I think it’s time for people who feel they have been harmed by the church, to just let it go and move on, rather than to continually wallow in their grief and publicly revel in their sorrow by staging yet another media spectacle.
If you have forgiven somebody, then just forgive them and get on with your life. If a specific individual has harmed you, then settle it alone between you and them, if that is possible.
You have been hurt. Acknowledge that. Also acknowledge that this is what religions do: they set up little circles of inclusion and exclusion. If you were once in the circle, they have the power to enforce conformance in thought and action, and if you don’t comply, they ostracize you. So what? If you happen to be an atheist or somebody who never believed in the doctrine anyway, what do you care? Good riddance.
But, if somebody was a member of any church and harbored a feigned allegiance or born a false testimony, then it is they who have sinned against the church, and not the other way around. The church needs to forgive you, and not the other way around.
How many of these people are still connected with the church in some way? Have they actually been officially excommunicated, or simply sent a letter of resignation. Have they made a clean break, or are they still connected in some way? Love and Hatred and both forms of connection. The difference is only in degree.
We stand of the verge of achieving full marriage equality for all people in all 50 states. The LDS church has no business excommunicating people who are simply engaging in legal activity. The only possible objection that the church could and should have is fornication or adultery.
In response to this post”
“Here is an essay that rationally speaks to the dilemma of what to do with the future of inclusion of LGBT people in the LDS church. It suggests a middle road of non-prosecution and acceptance, which I wholeheartedly agree with.”
This is my response:
I agree, “we should not throw anybody away”, but to characterize gays as “sick” and afford them second-class membership is insidious and wrong.
The choices the author poses are only “hard” because they are rationalizations, and rationalizations are always hard. Doing the right thing is easy, and it has never been easier and more clear cut than over this issue.
When all is said and done, the true test of our righteousness is whether we quality ourselves to move ahead to the next kingdom. The temple teaches us this. The temple also teaches us that if you are not true and faithful to the covenants we take upon ourselves, of our own free will and choice, we will remain in Satan’s power.
There you have it. The choice couldn’t be more clear. Progress, or remain condemned. What you hear over the pulpit doesn’t matter. It’s in the temple, where the real covenants are taught and made, that the rubber hits the road.
So, what exactly is this particular covenant that we take upon ourselves. It is called the Law of Chastity, and in the 1990 Endowment Ceremony, it reads as follows:
“… the Law of Chastity, and to put them under covenant to obey this law, which is, that the daughters of Eve, and the sons of Adam shall have no sexual relations except with their husbands or wives to whom they are legally and lawfully wedded, …”
It doesn’t say the sons of Adam must be married to the daughters of Eve. It specifies only the role of “husband” or “wife”, which are or can-be gender-neutral roles.
What? You never heard this before? How many times have you been to the temple and watched the drama? Seen the actors playing roles? Did it ever occur to you that everybody in the endowment is playing a role. At one point you are to vicariously play the role of Adam or Eve, and at another point you are to take upon yourself the Name of mission of Christ.
The actors are playing roles; they are acting in various offices. Art imitates life.
There’s your doctrinal exposition. Straight out of the temple endowment you have been sleeping through all these years.
Sometimes revelation does not involves something new and unheard of coming down out of heaven. Sometimes revelation means pointing out something that has always been there — right in front of you.
The truth you need to know is often in plain sight.