A Metaphor & a Plea

coinzI’m pleased to share a post written by my friend Christian Harrison.
I’d like to write a few words about something that was said, during the Saturday morning session of General Conference.

I grew up in Spokane, Washington. Living so close to the Canadian border, I frequently came across the random Canadian penny or dime. As a child, I learned that they were easily used to pay at the cashier but they were rejected outright by vending machines.

You see, those Canadian coins weren’t counterfeit, they were just foreign. The cashiers knew the difference… but the machines did not. And what separates the cashier from the machine is experience — and the willingness to learn from it. The cashiers knew that the coins were valued the same as their US equivalents by their customers. The foreign coins weren’t part of the official economy, but they were part of mine. I knew that I could use them to get cookies at the grocery store, to pay for a day at the local pool, or to pay my late fines at the library.

I’m both an out gay man and a practicing Latter-day Saint… and I’d like to speak to my brothers and sisters: as Latter-day Saints, we know the power of bearing testimony. And as LGBTQ Mormons, I would hope, we understand how vital it is to live our lives out loud. It’s my hope that our lives might be a testimony to our friends, neighbors, and leaders of our enduring and inherent value — a testimony that our lives and loves are simply foreign… not counterfeit.

We’ve come so far, and have so far to go. Sites like Mormons & Gays  do their part, but the heavy lifting will be done in our wards and in our neighborhoods as LGBTQ Latter-day Saints step out from the shadows and members of the Church who’ve not had any true frame of reference realize that they’ve loved someone gay (or lesbian or trans) all along.

It’s hard, after all, to hate someone you actually know.

D Christian Harrison was born and raised in Spokane, Washington. After a two-year mission in Montréal, Québec and a five-year stint at BYU, Christian settled down in Salt Lake City. With neither a spouse nor children, Christian spends his vast reserves of free time working, politicking, hosting dinner parties, serving in Church, dating, and road tripping. Christian is a long-time friend of Times & Seasons where, in the early years, he posted as Silus Grok.

70 comments for “A Metaphor & a Plea

  1. *It’s hard, after all, to hate someone you actually know.*

    If only that were true.

  2. Christian, thank you for this. I think your metaphor is memorable and illuminating. The full, genuine, bona fide humanity and fellowship of LGBT Saints (and others who depart from the norm) is something we must never stop paying attention to. All metaphors have their limits, of course — the limit here is that all Canadian pennies look alike, whereas different gay Saints will live their lives differently. Some may be called to celibacy, others to relationship; some to group advocacy, some to good works of a different kind. But each one is fully, genuinely human.

  3. Adam, I agree. However, it is *harder* to hate someone you actually know than it is to hate a faceless bogeyman. And it is harder still to hate someone you love. And when you can see their efforts to live the gospel, you can still disagree with them, but hate becomes very difficult.

  4. Well said. Am I the only one, though, who doesn’t know what was said at the Saturday morning conference session that sparked this post? Could some context be added?

  5. This is an unfortunate metaphor. Canadian pennies are only worth 80% of their American counterpart.

  6. But not in the local economy Christian describes — that’s the point! The community accepted them as foreign, but of full value in exchange.

  7. Rosalynde (8), this post and follow-up seem to be dancing around a lot of things. What is the line in the talk you are referring to? Also, does the “lives and loves” referred to in the OP include dudes having sex with dudes?

  8. Rosalynde:

    Did Elder Perry say that gay Saints aren’t fully, genuinely human?

  9. I have found that when you finally have a dear friend who is gay, or when you receive heartfelt service from someone who also happens to be lesbian, the worry about sexuality falls away. So much more important is who they are and what they mean in your life. That has been my experience. So yes, it is hard to hate someone you don’t know.

  10. As a rule, I generally let my posts (wherever they turn up) develop a life of their own before wading into the comments… but I don’t want Rosalynde to be in the awkward position of defending my post.

    If you have questions about my post, please direct them to me.

  11. Christian:

    Did Elder Perry say that gay Saints aren’t fully, genuinely human?

  12. My opinion is that he did not say that gay Saints aren’t fully, genuinely human. What’s your opinion, Christian?

  13. N. W. Clerk: Without taking the time to watch the entire talk (again), I’m pretty sure I can say that no, he did NOT say “gay Saints aren’t fully, genuinely human”. But he didn’t need to. You can be fully, genuinely human and still be on “The World’s” side, and therefore not fully, genuinely committed to the Gospel (at best) or wholly evil and completely pitted against God and His work (at worst).

    The problem is that as long as we hear talks about “the world” and “worldly philosophies” trying to destroy THE FAMILY, it’s a very short trip to the idea that the main threat is gay marriage (which has been preached, if not over the pulpit at GC, then in the Church’s actions re Prop 8). The next step in the train of thought is that all gays want to get married, and that therefore, all gays – and anyone who support them – are trying to destroy the family.

  14. Great! So defending gay Saints as “fully, genuinely human” is defending them against a charge that wasn’t being made. I’m glad we can agree on that.

  15. Nobody accused Elder Perry of saying any such thing. So you’re defending him against a defense that wasn’t made against a charge that wasn’t made.

    Rosalynde’s comment (as I read it) was that we, *as a church*, need to be better at viewing our LGBT brothers and sisters as fully, genuinely valued *as members of the church*. And that is absolutely something we need to work on. While there were many talks (especially Sunday morning) that were very much about all of us as sinners and all of us being patient and loving with each other’s shortcomings, many of our talks about the family engender an “us vs. them” mentality – especially against “the gays”

  16. N.W. I think that the point of the post is that others lives and experiences and perspectives are not counterfeit, just because they are foreign to us doesn’t make them counterfeit. Who we are, what we are, and how we are, and our experiences are all real and of worth. When we other people or call their experiences counterfeit because they are not like us we sin.

  17. I’m still confused. Are we being asked to consider gay sex as “foreign” instead of sinful or not? If this is about accepting that everyone is valuable and may have much to offer regardless of alphabet soup designation, OK, done. But if the idea is that Mormons are supposed to stop thinking dudes having sex with dudes is a sin (just “foreign”), this is a delusional waste of pixels.

  18. Elder Perry wasn’t speaking of individuals but of families. It would have been better for many reasons if he had simply drawn the line between marriage and non-committed relationships (which he also referenced in his talk). Instead, he praised *traditional* families and absolutely implied *non traditional* families were counterfeit:

    “We want our voice to be heard against all of the counterfeit and alternative lifestyles that try to replace the family organization that God Himself established. We also want our voice to be heard in sustaining the joy and fulfillment that traditional families bring.”

  19. Ok, had to listen to it, since the print isn’t out yet.

    “We want our voice to be heard, against all the counterfeits and alternate lifestyles that try to replace family organizations that God Himself established.” (L Tom Perry, Saturday Morning Conference Session, at abt 13:14)

    There was nothing about gays not being fully human or not being fully valued. The whole talk was about how we and other religions can find commonalities in “traditional” marriage.

    I don’t think it’s a good metaphor. Also spending some years near the Canadian border, Canadian pennies were a serious nuisance, not just something that people used interchangeably with US pennies. Banks (with their machines) wouldn’t accept them, so the loss had to be taken by the shop owners.

    If you want to talk about how same sex marriage is just as good as two sex marriage, just different, you’re going to have to come up with a different talk to use as an example. If you want to talk about how those outside the gender/sexual “norm” are different but just as acceptable, you’ll need a better metaphor.

  20. Thanks, Christian. As someone born from a non-Christian interracial relationship who grew up to marry interracially (and, technically, to a non-Christian as well though she later joined the church), I wonder how church leaders of earlier eras would have described my family. If Elder Perry meant to call out cohabitation, or sexual sin, or secularization, fine, he should have done so. Otherwise, I’m not sure I see the value in even attempting to define a given relationship as “counterfeit.”

  21. Serious questions for Bro. Harrison…

    Does acknowledging a gay man’s “enduring and inherent value” require that I disavow my perception of homosexual acts as immoral and contrary to God’s law?

    Is acknowledging a gay man’s enduring and inherent value any different than acknowledging the enduring and inherent value of any man or woman irrespective of their sexual orientation or personal predilections?

    If we can agree on the premise that homosexual acts are immoral and contrary to God’s law, what is the value of self identifying as gay (“out loud”)? Putting aside social policy and within the confines of our wards/neighborhoods/families, how is it different than self identifying with any other personal predilection the pursuit of which runs contrary to God’s law?

    You reference the heavy lifting needed from LBGTQ Mormons. Help me understand what I can do to better recognize your enduring and inherent value. Is your purpose a matter of eroding the social stigma within the Church associated with LBGTQ issues or are you are asking for something more? If so, what?

    I hope these questions don’t come across as rhetorical or agenda driven. I ask them sincerely. The problem is that the language used to discuss the LGBTQ movement carries social and political baggage. I often find myself wondering what exactly you and other outspoken proponents of the LGBTQ movement within the Church ask of me, your brother in the Gospel.

  22. Mormon theology, as I see it, is premised on the idea of the “patriarchal order.” It is an ideology that says the social unit of value in this life and the next requires one heterosexual male and some number of females greater than or equal to one. And, everyone has to be virile and fertile.

    Heaven knows I’d like some other way to interpret our faith, but at it’s core, the faith is centered on the “patriarchal order,” i.e. the heterosexual male and his “kingdom.”

    This discussion, along with many other discussions by thoughtful LDS people, is answering this question: “This ‘patriarchal order’ thing doesn’t really give me much purpose or meaning in life. Can I still be LDS?”

    Good heavens I hope this works out for you Christian. I’m all ears for how people manage to make this work. I genuinely pray for your success in working out a meaningful solution.

  23. I echo JJ above. It is often not really clear to me what I, as a member of the church, am being asked to change or do for LBGTQ members besides doing what I should be doing for all members… namely loving and serving them, forgiving them their trespasses against me and striving to be kind to them. Is there something more to all of this?

  24. Thanks for this, Christian.

    Frank, when L. Tom Perry mentioned “counterfeit” lifestyles, he clearly had same-sex marriage in mind. I think what Christian means by “live our lives out loud” is dating people of the same gender with the intent finding a same-gender marriage partner (correct me if I’m wrong). He then states that “our lives” (with the apparent meaning of same-sex romantic relationships) shouldn’t be regarded as “counterfeit,” although it is not clear if he is alluding to L. Tom Perry’s talk.

  25. I’ve said this before but I am at a loss as to what to think about subjects like polygamy and LGBT. The way some brethren talk about it it’s as if life is black and white, all are straight, all are interested in marriage, all know the plan of salvation, all want and should have kids, can afford them and all have access to dating partners. The world is just not like that. I don’t know where or what purpose homosexuality serves or what God expects his children (LDS or not) who are LGBT to do. Is he suprised gay rights is an issue? or that people don’t like gay folks or that vice versa?

  26. I believe its wishful thinking that the Church will ever fully accept you as you are. I hope someday to be proven wrong but the way the Church has and continues to fight against same sex marriage speaks volumes. Also, history has shown that as movements such as mormonism get attacked like it is with the debates over historicity of the BofM,etc., the movements move way to the right because the liberals leave and the fox news believers are the ones remaining.

    So, good luck to you if you choose to stay. I personally think you would be better served by leaving an organization that doesn’t care one bit about you and denies deep down that you were born this way.

  27. One of my favorite snippets from literature comes from Graham Greene’s The Power and the Glory. Here’s the quote, and it fits perfectly with your closing line, Christian.

    “When you visualized a man or a woman carefully, you could always begin to feel pity . . . that was a quality God’s image carried with it . . . when you saw the lines at the corners of the eyes, the shape of the mouth, how the hair grew, it was impossible to hate. Hate was just a failure of imagination.”

    Thanks for the great post.

  28. yoserian,

    Don’t mean to go off topic, but I find your caricature of church members offensive. Those of us that choose to remain in the church are not all knuckle-dragging, fox news watching ignoramuses who don’t care about the lives and struggles of other people, including those that are gay.

    We think seriously about these issues. Just because we come to a different conclusion than you, doesn’t mean that we are in denial nor does it mean that we don’t care about members like Christian.

  29. Christian, as a fellow gay active Latter-day Saint, I think we’re in a more difficult position than your post implies. It may be unfair or selfish, but I don’t want to be the victim of tokenism. As soon as I tell a lot of people I’m gay—especially people I’m only newly acquainted with—that becomes all I represent to them. I’m gay, and I’m not ashamed of that, nor do I actively try to conceal it, but I’m also so many more things than that, and as sick as I get of the hate and misunderstanding, I get almost as sick of the “you’re so brave” comments and cooption by people for whatever cause they believe in, conservative or liberal.

    So does anyone in my current ward know I’m gay? No. Does my current bishop know I’m gay? No. The first bishop I told spent every interview we had telling me I needed to get married and that he knew a gay women he’d counseled who had gotten married and prayed really hard and she became heterosexually attracted to her husband, and he kept promising me that if I dated people of the opposite gender and got married and prayed for long enough I would gain heterosexual attraction, too. Even he tokenized me, and I don’t want that again.

    I’m different, but that doesn’t mean I’m foreign or exotic or brave or damned or mutated or better or worse. I’m just different. My chosen religion doesn’t approve of me being capable of an eternal marriage. I don’t know if that’s right or wrong, but I believe in the fundamental core of the gospel message, so I stay unmarried.

    And that’s my life. It’s not something brave and heroic or testimony-worthy that I need to go around screaming to everyone I meet, any more than any other person’s life is. There’s nothing sacred and testimony-worthy about me being attracted to people of my same gender just like there’s nothing shameful and sinful about it, just like there isn’t anything sacred or sinful about my height or eye color.

    And more to the point, I’ve come to realize that our feelings of prejudice are caused by our own securities. To get someone to love me, I don’t need to get them to know me, I need them to get to know themselves, and to see how much God loves them and how valuable they are to Him and how they don’t need to be afraid or despair because Jesus came and took their sins and blood and everything upon himself if they’ll just let go if it.

    Us gays are hardly the only people being judged at church or in the world. Your way helps just me. The other way helps everyone. Otherwise, whenever a pence or kopek or rupee or whatever the next metaphoric currency is comes along, we’ll just have to start all over, because we never taught anyone the real lesson in the first place.

    Sorry to disagree.

  30. JJ, others:

    Acknowledging a gay man’s “enduring and inherent value” doesn’t require you to disavow your belief that homosexual acts are immoral… but I’m wagering that required or not, that will be the wage of familiarity. Once you come to have gay friends who live and love out loud, the otherness of gay love — and, ultimately, gay sex — will fade into the background. Our shared experience of human sexuality will be all that’s left… 

    The tender embrace, the practiced vulnerability, the molecular abandon — that heady, awkward dance that plays out on eddies of desire and indifference — heaving, as it were, on tides of cosmic and biological cycles.

    Once we restrict consensual sex to the confines of a loving marriage, focusing on the plumbing is like arguing over which highway one should take to Disneyland/the beach/the temple.

  31. “Acknowledging a gay man’s ‘enduring and inherent value’ doesn’t require you to disavow your belief that homosexual acts are immoral… but I’m wagering that required or not, that will be the wage of familiarity.”

    You’d lose that wager. I have friends and relatives who have broken the Law of Chastity in a wide variety of ways. I never stopped loving these people; I never started believing that they were right and the Prophets and Apostles were wrong.

  32. Moreover, I’d submit that infidelity, fetishism, and promiscuity are categorically different from consensual sex one finds within the confines of a loving marriage. So it’s no wonder you haven’t changed your mind… yet.

  33. Does that maxim apply to you as well? Are you certain that you will never come to agree with the Prophets and Apostles that homosexual relations are sinful?

  34. “focusing on the plumbing is like arguing over which highway one should take to Disneyland/the beach/the temple.”

    I’m a heterosexual male. I cannot foresee the day when I can view. … To me, gay sex is personally revolting. I don’t understand it at all.

    That being said, I feel every compulsion to take homosexuals at their word–that homosexuality is perfectly natural, that they were born that way, and that they should be free to live life in that manner. I’m persuaded that legally homosexuals should have available to them all of the rights of heterosexuals, including marriage. I have an uncle who is gay and has been with his partner for 25+ years through sickness and health, poverty and wealth. I know gay parents trying to raise children in this world. Those children deserve every benefit we as a society can give them. I see a bright future for homosexuals in society at large. If I have a son or daughter who is gay, I’m hopeful for his or her future, in the U.S.

    I would have serious doubts about encouraging that child to remain LDS. When church leadership speaks of “eternal families,” they are not using that term as it would be understood in common parlance. What they are talking about is a claim that the purpose of mankind is tied up with the “patriarchal order.” That is not what Joe-on-the-street thinks about if you told him the word “eternal family.” “Eternal family” is a marketing term.

    Homosexuality does not fit in the LDS narrative. I’m not saying it cannot be done. I’d like to think the LDS ideology could evolve, maybe. I know for a fact that the lion’s share of LDS members are open minded people who genuinely love other people. And, maybe spending one’s life giving people familiarity is a worthy pursuit. However, I would never ask my son or daughter to do that. I would encourage them to find other things that give them meaning and purpose in life, other than LDS ideology.

    Just my .02

  35. Christian Harrison (39) – “Once we restrict consensual sex to the confines of a loving marriage, focusing on the plumbing is like arguing over which highway one should take to Disneyland/the beach/the temple.”

    Wow, you’re just not very good at analogies. Not all highways lead to the same place. While it’s true that there are many routes from New York to Disneyland, if you’re at least not going West and South, you’ll never get there. It’s the same with marriage. If you’re not at least headed in the direction of the goal (Eternal marriage, which is very well established as requiring two genders), you’re never going to get there.

  36. The metaphor doesn’t work for me. We need to be saints first and everything else second.

  37. Frank (#45): You’re an excellent example of what I’m talking about. There is absolutely no room in your LDS world view for homosexuality. My intuition says you’re right, regrettably.

    Just curious, according to you is there a difference between “eternal marriage” and “patriarchal order”? I’m not asking a rhetorical question. I’m genuinely interested in your view.

  38. Josh Smith (44): I imagine my revulsion to straight sex is similar to your revulsion to gay sex. The point of my comment isn’t to say that your tastes will change, but that it will fade to the background. Also, I don’t think that homosexuality is incompatible with the LDS narrative. That just hasn’t been my experience.

    Frank Pellett (45): Crafting a good analogy requires faith that the hearer can suspend their insistence on being literal. I’m sorry my faith in you was misplaced.

    Jack (46): Being a “saint first and everything else second” is the very definition of crazed fundamentalism. Good luck with that.

  39. AHA! (This is almost certainly going to get me in trouble.) I’m very interested in other’s thoughts on this:

    I think Joseph Smith was implicit in the first same sex marriage in the LDS faith, and, … and, he may be a partner in a same sex marriage himself.

    It’s my understanding that when a man is sealed to more than one woman, the women are sealed to each other. If two women are sealed to one man–and the women are sealed to each other!–and they’re not mother-daughter, what are they? They’re sealed! Is that not same sex marriage?

    Now, if two men are sealed to the same woman (polyandry), are not the two men sealed to each other?

    I’ll leave this to the theologians and historians to work out the intricacies. You heard it here first folks! The LDS faith has been practicing same sex marriage since its inception.

    Christian, what do you think about that? Anything useful in there?

  40. Plural marriage is beyond my ken … BUT Joseph Smith did, most certainly seal men to men. Of course, I imagine it meant something slightly different to them than it would to us, seeing as how 19th century American men were still awash in a homosociality that was ripped — roots and all — from our civic fabric in the aftermath of WWI.

  41. Josh Smith (47), since you asked, I believe there’s a vast difference. To me, Partiarchal Order is a burden caused by the actions in the Garden that we should be trying to overcome, and not part of our Eternal experience.

    Christian Harrison (48) – trying to convince someone of the error of their ways (as you’ve been attempting with the OP) requires crafting analogies that even somewhat literal people can understand. bad analogies (these not being bad because of literalness, but because you use them poorly) don’t help make your point.

    Josh Smith (49) – the LDS version of polygamy wasn’t between one person and more than one person, it was strictly between two people of different genders. Emma wasn’t sealed to any of the wives, she was sealed to Joseph. it’s the loophole that allows us to continue polygamy where at least one party is dead, as it’s still a marriage between one man and one woman.

  42. Christian,

    I get the feeling from your responses that you believe that God is not offended by consensual sex in the confines of a loving marriage irrespective of gender. Maybe you’re right, but given the current position of the Church, how can you reasonably ask believing Mormons to accept your premise that homosexual sex in the confines of a loving marriage does not offend God? Is it fair to write off a believing Mormon as a vending machine that simply hasn’t reached your level of enlightenment?

    Right or wrong, and I hope you acknowledge the possibility that you may be wrong, why does your personal predilection demand such heightened status? I fight mine everyday. Whether the fight is driven by social norms or God’s law, it is still a fight. I constantly try, and fail, to sacrifice them on the alter. I endure them without fanfare and oftentimes without acknowledgement from those very close to me. Maybe I’m doing it wrong, but I don’t feel a need to live my predilections out loud, especially when acting out on them could offend God. I do not take offense if the powers that be in the Church seemingly relegate my personal predilection to some inferior status.

    mirrorrorrim’s comments resonated with me. At the end of the day, shouldn’t we strive to define ourselves by who we can become through Christ rather than by who we currently are (as interpreted through cultural/social lenses)? That said, maybe I’m off here but I’m not aware of any scripture or doctrinal support for the proposition that sexual attraction has some inherent or eternal value. I simply find it difficult to believe that my personal sexual attractions in this life have any enduring value or bearing on the eternities. If not, why should any of us use that specific predilection to define ourselves in the present?

  43. Calling Dave Banack! I’m only an occasional troll on this blog. It’s my understanding that Dave is a polygamy expert, as a scholar. So somebody please contact him with this question:

    Did Joseph Smith perform or was he involved in the first same sex marriage in the U.S.?

    That is, when two women are sealed to one man, are the women not sealed to one another?

    Additional question: Was Joseph Smith sealed to a woman who was sealed to another man? Is Joseph Smith sealed to a man who is not biologically related to him? Was Joseph Smith the first Mormon to be engaged in same sex marriage?

  44. Frank (#52): Google “patriarchal order” and see what pops up.

    Christian (#48): Please don’t interpret my comments as a personal attack in any way. Above all in this discussion, I don’t want to inadvertently offend another. Except maybe Frank. If Frank gets an ulcer tonight trying to figure out if Joseph Smith was “sealed” to another man, I’m okay with that. :-)

  45. That last comment reminds me of Mary McCarthy’s statement about Lillian Hellman: “every word she writes is a lie, including ‘and’ and ‘the.'”

    There is one exception, though: “troll.”

  46. Josh Smith (#52) – yep, quite aware of the predominant teachings about it. I just don’t buy it. I don’t believe men are eternally destined to be above women.

    And you’re not even close to starting an ulcer. I rather enjoy learning new things about our history, which is why it helps to work in the Church History Library, even if as just a techie.

  47. And Frank, I’m sorry about being an ass. People have predispositions towards all kinds of things. Unfortunately, I was born a natural ass hole.

    Though I’m absolutely sincere about the questions I posed in #55.

  48. Also, the sealing of men to men practiced in Joseph’s time is dynastic, not conjugal. You have to delve into the history, but the ordinance is not seen the exact way we perceive sealing now.

  49. Last comment. I promise.

    Thank you SilverRain. Your comment, along with 10 free minutes, inspired a Google search. “Was Joseph Smith sealed to other men?” I really only had time to skim quickly.

    There is a Wikipedia article on “The Law of Adoption.” Apparently back in the late 1970’s and early 80’s gay Mormons argued that this doctrine provided a theological basis for the sealing of homosexual men. Here I thought I had an original idea today. Nope. Nothing new coming out of my mind. But, let it be written that I came to the idea on my own, without any impetus from the 1970’s and 1980’s.

    I’m sure there is other interesting material out there. This morning I woke up thinking LDS thought and homosexuality were completely, inevitably at odds. Now, I’m not so sure. A thoughtful Mormon may be able to build a theological foundation for homosexuality within Mormonism.

    That’s my last comment. Thanks for the thoughtful post, Christian. I’ll keep reading posts, but I’m done.

  50. Josh Smith: don’t be confused. A “Mormon” might build theological basis for homosexuality, but not if they want to be mainstream. Even if Joseph Smith was sealed conjugally (which I have never seen a shred of evidence to that effect, but I’m sure there are more avid historians who can contribute actual documented evidence,) current prophets of the CoJCoLdS speak unequivocally against it.

    And the research I’ve done paints a very different picture of the early understanding of the sealing ordinance. Just because someone tried to build a case, doesn’t mean they had any ground to stand on.

  51. Alexander Pope’s lines about vice’s mien have been quoted 13 times in General Conference. The OP seems to have taken that diagnosis and turned it into a strategy.

  52. Christian, we admire your courage and openness. I feel like you stretching a bit, but empathize with feelings toward the word choice of ‘counterfeit.’ I do think that word is accurate in describing the promotion of alternate sexual behaviors, but perhaps a more constructive word would be ‘thorn in the flesh.’ How do you feel about that one?

  53. After recently viewing the movie “Woman in Gold,” I wondered why humanity continues to want to marginalize particular groups, either ethnic, religious, gender, etc.? Haven’t we had enough of witting and unwitting persecutions, teenage suicides, banishments, disownments, etc.? Why do we continue to preach that some members need to live celibate lives? Isn’t that anti-family. The LDS Church is headed down the same path that it trod with the black priesthood/temple issue. And all know how that was resolved. Do we need to just wait for a new generation of GAs?

  54. They think they need a devil to condemn in order to keep people in the pews. Christianity has done this for centuries and so has the mormon hierarchy.

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