About a week ago (November 6th, to be exact.) I wrote a post on the latest bit of Mormon bigotry toward the LGBT community. It seems, in their infinitesimal wisdom, church leaders decided that children of gay parents would not be allowed to join the church unless they renounced their parents.
If you missed reading that post, (Shame on you!) here’s they had to say in their proclamation:
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. Nor can the child be baptized and confirmed, ordained, or recommended for missionary service.
Then they listed the exception requirements.
- 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.
- 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.
Also, If you have the audacity to marry someone with the same genital plumbing, you are guilty of apostasy.
As might be expected, this caused quite a stir in the LGBT community, as well as the “straight” population as well. (At least, the progressive portion of the “straight” population. The Religious Wrong anal pits were all for the idea.) What wasn’t expected is that it also caused a stir in the Mormon community.
The backlash started immediately.
A FaceBook page was set up to publicize an resignation event to be held yesterday (11/14/15). It accumulated over 2300 “interested” guests.
During the following week, one Salt Lake City attorney said he had 1500 resignations already in the works. And, that was just one attorney. As to how many others were starting the process is hard to tell. The church doesn’t like to talk about losing members, only gaining them. Btw, as of 12/31/14, the church claimed 15,372,337 members, but by most accounts, active members only comprise about 38% of that number. (About 5,840,000) A lot of us (yes, me included) never get around to telling the church to go take a hike. In any case, it must be a large enough number to cause the church leaders to walk the nonsense back a bit.
Friday, the church offered a “clarification.”
Our concern with respect to children is their current and future well-being and the harmony of their home environment. The provisions of Handbook 1, Section 16.13, that restrict priesthood ordinances for minors, apply only to those children whose primary residence is with a couple living in a same-gender marriage or similar relationship.
When a child living with such a same-gender couple has already been baptized and is actively participating in the Church, provisions of Section 16.13 do not require that his or her membership activities or priesthood privileges be curtailed or that further ordinances be withheld.
All children may receive priesthood blessings of healing and spiritual guidance.
So, their “clarification” was that if minors in same-sex households were already in, they wouldn’t kick them out. How big(ot) of them! Btw, the “Handbook” that is mentioned, is for the use of church leaders. It’s not something that regular members would normally read.
They also released a “spin” video on the subject.
Evidently, that wasn’t good enough for those fed up with the church’s anti-gay stance.
Yesterday, a crowd gathered in Salt Lake City’s City Creek Park to sign letters of resignation to be forwarded to the church. Event organizer, Lauren McNamara, stated,
The energy has been really positive and supportive We may have even reached 2,000…We want this event to make a statement to the church today that its treatment of those we love has led us to this moment.
Steve Holbrook of Post-Mormons and Friends, told the Salt Lake Tribune,
Resigning is a really big step for people, because the church has filled so much of their life. This is not a statement necessarily against the church. We just disagree with some of the directions the church has been going in.
The church owned “Deseret News” tried to downplay the event by claiming that a very small percentage of members were actually resigning. (That’s probably true. Most, like me, just leave without saying goodbye.) And besides, most, of the people resigning were younger Mormons, inactive members or activists. They quoted “Apostle” Quentin Cook,
Some have asserted that more members are leaving the church today and that there is more doubt and unbelief than in the past. This is simply not true.