Fether

Church policy change on same sex marriage

Recommended Posts

5 minutes ago, person0 said:

It can be.  Depends on the circumstances.

I agree, and I agree it depends on the circumstances too. 

 I find it odd sometimes that people preach about the holiness of traditional marriage but have been married and divorced three times. 

Edited by MormonGator

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
11 hours ago, MormonGator said:

I find it odd sometimes that people preach about the holiness of traditional marriage but have been married and divorced three times.

I agree it It would seem rather hypocritical, and would probably be so, in most cases.  That said, I know at least 2 brethren from my former ward who were very penitent about their divorces.  One brother is married to his second wife and one is married to his 4th wife.  I remember a lesson where they both discussed how much they wished they had been better spouses and had made their first marriages work.  The one on his 4th wife seems to have finally figured things out, as she has stuck around for a while.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
12 hours ago, MormonGator said:

I find it odd sometimes that people preach about the holiness of traditional marriage but have been married and divorced three times. 

So what's the fix, MG? Only those who have lived sufficiently holy lives are allowed to claim that marriage is holy? Do we also ban former and current cigarette smokers from telling their children that smoking is bad? You're not allowed to speak out against public profanity if you swear sometimes? This mindset literally and directly leads to an amoral society. Not one of us wants to live in an amoral society, aka hell.

Those who claim that adultery is a far worse scourge on humanity and morality than homosexual conduct will ever be are missing (or in many cases, avoiding) the point. While I do not grant their claim, even if it's true, what of it? Pancreatic cancer is far more deadly than melanomas, so we shouldn't take measures against melanoma until we've eradicated pancreatic cancer? What sense does that make?

The institution of marriage is indeed holy, even if millions of people desecrate it. That some desecrations take place and are even legally allowed doesn't mean we should therefore allow and encourage other desecrations.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 minutes ago, person0 said:

I agree it It would seem rather hypocritical, and would probably be so, in most cases.  That said, I know at least 2 brethren from my former ward who were very penitent about their divorces.  One brother is married to his second wife and one is married to his 4th wife.  I remember a lesson where they both discussed how much they wished they had been better spouses and had made their first marriages work.  The one on his 4th wife seems to have finally figured things out, as she has stuck around for a while.

Oh I understand, and yes, there can be innocent victims in divorces, and yes, no one is perfect. Don't get me wrong, I'm not an absolutist in this- I 100% understand that we are all flawed and marriage is very complicated. You are talking to someone who had a string of failed relationships before he met his wife. So I get it. 

5 minutes ago, Vort said:

 Do we also ban former and current cigarette smokers from telling their children that smoking is bad?

"Your pop caught you smoking, and he said, no way! 
That hypocrite smokes two packs a day"-Beastie Boys 

Actually, you (generic) are allowed to preach to me about the dangers of smoking with a Marlboro in your mouth. But I don't have to take you seriously. You are allowed to to tell me to watch my language while using words that would make a sailor blush with shame. But I don't have to take you seriously. And yes, you are 100% allowed to preach about the sanctity of marriage even if you've been divorced 4 times, have a mistress, and have three baby mamas. But I don't have to take you seriously. 

Again, I understand where you are coming from-no one is perfect and yes, like President Uchtdorf said, we are all hypocrites. But there are certain "levels" of hypocrisy and yes, you (again, generic) lose the right to lecture someone about the dangers of certain behaviors if you routinely engage in them. In particular, if you actively engage in them.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, MormonGator said:

"Your pop caught you smoking, and he said, no way! 
That hypocrite smokes two packs a day"-Beastie Boys 

[...]

Again, I understand where you are coming from-no one is perfect and yes, like President Uchtdorf said, we are all hypocrites. But there are certain "levels" of hypocrisy and yes, you (again, generic) lose the right to lecture someone about the dangers of certain behaviors if you routinely engage in them. In particular, if you actively engage in them.

The Beastie Boys got it completely wrong. There is nothing in the least hypocritical about a sinner telling his child not to sin, whether that sin is adultery or smoking or cussing or thinking unkind thoughts. Hypocrisy occurs only when you put on a false face and pretend to be something you are not. And calling yourself a Saint (the Latter-day type) while refusing to publicly advertise your own sins doesn't qualify in any sense as putting on a false face.

Now, if you're telling your child or friend, "Be virtuous like me!" while you are secretly embezzling from your employer, then yes, you are a hypocrite. If you decry the perversion of homosexuality while you cheat on your wife, you're a hypocrite. The hypocrisy lies in the pretense, not in the imperfection.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hello,

I had a question on this part:

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

What does the church consider "immoral conduct in homosexual-marriage relationships" to be
and howare offenders dealt with?

Thank you,

Gale

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 minutes ago, GaleG said:

Hello,

I had a question on this part:

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

What does the church consider "immoral conduct in homosexual-marriage relationships" to be
and howare offenders dealt with?

Thank you,

Gale

The church does not recognize homosexual marriage.  The Family: A proclamation to the world is pretty straightforward.

Thus any sexual relationship outside of a legal and lawful marriage is considered either fornication or adultery.

 

For example, in my mission, a few years before I arrived a foursome of missionaries paired off after marring each other.   Yes the crazy Elders convinced themselves that that had the authority to perform the marriage ceremony as they were branch presidents.  They convinced the sister missionaries and consummated their unions.  They were all excommunicated as their ‘marriages’ were neither legal nor lawful in the eyes of the Church.

Homosexual marriage although considered legal by some governments does not trump the justice and government of God. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, mikbone said:

Thus any sexual relationship outside of a legal and lawful marriage is considered either fornication or adultery.

The article also said it (same-sex marriage) was a serious transgression but not considered
as apostasy.  Didn't understand that.

Maybe apostasy only has to do with teaching/believing false doctrine?

Thank you,

Gale

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
25 minutes ago, GaleG said:

The article also said it (same-sex marriage) was a serious transgression but not considered
as apostasy.  Didn't understand that.

Maybe apostasy only has to do with teaching/believing false doctrine?

Thank you,

Gale

In a generic/theological sense, “apostasy” is believing in, advocating, or practicing anything that is untrue or sinful; and anyone in a state of apostasy has a spiritual need to repent.  

But from a procedural standpoint, in matters of ecclesiastical discipline (i.e. excommunication and so on), “apostasy” has a much narrower definition.  In November of 2015, guidance to local leaders from Salt Lake City informed local leaders that entering into a legal gay marriage could fall under this definition in considering whether ecclesiastical discipline ought to be administered on a Church member.  

The new guidance says that for purposes of defining “apostasy” in the context of ecclesiastical discipline, gay marriage is not per se an act of apostasy.  However, sexual immorality and other “serious transgression” is (and always has been) a separate grounds for ecclesiastical discipline; and if a gay person engages in homosexual sexual contact—within or outside of the confines of legal marriage—then that person is still subject to ecclesiastical discipline.  

Edited by Just_A_Guy

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Just_A_Guy said:

In a generic/theological sense, “apostasy” is believing in, advocating, or practicing anything that is untrue or sinful; and anyone in a state of apostasy has a spiritual need to repent.  

But from a procedural standpoint, in matters of ecclesiastical discipline (i.e. excommunication and so on), “apostasy” has a much narrower definition.  In November of 2015, guidance to local leaders from Salt Lake City informed local leaders that entering into a legal gay marriage could fall under this definition in considering whether ecclesiastical discipline ought to be administered on a Church member.  

The new guidance says that for purposes of defining “apostasy” in the context of ecclesiastical discipline, gay marriage is not per se an act of apostasy.  However, sexual immorality and other “serious transgression” is (and always has been) a separate grounds for ecclesiastical discipline; and if a gay person engages in homosexual sexual contact—within or outside of the confines of legal marriage—then that person is still subject to ecclesiastical discipline.  

I saw the following:

https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/manual/gospel-topics/apostasy?lang=eng

"When individuals or groups of people turn away from the principles of the gospel, they are
in a state of apostasy".

Re-quoting the general conference talk:

"Previously, our handbook characterized same-gender marriage by a member as
apostasy. While we still consider such a marriage to be a serious transgression,
it will not be treated as apostasy for purposes of Church discipline".

Is engaging in same-sex marriage (and having same-sex relations) turning away
from a principle of the gospel, thus classifying that member as being in a state of
apostasy?

Thank you,

Gale

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, GaleG said:

Is engaging in same-sex marriage (and having same-sex relations) turning away
from a principle of the gospel, thus classifying that member as being in a state of
apostasy?

Yes. But as the quote says it won't be "treated" like apostasy for the purposed of church discipline.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, GaleG said:

I saw the following:

https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/manual/gospel-topics/apostasy?lang=eng

"When individuals or groups of people turn away from the principles of the gospel, they are
in a state of apostasy".

Re-quoting the general conference talk:

"Previously, our handbook characterized same-gender marriage by a member as
apostasy. While we still consider such a marriage to be a serious transgression,
it will not be treated as apostasy for purposes of Church discipline".

Is engaging in same-sex marriage (and having same-sex relations) turning away
from a principle of the gospel, thus classifying that member as being in a state of
apostasy?

Thank you,

Gale

The “gospel topic” essay you cite gives the sort of generalized definition used for spiritual purposes, to which I refer above.  

President Oaks’ talk uses the narrower definition used for administrative/procedural purposes, to which I also refer above.

Engaging in a same sex marriage (celibate or not) is obviously apostasy in the common general/spiritual sense.  But when we are talking about church discipline, which is imposed as a result of a specific finding such as “murder” or “incest” or “predatory activities” or “other serious transgression” or “apostasy”—it does not fall within the definition of “apostasy”.  

Nevertheless, it certainly remains solidly within the realm of “serious transgression”, which of course is another grounds for church discipline. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Elective abortion is not treated as murder. That doesn't mean it isn't murder, only that it is not being so treated at the moment.

It is dangerous to take open statements about policy decisions such as the one quoted here as some sort of pronouncement of eternal doctrine. Many took the policy about blacks of African descent not receiving Priesthood blessings as a statement of eternal verity or worth or something, and look where that led. The policy was correct and true, but it didn't mean what some wanted to say it meant. Same with elective abortion not being treated as murder. Same with homosexual relations not being treated as prima facie evidence of apostasy.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In the New Testament Christ is asked about marriage and divorce.  He was very clear that  (Matthew 19:8) "... because of the hardness of your hearts suffered you to put away your wives: but from the beginning it was not so."

This is an example of God allowing something wrong to continue and even be dealt with administratively... It does not make it right or correct... it just means God works with us were we are.

In the example others have given and even in the one being asked about in the OP the answer "... Because of the Hardness of your hearts..." seems to be enough of a reason.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
14 hours ago, Just_A_Guy said:

Nevertheless, it certainly remains solidly within the realm of “serious transgression”, which of course is another grounds for church discipline. 

On the church's web site, it mentions:

"To commit sin is to willfully disobey God’s commandments or to fail to act righteously despite a knowledge
of the truth (see James 4:17)."

Is there a reason why same-sex marriage was referred to as a serious transgression instead of a
serious sin?

Thanks,
Jim

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, theplains said:

On the church's web site, it mentions:

"To commit sin is to willfully disobey God’s commandments or to fail to act righteously despite a knowledge
of the truth (see James 4:17)."

Is there a reason why same-sex marriage was referred to as a serious transgression instead of a
serious sin?

Thanks,
Jim

Is this guy still around? Hey, mods, I've found a problem with the site algorithm.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
16 minutes ago, theplains said:

On the church's web site, it mentions:

"To commit sin is to willfully disobey God’s commandments or to fail to act righteously despite a knowledge
of the truth (see James 4:17)."

Is there a reason why same-sex marriage was referred to as a serious transgression instead of a
serious sin?

Thanks,
Jim

I have graciously allowed myself to quote myself, as follows:  

The LDS Church doesn’t operate according to any form of canon law; and its leadership often isn’t quite that precise in its terminology.  In most contexts* “transgression” and “sin” are used interchangeably, and we don’t expend a lot of energy trying to rank sins according to their severity.

 

*There are one or two exceptions, which I can get into if you want.  But the above is true as a general principle.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
19 hours ago, GaleG said:

Hello,

I had a question on this part:

What does the church consider "immoral conduct in homosexual-marriage relationships" to be
and howare offenders dealt with?

The article also said it (same-sex marriage) was a serious transgression but not considered
as apostasy.  Didn't understand that.

Maybe apostasy only has to do with teaching/believing false doctrine?

What does the church consider "immoral conduct in homosexual-marriage relationships" to be and how are offenders dealt with?

Homosexual relationships (marriage or not) are not condoned by the Lord. All homosexual acts are immoral. The law making something legal does not change God's laws. Offenders who repent go through church discipline.

Maybe apostasy only has to do with teaching/believing false doctrine?

Let's use "adultery" as an example that can clarify a difference between the possible use of serious transgression without a person being in a state of apostasy. There are members who make mistakes who still fully believe in the gospel. They have sinned, a serious transgression, but remain faithful to their testimony. They go through the repentance process, church discipline, and then back to full fellowship. They have not entered into a state of apostasy due to their sin.

Homosexual relations as described as "apostasy" is saying that a person not only sinned, but rejected the gospel (a falling away from truth). Now the policy is treating homosexual and heterosexual sins the same.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now