The New mormonsandgays.org is a Welcome Resource that Challenges Straight Mormons to Be More Like Christ.
The new mormonsandgays.org is welcome resource that I hope will help heal a deep-seated wound in our LDS culture. It turns the tables from focusing on those who are gay to those who are not. Latter-Day Saints have often described gay individuals as “struggling with same-sex attraction” without considering whether the true test from God was on those who are straight to see if they would struggle in loving those who are gay. From the very first lines on this site it is clear: We must love one another – unconditionally.
Too often, gay Mormons and their families have felt that they had to choose between their loyalty to each other and to their Church. This website re-emphasizes that the first great commandment to love God is not mutually exclusive of the second great commandment to love your neighbor. We simply can’t claim to love God, and not love the gay children, parents or neighbors that he has placed in our lives.
On this website we witness something that Church leaders rarely do: admit that we’ve done things wrong in the past. This is old news to gay children who were thrown out of their homes, spouses whose mixed-orientation marriages ended in disaster, or Mormons who felt so hopeless and persecuted that they were driven to suicide. In light of this, the clear admission that things need to change is particularly welcome, if long overdue.
I was named for Spencer W. Kimball, the LDS Church President when I was born, who is responsible for many of the erroneous and harmful statements about gays that helped fuel these tragedies. As such, I feel all the more called to help bring about this change and am inspired to see Church leaders reminding Mormons to act like true disciples of Christ, since we often haven’t in the past.
Conspicuously absent from the site is the repetition of any past directives that Latter-Day Saints should oppose civil marriage rights for gay families. This is in keeping with the changes made to official Church policies in 2010 that removed such direction and represents a positive development for families. Without formal LDS opposition, but rather grassroots support from many Mormons who donated their time and money, voters in four states supported civil marriage equality for the first time. With understanding of the value of all families, we’re proud to have helped promote these positive changes in our society.
It is clear that Church leaders have heard the voices and stories of so many Mormons who have been working to make things better for our gay and lesbian brothers and sisters, and I believe this will help open the door to even greater progress in the future.
Spencer W. Clark
Mormons for Marriage Equality