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Inclusiveness and Gay Children of God

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2 hours ago, pogi said:

He followed up by saying:

“Some of you may wonder if that doctrine is too good to be true. But Elder Dallin H. Oaks has said it MUST be true, because “there is no fullness of joy in the next life without a family unit, including a husband and wife, and posterity.” And “men (and women) are that they might have joy.”[v]

In other words, this is his opinion.  It is not something we should be teaching as truth or doctrine.  The best, most honest answer we have is “I don’t know”.

An opinion from a leader in an official platform is still just an opinion.

What does Elder Oaks know about fullness of joy for a gay man.  Has he ever been in love with someone of the same sex?  Might work for him, but not me.  And let's be clear, that is Elder Oaks opinion, not a revelation from God. So what is that worth?

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1 hour ago, Calm said:

Anyone that believes God can take any inherently deeply flawed human being and refine/gift them through the Atonement into exaltation material.

If God can purge the highly biologically triggered practically uncontrollable*** lust that is in so many of our hearts (straight or not), why couldn't he refine us in a way that we are attracted to the individual's qualities that have less to do with gender and more to do with how we are charitable?

***in terms of just popping up when we see someone we are highly physically attracted to, I think we can control our response to that initial reaction

So round two.  God is going to get me to be attracted to the opposite sex.  And why would I believe this?  Why would I want to believe this? What about my partner that I love so much?  Is God also going to take that love away from me?  

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1 hour ago, USU78 said:

I read Elder Oaks' statements on the subject to be in the nature of:  "We are living in Babylon now and henceforth will have very little ability to affect changes to/preservation of the Good, as much as that pains us -- "

Sounds like a case of Realpolitik.

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36 minutes ago, JAHS said:

Well of course they won't feel welcome, but they were the ones who made the choice to get married. I can't think of anything else the Church can do, short of changing main doctrines, that would make them feel more welcome. Making them feel more welcome will have to come from the individual members. 

I can't either.  So the answer to the question is No.  The Church can't make LGBT feel inclusive.  

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4 hours ago, Scott Lloyd said:

He said there is no exaltation without marriage between a man and a woman. And he is quite right. What you are describing is not exaltation. 

So where would I find this definition of exaltation in the scriptures or otherwise?

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20 minutes ago, california boy said:

So round two.  God is going to get me to be attracted to the opposite sex.  And why would I believe this?  Why would I want to believe this? What about my partner that I love so much?  Is God also going to take that love away from me?  

What then should God do to fix this? 

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40 minutes ago, california boy said:

What does Elder Oaks know about fullness of joy for a gay man.

I am pretty sure Elder Oaks was not talking about a joy that can be experienced in mortality, so it is not a joy that any of us can relate with.  His comment was based on current revelations regarding requirements for exaltation (fullness of joy).

43 minutes ago, california boy said:

And let's be clear, that is Elder Oaks opinion...

I think I was pretty clear on that.

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Posted (edited)
17 hours ago, california boy said:

I think I was pretty clear in what I meant.

Yes, and that is why I raised those fact-based questions, which you seemed heedless of.

Quote

I didn't mean to imply this was how I felt about the Church. I was commenting on what I believe would be required to make LGBT couples welcome in the church.  I don't think the church has ever said they regret any of the actions they have taken against the LGBT community.  Do you even think the Church regrets prop 8 or the Oct policy?  Do you think the LGBT community views the Church as a Church that welcomes gay families?

You already know that the LDS Church is unlikely to change its theology just to make some group happy.  For example, the LDS Church never apologized for practicing polygyny, but only ceased the practice in real time.  It's called accommodation, not acceptance of the opposing beliefs.

Quote

I didn't say the Church has done nothing to help the LGBT community.  I am well aware of their effort to help pass legislation to protect LGBT in housing and employment discrimination.  Is that enough for most people in the LGBT community to feel like the Church is welcoming to gay families?  Robert, do you sincerely believe the Church is welcoming and inclusive  towards gay families??

............This thread is asking what would make gay people feel more inclusive.  Do you think they should feel welcomed because they helped pass anti discrimination legislation on employment and housing, while excommunicating them when they get married?

I don't think that the LDS Church will accept homosexual activity as O.K. in any form within the faith.  I should have thought that you would appreciate what has been done to show tolerance and good neighborliness by the LDS Church.  You are always so slow in giving credit where it is due.  Nothing short of complete acceptance of homosexuality by the LDS Church seems your goal, but is that fair?  The Ordain Women movement likewise insists that only the ordination of women inside the LDS Church will be satisfactory.  Such absolute demands can certainly be made:  What I don't understand is why anyone would actually expect them to be fulfilled? Isn't it possible that the LDS faith simply does not allow for those ideas to become accepted?  Do you have any concept of boundary maintenance when it comes to religions?  I try to be tolerant of other religions, even if I don't particularly like aspects of those faiths.  Why is it so difficult to accept the faith of others?  Don't you believe in pluralism?

Quote

Do you think the Church supports discrimination by businesses based on religious beliefs?  Didn't the Church file a legal brief supporting businesses right to discriminate against the LGBT community?.....................

There are specific cases on the margins in which some types of businesses might need protection from being forced to engage in violation of their religious beliefs, and those margins are not well-defined yet.  This is an area of developing law, and we will have to see where it goes.  In the meantime, you have already said that the LDS Church has in fact made an "effort to help pass legislation to protect LGBT in housing and employment discrimination."  The LDS Church does not take that to mean that it can be forced to hire LGBTQ people in any and all circumstances.  Are you being reasonable in your demands?  Do you want a good neighbor LDS Church, or are you looking for conversion of the LDS Church to full participation in LGBTQ lifestyle?

Edited by Robert F. Smith
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20 minutes ago, JAHS said:

What then should God do to fix this? 

I think you will have to ask Him.  That is what I decided to do.  Maybe there is nothing that needs fixing.

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8 minutes ago, california boy said:

I think you will have to ask Him.  That is what I decided to do.  Maybe there is nothing that needs fixing.

I guess it could be one of those wait and see things. Like the scriptures say, in this life we are looking through a glass darkly.

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3 minutes ago, Robert F. Smith said:

Yes, and that is why I raised those fact-based questions, which you seemed heedless of.

You already know that the LDS Church is unlikely to change its theology just to make some group happy.  For example, the LDS Church never apologized for practicing polygyny, but only ceased the practice in real time.  It's called accommodation, not acceptance of the opposing beliefs.

 I certainly would not ask the Church to change its theology.  The Church can teach whatever it wants,  

3 minutes ago, Robert F. Smith said:

I don't think that the LDS Church will accept homosexual activity as O.K. in any form within the faith. 

I agree.

3 minutes ago, Robert F. Smith said:

I should have thought that you would appreciate what has been done to show tolerance and good neighborliness by the LDS Church.  You are always so slow in giving credit where it is due.  Nothing short of complete acceptance of homosexuality by the LDS Church seems your goal, but is that fair? 

I have acknowledged over and over the steps the Church has taken towards the LGBT community.  I have also pointed out the actions the church has taken against the LGBT community. I have NEVER suggested the church should accept homosexuality.  I have always said, the Church can teach whatever it wants.  What isn't fair is accusing me personally of having the church accept homosexuality as a goal.  I couldn't care less.  Why would I? 

3 minutes ago, Robert F. Smith said:

 

The Ordain Women movement likewise insists that only the ordination of women inside the LDS Church will be satisfactory.  Such absolute demands can certainly be made:  What I don't understand is why anyone would actually expect them to be fulfilled? Isn't it possible that the LDS faith simply does not allow for those ideas to become accepted?  Do you have any concept of boundary maintenance when it comes to religions?  I try to be tolerant of other religions, even if I don't particularly like aspects of those faiths.  Why is it so difficult to accept the faith of others?  Don't you believe in pluralism?

Robert, you seem to have gotten me confused with someone else.  I have no intention of even advocating that the Church accept those that are gay.  That doesn't mean I think the Church is welcoming, which is what my post was actually about.  I am just stating Church policy.  And right now, Church policy is that gay couples can not be members of the Church.  If they are, they will be excommunicated.  Can you show one post I have made where I advocated for the Church to change it's policies towards the LGBT community?  One?

3 minutes ago, Robert F. Smith said:

There are specific cases on the margins in which some types of businesses might need protection from being forced to engage in violation of their religious beliefs, and those margins are not yet well-defined yet.  This is an area of developing law, and we will have to see where it goes.  In the meantime, you have already said that the LDS Church has in fact made an "effort to help pass legislation to protect LGBT in housing and employment discrimination."  The LDS Church does not take that to mean that it can be forced hire LGBTQ people in any and all circumstances.  Are you being reasonable in your demands?  Do you want a good neighbor LDS Church, or are you looking for conversion of the LDS Church to full participation in LGBTQ lifestyle?

You are taking what I said totally out of context.  Is that fair?  I never said the Church should be forced to hire LGBT people.   Nor have I ever demanded that.  Where is all of this coming from?  You are making assumption after assumption from what I have said.  If you really believe anything you have written about me and any demands I have made, then SHOW ME where I have said anything you accuse me of.

The question was asked how the Church could be more inclusive of gays.  What I have said is that given current policy/doctrine, it can't.  Isn't that the reality of where things are?  And I gave the reasons why.  There has been no asking for those policies/doctrine to change.  

 

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8 minutes ago, california boy said:

..................  That doesn't mean I think the Church is welcoming, which is what my post was actually about.  I am just stating Church policy.  And right now, Church policy is that gay couples can not be members of the Church.  If they are, they will be excommunicated. .......................

The question was asked how the Church could be more inclusive of gays.  What I have said is that given current policy/doctrine, it can't.  Isn't that the reality of where things are?  And I gave the reasons why.  There has been no asking for those policies/doctrine to change.  

Sorry.  I apparently misunderstood you on all those points, and it did seem odd to me that you would say all that you did based on our previous conversations.

Yet, at the same time, you insist on the question of the LDS Church being welcoming to or inclusive of gays, and then state that ("given current policy/doctrine") they can't.  So, my question remains:  Isn't it enough that the LDS Church is a good neighbor?  On the one hand, you pose a critique of the LDS faith, while on the other you seem to accept the limits of accommodation.  Could be a win-win, if we let it, n'est-ce pas?

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1 hour ago, california boy said:

So round two.  God is going to get me to be attracted to the opposite sex.  And why would I believe this?  Why would I want to believe this? What about my partner that I love so much?  Is God also going to take that love away from me?  

Hey, man, we might just be ministering angels in the next life.  A celestial glory, yes, but not very sexy.  Love doesn't have to be sexual, in any case.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, rpn said:

So where would I find this definition of exaltation in the scriptures or otherwise?

Doctrine and Covenants 132:19-21. 

See also verses 16 and 17 in the same section. 

Edited by Scott Lloyd

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, california boy said:

God is going to get me to be attracted to the opposite sex.  

More than likely not, imo. But then I think straights probably wouldn’t be physically attracted to the opposite sex either. I thought we will be attracted to individuals we are married to for the unique combination that makes them them and our relationship together and their physical appearance will likely be a very minor part of that...if we end up looking very much like we do in this life even. 

Edited by Calm

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3 hours ago, HappyJackWagon said:

That's simply isn't correct unless you define "willingness to engage" as "proving yourself worthy" to church standards prior to actually engaging.

A willingness to engage would be a person coming to church wanting to participate in prayer, lessons, sacrament, etc. Perhaps they want to engage by serving others and having a calling like everyone else. But just because they are willing to engage in participation, doesn't mean they'll be allowed to participate. You'd agree with that, right?

I think the poster I’m actually responding to, who is not gay yet feels excluded, needs to decide if that is correct. Members (and even friends) who do identify as gay can also certainly desire and participate in these things and more, typically by assignment or invitation, an arrangement to which they voluntarily agree. Not all of them require "worthiness" (however you might define that). Hence their participation is also voluntary and is as full or partial as their willingness to engage.

 

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Robert F. Smith said:

Sorry.  I apparently misunderstood you on all those points, and it did seem odd to me that you would say all that you did based on our previous conversations.

Yet, at the same time, you insist on the question of the LDS Church being welcoming to or inclusive of gays, and then state that ("given current policy/doctrine") they can't.  So, my question remains:  Isn't it enough that the LDS Church is a good neighbor?  On the one hand, you pose a critique of the LDS faith, while on the other you seem to accept the limits of accommodation.  Could be a win-win, if we let it, n'est-ce pas?

Yeah.  The answer to the question is no.  The church can not be welcoming and inclusive of gay couples as members of the church.  But gay couples certainly can attend as guests, and I am sure the ward will be cordial towards them for the most part.

As you know, I personally don't have a problem with the Church. I support my children in their activity in the church. When I am invited to attend, I go along with my partner.  We recently attended the baptism of my grandson.  

I understand the limitations the Church has set.  But honestly, most gay people I have talked to feel the Church has been pretty aggressive against the gay community and think of the church as being pretty anti gay.  I doubt many know anything about the Utah legislation against discrimination in housing and employment.  Prop 8 and the Oct policy pretty much overshadow that.  Most don't follow the Church's actions as close as I do.  I don't think there is a big movement for gay families seeking out Church membership.

Edited by california boy

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, california boy said:

What does Elder Oaks know about fullness of joy for a gay man.  Has he ever been in love with someone of the same sex?  Might work for him, but not me.  And let's be clear, that is Elder Oaks opinion, not a revelation from God. So what is that worth?

He phrased it in a way to indicate it is axiomatic in the context of other truths. 

But in all candor, if this were phrased in a way to indicate it is a direct revelation from God, would you be any more inclined to accept it?

Edited by Scott Lloyd
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10 minutes ago, Calm said:

More than likely not, imo. But then I think straights probably wouldn’t be physically attracted to the opposite sex either. I thought we will be attracted to individuals we are married to for the unique combination that makes them them and our relationship together and their physical appearance will likely be a very minor part of that...if we end up looking very much like we do in this life even. 

I honestly have no idea what the next life will be like.  But I put my trust in God's hands.  I guess we will see.  Death may very well be l life's greatest adventure.

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2 hours ago, california boy said:

I didn't say that a gay couple couldn't sit in church.  I only said they couldn't be a part of the Church.  And yeah, they are excommunicated because they are gay and partners.  

As I understand Church doctrine, one must be married to the opposite sex to be exalted, as in enter the highest degree of the Celestial Kingdom..  No temple covenants.  No Sealings.   Do you disagree with this?  If this is a fundamental requirement, then no gay married partners would be allowed in the Celestial Kingdom.

Church doctrine has nothing to say about sexual orientation, just the covenants (in this case, marriage). This is why people who are "not straight" still enter and keep them.

2 hours ago, california boy said:

A belief in Christ.  But if I wanted to join any religious group to worship with them, I would want to feel like I could be a part of their community.  Since the Church doesn't allow me and my partner to be a member, then the decision to join is not really my decision to make.

Have you decided not to participate on any level, even as a non-member, despite your common belief in Christ? If that is the case, join the club! But you are certainly still welcome to be included in our community on a non-covenantal basis to the extent you are willing.

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1 minute ago, Scott Lloyd said:

He phrased in a way to indicate it is axiomatic in the context of other truths. 

But in all candor, if this were phrased in a way to indicate it is a direct revelation from God, would you be any more inclined to accept it?

I don't really trust Church leaders when they claim they have had a revelation from God.  I have been disappointed too many times in trusting their claims of revelation in the past.  What Elder Oaks thinks really doesn't matter to me one way or the other.  I am satisfied with the peace God has given me.  I will trust Him.  

I only point out that what was stated was Elder Oaks opinion.  Others can decide to believe that opinion or not.  But we shouldn't imply it is the word of God.

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6 minutes ago, california boy said:

Yeah.  The answer to the question is no.  The church can not be welcoming and inclusive of gays as members of the church.  But gay couples certainly can attend as guests, and I am sure the ward will be cordial towards them for the most part.

As you know, I personally don't have a problem with the Church. I support my children in their activity in the church. When I am invited to attend, I go along with my partner.  We recently attended the baptism of my grandson.  

I understand the limitations the Church has set.  But honestly, most gay people I have talked to feel the Church has been pretty aggressive against the gay community and think of the church as being pretty anti gay.  I doubt many know anything about the Utah legislation against discrimination in housing and employment.  Prop 8 and the Oct policy pretty much overshadow that.  Most don't follow the Church's actions as close as I do.  I don't think there is a big movement for gay families seeking out Church membership.

Not all gays or members of the gay community believe this way, especially those who are active members of the Church. Perhaps they aren't as fully engaged in the same community as you are; does that make them any less gay?

This is simply a matter of becoming better informed.

I think the light of Christ is operating upon all kinds of people form all kinds of walks of life and will help them recognize the truth when they find it.

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5 minutes ago, california boy said:

I don't really trust Church leaders when they claim they have had a revelation from God.  I have been disappointed too many times in trusting their claims of revelation in the past.  What Elder Oaks thinks really doesn't matter to me one way or the other.  I am satisfied with the peace God has given me.  I will trust Him.  

I only point out that what was stated was Elder Oaks opinion.  Others can decide to believe that opinion or not.  But we shouldn't imply it is the word of God.

Not even if we believe wholeheartedly it reflects the word of God?

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7 minutes ago, CV75 said:

Church doctrine has nothing to say about sexual orientation, just the covenants (in this case, marriage). This is why people who are "not straight" still enter and keep them.

Have you decided not to participate on any level, even as a non-member, despite your common belief in Christ? If that is the case, join the club! But you are certainly still welcome to be included in our community on a non-covenantal basis to the extent you are willing.

Like I told Robert above:  

Quote

As you know, I personally don't have a problem with the Church. I support my children in their activity in the church. When I am invited to attend, I go along with my partner.  We recently attended the baptism of my grandson. 

I know most members of the church would probably be fine with me and my partner visiting.  I don't think anyone freaked out that we were at my grandson's baptism.  And I don't intend to be joining, so baring me from becoming a member really isn't an issue with me personally.  

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8 minutes ago, CV75 said:

Not all gays or members of the gay community believe this way, especially those who are active members of the Church. Perhaps they aren't as fully engaged in the same community as you are; does that make them any less gay?

This is simply a matter of becoming better informed.

I think the light of Christ is operating upon all kinds of people form all kinds of walks of life and will help them recognize the truth when they find it.

Being gay does not mean we ALL think and feel the exact same way.  What does less gay look like?  There really isn't some kind of standard one has to reach in order to be "fully" gay.  Though just this week, a gay person told me he got his gay card taken away because he didn't know who Donna Summer was.  

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