support and friendship no matter what.

I cannot speak from personal experience about what it means to have SSA as a member of the Church, but I do observe as a very close bystander. I speak from my experience watching a very dear family member come out and try to find his place both in the world and at Church. I have always loved him. I have tried so hard to perfectly understand him, at all times, but there are so many times where I feel like I have failed him miserably. He is a beautiful son of God. I know that God loves him. As I have watched and been a part of his journey, I have learned a few things:
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Which Way Do You Facebook?

Not long ago, a friend of mine shared with me an experience her husband had on Facebook. He was casually scrolling through the news feed when he saw that one of his LDS friends had posted a very approving comment about the nature of same sex relationships on a photo of gay couple on a cruise. My friend’s husband was surprised. This man on Facebook was a faithful, active member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints who somehow didn’t realize that he was unwittingly giving approval comments about a practice that is in direct opposition to the teachings of our Church. Why would he feel okay with doing this, while on the other hand not feel comfortable positively commenting on other types of sins being hailed on social media? My friend then said the following:

How many others do this, in spite of the fact that the Brethren have clarified this issue to the point that no one can misunderstand the Church’s position? This is basic LDS doctrine. Do Church members realize when they “like” and leave comments of approval on Facebook, they are going along with behaviors that the Lord has clearly defined as serious sexual sin?  What kind of a message are they sending to others? To their children? To the youth they teach? Or to those they lead in the Church?  How are these good, faithful members missing this crucial point?

While we may not fully know the intent of others’ actions, we can look to our own actions in this regard. The point of sharing this story is not to cast judgment on an individual. Rather, it is to illustrate the point that we would do well to consider what we show approval of on social media, whatever it may be.

Many reading this may have had the same thoughts, being disappointed, concerned or surprised when they see LDS friends and family sharing and commenting positively on things in opposition to and in violation of God’s commandments. Others reading this will be angry and immediately cast this man as being judgmental and intolerant. Yet, knowing what we know about LDS doctrine and standards, why would some still choose to support practices that have been so clearly defined as right and wrong? Whom do we face when we see things contrary to Church standards and doctrine being advocated on social media?

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Why You Can’t Be Loyally Opposed to the Church

Free stock photo of person, woman, apple, hotelThere has been a lot of talk lately from members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints who say they sustain the prophet and apostles but actively promote opposition to the Church’s stance on same-sex marriage and homosexual relationships and try to persuade others to dissent. Can one be true to the faith if they are doing this? Is there a such thing as “loyal opposition” in God’s kingdom?

With this particular issue, we’re not talking about minor disagreements. We’re talking about being opposed to fundamental, core doctrines of the gospel; namely that marriage is only between a man and a woman and the law of chastity. Put these two things together and one can see how it creates an impasse; and sadly, a wall between them and the prophet.

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Murmuring With Those That Murmur

LDS Church Handbook ISocial Media is being inundated with some  members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon) declaring their objection to the recent policy updates in the Church. Some have even gone as far as saying that they intend to walk away from their faith. This makes me wonder if they realize that these policy updates have come directly from The First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. These prophets, seers and revelators are doing exactly what they have been commissioned by the Savior to do: prophesy, see and reveal. Theirs is a unique calling; they are Apostles of the Lord Jesus Christ, chosen and commissioned by Him. When something this collective is done on such serious issues, don’t believe for one second that they acted rashly, are misguided or decided this without careful consideration, prayer and fasting. Yet without much pause, some are already announcing their intentions to walk away from their faith, their beliefs, and their covenants — and with very public criticism of the Church via social media.  In a twist, members are being asked to “mourn with those that mourn”, with perhaps the expectation or inference that we will also “murmur with those who murmur.”

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Redefining Marriage and Polygamy

file000619663500Marriage is being redefined in a few countries across the world. In fact on Tuesday, April 28, 2015, the Supreme Court of the United States of America will hear arguments on whether or not the states of that nation have the constitutional right to define marriage solely as a union between one man and one woman. Many members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints find themselves asking or answering some tough questions about redefining marriage and polygamy.

I have heard many people complain that the Church has no right to defend the definition of marriage as a union between one man and one woman simply because in the early days of the Church some prophets, apostles, and common Church members practiced polygamy. They suffered great persecutions because of it. Shouldn’t  the LDS Church be more sympathetic to other types of unions? Continue reading