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Maestrophil

Policy reversal

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1 minute ago, MustardSeed said:

At least now it won' t be 'required' that they will be excommunicated.  And they can maintain their integrity if they choose to be involved in church.  IT would be hard to be labeled apostate and participate in any way and not feel wrong about that, I should think.

I don't know why people view apostasy as a greater sin from sexual sin.  A person who practices sexual sin unrepentantly meets all the requirements for excommunication, just like a person who practices apostasy.  There is no difference.  One is not more "required" than the other.  There is grounds for both to be excommunicated equally. 

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This thread is moving very fast and this might have already been shared by someone but here is part of the letter received by my Stake President from the First Presidency most of which is included in news reports
Details shared by President Oaks
"At the direction of the First Presidency, President Oaks shared that effective immediately, children of parents who identify themselves as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender may be baptized without First Presidency approval if the custodial parents give permission for the baptism and understand both the doctrine that a baptized child will be taught and the covenants he or she will be expected to make.

A nonmember parent or parents (including LGBT parents) can request that their baby be blessed by a worthy Melchizedek Priesthood holder. These parents need to understand that congregation members will contact them periodically, and that when the child who has been blessed reaches 8 years of age, a Church member will contact them and propose that the child be baptized.

Previously, our Handbook characterized same-gender marriage by a member as apostasy. While we still consider such a marriage to be a serious transgression, it will not be treated as apostasy for purposes of Church discipline. Instead, the immoral conduct in heterosexual or homosexual relationships will be treated in the same way.

The very positive policies announced this morning should help affected families. In addition, our members’ efforts to show more understanding, compassion and love should increase respect and understanding among all people of goodwill. We want to reduce the hate and contention so common today. We are optimistic that a majority of people — whatever their beliefs and orientations — long for better understanding and less contentious communications. That is surely our desire, and we seek the help of our members and others to attain it.

These new policies are being sent to priesthood leaders worldwide and will be included in online updates to our Church Handbook for leaders. These changes do not represent a shift in Church doctrine related to marriage or the commandments of God in regard to chastity and morality. The doctrine of the plan of salvation and the importance of chastity will not change. These policy changes come after an extended period of counseling with our brethren in the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and after fervent, united prayer to understand"

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Posted (edited)
3 minutes ago, pogi said:

I don't know why people view apostasy as a greater sin from sexual sin.  A person who practices sexual sin unrepentantly meets all the requirements for excommunication, just like a person who practices apostasy.  There is no difference.  One is not more "required" than the other.  There is grounds for both to be excommunicated equally. 

How can you claim with such surety that you know what you’re talking about? You’re wrong in using such blanket statements.

Read the statement to stake presidents. 

Edited by SouthernMo
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5 minutes ago, ALarson said:

That's what we don't know yet.  Does it mean the same as unrepentant "heterosexual sex"?

I think the quote makes that pretty clear.  I don't understand how else you can interpret it:

Quote

 Instead, the immoral conduct in heterosexual or homosexual relationships will be treated in the same way.

In other words, unrepentant immoral sexual conduct (heterosexual or not) will be treated the same way - grounds for excommunication. 

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Just now, SouthernMo said:

How can you claim with such surety that you know what you’re talking about? You’re wrong in using such blanket statements.

I think it spells it all out in the handbook of instructions.  Apostasy is grounds for excommunication as is unrepentant sexual sin.  It doesn't place one above the other in terms of urgency or "requirement" to excommunicate. 

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3 hours ago, Gray said:

I guess the parents will have to decide whether or not they want the baptism to go forward. As it should be.

I am assuming bishops have always been able to delay baptisms if they believe the candidate is not ready in some fashion, including confusion over what is and isn't a sin.  Am I wrong in this?  If not, it will not be solely the parents' decision, nor should it be, Imo, when baptism is not just an individual action, but a community one.

My biggest concern (outside of the concern of the child experiencing significant conflict) is grandparents or other family pushing for baptism and parents going along with it while having no intent to support and leadership knowing this and being reluctant to baptize, but now being open to pressure to do so.  I feel this puts children and leaders in positions they shouldn't be in.  I hope training is provided on how to work with the grandparents or others who are pressuring parents to back off so it truly becomes a choice of desire of the parents and child so support will be there for the child and leaders who want to include the child in full activity.

The ministering programming change at least allows for the ministers assigned to the child once they are on record as a member to not be automatically counted as failing if they are not let in the home or allowed to make contact, as I understand it, as well as allowing for less formal interaction to be seen as sufficient (inviting children to participate in group activities with one's own children, for example) and not be feel pressured to try to do more if there is resistance.  So I think that is one issue that was a problem before that is now resolved to avoid potential conflict (as long as care is taken to assign understanding ministers who feel comfortable with the situation and therefore will work within the appropriate limitations and not either give up or think it is useless or be pushy).

I think I would have preferred a tightening up on heterosexual transgressions affecting families, where children living in the household of parents living together unmarried were told to wait until baptism as a family could occur or children were adults in general with exceptions being relatively easily made (meaning no a lot of hoops or road blocks to maneuver around, but simple application and quick turnaround of processing it) in all cases where children were exceptional in personal desire and commitment to baptism (and not doing it just because friends were doing it) or had obvious support from family and friends, such as parents attending consistently no matter what, but I may be missing complications in cultures where divorces are difficult to get.

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3 minutes ago, pogi said:

Unrepentant sexual sin (homosexual sex) is simply not going to fly.  I think you guys are reading WAY beyond the mark here.  They are comparing it to all other sexual sin - is a bishop not going to excommunicate someone who is unrepentant in their sexual sin?  Of course they will. 

Hopefully EACH instance of immorality and adjudicated by the Spirit.

But I think your main point is unrepentant sexual immorality.

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Posted (edited)
5 minutes ago, pogi said:

I think the quote makes that pretty clear.  I don't understand how else you can interpret it:

In other words, unrepentant immoral sexual conduct (heterosexual or not) will be treated the same way - grounds for excommunication. 

If it’s in the exact “same” way as heterosexuals can be disciplined (or purpose), it’ll be for cheating or sex before marriage.  It depends on how literal the leadership meant that part to be.

I think it could go either way and I expect there will be more information coming out and direction.

Edited by JulieM

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Just now, provoman said:

Hopefully EACH instance of immorality and adjudicated by the Spirit.

But I think your main point is unrepentant sexual immorality.

Exactly.  Unrepentant.

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6 minutes ago, pogi said:

I think the quote makes that pretty clear.  I don't understand how else you can interpret it:

In other words, unrepentant immoral sexual conduct (heterosexual or not) will be treated the same way - grounds for excommunication. 

Stop - just stop. You are wrong. You just are.

You claim that any unrepentant sexual sin will lead to excommunication. Where is this taught?

You claim that there is no difference between unrepentant sexual sin and apostasy. The instruction to stake presidents clearly teaches otherwise.

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2 minutes ago, JulieM said:

If it’s in the “same” way as heterosexuals can be disciplined, it’ll be for cheating or sex before marriage.  It depends on how literal the leadership meant that part to be.

I think it could go with way and expect there will be more information coming out and direction.

Don't leave out homosexual sex.  A heterosexual will be disciplined for experimentation with the same sex too.  Marriage has nothing to do with it. 

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, 10THAmendment said:

I have been feeling very off since hearing this. I think I may have just lost my temple recommend. I do not think I can answer that I sustain the church leaders as prophets. They lead me astray too often. I can no longer justify their mistakes in my mind and heart. I really have a sick feeling about all of this. I have wanted the church to be true for the past few years since my eyes started to be opened to the big problems. 

I simply cannot continue to believe these men are prophets when they have been so wrong so many times since the beginning. Good men, yes. Faithful men who are trying to do their best? Absolutely, I believe that 100%. In my mind they just cannot be who they say they are based on their fruits. And it really does break my heart. I think I have finally reached the end of my rope and it is a pretty empty feeling.

Our leaders never claimed to be infallible. In fact almost every Prophet has warned against us automatically believing everything they say comes from God.

Having said that, I see a "passing of the old guard' and a kinder gentler more Christ-like leadership.

Elder Christofferson's Brother is gay. Elder Gongs son is gay.

Edited by mnn727
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1 hour ago, juliann said:

Yes. 

CFR

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Maybe the Prophet being smart?  Why make the whole nation hate your guts?  People are already fairly anti-Christian as it is, at least this makes you look a bit better in public.  At the very least, next time an angry mob shows up at a temples gates the guards can say something to the affect of "Hey guys we're ok with LGBTQ folk!  Those mean old evangelicals down the street however...."

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1 minute ago, pogi said:

Don't leave out homosexual sex.  A heterosexual will be disciplined for experimentation with the same sex too.  Marriage has nothing to do with it. 

We don’t know if a transgression (not apostasy anymore) gets you excommunicated.  I think they’re leaving a lot more up to the discretion of the leaders locally.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, juliann said:

Come on, just because you don't know any doesn't mean it wasn't happening. I know people who left. When you have beloved gay family members it isn't a non-issue.

My wife's sister is gay, her and her partner have been together longer than my wife and I have. We don't shun them, they've stayed with us and we've stayed with them. Her sister is my wife's best friend.  They would never consider joining the Church nor would they ever have any children join (her partner has 2 kids {now adults with kids of their own} from a previous {regular} marriage)

Edited by mnn727
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1 minute ago, mnn727 said:

Having said that, I see a "passing of the old guard' and a kinder gentler more Christ-like leadership.

Bingo. We are led by men far more than we acknowledge.  Far less revelation.

If we have a president of the church who is strict and obedience-focused, the Mormon god suddenly becomes strict and obedience-focused in His policy.  If we have a president who is caring, loving and patient, the Mormon god suddenly becomes caring, loving and patient in His policy.

Yet, we are told that He does not change. 

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2 hours ago, Gray said:

Not necessarily. Lots of people get more lenient discipline for sex outside of marriage or adultery.

Do they if they state they will persist in the sin?  Serious question since the only situations I have been aware of where one spouse persists, they have been excommunicated and even in some cases of repentance, there has been excommunication and rebaptism as part of the process of repentance.  I haven't been aware of unmarried cases as well.  Most who confined in premarital sex had left the church themselves unofficially and I didn't pry to see if it was made official by either them or leadership.

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9 minutes ago, mnn727 said:

Our leaders never claimed to be infallible. In fact almost every Prophet has warned against us automatically believing everything they say comes from God.

Having said that, I see a "passing of the old guard' and a kinder gentler more Christ-like leadership.

Elder Christofferson's Brother is gay. Elder Gongs son is gay.

But, they did claim it was originally established via revelation: https://www.mormonnewsroom.org/article/president-nelson-handbook-change

Are you ignoring that bit, or have you found some way around it in your mind?

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Just now, Calm said:

Do they if they state they will persist in the sin? 

I don’t know about other wards, but we have an active sister who lives with the father of her children (not married but they’ve been together for over 15 years).  They have no plans to marry (according to her).  She’s a wonderful, sweet, faithful woman and everyone loves her.  She teaches primary (has a calling) , but has not been through the temple.

Should she be excommunicated if she’s to be treated the same as many seem to believe those in SSM should be?

I think that opens a whole can of worms for local elders maybe.

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28 minutes ago, pogi said:

Unrepentant sexual sin (homosexual sex) is simply not going to fly.  I think you guys are reading WAY beyond the mark here.  They are comparing it to all other sexual sin - is a bishop not going to excommunicate someone who is unrepentant in their sexual sin?  Of course they will. 

I've heard, anecdotally, of Bishops who did not discipline gay married couples in their wards.  Some people believe that was partially the impetus for the policy declaring gay marriage = apostasy.

I'm very confident that there are bishops who will not discipline gay married couples.  Time will tell.

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Posted (edited)
22 minutes ago, SouthernMo said:

Stop - just stop. You are wrong. You just are.

You accuse me of being the certain one?  I am expressing my opinion based on my understanding of the handbook of instructions in regard to sexual immorality and apostasy.  

22 minutes ago, SouthernMo said:

You claim that any unrepentant sexual sin will lead to excommunication. Where is this taught?

If the sexual sin is known, I think we can both agree that there will be a disciplinary council.  Many things are taken into consideration in the council: 

Quote

The council takes into consideration many factors, such as whether temple or marriage covenants have been violated; whether a position of trust or authority has been abused; the repetition, seriousness, and magnitude of the transgression; the age, maturity, and experience of the transgressor; the interests of innocent victims and innocent family members; the time between transgression and confession; whether or not confession was voluntary; and evidence of repentance.

The person in disciplinary council will surely be invited to repent of his sins.  If the person remains unrepentant and actively pursues sexually immoral practices despite his priesthood leaders admonition, then the person will be excommunicated for apostasy, if not for the sexual immoral act itself. 

Quote

It should also be made clear that an apostate is not an indifferent or an inactive member of the Church but rather one who flatly denies the divine nature of the Church or one who is antagonistic against or unresponsive to his priesthood authority.

https://www.lds.org/study/new-era/1975/07/q-and-a-questions-and-answers/what-are-the-reasons-for-and-the-process-of-excommunication?lang=eng

To openly and unrepentantly practice sexual immorality after a disciplinary council where they were admonished to repent, is to be "antagonistic and unresponsive to his priesthood authority."   The unrepentant and continued open practice of sexual immorality after disciplinary counsel is open apostasy and rebellion.   If the person has remorse and is repentant and strives to not sin again, but relapses - that is a different story.  They are at least trying and repentant. But if they are basically giving the bird to their Stake President and actively pursues what they are in disciplinary counsel for...apostasy. 

 

Edited by pogi

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