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Church policy change on same sex marriage

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What I hate to see in these discussions is the absence of the name of Jesus Christ.

Jesus Christ and Joseph Smith had to deal with the legal system during their lives on multiple occasions.  Joseph Smith had like 200 legal cases against him.

The Church has to co-exist in a legal system.  Good thing we have some great lawyers in the Church.

Jesus was an infinite number of steps ahead of his legal enemies.  And Joseph Smith had a damn good legal mind.

Homosexuality is a sin.  It is not apostasy.  Teaching that homosexuality in not a sin is apostasy.  Entering into a legal same sex marriage is borderline...  It is obviously a sin.  But the intent of the marriage itself may not be apostasy.  If you enter into marriage for tax purposes or to declare your love to each other it isn't apostasy.  If you have same sex marriage to publicly show your distain for church doctrine - that probably is apostasy.

I think as a Church we should try harder to be more like Christ in our legal relationships.  

They say unto him, Caesar's. Then saith he unto them, Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar's; and unto God the things that are God's.

We should stay out of government.

And I have a hard time getting bent out of shape for the dozen or so cases where same sex married couples will want their children baptized in the LDS Church...

 

Anyway, I am sure that during conference all our concerns will be alleviated.

I was sealed to my eternal spouse in the Dallas TX temple 12/27/91.  My marriage license was obtained in the Dallas County Courthouse on 12/23/91.

There is an incredible difference between the two.

I hope that we see Marriages no longer offered in the Temples of the Lord.  Only sealing ceremonies.  

If you have ever been in the basement of the Salt Lake Temple waiting in the cattle runs and having to hear the temple staff repeatedly remind everyone to be reverent in the house of the Lord you might understand my point.

Edited by mikbone

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26 minutes ago, MormonGator said:

@Vort/ @Just_A_Guy-If I was a single man living with my girlfriend out of wedlock, would I be excommunicated? Honest question, not a challenge. 

In my experience, there have been two primary questions we ask when we consider the possibility of disciplinary action.

First, will disciplinary action help the person to repent.  If the result of the action would be to further embitter and but a stumbling block to repentance, then we don't do it.  In these kinds of situations, we have felt that withholding the temple recommend but otherwise encouraging as much participation in the Church as possible. This decision also tends to follow those that, if disciplined, would likely wash their hands of the Church forever and never look back.

On the other hand, if we feel like disciplinary action may actually spur the person into repentance, we do it.

The second question we consider is whether the person needs to be delegitimized. I know that sounds horrible, but if we're dealing with someone that will interpret the lack of disciplinary action as vindication and potentially start telling people "I did this awful thing and nothing happened.  You can do it too," then we will convene a council. It's more of a protection against some dope using their "member in good standing" status to lead other into sin.

Oh, one more situation is almost sure to prompt disciplinary action.  If we need to annotate a person's record in order to prevent them from being able to work with youth or children (usually due to some form of abuse), that usually involves a disciplinary council (though I don't think it's strictly necessary).  

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50 minutes ago, Just_A_Guy said:

(remember, we hoi polloi aren’t even supposed to be able to read the CHI in the first place).  

Well, not from Handbook 1 for Bishops, right?  Handbook 2 for auxiliaries and whatnot is publicly available for anyone with a login, is that not correct?

https://www.lds.org/study/manual/handbook-2-administering-the-church/selected-church-policies-and-guidelines/selected-church-policies?lang=eng#title_number71

(If this link works for you, the church is making it available to you.)

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12 minutes ago, mikbone said:

 

If you have ever been in the basement of the Salt Lake Temple waiting in the cattle runs and having to hear the temple staff repeatedly remind everyone to be reverent in the house of the Lord you might understand my point.

You mean to suggest that the bridezilla Just_A_Girl saw screaming and cussing and crying at her own mother as Just_A_Girl was preparing for our own wedding in the SL Temple, was somehow being unseemly?

Perish the thought!

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5 hours ago, Just_A_Guy said:

This one is harder, because as @Midwest LDS says—what has changed in the last three years, really?  

The issue of revealed change in policy within 3 years brought to mind some things I have been contemplating in relation to the Come Follow Me lessons.

Early into Christ's 3-year mission, he ordained the twelve and commissioned them to not go unto the Gentiles, but only go to the house of Israel (Mt. 10:5-6). About 3 years later, Peter had the vision that opened the door to the Gospel being preached to the Gentiles. (Acts 10)

Thanks, -Wade Enlgund-

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I haven't read the posts in the thread yet (I will later, but I have to run.)  I just wanted to share my initial reaction which is 

HALLELUJAH!  The Lord is Good!   I'm so pleased to hear this news.  I'm not naive though, and anticipate that this news will NOT be well received by either side of the divide.  I imagine many church members will be disturbed by it (I can check if I'm right later by reading this thread.  I would love to be wrong....) and I imagine that many LGBTQ folks and their supporters will say, "Too little too late."  

But for whatever it is worth, I am happy!   

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6 hours ago, Jane_Doe said:

Honestly... while I realize a lot of people will be happy about this, it makes me really worry.  I worry that it's going to put families in an awkward position -- kids being taught that their dad & papa's relationship is wrong in one venue and that it's totally ok in another.  That unrepentant dad & papa's would resent that.  Primary teachers being caught is the middle.  Little eight year olds feeling like they have to choose.  ...  

Sorry, I am late to the game.  But how is this any different than a kid who's parents smoke, or drink, or who's parents work on Sunday, or who's parents have questionable taste in clothing or occupations that are not in line with the gospel?  I remember having a friend from the neighborhood who was in our scout troop.  Non-member single mom, at a time where that was rare.   We didn't care, and the church leaders wanted to make sure he was welcome in every way.  His mom didn't want him baptized, but she recognized the good that the church did. 

Now, whenever I see a church policy that lasts only a few years, I immediately think "separating the wheat from the chaff."  This policy really affected only a tiny fraction of families.  But it sure did reveal those who would cast off the church and not follow the prophet.  I am sure they won't be back, and frankly, I see it as a way for the church to clear out the dead brush.  Once the brush is cleared, the Lord restores fertile ground for those who remain (including gay members).

Edited by bytebear

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1 minute ago, bytebear said:

Sorry, I am late to the game.  But how is this any different than a kid who's parents smoke, or drink, or who's parents work on Sunday, or who's parents have questionable taste in clothing or occupations that are not in line with the gospel?  I remember having a friend from the neighborhood who was in our scout troop.  Non-member single mom, at a time where that was rare.   We didn't care, and the church leaders wanted to make sure he was welcome in every way.  His mom didn't want him baptized, but she recognized the good that the church did. 

A long-term committed relationship a person is WAY more defining to themselves than their wardrobe.  The bond between a kids parents is the role model that child sees from day 1 on how to interact with others, care for them, model love, etc--- in early years it forms the foundation of who that kid is.  WAY more important and defining than your shirt or job or food.  

1 minute ago, bytebear said:

Now, whenever I see a church policy that lasts only a few years, I immediately think "separating the wheat from the chaff."  This policy really affected only a tiny fraction of families.  But it sure did reveal those who would cast off the church and not follow the prophet.  I am sure they won't be back, and frankly, I see it as a way for the church to clear out the dead brush.  Once the brush is cleared, the Lord restores fertile ground for those who remained (including gay members).

*Thumbs up*

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17 minutes ago, wenglund said:

The issue of revealed change in policy within 3 years brought to mind some things I have been contemplating in relation to the Come Follow Me lessons.

Early into Christ's 3-year mission, he ordained the twelve and commissioned them to not go unto the Gentiles, but only go to the house of Israel (Mt. 10:5-6). About 3 years later, Peter had the vision that opened the door to the Gospel being preached to the Gentiles. (Acts 10)

Thanks, -Wade Enlgund-

Thanks, I had not thought of that, it's a good example.

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3 minutes ago, Jane_Doe said:

A long-term committed relationship a person is WAY more defining to themselves than their wardrobe.  The bond between a kids parents is the role model that child sees from day 1 on how to interact with others, care for them, model love, etc--- in early years it forms the foundation of who that kid is.  WAY more important and defining than your shirt or job or food.  

 

I agree that a long term relationship is different than clothing choice.  However, the notion that gay couples can't be loving parents is hogwash.  There are gay parents who are far better role models for parental love than some (many) heterosexual couples.  Being gay doesn't mean you are a bad parent, or an unloving person.   No more than a straight marriage automatically makes you a good candidate for raising kids.   The church isn't condemning gay marriage because of the social sciences of raising a child.  There are eternal ramifications.  But those same ramifications exist for single parents, or even parents who are restricted from temple sealings due to various sinful behavior, including things like alcohol use.  So, please don't think the church is condemning gay marriage because gay people are incapable of raising children successfully, even spiritually.  That's simply not true, and it's not the reason for the initial ban, for that matter.  The ban was so that children wouldn't have to choose the church over a parent.  The policy was siding with the parents.  And now that the new policy is in place, I think some members will have to learn to love gay parents who's children may be in their ward.  It may be a spiritual test they are unable to pass.

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2 minutes ago, bytebear said:

  However, the notion that gay couples can't be loving parents is hogwash.  There are gay parents who are far better role models for parental love than some (many) heterosexual couples.  Being gay doesn't mean you are a bad parent, or an unloving person.   No more than a straight marriage automatically makes you a good candidate for raising kids.   The church isn't condemning gay marriage because of the social sciences of raising a child.  There are eternal ramifications.  But those same ramifications exist for single parents, or even parents who are restricted from temple sealings due to various sinful behavior, including things like alcohol use.  So, please don't think the church is condemning gay marriage because gay people are incapable of raising children successfully, even spiritually.  That's simply not true, and it's not the reason for the initial ban, for that matter.  The ban was so that children wouldn't have to choose the church over a parent.  The policy was siding with the parents.  And now that the new policy is in place, I think some members will have to learn to love gay parents who's children may be in their ward.  It may be a spiritual test they are unable to pass.

Of course a gay couple can be loving parents!  They (almost always) love their kids with every fiber of their being, just the same as heterosexual couples.  That exact love & it's importance is why I was a fan of protecting kids of gay couples from making certain choices as kids.  Because the love a parent feels (to kids and to their parent) is SO much more defining to that kid and to the adults than other sins (clothes, food, other activities, etc).    And it's why I worry now-- I don't want a kid to have to feel like they have to choose between God or the love their parents show.  

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10 minutes ago, Jane_Doe said:

Of course a gay couple can be loving parents!  They (almost always) love their kids with every fiber of their being, just the same as heterosexual couples.  That exact love & it's importance is why I was a fan of protecting kids of gay couples from making certain choices as kids.  Because the love a parent feels (to kids and to their parent) is SO much more defining to that kid and to the adults than other sins (clothes, food, other activities, etc).    And it's why I worry now-- I don't want a kid to have to feel like they have to choose between God or the love their parents show.  

Let us not forget that barring adoptive/in vitro cases, every. single. gay. parent procreated in a heterosexual with their child’s other parent, then dumped that parent when they decided they couldn’t contain their horniness for people of their own sex.

”Love”, so-called, loses a lot of its meaning in the absence of other concepts like responsibility, and covenant, and commitment, and honor, and stability, and sacrifice.

It’s obviously dangerous to over-generalize;  but one could argue that the Church has loved and is loving these kids far better than their own parents do.

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1 minute ago, Just_A_Guy said:

Let us not forget that barring adoptive/in vitro cases, every. single. gay. parent procreated in a heterosexual with their child’s other parent, then dumped that parent when they decided they couldn’t contain their horniness for people of their own sex.

”Love”, so-called, loses a lot of its meaning in the absence of other concepts like responsibility, and covenant, and commitment, and honor, and stability, and sacrifice.

It’s obviously dangerous to over-generalize;  but one could argue that the Church has loved and is loving these kids far better than their own parents do.

A kid doesn't understand that his mom was fertilized via in vitro and what that means.   Or a lot of the other things.

Hence why i was a fan of such a person having waiting until they were an adult and could better understand this -- they are shielded.  I'm not arguing with today's pronounced change... but I do worry for kids. 

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2 minutes ago, Jane_Doe said:

A kid doesn't understand that his mom was fertilized via in vitro and what that means.   Or a lot of the other things.

Hence why i was a fan of such a person having waiting until they were an adult and could better understand this -- they are shielded.  I'm not arguing with today's pronounced change... but I do worry for kids. 

Love from the kid’s perspective, sure.  

The point I was trying to make was, when we talk about the love *parents* ostensibly have for their kids:  the proper comparison to make, in 80% of cases, is not gay parents vs straight parents.  The proper comparison is gay parents vs adulterers.

Edited by Just_A_Guy

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33 minutes ago, bytebear said:

There are gay parents who are far better role models for parental love than some (many) heterosexual couples.

If by "better" you mean "less bad", then this is obviously true. I would suggest that if you want parents to qualify as "good parents", there are some aspects that absolutely must be present, without which the parents are not "good parents". Healthy modeling of a normative heterosexual relationship seems to me to be one of these.

25 minutes ago, Jane_Doe said:

Of course a gay couple can be loving parents!  They (almost always) love their kids with every fiber of their being, just the same as heterosexual couples.

Do you have any evidence of this assertion, or is it just what you suppose must be true?

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Do you want clinical studies?   There is no doubt it exists.  There is no reason to think that gay parents can't do as good a job or better a job at raising kids than a heterosexual couple.  Again, God did not make the law because of the temporal ramifications of the gender of parents.  There are some pretty horrible,awful, rotten straight parents.  Parents who made choices that have seriously detrimental ramifications to their children.   Divorce and abuse are not absent from people who are straight.   In an ideal world, every child will be raised by their biological parents, in a loving and eternal way.  But we don't live in a perfect world, and I would much rather have a child raised by loving adoptive gay parents than by biological abusive parents. 

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4 minutes ago, bytebear said:

Do you want clinical studies?

Sure, that would be great.

4 minutes ago, bytebear said:

There is no doubt it exists.

I have lots of doubt.

5 minutes ago, bytebear said:

There is no reason to think that gay parents can't do as good a job or better a job at raising kids than a heterosexual couple.

On the contrary, there is plenty of reason to think exactly that.

5 minutes ago, bytebear said:

Again, God did not make the law because of the temporal ramifications of the gender of parents.

Why do you think this? I think this statement is obviously false. For God, all things are eternal, including "temporal ramifications".

6 minutes ago, bytebear said:

There are some pretty horrible,awful, rotten straight parents.  Parents who made choices that have seriously detrimental ramifications to their children.   Divorce and abuse are not absent from people who are straight.

None of these obvious statements are in any way relevant to the topic of discussion. That there are ten zillion unfit heterosexual parents in no way provides evidence that homosexual parents are just dandy.

7 minutes ago, bytebear said:

I would much rather have a child raised by loving adoptive gay parents than by biological abusive parents.

And I would much rather have a child raised by biological abusive parents than by wolves. What of it? That's immaterial.

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34 Wherefore, verily I say unto you that all things unto me are spiritual, and not at any time have I given unto you a law which was temporal; neither any man, nor the children of men; neither Adam, your father, whom I created. - D&C 29.

 

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Just now, bytebear said:

34 Wherefore, verily I say unto you that all things unto me are spiritual, and not at any time have I given unto you a law which was temporal; neither any man, nor the children of men; neither Adam, your father, whom I created. - D&C 29.

Exactly. God's commandments, including those about homosexuality, are not merely temporal commandments. They apply in all cases.

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5 minutes ago, Vort said:

Exactly. God's commandments, including those about homosexuality, are not merely temporal commandments. They apply in all cases.

I think you misinterpret the verse.  The law exists because it has eternal ramifications.  Gay couples cannot be sealed to their children.   But neither can parents who prefer a beer at the end of the day.  And neither can a parent married to a non-member.   And neither could those who married black people prior to 1978.  You seem to be singling out one group of people because of cultural issues, but ignoring all the other sins out there.  it's almost as if you want to use God's law to be a bigot.  And that is unfortunate.  Particularly when the Lord and the prophet have clearly invited these people into His church with love.

Edited by bytebear

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4 minutes ago, bytebear said:

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4771005/

https://thefederalist.com/2016/07/06/another-study-finds-same-sex-parenting-isnt-best-for-kids/

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0049089X12000610

Quote

I could go on, but it really is irrelevant.  Because the law is not about the temporal well being of children. 

But that is exactly what this discussion is about. To wit, you claimed:

17 minutes ago, bytebear said:

There is no reason to think that gay parents can't do as good a job or better a job at raising kids than a heterosexual couple.

Do you remember writing that? Because that's what's under discussion.

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No, it's not.  You might as well be doing studies on children raised by Mormons over Lutherans.  Or Amish vs Methodists.   There are principles that help people be good parents,  but there is nothing inherit about your sexual orientation that makes you a more loving one.  So, no, God did not look at the studies on how parents would do, and created this law accordingly.

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2 minutes ago, mordorbund said:

Who guessed 4 pages? Come by after hours and collect your prize!

Well, I look at sin from two angles.  One is the sin of the outsider, and the other is the sin of the insider, who decides they are superior because they can point and mock the sin of the outsider.   Both sins, in my opinion, will keep you out of the presence of God.

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