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Rivers

Inclusiveness and Gay Children of God

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I often hear talk about how the Church needs to be more inclusive rather than exclusive.  And I am all for inclusiveness.  Jesus was all about being inclusive to everybody.   We, as the body of Christ, can always do better.  

But when it comes to our gay and lesbian brothers and sisters, things get complicated.  According to our theology, sexual relations are forbidden outside marriage. We also believe that marriage, by definition, is the union of male and female.  Thus homosexual relations are always wrong.  That is a rule members of the Church must follow.  It's part of the buy-in to be a Latter-day Saint.  And you can argue that it is a stupid and unfair rule.  Regardless its the rule and its not changing.  

So given that fact that the theology is what it is and it isn't changing, is there anything more we can do policy-wise to be more inclusive?  I'm all ears.  I know that we can start by simply not being jerks.  But are there any policy changes that could help?

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Other then the policy that was recently lifted is there any other that excludes LGBT people?

Obviously baptism, but that’s not so much a policy as a commandment.

If there isn’t any policy specifically excluding them, I think it just comes down to member attitudes and treatment. I got called out on BYU-I campus for wearing shorts, I don’t go to the school and was just visiting my wife, but someone felt the need to call me out on my “sin”..can you imagine if they had seen two happy men kiss on campus? 

Theres still a lot of bad culture around the LGBT community vs. the church. While many members are welcoming, many make it awkward to the point that none would feel comfortable attending with their “partner.”

So in short, unless there are current policies excluding LGBT people that need to be repealed or changed..there isn’t much we can do but change our attitude.

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Posted (edited)

Yes, our scriptures do forbid sexual relations outside marriage.  But now gay marriage is a reality.  Many do not accept the premise that marriage, by definition, is the union of male and female.  I personally do not believe that is in our scriptural canon.  Now before everyone starts screaming about the proclamation on the family. I just want to say that is not a revelation.  It is a policy only.  It was Oaks who years later did a little revisionist history and called it a revelation.  Just like what Nelson tried to do with the Policy of Exclusion.  Only it didn't work.  The policy (and his revelation) was reversed.  The same can happen with any policy, including the proclamation on the family.  

IMO for the church to continue to be virbrent in the twenty first century, it will have to become much more inclusive. This means equal standing for women and the LGBTQ community.  Sure, core beliefs will have to change, but that has happened before. Polygamy was a central doctrine and it dumped in order for the church to survive. 

Edited by sunstoned
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2 minutes ago, sunstoned said:

Yes, our scriptures do forbid sexual relations outside marriage.  But now gay marriage is a reality.  Many do not accept the premise that marriage, by definition, is the union of male and female.  I personally do not believe that is in our scriptural canon.  Now before everyone starts screaming about the proclamation on the family. I just want to say that is not a revelation.  It is a policy only.  It was Oaks who years later did a little revisionist history and called it a revelation.  Just like what Nelson tried to do with the Policy of Exclusion.  Only it didn't work.  The policy was reversed.  The same can happen with any policy, including the proclamation on the family.  

IMO for the church to continue to be virbrent in the twenty first century, it will have to become much more inclusive. This means equal standing for women and the LGBTQ community.  Sure, core beliefs will have to change, but that has happened before. Polygamy was a central doctrine and it dumped in order for the church to survive. 

I love many of our LGBT brothers and sisters, though they know I don’t approve, we are still close friends. However, if the church dropped the bomb that gay marriage was A-Okay I’d most definitely jump ship.

There is a Heavenly Mother and Heavenly Father. The revelations make it clear (meaning the Bible and D&C) that it is man and wife that are exalted. Any other pattern for a family will not exist in eternity, thus to me it is not a valid marriage.

Thats why I didn’t care during the great debates behind federal gay marriage approval. I don’t consider state licensing as a valid marriage since it’s a recent development in history and is done purely for money and insurance purposes, so why should I care if the state now “recognizes” gay marriage? They could still hold a ceremony before that, wear rings, and change their names, so does this REALLY chmage anything?

If the church, however, changed or announced that LGBT marriages were legitimate in the eyes of God..I might just go join Snuffers crew after all! Haha

Though I do agree to an extent that in order to stay “vibrant” they may adopt this practice. I’m not to sure, but it wouldn’t surprise me. Like the sudden switch between “polygamy is required for exaltation” to “well, just kidding.” It’s always a possibility...just not a likely one.

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Legitimizing same-sex marriage would be way more radical than the discontinuation of polygamy.  Polygamy was still a male/female union and it also had a biblical precedent.  

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Posted (edited)
4 minutes ago, Rivers said:

Legitimizing same-sex marriage would be way more radical than the discontinuation of polygamy.  Polygamy was still a male/female union and it also had a biblical precedent.  

Oh for sure! Much easier to either start or stop something for which you can cite God as the author.

But Gay Marriage? That would probably take a very convincing and/or legitimate revelation to get many of the more..traditional members..to stay and be confident in the leaders. I’m not saying they would ever do it, but technically the possibility is there.

Edited by SettingDogStar

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7 hours ago, SettingDogStar said:

Oh for sure! Much easier to either start or stop something for which you can cite God as the author.

But Gay Marriage? That would probably take a very convincing and/or legitimate revelation to get many of the more..traditional members..to stay and be confident in the leaders. I’m not saying they would ever do it, but technically the possibility is there.

The Greek root “gen” means to produce; the suffix “der” creates the agent noun (someone who does something). There is an aspect of gender that is defined by social and cultural roles, and in Zion these are based on covenant. Ultimately in the Gospel of Jesus Christ, life is produced by sons and daughters of God under covenant, spiritually, physically, temporally and eternally.

I think this is why the Proclamation addresses gender as “an essential characteristic of individual premortal, mortal, and eternal identity and purpose,” and not sexuality. The same-sex production of human life on all planes cannot be reconciled into a covenant (marriage).

The covenants are defined under proper authority, through keys held by relatively few. But the saints strive to include people in whatever aspect of society and culture that remains in common, as long as such people find meaning in participating without making or keeping covenants

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8 hours ago, sunstoned said:

Yes, our scriptures do forbid sexual relations outside marriage.  But now gay marriage is a reality.  Many do not accept the premise that marriage, by definition, is the union of male and female.  I personally do not believe that is in our scriptural canon.  Now before everyone starts screaming about the proclamation on the family. I just want to say that is not a revelation.  It is a policy only.  It was Oaks who years later did a little revisionist history and called it a revelation.  Just like what Nelson tried to do with the Policy of Exclusion.  Only it didn't work.  The policy (and his revelation) was reversed.  The same can happen with any policy, including the proclamation on the family.  

IMO for the church to continue to be virbrent in the twenty first century, it will have to become much more inclusive. This means equal standing for women and the LGBTQ community.  Sure, core beliefs will have to change, but that has happened before. Polygamy was a central doctrine and it dumped in order for the church to survive. 

Do you feel included in our Church, society and culture?

What core beliefs do you think would have to change, and how would those changes relate to core doctrine and core covenants?

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Posted (edited)
32 minutes ago, CV75 said:

The Greek root “gen” means to produce; the suffix “der” creates the agent noun (someone who does something). There is an aspect of gender that is defined by social and cultural roles, and in Zion these are based on covenant. Ultimately in the Gospel of Jesus Christ, life is produced by sons and daughters of God under covenant, spiritually, physically, temporally and eternally.

 

I think this is why the Proclamation addresses gender as “an essential characteristic of individual premortal, mortal, and eternal identity and purpose,” and not sexuality. The same-sex production of human life on all planes cannot be reconciled into a covenant (marriage).

 

The covenants are defined under proper authority, through keys held by relatively few. But the saints strive to include people in whatever aspect of society and culture that remains in common, as long as such people find meaning in participating without making or keeping covenants

 

So maybe there’s away to offer some but not all covenants? I suppose that would be up to the Lord to decide how serious LGBT behiavior is and if He’s willing to excuse it to allow them to take some covenants, but not all.

maybe not, but I’m trying to think of some out of the box ideas haha

Edited by SettingDogStar

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35 minutes ago, CV75 said:

The Greek root “gen” means to produce; the suffix “der” creates the agent noun (someone who does something). There is an aspect of gender that is defined by social and cultural roles, and in Zion these are based on covenant. Ultimately in the Gospel of Jesus Christ, life is produced by sons and daughters of God under covenant, spiritually, physically, temporally and eternally.

 

I think this is why the Proclamation addresses gender as “an essential characteristic of individual premortal, mortal, and eternal identity and purpose,” and not sexuality. The same-sex production of human life on all planes cannot be reconciled into a covenant (marriage).

 

The covenants are defined under proper authority, through keys held by relatively few. But the saints strive to include people in whatever aspect of society and culture that remains in common, as long as such people find meaning in participating without making or keeping covenants

 

Then basically the Church has to just write off anyone who is gay as not being eligible for exaltation.  There is no promise that if you are gay, you will be straight after you die.  And even if such a promise was given, who would believe it?  We all remember previous promises of becoming straight if you just marry a woman.  Maybe discarding  all gay children of God is an acceptable gospel stance to take.  It seems like the church is willing to make that their position even in absence of ANY direct revelation on what happens to someone who is gay.  

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Posted (edited)
54 minutes ago, SettingDogStar said:

So maybe there’s away to offer some but not all covenants? I suppose that would be up to the Lord to decide how serious LGBT behiavior is and if He’s willing to excuse it to allow them to take some covenants, but not all.

maybe not, but I’m trying to think of some out of the box ideas haha

It seems all the covenants are already offered to everyone, but not everyone desires or accepts them or has the opportunity to follow through on receiving them despite their desire to. I see this everyday, and I think people can still be included in social and cultural aspects no matter how they may assign a particular characteristic or categorization to themselves or describe themselves as belonging to a particular category or group in addition to that of being a member or friend of the Church, or the family or friend of a member.

ETA correct spelling

Edited by CV75
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46 minutes ago, california boy said:

Then basically the Church has to just write off anyone who is gay as not being eligible for exaltation.  There is no promise that if you are gay, you will be straight after you die.  And even if such a promise was given, who would believe it?  We all remember previous promises of becoming straight if you just marry a woman.  Maybe discarding  all gay children of God is an acceptable gospel stance to take.  It seems like the church is willing to make that their position even in absence of ANY direct revelation on what happens to someone who is gay.  

What do "write off" and "discard" mean in practical or doctrinal terms? What are the revealed eligibility requirements for exaltation, which apply to everyone?

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Posted (edited)

I keep remembering what the gay activist who reactivated and became exec secretary in his ward (don't know how he's doing today).   He said that the male fellowship and hugs he got in his service was enough to handle his needs and make it possible for him to live the gospel (paraphrased, of course).

I wish we could not be afraid to hug and touch those of our same sex who we think are gay (not suggesting we hug without consent ether).   I wish we could not be afraid to pal around, invite into our social circles those who we think or know are gay (and, frankly those who are just weird to us).   All people need social connection and human touch.   And sometimes lots of it.   Our society seems to make that touch all about sex for adults and not even the little bit about sex for kids.   There are many many people in this world trading sex for affection, even amongst single adults who know they should be living the Law of Chastity.

And it wouldn't hurt at all if we all wore rainbow lapel pins to church.

Edited by rpn
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7 minutes ago, CV75 said:

What do "write off" and "discard" mean in practical or doctrinal terms? What are the revealed eligibility requirements for exaltation, which apply to everyone?

Basically I am saying that the Church is willing to not have a place for gay couples in the church in order to ensure a place for straight couples to receive their exaltation.  According to current church doctrine/policy, there is no exaltation without a marriage between a man and a woman (women).  Revelation on what happens to someone who is gay is completely absent from Church doctrine.  The Church's solution is to excommunicate any gay couple.  Problem solved.  

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5 minutes ago, rpn said:

I keep remembering what the gay activist who reactivated and became exec secretary in his ward (don't know how he's doing today).   He said that the male fellowship and hugs he got in his service was enough to handle his needs and make it possible for him to live the gospel (paraphrased, of course).

I wish we could not be afraid to hug and touch those of our same sex who we think are gay (not suggesting we hug without consent ether).   I wish we could not be afraid to pal around, invite into our social circles those who we think or know are gay (and, frankly those who are just weird to us).   All people need social connection and human touch.   And sometimes lots of it.   Our society seems to make that touch all about sex for adults and not even the little bit about sex for kids.   There are many many people in this world trading sex for affection, even amongst single adults who know they should be living the Law of Chastity.

And it wouldn't hurt at all if we all wore rainbow lapel pins to church.

Interesting ideas, but I personally would not really respond to either gesture.  They seem simply gestures to give a pretext of inclusion when none really exists. There is not a lot of credibility of the Church to being welcoming to the gay community.  You can't just wipe out Prop 8 and the Oct policy with a rainbow pin and a hug.  I would be much more impressed if the Church made a stance against businesses from discriminating against gay couples, but I doubt that is even being discussed.  

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10 hours ago, Rivers said:

I often hear talk about how the Church needs to be more inclusive rather than exclusive.  And I am all for inclusiveness.  Jesus was all about being inclusive to everybody.   We, as the body of Christ, can always do better.  

But when it comes to our gay and lesbian brothers and sisters, things get complicated.  According to our theology, sexual relations are forbidden outside marriage. We also believe that marriage, by definition, is the union of male and female.  Thus homosexual relations are always wrong.  That is a rule members of the Church must follow.  It's part of the buy-in to be a Latter-day Saint.  And you can argue that it is a stupid and unfair rule.  Regardless its the rule and its not changing.  

So given that fact that the theology is what it is and it isn't changing, is there anything more we can do policy-wise to be more inclusive?  I'm all ears.  I know that we can start by simply not being jerks.  But are there any policy changes that could help?

Yes.  The first step, which the LDS Church has already taken, is to be in favor of equal rights for gay people -- equal access, equal marital rights, equal employment rights, etc.  Not allowing them standing is a major problem in many countries -- in which religion is civil policy and law.  Muslims especially need to adopt an egalitarian POV on women's  and gay rights, aside from not persecuting members of other religions.

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Posted (edited)
11 hours ago, Rivers said:

I often hear talk about how the Church needs to be more inclusive rather than exclusive.  And I am all for inclusiveness.  Jesus was all about being inclusive to everybody.   We, as the body of Christ, can always do better.  

But when it comes to our gay and lesbian brothers and sisters, things get complicated.  According to our theology, sexual relations are forbidden outside marriage. We also believe that marriage, by definition, is the union of male and female.  Thus homosexual relations are always wrong.  That is a rule members of the Church must follow.  It's part of the buy-in to be a Latter-day Saint.  And you can argue that it is a stupid and unfair rule.  Regardless its the rule and its not changing.  

So given that fact that the theology is what it is and it isn't changing, is there anything more we can do policy-wise to be more inclusive?  I'm all ears.  I know that we can start by simply not being jerks.  But are there any policy changes that could help?

Nope.  Not if change is off the table.  if the position is anyone who is LGBT should be excluded, then I don't see how you can be inclusive.  You can be nice and smile and talk to them, but they'll not be able to participate in church fully and will thus be excluded by definition.  

Edited by stemelbow

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7 minutes ago, california boy said:

Interesting ideas, but I personally would not really respond to either gesture.  They seem simply gestures to give a pretext of inclusion when none really exists. There is not a lot of credibility of the Church to being welcoming to the gay community.  You can't just wipe out Prop 8 and the Oct policy with a rainbow pin and a hug.

So no amount of change in LDS policy has any meaning for you?  The LDS can never obtain forgiveness?  So it is not true that "The LDS Church previously taught that same-sex attraction is a curable condition, but now states that 'individuals do not choose to have such attractions'."  And it is not true that "In April 2019, . . . the LDS Church reversed the controversial November 2015 policy."  Do you know about the reversal of the November Policy, or should I explain it to you?

7 minutes ago, california boy said:

 I would be much more impressed if the Church made a stance against businesses from discriminating against gay couples, but I doubt that is even being discussed.  

So it is not true that "in 2015, top LDS leaders worked alongside LGBTQ advocates and Utah lawmakers to pass a statewide non-discrimination bill that protects LGBTQ people in housing and employment, while offering exemptions for churches and other religious-liberty protections" (https://www.hrc.org/resources/stances-of-faiths-on-lgbt-issues-church-of-jesus-christ-of-latter-day-saint ).  Nothing like that has even been discussed?

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11 hours ago, Rivers said:

Jesus was all about being inclusive to everybody. 

Well, almost everybody. There were a few instances where he refused help or preaching of the gospel to certain groups of people.  (Matthew 15:21-28)

I think anything more the church can do to edge towards more inclusion will never be enough for those groups of people. 

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1 hour ago, Robert F. Smith said:

Yes.  The first step, which the LDS Church has already taken, is to be in favor of equal rights for gay people -- equal access, equal marital rights, equal employment rights, etc.  Not allowing them standing is a major problem in many countries -- in which religion is civil policy and law.  Muslims especially need to adopt an egalitarian POV on women's  and gay rights, aside from not persecuting members of other religions.

So the Church now approves of same-sex marriage? When did that change occur?

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3 minutes ago, Scott Lloyd said:

So the Church now approves of same-sex marriage? When did that change occur?

I was speaking solely of civil liberties for gay people, which the LDS Church supports.  Sorry I was unclear.

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1 hour ago, california boy said:

Basically I am saying that the Church is willing to not have a place for gay couples in the church in order to ensure a place for straight couples to receive their exaltation.  According to current church doctrine/policy, there is no exaltation without a marriage between a man and a woman (women).  Revelation on what happens to someone who is gay is completely absent from Church doctrine.  The Church's solution is to excommunicate any gay couple.  Problem solved.  

That is an interesting thing to say, but what gay couple has been escorted out of Church meetings? The excommunication of gay couples is not because the partners are gay. Where does it say that either action ensures the exaltation of other couples? There is no revelation on what happens to anyone vis-a-vis their sexual orientation, so i don't understand what you mean. What would you say are the requirements for exaltation?

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1 hour ago, california boy said:

Interesting ideas, but I personally would not really respond to either gesture.  They seem simply gestures to give a pretext of inclusion when none really exists. There is not a lot of credibility of the Church to being welcoming to the gay community.  You can't just wipe out Prop 8 and the Oct policy with a rainbow pin and a hug.  I would be much more impressed if the Church made a stance against businesses from discriminating against gay couples, but I doubt that is even being discussed.  

What bases do you have in common with her members that would make you want to be included in the Church as well as the gay community? Are political alignments really that essential?

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3 minutes ago, CV75 said:

According to current church doctrine/policy, there is no exaltation without a marriage between a man and a woman (women)

There will be single people in the celestial kingdom, and all of them somehow will be included in the government of eternity which is establish by family.    How can you claim your statement above as being church doctrine?   (And I quoted this out of CV75 quoting california boy.  So these aren't CV75's words.)

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