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The Harsh Truth

Posted: December 25, 2015 in Uncategorized

Once upon a time, I was a devout Mormon. It actually wasn’t that long ago, though I’ve changed so much that it feels like another life or even a fairy tale. But I didn’t change easily. I had doubts for a long time. There were issues that didn’t sit well with me. Problems that challenged my sensibilities. And while I prided myself on being a seeker of truth, I wasn’t asking the right questions. Until someone pushed me…

I enjoyed religious discussions immensely, and I participated in such through various outlets. For several years, I respectfully discussed faith related questions with people from a wide variety of religious backgrounds. While these discussions helped expand my knowledge and understanding of my religion and the religions of the world, and even presented me with information that fostered more doubts, it was not enough to drive me toward an unbiased study. I even became an “apologist” and ghost writer for sites designed to answer the “tough questions” so believers would not be led away from their faith.

Through it all, I thought I was standing on the side of truth, and I believed firmly that “the truth will withstand scrutiny, but a lie, no matter how skillfully crafted, will wilt and wither under the intense heat of inspection” (Rod Parsley). So I continued to discuss, and study, and dig… and I eventually started digging into topics that my fellow believers considered “off limits”. I was told to avoid discussing anything that wasn’t “faith promoting”. I was told the answers to the questions I was asking were not “pertinent to my salvation” and so were unimportant. I was told that there were NO answers and that “all would be revealed” in the afterlife. And so on, and so forth… and that wasn’t good enough for me.

So, I started looking for a setting in which the discussions I was looking for would be permitted and not ignored. I found an online group of mostly ex-Mormons designed to be a place where nothing was off the table. I knew I’d be dealing with people who would challenge my faith there, but… “the truth [would] withstand scrutiny”… It was in this group that I found myself confronted by a very crass, vulgar, and passionate atheist. His discussion tactics caused quite a bit of upset, and MANY argued that he was taking things too far. I even left the group a couple times, but returned because I could not find any other outlet that would permit the discussions I wanted to engage in.

It was the direct, merciless, badgering approach of this individual that finally broke through my biases. I took his words to heart. I examined them, studied them, and could find no error in the logic. I engaged him in debate and found myself rethinking everything I’d thought I knew. My fellow believers would argue that I was allowing myself to be influenced by the devil – but there was TRUTH in what he was saying. Unflinching, unyielding, unforgiving, truth. And I came to find that this individual who withstood constant attacks and defamation of his character due to his language and confrontational demeanor was only harsh in the face of reprehensible lies, excuses, and hypocrisy.

He was never cruel. He was never malicious. He defended the weak. He stood up for victims. Yet, he was hated and ridiculed, because people were so upset about his use of words like “fucktard” and “turdsucker” that they lost sight of what he was actually saying. “Attack ideas, not people” was an understood rule of discussion that he was intent on breaking, and if it weren’t for his steadfast focus and uncompromising, irreligious intolerance for… well, fucktardery, the barrier of my own cognitive dissonance never would have been broken.

Perhaps I’m a rarity. Perhaps one really can “catch more flies with honey than with vinegar”. I witnessed countless individuals driven away by this offensive. They’d leave the group, block this “attacker”, or simply remain silent and stop participating. It was eventually decided by group administrators that the language, personal attacks, and graphic descriptions utilized by this person would no longer be tolerated. The desire for RESPECTFUL discussions won out… but how many people actually change their opinions, actually accept truth that goes contrary to their internalized reality, through respectful discussions?

Change isn’t really the goal, some say. The sharing of ideas… Mutual understanding… Those are the goals of a discussion group. And this idea that every person should be treated with respect, no matter what, was deemed more important than standing up for truth. But you can do both, some say… Perhaps. But I don’t want to be respectful of morally repugnant beliefs or the people who defend those beliefs. Not anymore.

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This is an amazing piece, giving a flip-side of the messages taught to Young Women in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Captain Mormon

Lucy H. WestmoorBy Lucy H. Westmoor, Ph.D.

Editor’s Note: This is from a talk given by Dr. Lucy Westmoor at a gathering of young single adult brothers. It is a companion piece for the similar talk given to LDS young single adult women by Larry L. Eastland, published by Meridian Magazine. The opinions expressed are solely those of Dr. Westmoor, and reflect neither those of the editor nor The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Introduction

6Now Joseph was well-built and handsome, 7and after a while his master’s wife took notice of Joseph and said, “Come to bed with me!” 8But he refused…. 11One day he went into the house to attend to his duties, and none of the household servants was inside. 12She caught him by his cloak and said, “Come to bed with me!” But…

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On Thursday, November 5, 2015, revisions to the LDS Handbook of Instructions 1 were leaked to the public. Among those revisions there is now detailed a new policy concerning the children of same-sex couples, in which such children cannot be baptized into the church at the typical age of eight. Instead, these children must wait until age 18 and disavow the practice of same-sex cohabitation and marriage before they can become members of the church. News and social media outlets have erupted with this news, leaving many who are unfamiliar with the intricacies of the Mormon church scratching their heads.

Most people know the basics about the Mormon church. After Mitt Romney’s run for President of the United States in 2012, Mormons found themselves in the political spotlight and a major campaign to familiarize people with the church went worldwide. The Book of Mormon musical hit Broadway just a year before in 2011, a satirical comedy developed by the producers of South Park. Mormons are now frequently distinguished by their missionary efforts, and they are referenced often in pop culture.

So most people already know that the church takes a strong position against gays and that they have a history of applying political and social pressures to try and combat the “gay lifestyle”. If you don’t know, here’s the skinny (summarized from rationalfaiths.com “Timeline of Mormon Thinking About Homosexuality”):

Mormon leaders first equated homosexuality to that which led to the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah (calling it sodomy) in 1855. In 1876, sodomy became illegal in Utah Territory – a felony punishable by 23 years imprisonment. Active efforts to remove the “stain” of homosexuality from the membership continued with various leaders speaking out against this “abominable sin” over the course of the century.

In 1962, any members having convincing evidence that they’d engaged in homosexual deeds were barred from attendance at Brigham Young University – the Mormon sponsored college. Pressure continued, and in 1965, five BYU students that had been counseled about homosexuality committed suicide. This led to campus policies that were termed the “gay witch-hunts” and the Church Handbook of Instructions was updated to include homosexuality as an ex-communicable offense.

The Miracle of Forgiveness, published in 1969 by Mormon apostle and prophet Spencer W. Kimball expressed the belief that masturbation would lead to homosexual behavior. Pressures against homosexuality were now extended to other “deviant” sexual practices, and masturbation and pornography became regular topics for leadership to call out as dangerous and spiritually damaging.

In 1976, efforts to “cure” homosexuals led to the experimental use of electroshock therapy at BYU. Several of the participants committed suicide. In that same year, apostle Boyd K. Packer gave his talk “To Young Men Only”. This talk was then turned into a pamphlet distributed for all young men in the church, and it urged them to exercise self-control and not engage in any “unnatural” sexual acts, again hinging on the belief that masturbation would lead to homosexuality.

House Bill 3 was passed in 1977, making homosexual marriage in the state of Utah illegal. Thanksgiving 1988, Gordon Church, a 28-year-old Southern University Student and gay Mormon was murdered by Lance Wood and Michael Archuleta in “what is one of the most horrific hate crimes in Utah history”. And still the attacks and pressures continued, Boyd K. Packer again taking the lead with a talk in 1993 calling feminists, intellectuals, and homosexuals the “three enemies of the church”.

In 1995, the church Presidency sent out “The Family: A Proclamation to the World”, accepted as an additional, official, church doctrine on par with scripture. Members were urged to frame and place the proclamation on the walls of their homes and read it frequently. It detailed the Mormon views on sexuality, gender, and marriage, specifically detailing the gender roles of men and women and stating that sexual relations were meant to be had only between a man and a woman lawfully wed.

In 2000, “President Gordon B. Hinckley released a statement that is read in every Latter-Day Saint congregation in California that urges members to ‘redouble their efforts’ to pass Prop. 22 a law stating ‘only marriage between a man and a woman is valid and recognized in California.’ Prop 22 passed.” In that same year, Stuart Martis committed suicide after drafting and sending a letter to the Brigham Young University student newspaper detailing his emotional plight and urging students to harbor more tolerance toward gays.

Finally, comes the familiar Proposition 8 in California in 2008. About half the donations for Protect Marriage came from LDS donors, and about 80-90% of the volunteer base for door-to-door canvasing was LDS members. Then, in 2012, right along with Mitt Romney’s campaign, the church starts trying to improve it’s image. They accept the Boy Scout policy allowing gay scouts. The Mormons Building Bridges organization is formed, inspiring thousands of LDS members worldwide to participate in Pride parades, and the church releases a new website on Mormons and Gays entitled “Love One Another: A Discussion of Same-Sex Attraction”.

So, it is quite clear that the Mormon leadership considers homosexuality a serious sin. They’ve quite actively sought to stamp it out of their membership through every means possible from their very foundation in the mid-1800s. Those familiar with this history are not at all surprised by this new policy, but many are confused by the resultant outrage and media attention it has garnered.

One question and reaction I’ve seen repeated over and over as members and ex-members are coming to terms with this has been:

“So what? Why are you surprised? It’s nothing new. The church has always been clear about it’s position on homosexuality.”

To that, I’ve frequently responded:

“Of course I’m not surprised. But I AM angry.”

Why? Why does it matter?

Mormons make up a very small portion of the world population. There are approximately 7 billion people in the world today, and the Mormons claim to have a membership of approximately 15 million, though this is grossly exaggerated. Church records count children who’ve received their baby blessings even though they haven’t yet been baptized, and they count any member who has not explicitly insisted their name be removed from the records. So this number includes many inactive and apostate members as well. A recent Pew Survey shows that approximately 36% of those raised LDS have abandoned the faith. So active Mormons actually make up less than 0.01% of the world population. Many people are completely unaffected by this policy and rightly confused. Why so angry?

“Anybody who is gay shouldn’t associate themselves with such a hateful church. Just leave.”

While I agree, it isn’t that simple.

There have been and always will be gay members in the Mormon church. This is because people are BORN gay. Even church leadership has come to recognize that people “cannot choose who they are attracted to”. They claim to “love the sinner, but hate the sin”. They believe that those who “suffer” from same-sex attraction must battle this “temptation” in order to abide by the “Law of Chastity” which requires sexual activity be practiced only between a married man and woman. Individuals born into this church face a very real struggle for acceptance and understanding.

They will be indoctrinated from birth. They will be taught that their church is the “one true church” and that living by it’s teachings is the only way to guarantee the salvation of their eternal souls. Their sexuality will be stifled. And this is already resulting in turmoil and strife. While most people outside the Mormon church’s sphere of influence are coming to accept their homosexual friends, relatives, and neighbors, members of this church look on homosexuality with fear and distaste. Children who come out to their Mormon parents are often disowned and kicked out of their homes. Between 20 and 40% of the homeless youth in Utah identify as LGBT. And the youth suicide rates in Utah are the 5th highest in the nation.

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The homophobic teachings of this church is HURTING their members who identify as homosexual. They are trying desperately to live up to the expectations of their parents, peers, and supposed god. Trying desperately to find love and acceptance. Trying desperately to change what they CANNOT change, because they are told that their feelings are sinful, wretched, and disgusting. The Mormon church is not battling to keep something outside from coming in – it is battling to eradicate a “problem” within its own ranks, and this battle is succeeding in driving its gay youth to suicide.

And now they’ve shifted targets. Now they want to cause even more damage by singling out the children of gay couples. Obviously, if a same-sex couple is married or cohabiting, they’ve already rejected the teachings of the Mormon church. Excommunicating them and labeling them apostates would be an understandable move for the church to take, considering it’s track record. An upsetting continuation of homophobic bigotry, to be sure. But understandable. Those affected by such an action would already be on their way out and hopefully have a strong support network they can go to for dealing with the rejection and potential family fallout.

But this is going to be affecting more kids. And this is where many people will fail to understand why this is such a big deal if they aren’t familiar with the inner workings of the Mormon church. So here’s how it works:

  • Newborn babies get a name and blessing, with their names getting added to the records of the church.
  • At 8 years old, children are baptized, receive the “Gift of the Holy Ghost”, and become official members of the church.
  • At 12 years old, male children receive the Aaronic Priesthood. This allows them to participate in the blessing and passing of the sacrament and to perform baptisms.
  • Also at 12 years old, all children can participate in performing proxy baptisms for their dead relatives in the temples.
  • Also at 12 years old, all children can receive callings of leadership in their respective quorums and classes.

All these things will now be denied to the children of gay couples in the church. And if anybody remembers what it’s like to be part of a peer group where you’re excluded from the majority of the activities, they’ll understand why this is such a bad thing. Imagine trying to explain to an 8 year old child why he can’t get baptized like all his peers. Imagine the strife it will cause. Imagine the division between parent and child, as all involved are taught that the blame falls on the shoulders of the couple who chose to marry against church teachings. Imagine growing up in a home that would have been loving and accepting and tolerant, but that will now be torn by this injustice.

Now, many have asked “why would any gay couple let their child go to this church, anyway?”

REMEMBER –

There have been and always will be gay members in the church, because they are BORN gay. Those growing up in this church will face a very difficult time getting out, especially if they grow up in Mormon dominated areas like Utah, where the cultish peer-pressures and censorship of anything outside the Mormon sphere will keep them in the dark. Many of these gay members will continue trying to live according to church teachings all the way into adulthood. They will marry someone of the opposite gender, striving to maintain a hetero-normative lifestyle. They will have children with their spouse. And then… as has so often, already, happened… they’ll finally come to terms with their sexuality and “come out” to their spouse. They’ll divorce, effectively leave the church (whether or not they actually request their name be removed), and find a relationship with someone with whom they can actually be happy. But they still have kids, and shared custody with an often still-believing parent.

Striving to show an example of love, acceptance, tolerance, and compassion, many families in these circumstances are trying to “live and let live”. The child is being permitted to choose baptism in the church, if they want it, and everyone involved ends up being kinder and more open-minded toward differing views for their efforts. Now the Mormon church says “Forget that. We can’t let our members think it’s okay to be tolerant of gay marriage. We’ve got to nip this in the bud.”

The SCOTUS ruling legalized same-sex marriage nationwide, overruling the Utah bill that made it illegal in 1977. So the Mormon church made a political move in response, not unlike the political move they made barring polygamous households from their membership in 1890. Only then, the Mormons had been practicing polygamy until the United States declared it illegal. So they disavowed the practice (via “revelation”) and instituted a similar policy to separate themselves from those families that refused to discontinue the practice. With absolutely no concern for how such policies would affect the children involved, the Mormon church is heartlessly playing a game of politics.

Those who believe the church is true and that Gods laws are “unchanging” will support this, showing little to no sympathy for the resultant pain and suffering. They will pin the blame on the gay parents. They will continue to cause division and strife. They will further cement the bigotry, hatred, and homophobia, creating a hostile environment for any homosexual who happens to be unlucky enough to be born into their community.

This policy change matters, because it HURTS people. Innocent people. People who are entrenched in a world they will not know how to escape. People who deserve and NEED our compassion and help. And this problem is NOT going to go away with time. It will only get worse. Unless we take a stand. Unless we redouble our efforts to reveal the false teachings of this hate group and help free it’s victims.

It matters. Because every life matters. Because nobody should have to live in constant fear. Because nobody should be forced to reject their nature in order to be accepted by family. Because the members are blind to the damages they are causing and need their eyes opened. Even now, there is an apologetic rhetoric circling through the membership in response to this news. Already, a Mormon apostle is spouting lies meant to soothe the membership into acceptance. We need to expose those lies for what they are. We need to show people the REAL EFFECTS this policy change will have on the children they are supposedly “protecting”.

They are driving their children to suicide. And that should not be tolerated.

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The Mormon Church has been thrust into the spotlight again, which is never a good thing. Media outlets are abuzz with the leaked revisions to the Handbook of Instructions, used to direct ecclesiastical leaders in their duties as Bishops, Presidents, Quorum Leaders, etc. Why? Well, take a look for yourself:

Handbook 1, number 6.7.2 has been updated as follows (addition is italicized):

When a Disciplinary Council May Be Necessary

Serious Transgression

. . . It includes (but is not limited to) attempted murder, forcible rape, sexual abuse, spouse abuse, intentional serious physical injury of others, adultery, fornication, homosexual relations (especially sexual cohabitation), deliberate abandonment of family responsibilities, . . .

Handbook 1, number 6.7.3 has been updated as follows (addition is italicized):

When a Disciplinary Council is Mandatory

Apostasy

As used here, apostasy refers to members who:

  1. Repeatedly act in clear, open, and deliberate public opposition to the Church or its leaders.
  2. Persist in teaching as Church doctrine information that is not Church doctrine after they have been corrected by their bishop or a higher authority.
  3. Continue to follow the teachings of apostate sects (such as those that advocate plural marriage) after being corrected by their bishop or a higher authority.
  4. Are in a same-gender marriage.
  5. Formally join another church and advocate its teachings.

A new section in Handbook 1, 16.13 has been added as follows:

Children of a Parent Living in a Same-Gender Relationship

A natural or adopted child of a parent living in a same-gender relationship, whether the couple is married or cohabiting, may not receive a name and a blessing.

A natural or adopted child of a parent living in a same-gender relationship, whether the couple is married or cohabiting, may be baptized and confirmed, ordained, or recommended for missionary service only as follows:

A mission president or a stake president may request approval from the Office of the First Presidency to baptize and confirm, ordain, or recommend missionary service for a child of a parent who has lived or is living in a same-gender relationship when he is satisfied by personal interviews that both of the following requirements are met:

  1. The child accepts and is committed to live the teachings and doctrine of the Church, and specifically disavows the practice of same-gender cohabitation and marriage.
  2. The child is of legal age and does not live with a parent who has lived or currently lives in a same-gender cohabitation relationship or marriage.

Now the Mormon church has been known for it’s bigotry for quite some time, so this new policy should come as no surprise. It’s rather reminiscent of the racist teachings dating all the way back to Brigham Young:

“Shall I tell you the law of God in regard to the African Race? If the White man who belongs to the chosen seed mixes his blood with the seed of Cain, the penalty, under the law of God, is death on the spot. This will always be so.” (Journal of Discourses)

And it was still prevalent well into the 1970s. See, for example, this quote from Apostle Bruce R. McConkie in his book “Mormon Doctrine”:

…in a broad general sense, caste systems have their origin in the gospel itself, and when they operate according to the divine decree, the resultant restrictions and segregation are right and proper and have the approval of the lord.
To illustrate: Cain, Ham, and the whole negro race have been cursed with a black skin, the mark of Cain,so they can be identified as a caste apart, a people with whom the other descendants of Adam should not intermarry.

Interracial marriage was considered a grievous sin in the Mormon church for well over a decade, and now the target is homosexuals. Of course, the leaders have their reasons. “The Family” is considered a very central doctrine of the church, and marriage and sex are heavily controlled with the “Law of Chastity”. According to Mormon teachings, sexual activity of any kind is b. a. d. BAD, with one exception – being married to a faithful member of the opposite gender in a temple ceremony. Even lawful, non-temple weddings are frowned upon, with members who choose to marry outside the temple having to wait one year before they can receive their sealing ordinance.

Mormons frequently espouse “one man and one woman” as an important and integral part of their God’s plans for the universe and for each individual’s divine destiny. This point is so important that anyone who deviates from this path is considered unworthy of the “Celestial Kingdom”, their highest degree of heavenly glory and honor in the afterlife.

Masturbation and pornography are matters to discuss with a bishop, and a pamphlet “To the One” targeting young men struggling with masturbation led many in the church into a depressive slump and even resulted in many suicides. Young adults are pressured to hurry up and marry, women told to make it their top priority even above education or self-advancement with a career and men told that if they were still single beyond age 32 that they were “deviants” and a “menace to society”. Divorced and single-parent members are ostracized. And now… they gays.

Now before you start going on about how a “loving” god would not support this, remember what the Bible says:

The invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; that they are without excuse. Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools … Wherefore … God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another. God gave them over to a reprobate mind … Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers, Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, Without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful … they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.Romans 1:20-32

The Biblical God thinks homosexuals and those who support them are “worthy of death” and compares them to, among other things, murderers. Hmm… see Mormon Handbook:

Serious transgression “includes (but is not limited to) attempted murder, forcible rape, sexual abuse, spouse abuse, intentional serious physical injury of others, adultery, fornication, homosexual relations (especially sexual cohabitation), deliberate abandonment of family responsibilities, . . .”

Apparently, two people loving one another with the wrong piping for reproduction makes them akin to murderers. At least the Mormons and the Bible are in agreement.

The church has a long history of oppressing the LGBT community. As people around the world started gaining courage and going public, the church initially taught that homosexuality was a choice and that those experiencing such feelings were under the influence of Satan. Electroshock therapy was used at Brigham Young University in the 1970s as an attempt to “cure the gays” of their “tendencies”. When they realized such treatments weren’t working, they revised their teachings with a separation between those who feel “same-sex attraction” and those who live a “homosexual lifestyle”. Even so, there remains a refusal to accept scientific findings that individuals are BORN with such attractions and that homosexuality is not a deviant behavior as it is found in numerous species and is even considered beneficial to communities.

Elder Oaks, April 2007: “The Church does not have a position on the causes of any of these susceptibilities or inclinations, including those related to same-gender attraction. Those are scientific questions — whether nature or nurture — those are things the Church doesn’t have a position on.”

In other words – “The science doesn’t agree with our position, so we’ll play the PR card and pretend like we’re undecided and that the question isn’t pertinent to church doctrine anyway.”

As a result of the shifting Mormon views on homosexuality, children coming to terms with a homosexual identity in Mormon families have faced some very real challenges. LGBT youth in Utah are at high risk of depression and suicide, largely due to being rejected and disowned by their families, and 40% of Utah’s homeless youth identify as homosexual.

Now, the church attacks children once again, with this policy barring the children of homosexual parents from baptism. I’ve seen members defending this, explaining that the bar is a kind of “protection” and that the measure was “wise”, as it would prevent children from having to choose between the conflicting interests of family and church. To that I say “HA!” You obviously are not thinking this through from the perspective of a child.

For some levity, here is a real story from a real person who’s child has already been affected by this bar (shared anonymously by a friend of the individual in question):

A woman I love very much does not get to have her child baptized, who was set to be baptized this Saturday. Her and her husband got a divorce because he could no longer pretend he wasn’t gay and is now happily married to a man. They are all happily co-parenting together. The gay father was in complete support of the child getting baptized and had given his consent, even bought scriptures with the child’s name on them as a gift and was planning on attending the baptism. Because of this new rule, this child is not allowed to be baptized. The child is staying home from school today because the child was up all night sobbing. This child does not understand why he cannot be baptized when a week ago he would have been able to. Everyone else in his class will be getting baptized, everyone else in his extended family will be getting baptized. He is not allowed, despite going to church every Sunday, even with his father on the weekends he spends there. Despite paying tithing faithfully. Despite looking forward to this for as long as he understood what baptism was. Hurting children is wrong.

An eight year old CHILD will not understand why they can’t be baptized when all their friends can. An eight year old CHILD will not understand why their parents are being compared to murderers. An eight year old CHILD will be facing a future in the church in which they will be bullied, ostracized, demonized, persecuted, ridiculed, segregated, and ultimately forced to choose between family and religion. And this in a church which claims to be focused on drawing families together.

The parents are not forcing the child to choose. The parents are not threatening the child. This policy is WRONG. This policy is punishing children for the actions of their parents, actions which the church says deems these individuals apostates and worthy of death, but which the child has no control over.

The Mormon church is NOT “true”. The Mormon church is NOT “good for families”. The Mormon church does NOT provide a “good moral upbringing”. No. Quite simply, the Mormon church has proven itself to be racist, sexist, bigoted, homophobic, and hypocritical. The Mormon church DENIES truth in order to keep spouting it’s hateful filth, and it drives a wedge between families for no other reason than that individuals within these families are different.

If you or your loved ones are members of this church, realize NOW that these teachings are damaging and harmful. Stop making excuses. Stop denying the evidence staring you in the face. Stop being tolerant of those who would rather see you conform than see you happily living the life that brings you joy. Stop exposing your children to an environment where they will be forced to accept hateful teachings or be forever condemned to a life on the sidelines.

I have been “out” for just over a year now, and now… I will be officially resigning from this monstrosity. And you should too.