This is a conversation I had with a friend of mine over emails. She's a sweet, funny woman in my parent's ward, and we've recently become friends. She asked me for advice, and I provided it, but you guys have given me tons of wonderful advice; so I asked her if I could put out conversation here so you could put in your two cents, too. Oh, and yes, I changed the guy's name.
Read this conversation I had with someone on facebook (I went to school with
his partner in Moab Utah). Please tell me what I should have said. This
really bothers me. And I can't find anywhere on LDS.org that Homosexuality
is equal to child molestation and murder.
ME: How cute did Keith change his name?
James Martin: No. Keith doesn't facebook and his partner, James's
mormon parents told him he was no longer a "Larsen" so he goes by "Martin"
Me: James I am so sorry and that breaks my heart! I am LDS, active,
temple worthy and also the proud parent of a gay son! This is the most un
Christ like behavior I have ever heard! Shame on your parents!!!! May they
be judged as harshly as they have judged you!!!
James Martin: "I'd be interested to know how you can be a temple worthy
Mormon & be a supportive mother of a gay son. This just tells me that you
sustain leaders who compare homosexuality with child molestation and murder
and then give these people money. You couldn't be too proud of your son or
the hypocrisy would drive you mad."
Me: I am sorry you feel that way. But I understand why.
James Martin: "Answered like a true Mormon. It was a real question. I'd
ask again but I'm not sure you understand the question. Good luck."
Me: I am a true Mormon and I do not take offense to it. I understand the
question and I also know that nothing I could say would make you change your
mind about how you feel towards the church. I am not one to debate
anything. Religion and politics on are on top of that list. You don't know
me and I don't know you. You stated your Mormon parents disowned you and I
think that is horrible and sad.
Me again: Sorry Chrissy for taking over your post on facebook. I am going
to delete my comments. James feel free to respond to me directly at
I think your response was awesome! Good for you for sticking up for yourself, the church, and your son, all in one very short conversation, without attacking anyone, or apologizing for your own views. What you told Jeffery was honest, real, and very valid.
Whenever people ask me questions like that, I tend to respond with something like this:
Religion is a practice that enhances a relationship between a person and God. It is a very personal thing to me, my relationship to my Father, and I have strengthened it more by practicing the LDS faith than through any other means. If I support my leaders at church, it's not because of what they believe; it's because of what I believe. I go to church because I feel closer to God there than anywhere else. I love the temple, because God resides there, and I feel it everywhere I go when I'm there. I pay tithing because I'm grateful for the multitude of blessings God gives me daily, and He has only asked for 10% of my income. I have been blessed more than I have given, and I know that money has gone where God wants it to go. I have never given it to someone who was being payed to administer to me, because everyone who has come to my aid has done it of their own, profit-less accord.
Do I believe that there are members of the church who are close-minded, ignorant, or misinformed? Why yes, of course I do, because I've met them. I encounter them constantly, and I even support them at church, and become friends with them. Why? Because God asked me to love all of my neighbors, as I love myself. And you know what? The majority of these people have returned the favor. Some of these people have become my closest friends, and some of my best allies. And a minute number of them have ever suggested that homosexuality and pedophilia are synonymous, let alone murder. I'm sorry if that's been your experience, but it hasn't been mine; I'm very happy being a Mormon, and I think it's obvious. I respect those who are not, or leave the church by choice. I am still friends with many of these people, and they respect me too.
Really, Brenda, you were way too nice to that guy. I wish he had just appreciated your comments, instead of being a close-minded jerk about the whole thing. Do you mind if I copy our conversation into a blog?
Talk to you again soon!
There you go. What would you have said?