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Pope Francis advocates for civil union laws


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10 hours ago, carbon dioxide said:

There is the laws of God and the laws of man. There is mortality and there is eternity.  The Church teaches what one needs to do or what is necessary to have an eternal family.  The Church also teaches agency.  So I think the answer is the church teaches homosexuals and polygamists have a right to be a part of a family.  We can organize a family in any manner we choose while in mortality.  So I think the answers to all those questions is probably yes.  Civil rights pertain to mortality.  Homosexuals and modern day polygamists have a right to be a part of a temporal family on earth. 

But if we desire an eternal family, then it has to be in according to the laws of God which are specific.  God makes the rules and he does not alter them according to our will.  We really do not have any rights regarding anything regarding eternity.  We don't have a right to the celestial kingdom.  We lost that right when we starting sinning and became unclean.  Though Gods mercy and the atonement, we are allowed to become clean and be worthy to enter.  Since we are utterly dependent on Christ, the Father and Son make the rules and we have only one option which is to follow them.  The purpose of the Church is bring that part out.  We don't need the Church for a temporal family.  For an eternal family, that is the only way it can happen. 

I agree with all of this.  Now, show me a revelation outlining the will of God concerning homosexuals and what happens to them after they die, and whether they can stay with their companions they had on earth and you may have a point.  But you certainly do not expect anyone to conform their lives to the extent that they make the sacrifices currently asked by church leaders where they are speculating on the will of God.  How many times have Church leaders been wrong in the past about their speculations on God's will concerning this issue in the past in MAJOR ways.  Remember when Church leaders were promising that if gays got married they would no longer be gay is just one major goof up. 

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11 hours ago, california boy said:

I guess everyone wants to dodge the real point the Pope and I was making about a right to a family.  I doubt very much that the Pope was addressing being a brother/son/uncle.  And either was I.  But. you knew that, and you still decided to lob this as some kind of answer to what the Pope was stating.  Anything to not confront the realities of a gay couple.  Yeah I get it.  The Church does this all the time.  They have taught the members well. 

I addressed this specifically: the Pope is speaking of civic or secular union, which offers financial, legal protections, etc. He did not say they are changing the Catholic sacrament of matrimony. I see this as parallel to the Church's work in Utah with LGBT rights.

11 hours ago, california boy said:

So tell me, what is the other half of that perspective?

The straw man you keep putting up there as representative of the Church's stance and all Church members.

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10 hours ago, Calm said:

Are you?  I know addicts of various drugs that see freedom from their addiction as heavenly. 
Are there addicts who know they are addicts who believe that is what they were meant to be, who see it as part of their identity?  Serious question. 

I can only answer to my experience of things. I have never been an addict of a chemical of any kind, but I have dealt with chronic illness for decades. There are some similarities. I had a liver transplant in 1999 and I know that my first liver was destroyed by a rare disease. I know I am the recipient of a transplanted organ. However, I was never intended to be an organ recipient in the same way that an addict is not meant to be just an addict. We each are called to greater things and we each must walk a path that takes us beyond these trials. 

If we see something as part of our identity is it actually an intrinsic part of our identity? Is it possible to become convinced a behavior is an intrinsic part of ourselves?  We may each want to put ourselves in a simple, little box and claim that box is who we are, our essential selves. I think when we do that we completely shut the door on God and his plans for eternity. 

Our spirits are shackled with this mortal body and we are each striving to make this joining of spirit and body work in peaceful union. Unfortunately, most of us never get the hang of it and we are ruled by our bodily passions and suffer the conflict between body and spirit. 

I have met very few holy people in my lifetime. I think it is pretty clear that our reliance on the Savior and his atonement is vital for our salvation.   

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10 hours ago, let’s roll said:

The Pope spoke in favor of civil union laws.  Does he refer to marriage?  Does he view it as a distinction with a difference, or without?  

What views are there within the gay community regarding the distinction?  Is civil union viewed as indistinguishable from marriage or is use of the term marriage a sin qua non?

I think possibly what the Pope is saying is that maybe we should let gays live in a civil legally binding relationship on this earth and let God sort it out after we die.  But to allow them full fellowship and participation in the Catholic Church.  Let them become part of the body of Christ instead of shoving them to the outside and having them view religion looking through a gate.  Because that is how a lot of gay people view the religion that they were brought up in and now excludes them from full participation simply because they want a life with the same wants and desires as their heterosexual brothers and sisters.  That life includes family and someone they love and cherish in every way that  humans on the earth seeks.

Leading people towards Christ rather than judging them through exclusion seems like an interesting idea.  Just maybe one that Christ would want to encourage. Just maybe God should be the judge of who should be allowed in heaven and how they get there.

 

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9 minutes ago, CV75 said:

I addressed this specifically: the Pope is speaking of civic or secular union, which offers financial, legal protections, etc. He did not say they are changing the Catholic sacrament of matrimony. I see this as parallel to the Church's work in Utah with LGBT rights.

That may be true, but for some gays, it is a message of hope that they too might be a part of a religion that they want to identify with.

9 minutes ago, CV75 said:

The straw man you keep putting up there as representative of the Church's stance and all Church members.

I don't know what you mean.

 

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I guess I am only trying to present the perspective of what it is like to live as a gay person in organized religion.  I hope that my comments have shown everyone that a lot of mainstream religions  pushes gay families away from their religions rather than helps them in their struggles.  It is like being gay and wanting a family becomes this monolithic wall that prevents that person from working within those religions on all the rest of their issues where they fall short of what Christ wants of them.  So they are cut loose from that body of Christ.  I am not arguing what the Catholic Church or the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints should or shouldn't do.  I am only trying to point out what those policies are doing and the affect that has on a person simply because they are gay.

The good news is, one doesn't need organized religion to come closer to God.  You don't need to belong to any church to seek the path that God wants you to be on.  Unfortunately that understanding is lost on a lot of gay people because they grow up thinking the only path back to God comes through the organized religion they grew up in.  A bigger perspective needs to be taught. The question is. who will teach that message.  It probably won't come from churches that have a narrow view of who should be members and who should be kept out of full fellowship.  

 

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17 minutes ago, CV75 said:

So your remarks about speculation and [popes] getting it wrong in the past apply to you as well!: Posted 18 minutes ago

 

What I am saying is that I see a lot of people on this thread and in the Church taking their position of authority from a position when no such authority has come from God according to their own church leaders.  Not even any claims of such revelation, yet their position seems to be couched in a righteous understanding of the will of God.  

I am trying to point out that such a position has no foundation in a revelation from God, so how can they be so sure of the stance either the Catholic Church or the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has taken.  

If you are taking about me personally, I have long since lost any faith that any church leader speaks for God.  

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11 hours ago, Storm Rider said:

If we are perfected in Christ and become like him, does a lame person stay lame? Does a mentally ill person remain ill? Does a person filled with mortal passions retain their passions? Does an alcoholic remain an alcoholic? Where does perfection begin and end?  

I have heard a few of our brothers on this Board say they would just not like heaven if they could not remain gay. How can a mortal make such a statement when we have no understanding or comprehension of being an eternal being at present? 

My grandfather was an alcoholic and died one. I am sure his mortal mind would not like to think of a heaven where he could not drink. For him alcohol was enjoyed heavily the last thirty years of his life.

I believe that none of us has any understanding, nor will we ever gain in this life an understanding of what it means to be perfected in and through Christ. What I believe is that if we honestly strive with an eye single to his glory and remain sinful - which we will - we will be perfected through our Savior. Nothing is more important than that relationship with God - not our relationship with our spouse, our children, or anyone else. The question will remain throughout this mortal life, will you follow me?  

I get what you are saying and agree with the theory, but honestly, if someone told you you would be married to a man for eternity, would that be any kind of incentive?  Even if you believed that ultimately you'd be ok with it (and ignored the teachings that we have about how the spirit that we die with is the same spirit that we have in the next life, including their desires and personality), is that promise at all appealing?

That's the point of this line of discussion--that eternal promises are often perceived differently by lgbtq, for whom the promise of being straight in heaven is no more hopeful than we would feel if we were promised that we would be homosexual in heaven.

It really is o.k. to be empathetic.  It's not a sign you don't have a testimony or don't want to follow Jesus. 

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A family really can be anything one wants to make up in todays world.  A traditional family, a gay family, a polygamist family.  Unmarried people living together with kids can be a family.  I wonder if the pope endorses all the various versions of a family that people can come up with?

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6 minutes ago, bluebell said:

That's the point of this line of discussion--that eternal promises are often perceived differently by lgbtq, for whom the promise of being straight in heaven is no more hopeful than we would feel if we were promised that we would be homosexual in heaven.

I think this applies to any human quality to which we hold too strongly as the basis of our identity. They are effective barriers to change, and to becoming like Christ, prioritizing them at the expense of our relationship with Him. If our hope is in Christ before our [fill in the blank]-ity, we will be fine in the long run and at peace in this life. Society of course tugs away at that one way or another, hence the need for love and caring.

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3 hours ago, Boanerges said:
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What do you think that revelation will entail?

I'm not a prophet and have no idea. It is my understanding that the prophets receive revelation the same way the rest of us do, that it's not a sit down face-to-face with God/Jesus in the Holy of Holies. 

I was thinking more of the content of the revelation, rather than the specific means of transmission.

3 hours ago, Boanerges said:

I was baptized into the church as a young adult shortly after the priesthood revelation. In those days, and for a long time thereafter, the notion that Blacks had were not as valiant in the pre-earth existence or that they were cursed with the mark of Cain was widely taught. More recently, in the essay on priesthood and from our prophet in the most recent general conference, it has been made very clear that those teachings were false and that they are not doctrine. I'm actually quite glad that Pres. Nelson made this very clear in his Conference address. Nevertheless, I am also reasonably sure I have not heard the end of those teachings and that some old school members still believe and espouse those ideas. 

Some "old school members" may "still believe" but I've never heard any of them "espouse those ideas," in public or private.  The only message I have heard for the last several decades is a condemnation of racism.

3 hours ago, Boanerges said:

What I would hope for is a very clear statement from the prophets regarding the acceptance of those who are LGBTQ and their families and the reinforcement of the idea that regardless of their sexual orientation or sin they are still beloved children of loving Heavenly Parents and like all the rest of us sinners, who are also beloved children of loving Heavenly Parents, that they will have the same benefits of grace and mercy through the atonement of Jesus Christ that the rest of us have.

Isn't this already happening?  Consider this "Official Statement" on the Church website (the "Newsroom" section):

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The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints acknowledges that same-sex attraction is a sensitive issue that requires kindness, compassion and understanding. The website mormonandgay.lds.org reinforces the reality that, in the words of one Latter-day Saint scripture, God “loveth his children” (1 Nephi 11:17), and seeks to help everyone better understand same-sex attraction from a gospel perspective.
...
While same-sex attraction is not a sin, it can be a challenge. While one may not have chosen to have these feelings, he or she can commit to keep God’s commandments. The parent of a child who experiences same-sex attraction or identifies as gay should choose to love and embrace that child. As a community of Church members, Latter-day Saints should create a welcoming community.

Those who experience same-sex attraction or identify as gay can fully participate in the Church. As a Church policy says, “If members feel same-gender attraction but do not engage in any homosexual behavior, leaders should support and encourage them in their resolve to live the law of chastity and to control unrighteous thoughts. These members may receive Church callings. If they are worthy and qualified in every other way, they may also hold temple recommends and receive temple ordinances.”

The Church's website also has a section for "Family and Friends" that includes counsel such as this:

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My loved one is gay. What should I do?

Start with love

Talking about one’s same-sex attraction can be terrifying and confusing. Your child, spouse, or family member may not have known how to talk to you about it. You may sometimes feel inadequate. Although you may not always know how to respond to the struggles your family member faces, you will never regret reaching out with love and understanding.

You will never regret saying “I love you.”

You will never regret throwing your arms around your loved one and hugging him or her. You will never regret listening. You will never regret trying to understand.

If you overreact, get angry, or say things you regret, don’t be discouraged. This is one moment in a lifelong conversation. It’s never too late to apologize.

If you learn about your loved one’s same-sex attraction secondhand, don’t take it personally.

It’s natural to grieve. Do you feel your dream of the “perfect” family slipping away? Do you fear losing a close relationship? Are you afraid your loved one won’t be treated with kindness? These feelings are natural. There is no shame in grieving.

Don’t blame yourself for your loved one’s same-sex attraction. This is no one’s fault. Blame is neither necessary nor helpful.

These seem to be "very clear statement{s} from the prophets."  And there are many more.

3 hours ago, Boanerges said:

In short, I would hope for at least pretty much what Pope Francis said.

What is it that you feel Pope Francis has said that the Church has not?

3 hours ago, Boanerges said:

And it needs to be more than just words on a website, these brothers and sisters, like all brothers and sisters, need to be welcome and feel part of our community.

Certainly.

3 hours ago, Boanerges said:

I would not expect a sanction of same sex sealings in temples or even that bishops be required to perform same sex unions. But, as the church recognizes "legal and lawful" marriage, I would hope for a recognition of legal and lawful unions.

But this is already the status quo.  See here:

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“We recognize that same-sex marriages are now legal in the United States and some other countries and that people have the right, if they choose, to enter into those, and we understand that. But that is not a right that exists in the Church. That’s the clarification.”

And here:

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Legal proceedings and legislative action in a number of countries have given civil recognition to same-sex marriage relationships, and the question of same-sex marriage continues to be widely debated. As we confront this and other issues, we encourage all to bear in mind our Heavenly Father’s purposes in creating the earth and providing for our mortal birth and experience here as His children. “God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth” (Genesis 1:27–28). “Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh” (Genesis 2:24). Marriage between a man and a woman was instituted by God and is central to His plan for His children and for the well-being of society. Strong families, guided by a loving mother and father, serve as the fundamental institution for nurturing children, instilling faith, and transmitting to future generations the moral strengths and values that are important to civilization and crucial to eternal salvation.

Changes in the civil law do not, indeed cannot, change the moral law that God has established. God expects us to uphold and keep His commandments regardless of divergent opinions or trends in society. His law of chastity is clear: sexual relations are proper only between a man and a woman who are legally and lawfully wedded as husband and wife. We urge you to review and teach Church members the doctrine contained in “The Family: A Proclamation to the World.”

Just as those who promote same-sex marriage are entitled to civility, the same is true for those who oppose it. The Church insists on its leaders’ and members’ right to express and advocate religious convictions on marriage, family, and morality free from retaliation or retribution. The Church is also entitled to maintain its standards of moral conduct and good standing for members.

Consistent with our fundamental beliefs, Church officers will not employ their ecclesiastical authority to perform marriages between two people of the same sex, and the Church does not permit its meetinghouses or other properties to be used for ceremonies, receptions, or other activities associated with same-sex marriages. Nevertheless, all visitors are welcome to our chapels and premises so long as they respect our standards of conduct while there.

We affirm that those who avail themselves of laws or court rulings authorizing same-sex marriage should not be treated disrespectfully. The gospel of Jesus Christ teaches us to love and treat all people with kindness and civility—even when we disagree.

This sounds quite a bit like what you are hoping to see in a future revelation.  But if we are already receiving the counsel now...

Thanks

-Smac

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1 hour ago, california boy said:

I guess I am only trying to present the perspective of what it is like to live as a gay person in organized religion.  I hope that my comments have shown everyone that a lot of mainstream religions  pushes gay families away from their religions rather than helps them in their struggles.  It is like being gay and wanting a family becomes this monolithic wall that prevents that person from working within those religions on all the rest of their issues where they fall short of what Christ wants of them.  So they are cut loose from that body of Christ.  I am not arguing what the Catholic Church or the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints should or shouldn't do.  I am only trying to point out what those policies are doing and the affect that has on a person simply because they are gay.

The good news is, one doesn't need organized religion to come closer to God.  You don't need to belong to any church to seek the path that God wants you to be on.  Unfortunately that understanding is lost on a lot of gay people because they grow up thinking the only path back to God comes through the organized religion they grew up in.  A bigger perspective needs to be taught. The question is. who will teach that message.  It probably won't come from churches that have a narrow view of who should be members and who should be kept out of full fellowship.  

 

I think part of the problem here is like trying to explain why "all lives matter" is an offensive response to someone who says "Black lives matter." You're saying "Gay families matter" and the response you're getting is (and that church gives) "All families matter." I hear what they're saying and they hear what I'm saying but we're not actually talking about the same thing. Trying to explain white privilege is another example. I know lots of white folks (for the record, I am white) who will swear up and down that white privilege had nothing to do with where they are or what they have attained. Just because you can't see it or can't comprehend it or don't recognize it doesn't mean it's not there.

I agree with your second paragraph as well. 

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18 minutes ago, CV75 said:

I think this applies to any human quality to which we hold too strongly as the basis of our identity. They are effective barriers to change, and to becoming like Christ, prioritizing them at the expense of our relationship with Him. If our hope is in Christ before our [fill in the blank]-ity, we will be fine in the long run and at peace in this life. Society of course tugs away at that one way or another, hence the need for love and caring.

In the proclamation on the family we learn that certain parts of us are eternal (like our sex--which the PoF mistakenly refers to as gender) and are not meant to be messed with or changed.  But you seem to be saying that while our sex is eternal and an innate part of ourselves that cannot be changed and should not be wished to be changed, our sexual orientation is something that we need to be ready to jettison in heaven so that we can become like our Savior.  

According to our doctrine, it is not possible to hold too strongly to our sex but we can hold to strongly to our sexual orientation?  Am I understanding your correctly? 

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9 minutes ago, smac97 said:

I was thinking more of the content of the revelation, rather than the specific means of transmission.

Some "old school members" may "still believe" but I've never heard any of them "espouse those ideas," in public or private.  The only message I have heard for the last several decades is a condemnation of racism.

Isn't this already happening?  Consider this "Official Statement" on the Church website (the "Newsroom" section):

The Church's website also has a section for "Family and Friends" that includes counsel such as this:

These seem to be "very clear statement{s} from the prophets."  And there are many more.

What is it that you feel Pope Francis has said that the Church has not?

Certainly.

But this is already the status quo.  See here:

And here:

This sounds quite a bit like what you are hoping to see in a future revelation.  But if we are already receiving the counsel now...

Thanks

-Smac

This is exactly what I am saying in my post above quoting Californiaboy. "We love Gays, we're all God's children, all families matter, gay marriage is legal - but even though you are legally married according to the laws of the land, you're not married in the church (despite our "legal and lawful" rhetoric) , you can't go to the temple, you can't hold certain callings (none in some cases depending on leadership roulette), you're welcome here but you're not really one of us and I'm keeping my eye on you."

To your first comment, come on over and visit my ward sometime. I'll introduce you to some folks. Earlier this year (pre-COVID) there was a remark in priesthood meeting about the mark of Cain. He was corrected (and very nicely and gently I might add, so it obviously wasn't by me) but the guy seriously had no idea - and he's and every Sunday guy. he's not the last unicorn. And we all know that just because the prophet said it doesn't mean everybody buys it and falls in line that day - I would that it were so (mostly).  That said, maybe the same will happen with the Pope. There are billions of Catholics, and I only know a few (before joining the church I was Catholic) but I also know none who buy every bit of Catholic doctrine/theology.

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1 hour ago, bluebell said:

I get what you are saying and agree with the theory, but honestly, if someone told you you would be married to a man for eternity, would that be any kind of incentive?  Even if you believed that ultimately you'd be ok with it (and ignored the teachings that we have about how the spirit that we die with is the same spirit that we have in the next life, including their desires and personality), is that promise at all appealing?

That's the point of this line of discussion--that eternal promises are often perceived differently by lgbtq, for whom the promise of being straight in heaven is no more hopeful than we would feel if we were promised that we would be homosexual in heaven.

It really is o.k. to be empathetic.  It's not a sign you don't have a testimony or don't want to follow Jesus. 

I don't think it is that I am not empathetic; I think I have a grasp of the inner conflict and the situation. But, how should that empathy be expressed?  How helpful is it be put aside an entire history that is thousands of years old and say, "Gosh, John, this is so hard. Why don't you just ignore the gospel of Jesus Christs, do what feels natural for you, and enjoy your mortal existence."  How does that help?

Rather than do that, I have tried to say, we don't know what it means to be in heaven, BUT we know that we are each children of our Father in Heaven. The Celestial glory is beyond our comprehension, but it is being in the presence of God for eternity.  Focus on that gift and follow Christ. 

It is a message that is the same for each of God's children regardless of their weaknesses, passions, desires, sins, etc.  Repent - every day - and come, follow him who saved us. 

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15 hours ago, california boy said:

For me, this statement by Pope Francis is really what it all boils down to.

Does the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints believe that homosexuals have a right to be a part of a family?  

Certainly.  Plainly.  Unequivocally.

I think the issue needs to be boiled down further still, to the definition of "family" and "marriage."  How does God define and apply these things?

The issue also needs to be addressed via the Law of Chastity.  As Elder Ballard put it: "We follow Jesus Christ by living the law of chastity. God gave this commandment, and He has never revoked or changed it. This law is clear and simple. No one is to engage in sexual relationships outside the bounds the Lord has set. This applies to homosexual behavior of any kind and to heterosexual relationships outside of marriage. It is a sin to violate the law of chastity."

15 hours ago, california boy said:

Or is that condition only if you are straight?  

Everyone has the same access to the blessings of the Gospel.

15 hours ago, california boy said:

Does the  Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints believe that homosexuals are children of God and have a right to a family?  

Yes.

15 hours ago, california boy said:

Currently, the answer to those questions that Pope Francis asks is NO in the  Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Wildly, flagrantly false.

You are bearing false witness against us.  Big time.  I hope in time you will stop doing this.

15 hours ago, california boy said:

It brings up some interesting questions for me.  

"It" being a flagrant and deliberate false statement.

15 hours ago, california boy said:

Is it better for those homosexual families to be separated from a Church that claims to have the gospel of Jesus Christ?  

In the end, we all must do what we think is right.  If the Church is what it claims to be, then rebelling against it is not, cannot be, "better."

15 hours ago, california boy said:

Does that gospel of Jesus Christ encourage the breaking up of those families?  

I think the Gospel of Jesus Christ encourages obedience to God.  That is, we must submit ourselves to His righteousness, rather than go about trying to fabricate our own version of it.  From Romans 10:

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1. Brethren, my heart's desire and prayer to God for Israel is, that they might be saved.
2 For I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge.
3 For they being ignorant of God's righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.

This, I think, typifies the conflict between A) the Restored Gospel, and B) well-intentioned, but nevertheless fundamentally misguided, notions about same-sex marriage.

Christ also said: "He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me."  

Christ also said "For if ye will not abide in my covenant ye are not worthy of me."  

He also said:

Quote

49 ¶ I am come to send fire on the earth; and what will I, if it be already kindled?
50 But I have a baptism to be baptized with; and how am I straitened till it be accomplished!
51 Suppose ye that I am come to give peace on earth? I tell you, Nay; but rather division:
52 For from henceforth there shall be five in one house divided, three against two, and two against three.
53 The father shall be divided against the son, and the son against the father; the mother against the daughter, and the daughter against the mother; the mother in law against her daughter in law, and the daughter in law against her mother in law.

I am once again reminded of the response the Savior received to his "Bread of Life" sermon, as recorded in John 6.  He said things that were not not popular.  Many of those who heard it "murmured at him."  Many of those who heard it "strove among themselves."  Many of those who heard it "went back, and walked no more with him."  

Christ said and did things that were not well-received by the society around Him.  I think we need to reconcile ourselves to that.  To the idea that following Christ is not going to be popular.  That listening to His servants is not going to be popular.  

I am of course interested in the reputation of the Church.  Our reputation affects our ability to fulfill various mandates from God, not the least of which is the Great Commission.  But preserving and ehnancing the Church's "reputation" cannot come at the expense of other mandates, such as upholding and proclaiming and teaching principles pertaining to marriage and the Law of Chastity.  Christ did not upend the moneychangers' tables in the temple because it was popular.  He did so because it was right.  Christ did not preach the "Bread of Life" sermon in John 6 because it was popular.  He did so because it was right.

Christ preached a gospel that was not going to be popular in the minds of an increasingly wicked world.  He knew that.  But He preached it anyway.  I think He knew beforehand that His message would alienate many people, including some otherwise good and decent people.  But He preached anyway.  And He asks us - commands us, actually - to follow Him in His unpopular ways.

My dad and I were talking about these things a while back, some of which have been described as the "dark sayings of Jesus."  My dad noted that some people focus on the "sweetness and light" sayings of the Savior, which is probably fine - unless that focus is exclusionary.  Christ had warnings for us, after all.  

Such as this: "If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you."  

And this: "The world cannot hate you; but me it hateth, because I testify of it, that the works thereof are evil."   

And this: "Therefore, fear not, little flock; do good; let earth and hell combine against you, for if ye are built upon my rock, they cannot prevail."   

And this: "For by doing these things the gates of hell shall not prevail against you; yea, and the Lord God will disperse the powers of darkness from before you, and cause the heavens to shake for your good, and his name’s glory."

So the hostile reactions of the World (and even some members of the Church) to the inspired leadership of the Brethren are, I think, not surprising.  To the contrary, they are the anticipated responses to prophetic counsel.  In a way, I find it grimly satisfying that the Brethren are saying and doing some things that, in my mind, are A) unpopular in the eyes of the World, and B) plainly in accordance with revealed truths and based on revelation.

15 hours ago, california boy said:

Of keeping those families separated from the Church?  Should the doors be sealed to those families?  

Not sure what this means.  Families are welcome to attend.

15 hours ago, california boy said:

Should those families be prohibited from participating in the Church?  

They're not.  You are bearing false witness against us.  Again.

15 hours ago, california boy said:

Holding positions that enrich other members lives?  

Well, "families" don't hold callings in the Church.  Individuals do.  And holding a calling is a privilege, and requires some measure of worthiness and obedience to the laws and commandments of the Gospel.  A person who is regularly violating the Law of Chastity, for example, is choosing to not live in such a way as to facilitate having a calling, holding a Temple Recommend, and so on.

15 hours ago, california boy said:

From what I am hearing, the answer for many in the Church is a resounding yes to all of those questions.  

You are bearing false witness against us.

15 hours ago, california boy said:

For some, that yes is a troubling answer that should require further revelation from God.  Locking the doors of Church membership and participation from those families just doesn't seem like the Church is a church for everyone, just those that are straight.

You are bearing false witness against us.

15 hours ago, california boy said:

I should also disclose that I am not pushing the Church to do anything.  It is no longer my church.  But to say the current position of the Church is not without problems that should be considered is denying the feelings of a great many members.

Well, I'm willing to listen.  What do you think the Church should do that it is not now doing?  And why?

Thanks,

-Smac

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15 hours ago, california boy said:

Yes, but there is a huge difference between being the child of a parent and being the parent of a child.  I think Pope Francis recognized and acknowledges the difference.  The Church? not so much.  They want to keep a gay person as a child their whole life. His statement

You again bear false witness against us.  It is particularly troubling when you do so by presuming to publicly speak on our behalf.  I hope someday you will stop doing this.

Thanks,

-Smac

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11 hours ago, Islander said:

Based on catholic doctrine, that church is sunk in a cesspool of false doctrine and idolatry that is condemned by God, in no uncertain terms, in scripture. So, nothing surprises me any more which comes out of Rome. 

Love you, too, bro 😘

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36 minutes ago, Boanerges said:

I think part of the problem here is like trying to explain why "all lives matter" is an offensive response to someone who says "Black lives matter."

I also think part of the problem here is that saying "Black lives matter" is offensive in and of itself, since it presumes to person being told this disagrees with the sentiment and needs to be corrected.  It is an implicit, but nevertheless clear, accusation of racism.

If a total stranger, Person A, came up to Person B and shouted "Beating your children is wrong!", or "Stop raping women!" or "Quit supporting pedophiles!", Person B may well be justified in taken exception to being yelled at in such a way.  Person A doesn't know anything about Person B, and hence has no business making such implicit accusations.

36 minutes ago, Boanerges said:

You're saying "Gay families matter" and the response you're getting is (and that church gives) "All families matter."

Hmm.

36 minutes ago, Boanerges said:

I hear what they're saying and they hear what I'm saying but we're not actually talking about the same thing. Trying to explain white privilege is another example. I know lots of white folks (for the record, I am white) who will swear up and down that white privilege had nothing to do with where they are or what they have attained. Just because you can't see it or can't comprehend it or don't recognize it doesn't mean it's not there.

But merely asserting it doesn't mean it is there.  If "white privilege" were a thing, I think we would see more evidence of it.  Lawsuits, for example.  And we wouldn't be seeing "passing"-style antics from people like Rachel Dolezal, Jessica Krug, Shaun King, Satchuel Cole, CV Vitolo-Haddad, etc.  From this article ("Blackness Has Become A Commodity"): 

Quote

Blackness was once considered a curse, now it’s considered a commodity.

Just as intellectuals from decades and centuries ago created white supremacy to label black skin a curse, many intellectuals today have created critical race theory to label black skin a commodity.

For that reason, blackness has become one of the most valuable items on the market. Increasingly, some white people—particularly white people who embrace critical race theory—seemingly yearn to become allies with or members of the supposed Black American community. 

Social justice activists and leftist politicians tend to identify with blackness to profit their agenda. However, some white social justice advocates are not merely identifying with black people—they’re identifying as black. 
...
 

In a statement about their former colleague, Vitolo-Haddad, the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Racial Justice Committee said, “we have unknowingly rewarded the toxic opportunism of performing Blackness.”

That toxic opportunism of performing blackness wouldn’t exist if our culture hadn’t created a philosophy that considers perceived oppression as more advantageous than privilege. Blackness has become a commodity because critical race theory and intersectionality demonize whiteness while deifying blackness.

Critical race theory has convinced many people—including black people—to find their identity in perceived oppression. And for that reason, critical race theory is creating an environment where people are tempted to exploit blackness.

If whiteness and privilege are bad, why should anyone embrace their white skin or privilege? And if blackness and perceived oppression position a person at the top of intersectional hierarchy, why wouldn’t some people pursue that identity? 

Nevertheless, if critical race theorists are correct that black people are systemically oppressed, why do these five white social justice advocates desperately want to be black?

But perhaps that's a topic for another day.

Thanks,

-Smac

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31 minutes ago, Storm Rider said:

I don't think it is that I am not empathetic; I think I have a grasp of the inner conflict and the situation. But, how should that empathy be expressed?  How helpful is it be put aside an entire history that is thousands of years old and say, "Gosh, John, this is so hard. Why don't you just ignore the gospel of Jesus Christs, do what feels natural for you, and enjoy your mortal existence."  How does that help?

Rather than do that, I have tried to say, we don't know what it means to be in heaven, BUT we know that we are each children of our Father in Heaven. The Celestial glory is beyond our comprehension, but it is being in the presence of God for eternity.  Focus on that gift and follow Christ. 

It is a message that is the same for each of God's children regardless of their weaknesses, passions, desires, sins, etc.  Repent - every day - and come, follow him who saved us. 

I think one good way to express empathy is to say something like "Yeah, that would be so hard." or "I can see why that would be a difficult struggle."  Etc.  

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2 hours ago, california boy said:

I think possibly what the Pope is saying is that maybe we should let gays live in a civil legally binding relationship on this earth and let God sort it out after we die.  But to allow them full fellowship and participation in the Catholic Church.

He most certainly did not say the part I bolded. He was speaking of secular law, not religious doctrine. Nothing at all has changed in Catholic doctrine because of his statement.

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36 minutes ago, Boanerges said:

This is exactly what I am saying in my post above quoting Californiaboy. "We love Gays, we're all God's children, all families matter, gay marriage is legal - but even though you are legally married according to the laws of the land, you're not married in the church (despite our "legal and lawful" rhetoric) , you can't go to the temple, you can't hold certain callings (none in some cases depending on leadership roulette), you're welcome here but you're not really one of us and I'm keeping my eye on you."

No, a person can't go to the temple if he is violating the Law of Chastity.  Are you suggesting that this is a problem that the Church needs to correct?  That the Church should toss out the Law of Chastity as a doctrine and behavioral standard expected of members of the Church?

The Church recognizes the legal validity of same-sex marriage, but teaches that such marriages are not acceptable to God, much in the same way that unauthorized polygamous marriages are not acceptable to God.  Again, are you suggesting that this is a problem that the Church needs to correct?

And where are you getting this "you're not really one of us" and "I'm keeping my eye on you" nonsense?  I guess I'll issue a CFR.  Chapter and verse, please, for where I have said such things, or where the Church has said such things.

36 minutes ago, Boanerges said:

To your first comment, come on over and visit my ward sometime. I'll introduce you to some folks.

I'm not saying improper sentiments don't exist.  I am, instead, questioning how widespread and accepted they are in 2020.

36 minutes ago, Boanerges said:

Earlier this year (pre-COVID) there was a remark in priesthood meeting about the mark of Cain. He was corrected (and very nicely and gently I might add, so it obviously wasn't by me) but the guy seriously had no idea - and he's and every Sunday guy.  He's not the last unicorn.

But he was corrected.  Publicly.  

36 minutes ago, Boanerges said:

And we all know that just because the prophet said it doesn't mean everybody buys it and falls in line that day - I would that it were so (mostly).

Sure.  But again, the guy you mentioned above was corrected.  Immediately and publicly (and kindly).  And these sentiments are publicly and consistently condemned by the Brethren.  Over the pulpit, in the Ensign and other printed materials of the Church, on the Church's website, etc.

Thanks,

-Smac

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16 hours ago, Calm said:

Do you see Storm Rider’s descriptions of the Catholic community as accurate or overstated or something else?

The problem is that the Catholic community is 1.2 billion people, so reactions are going to be all over the place. I know faithful Catholics who will rejoice at Pope Francis's statement, and I know faithful Catholics who will recoil in horror.

It's hard when the Church is so big.

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16 minutes ago, MiserereNobis said:
Quote

I think possibly what the Pope is saying is that maybe we should let gays live in a civil legally binding relationship on this earth and let God sort it out after we die.  But to allow them full fellowship and participation in the Catholic Church.

He most certainly did not say the part I bolded. He was speaking of secular law, not religious doctrine. Nothing at all has changed in Catholic doctrine because of his statement.

In that sense, the "Utah Compromise," which the Church endorsed, addressed some of the underlying sentiments expressed by the Pope (namely, his concern for their temporal welfare).

Thanks,

-Smac

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