I choose love, full stop.

This is for encouragement, ideas, and support for people going through a faith transition no matter where you hope to end up. This is also the place to laugh, cry, and love together.
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Red Ryder
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I choose love, full stop.

Post by Red Ryder » Sat Oct 12, 2019 2:44 pm

I saw this posted on FB and just love it.
In 1978 the prophet of our church, Spencer W. Kimball, removed the temple and priesthood ban. That meant that black people, who previously were not allowed to hold the priesthood or enter the temple to make covenants and receive blessings, were now allowed to do those things.

I was only a toddler at the time. But if I were an adult during the 60’s and 70’s, I HOPE that ban would’ve bothered me a lot. I HOPE I would have seen black members in my ward who were not allowed to bless or pass the sacrament, and I HOPE I would’ve been appalled. I HOPE I would have seen them waiting outside of the temple during important ordinances and wept. I HOPE I would’ve prayed about the anecdotal reasons that were given at the time (that have since been discredited by an essay produced by the church in 2013) and felt that it just wasn’t right.

Kind of like Dallin H. Oaks who said, during the church’s recent 40th celebration of the lifting of that ban:

"I observed the pain and frustration experienced by those who suffered these restrictions and those who criticized them and sought for reasons. I studied the reasons then being given and could not feel confirmation of the truth of any of them."
(https://newsroom.churchofjesuschrist.or ... elebration)

I HOPE I would’ve felt those things that Elder Oaks felt. I HOPE I would’ve been brave enough to speak out. I HOPE I would’ve had enough faith in myself and in my church to say out loud that those things were not ok.

I KNOW I feel all of those things now. And I KNOW I can’t sit idly by and not say anything.

I’ve prayed and I’ve prayed to understand our church’s stance on LGBTQ members. I appreciate that the church has always taught that we as members are not only entitled to personal revelation, we are obligated to seek it out. And I have.

Not only have I asked God, I have talked to our LGBTQ brothers and sisters. I have sought , I have asked, I have listened , and I have learned. For hours. For months. For years now.

Because our prophets have said that good inspiration comes from good information.

What I have learned is that God loves them. Full stop. Not “even though..” He just loves them in all their glory. Period.

Even our own doctrine admits that “we don’t know how it happens”. We no longer believe that gay members choose to be gay. That’s why being gay is not considered a sin.

Our church is all about families. We are all about love. This year we have been studying the New Testament and I have thoroughly enjoyed it. Because Jesus teaches about love and acceptance more than anything else. What are His great commandments?

Love God.
Love your neighbor (all of them!)
Love yourself.

On these principles hang ALL of the laws and commandments.
So why would God condemn this whole percentage of His children to live alone their whole lives? To run from love? To not have families?

The answer I get to this question when I pray is that He doesn’t.

I’m not trying to change minds. I’m only trying to make my own position clear. So when my people have their own 1978, their own Spencer W. Kimball, I will be on the right side of history.

I need to be clear that I choose love, full stop.

Studies have shown that love and full acceptance of our LGBTQ children can literally saves their lives. They are some of the most susceptible to self loathing and suicidality. I have mourned with those who mourn the loss of these beautiful children of God and I want it to stop.

Statistically speaking, there are a handful of these folks in your ward. They hear you when you call them out from the pulpit. Their families suffer when you disparage them in your Relief Societies, your Elder’s Quorum, your YW and YM classrooms.
They are there, whether you see them or not. And they hurt. We hurt.

Prophets and apostles, though called of God, are human and have been wrong before. About many things.(see policy on blacks and the priesthood. If you’re brave, look up quotes..) We really don’t expect them to be perfect, we never have.

Humans see spiritual things through their own lenses, their own experiences. They see things, “through a glass, darkly”.

Thank goodness we are a living, breathing, changing church. The 9th article of faith is still in full affect:

“9 We believe all that God has revealed, all that He does now reveal, and we believe that He will yet reveal many great and important things pertaining to the Kingdom of God.”

The Heavens are not closed.

I love my church. I can say that I sustain my leaders. In the second definition of the Mcmillan dictionary it says, “ Sustain :FORMAL to give someone strength, energy, or hope” I love them as children of God. I pray for them. I consider very carefully and respectfully what they say. But I don’t believe my church requires me to agree with everything all of them say. I am grateful for that.

If you have read this whole thing, thank you. It’s just my opinion, and where I stand personally. Please be kind to each other in the comments..

Edited to add, for those who have asked, i made it shareable ❤️
Those who do not move do not notice their chains. —Rosa Luxemburg

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Hagoth
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Re: I choose love, full stop.

Post by Hagoth » Sat Oct 12, 2019 2:59 pm

That's great. Were they kind to each other in the comments?
see policy on blacks and the priesthood. If you’re brave, look up quotes..) We really don’t expect them to be perfect, we never have.
I like that this person acknowledges that investigating the truth is an act of bravery.

I think they are a bit naive about how the membership approaches the perfection of leaders. It would be more correct to say that they do expect to be treated as perfect about what they are saying today. They will never point out a precise moment in which they are not perfect, but we allow them to use this as a blanket excuse when they need to remind us that "mistakes were made, but not by us." I'd like to see how someone like Oaks would respond if you said, "thanks, but I'm going to ignore what you just said. You have always told us not to expect you to be perfect, you have made lots of mistakes in the past, so I'm going to follow your advice about not expecting perfection and just assume that you are wrong in this case too."
“The easy confidence with which I know another man's religion is folly teaches me to suspect that my own is also.” -Mark Twain

Jesus: "The Kingdom of God is within you." The Buddha: "Be your own light."

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Nonny
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Re: I choose love, full stop.

Post by Nonny » Sat Oct 12, 2019 5:40 pm

Hagoth wrote:
Sat Oct 12, 2019 2:59 pm
"thanks, but I'm going to ignore what you just said. You have always told us not to expect you to be perfect, you have made lots of mistakes in the past, so I'm going to follow your advice about not expecting perfection and just assume that you are wrong in this case too."
Love it!🥰

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Palerider
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Re: I choose love, full stop.

Post by Palerider » Sat Oct 12, 2019 9:53 pm

I'm always glad to see someone do their best to love God and their neighbors as themselves.

This post however makes me sad for people who are so psychologically stuck between a rock and a hard place created by a cult-like corporation that calls itself a church.
If this person had been an adult during the time of the ban and had done all the things he "hoped" he would have, he would have been excommunicated. The church that he seems to love so dearly wouldn't have wanted him until he could get his mind right about who's in charge.

I wonder how he would have dealt with that?? :|
"There is but one straight course, and that is to seek truth and pursue it steadily."

"Truth will ultimately prevail where there is pains to bring it to light."

George Washington

Wonderment
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Re: I choose love, full stop.

Post by Wonderment » Sun Oct 13, 2019 4:44 pm

"thanks, but I'm going to ignore what you just said. You have always told us not to expect you to be perfect, you have made lots of mistakes in the past, so I'm going to follow your advice about not expecting perfection and just assume that you are wrong in this case too."
I am SO tired of Oaks' endless palavering about the gay community. It is so monotonous and so hurtful. I live in California, where the church donated over $30,000,000 back in 2008 to approve Prop. 8, which overturned gay marriages. People's lives were thrown into tumult as their marriages were suddenly declared illegal. Just absolute hateful nonsense. SO very tired of church officials using conference to go on and on about the gay community. Stop bullying gay people.
JUST STOP IT. :roll:
Last edited by Wonderment on Sun Oct 13, 2019 4:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Wonderment
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Re: I choose love, full stop.

Post by Wonderment » Sun Oct 13, 2019 4:46 pm

Sorry - double post. Did I mention how sick I am of Oaks and his non-stop verbal harassment of gay people........

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blazerb
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Re: I choose love, full stop.

Post by blazerb » Sun Oct 13, 2019 7:18 pm

Wonderment wrote:
Sun Oct 13, 2019 4:44 pm
"thanks, but I'm going to ignore what you just said. You have always told us not to expect you to be perfect, you have made lots of mistakes in the past, so I'm going to follow your advice about not expecting perfection and just assume that you are wrong in this case too."
I am SO tired of Oaks' endless palavering about the gay community. It is so monotonous and so hurtful. I live in California, where the church donated over $30,000,000 back in 2008 to approve Prop. 8, which overturned gay marriages. People's lives were thrown into tumult as their marriages were suddenly declared illegal. Just absolute hateful nonsense. SO very tired of church officials using conference to go on and on about the gay community. Stop bullying gay people.
JUST STOP IT. :roll:
It feels to me that Oaks is insecure about his position. He knows it hurts people, but if he can get enough others to follow his lead he'll feel like he isn't alone. He just can't let it go. I'll have to check, but this condemnation of LGBT+ people seems to be a consistent topic for him over the last few years.

Blashyrkh
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Re: I choose love, full stop.

Post by Blashyrkh » Tue Oct 15, 2019 5:18 am

IF YOU DONT LIKE THE BELIEFS OF THE CHURCH AND IT MAKES YOU SAD THEN DONT BE A MEMBER!!!! Seriously. This has nothing to do with "acceptance" or "love." This has to do with forcing someone or some group who thinks you are bad to accept you in order to make whatever it is in the back of your head that still makes you think you are indeed bad go away. The church is anti-gay. We get it. Then don't join it. My uncle was a full fledged homosexual yet a devout member. He had to make a decision as to which meant more to him. He chose the church and lived a celibate life. He knew the rules and didn't demand that the church change them for the way he was. Should I demand a temple recommend because I like to drink alcohol? Should I demand a recommend even though I think the church is b.s.? No. I decide what is important to me and what isn't and I go my way in peace. I hate the church. But what I hate even more is the attitude that millions of people have to change their beliefs and standards because these standards make an itty-bitty minority feel bad. Go start your own church and be the leader of it. Make yourself an apostle or prophet of said church and then you can believe whatever you choose. You can exclude and include whomever you please. But don't go around demanding that anyone change their beliefs to please you because their beliefs make you feel sad inside.

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Hagoth
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Re: I choose love, full stop.

Post by Hagoth » Tue Oct 15, 2019 11:05 am

Blashyrkh wrote:
Tue Oct 15, 2019 5:18 am
But don't go around demanding that anyone change their beliefs to please you because their beliefs make you feel sad inside.

Just wondering why you think everyone BUT the organization causing the damage should change. They certainly make demands on people who they have in a psychological headlock, who really should just walk away if they could wake up to what's really going on. Yeah, those kids who killed themselves or who were kicked out of their homes by Oaksist parents should have just walked away I guess. So should their parents, and put their families above The Brethren. But they didn't.

There are Islamic factions who are beheading people who don't fit their mold. I think they should change. A little less beheading would be a good start. There used to be communities that didn't allow black or Jewish people. I guess you could say that those unwelcome people should have just chosen to stay away from communities where they weren't wanted so those people's precious beliefs could continue undisturbed.

I think I can understand why you see a difference here, Blashyrkh, but it's not that black and white for me, maybe because people I love have been harmed and continue to be harmed by the attitudes that are generated by the church, EVEN AFTER THEY HAVE LEFT IT. I think people who use bogus authority to do harm should be called on it.
“The easy confidence with which I know another man's religion is folly teaches me to suspect that my own is also.” -Mark Twain

Jesus: "The Kingdom of God is within you." The Buddha: "Be your own light."

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Red Ryder
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Re: I choose love, full stop.

Post by Red Ryder » Tue Oct 15, 2019 11:23 am

I get it Blashyrkh but your rant has to go both ways then.

This means that the church needs to be explicitly clear and post a big fnucking neon sign on the door that says “Homosexuals NOT Welcome!” and let the societal consequences follow. At some point (if not already), the church will be seen as a bigoted racists organization and people will not join.

Instead the church takes the (revised) position that God’s law is marriage between one man and one woman and hangs it’s bigotry on marriage. They claim now that its ok for members with “same sex attraction” to remain members as long as they don’t act upon it and choose celibacy. What human on this planet would choose celibacy over the inherent desire to love and be loved?

The real problem is the church can’t have it both ways. They can’t except gay people and then turn around and tell them how or whom to love based on sexual orientation. You can’t treat straight people different than homosexual people.

Fortunately most gay people are leaving the church as you suggest. Unfortunately many of us are stuck between a shitty organization that we would all walk away from tomorrow if it weren’t for our loved ones still in.

By the way Blashyrkh, what color are your eyes?

What would happen if your employer sent a memo that said people with your eye color could stay employed there but couldn’t associate or work with certain employees?

What would happen if your church you grew up in always harped on people with your eye color and said you couldn’t marry other people with a different eye color?

Church’s shouldn’t be allowed to discriminate against people based on race, sex, or sexual orientation. Yet the Mormon church has done all three.

Your uncle shouldn’t have had to make a choice between his sexual orientation and his faith in the first place. Perhaps you should consider that as the starting point and ask why he had to in the first place?

One last question. Did your uncle choose to be gay? When did you choose to be straight?
Those who do not move do not notice their chains. —Rosa Luxemburg

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wtfluff
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Re: I choose love, full stop.

Post by wtfluff » Tue Oct 15, 2019 12:07 pm

Blashyrkh wrote:
Tue Oct 15, 2019 5:18 am
IF YOU DONT LIKE THE BELIEFS OF THE CHURCH AND IT MAKES YOU SAD THEN DONT BE A MEMBER!!!! Seriously. This has nothing to do with "acceptance" or "love." This has to do with forcing someone or some group who thinks you are bad to accept you in order to make whatever it is in the back of your head that still makes you think you are indeed bad go away. The church is anti-gay. We get it. Then don't join it. My uncle was a full fledged homosexual yet a devout member. He had to make a decision as to which meant more to him. He chose the church and lived a celibate life. He knew the rules and didn't demand that the church change them for the way he was. Should I demand a temple recommend because I like to drink alcohol? Should I demand a recommend even though I think the church is b.s.? No. I decide what is important to me and what isn't and I go my way in peace. I hate the church. But what I hate even more is the attitude that millions of people have to change their beliefs and standards because these standards make an itty-bitty minority feel bad. Go start your own church and be the leader of it. Make yourself an apostle or prophet of said church and then you can believe whatever you choose. You can exclude and include whomever you please. But don't go around demanding that anyone change their beliefs to please you because their beliefs make you feel sad inside.
I wonder...

If we all jumped in a time machine and went back 50 years, would you voice the same rant about black people?
Faith does not give you the answers, it just stops you asking the questions. -Frater Ravus

Keep the company of those who seek the truth - run from those who have found it -Václav Havel

Brilliant.

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alas
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Re: I choose love, full stop.

Post by alas » Tue Oct 15, 2019 12:58 pm

Blashrykh, NOMs gripe about how the church treats gays. If you don’t like it you can just leave.

Oh, was what I just said offensive? You don’t think you should have to leave? You want *us* to change instead of sending you away? Think about it, real hard.

No, I don’t want you to leave NOM, but I do want you to understand why it isn’t as simple as “if you don’t understand, just leave.”

It sent just the church. It is the people who believe in the church. It is the horrible horrible way my sister in law treated my niece, because she believed that her daughter was making a choice, under the influence of an evil school teacher, that was going to ruin her life. My sister in law is closer to the generation of Oaks than you probably are, and she thinks just like Oaks, except she has reason to be angry. See, long before she met my brother, she was married in the temple to the man she loved. She had 4 children who were still small when her husband decided he could not pretend any more. He didn’t love her, never had because he was gay and had tried to “fix it” in the way the church told him to. It not only left my current sister in law divorced, but left her with 4 small children to raise and support, as in when the jerk decided he didn’t care about what the church told him was “righteous,” he also didn’t care about child support. And any way, when he came out as gay, his LDS employer fired him. So, the betrayal kind of destroyed my SIL. 10 years later she meets my brother. Who, long story short, was NOT easy to be married to, not his fault, just the nature of disabilities. They had children, but by then SIL is kinda old to be having children. 15 years later, dear niece comes out as lesbian. SIL reacts exactly as Oaks has taught her to react.


DN is 15, she can’t just leave the church. She can’t just leave her parents either. Then, her only support in the world, disappear from her life one by one. Grandpa dies, Grandma dies. Her aunt and uncle who have a lesbian daughter themselves and were supportive of her being lesbian pull far away. (She probably didn’t understand that we couldn’t stand how nasty SIL was to us about our daughter and how we should treat our daughter horribly like Oaks said and that we couldn’t do anything to protect DN, and had to protect our own daughter. What are we supposed to do, tell the poor kid that her mother is the wicked witch from the church? Yeah, so we kind of abandoned her. She did have our phone number and knew where we lived, and by now is driving.

When we finally made contact again, she had cut her mother out of her life, pretty much along with all her siblings for 10 years. Oh, yeah she had left the church by then, the church was easy to leave compared to her TBM family.

The church isn’t just setting its own standards of not liking gays. It is teaching people that it is fine, even good, to marry someone who doesn’t know you are gay. It is teaching people that it is fine to fire people because they are gay. It is teaching people to be hateful to their own children and that hatefulness is how Jesus would have them act.

So, if you don’t like Nazi Germany, you can just leave it, or you can fight against what it is doing to innocent people. Me, I choose to fight.

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moksha
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Re: I choose love, full stop.

Post by moksha » Wed Oct 16, 2019 10:43 pm

Blashyrkh wrote:
Tue Oct 15, 2019 5:18 am
IF YOU DONT LIKE THE BELIEFS OF THE CHURCH AND IT MAKES YOU SAD THEN DONT BE A MEMBER!!!! Seriously. This has nothing to do with "acceptance" or "love."
On the other hand, standing up to hatred and bigotry seems a worthwhile thing to do, especially if you have a vested interest such as being born into such a church.
Good faith does not require evidence, but it also does not turn a blind eye to that evidence. Otherwise, it becomes misplaced faith.
-- Moksha

Blashyrkh
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Re: I choose love, full stop.

Post by Blashyrkh » Wed Oct 16, 2019 11:42 pm

So where do you draw the line? Do you protest and make a fuss because the church believes that God lives near Kolob? Or let's say you believe in infant baptism yet the church believes differently. Do you again throw a fit because the Church's beliefs run contrary to yours? You think that the BofM is fiction. Do you complain because the church believes that it is literal truth and demand that they change their teachings? The church disagrees with the LGBTQ lifestyle. That is their belief. Let them believe what they want. You throw a fit and demand "acceptance" from the church for something that they have always taught against yet where is your acceptance of their beliefs? So what if the church doesn't fully accept gays. Lots of groups don't accept different people. Personally, I believe that anyone should be welcomed into a church regardless of what their "sins" are. As long as you can act civilized and dignified you are welcome. What I am arguing against is people demanding that the church change their age old beliefs just because they don't jive with your own beliefs or because people are offended by those beliefs.

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Not Buying It
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Re: I choose love, full stop.

Post by Not Buying It » Thu Oct 17, 2019 5:28 am

Blashyrkh wrote:
Wed Oct 16, 2019 11:42 pm
So where do you draw the line? Do you protest and make a fuss because the church believes that God lives near Kolob? Or let's say you believe in infant baptism yet the church believes differently. Do you again throw a fit because the Church's beliefs run contrary to yours? You think that the BofM is fiction. Do you complain because the church believes that it is literal truth and demand that they change their teachings? The church disagrees with the LGBTQ lifestyle. That is their belief. Let them believe what they want. You throw a fit and demand "acceptance" from the church for something that they have always taught against yet where is your acceptance of their beliefs? So what if the church doesn't fully accept gays. Lots of groups don't accept different people. Personally, I believe that anyone should be welcomed into a church regardless of what their "sins" are. As long as you can act civilized and dignified you are welcome. What I am arguing against is people demanding that the church change their age old beliefs just because they don't jive with your own beliefs or because people are offended by those beliefs.
The Church’s beliefs on Kolob are weird and creepy and completely wrong-headed scientifically, but they aren’t causing anyone any pain. No one is committing suicide over infant baptism, or facing a lifetime of loneliness and celibacy over it. Protesting the way the Church impacts the lives of its LGBT members is very different than discussing its ridiculous doctrinal peccadillos.

The Church is hurting people with its teachings and policies about the LGBT population. Real hurt to real people. Life-ending hurt in some cases. Even worse than the usual time-wasting life-wasting money-wasting potential-limiting needlessly-missing-out-on-good-times-for-no-good-reason run-of-the-mill harm it does to all of its members, we are talking depression and suicides that are a DIRECT result of the Church’s teachings on this subject. Damn straight I’m gonna protest that. And as I mentioned in response to one of your comments in another thread, the Church changes due to pressures both internal and external ALL THE TIME, it is logical, rational, and reasonable for disaffected members to agitate for change - and I would argue in this case where so much harm is being done, they have a moral obligation to do so. I was complicit for a number of years - there are some things I need to make right by using my voice. I disagree completely that we should all just accept the Church and not expect it to change - it is going to change, it always does, and we might as well have some influence on that change, such as it is.
"The truth is elegantly simple. The lie needs complex apologia. 4 simple words: Joe made it up. It answers everything with the perfect simplicity of Occam's Razor. Every convoluted excuse withers." - Some guy on Reddit called disposazelph

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moksha
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Re: I choose love, full stop.

Post by moksha » Thu Oct 17, 2019 5:46 pm

Blashyrkh wrote:
Wed Oct 16, 2019 11:42 pm
So where do you draw the line?
The line should be drawn where the Church is abrogating the civil rights of others.
Good faith does not require evidence, but it also does not turn a blind eye to that evidence. Otherwise, it becomes misplaced faith.
-- Moksha

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alas
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Re: I choose love, full stop.

Post by alas » Thu Oct 17, 2019 10:48 pm

moksha wrote:
Thu Oct 17, 2019 5:46 pm
Blashyrkh wrote:
Wed Oct 16, 2019 11:42 pm
So where do you draw the line?
The line should be drawn where the Church is abrogating the civil rights of others.
Or, the line should be drawn where the church is teaching children to hate themselves over something that is totally out of their control.

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moksha
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Re: I choose love, full stop.

Post by moksha » Fri Oct 18, 2019 12:46 am

alas wrote:
Thu Oct 17, 2019 10:48 pm
Or, the line should be drawn where the church is teaching children to hate themselves over something that is totally out of their control.
+1000
Good faith does not require evidence, but it also does not turn a blind eye to that evidence. Otherwise, it becomes misplaced faith.
-- Moksha

Blashyrkh
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Re: I choose love, full stop.

Post by Blashyrkh » Fri Oct 18, 2019 3:47 am

So by your standards the church can't teach anything because no matter what they teach someone is going to be affected negatively. Can't teach the Word of Wisdom because some people really struggle with chemical/alcohol addiction like I do. Can't teach about the law of chastity because some people can't control their physical/sexual urges. Can't teach tithing because some people have medical bills and struggle to pay that 10% or they will lose their homes. And that would make then feel like unworthy piece of crap. Can't have any standards or beliefs because someone somewhere struggles with it.

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alas
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Re: I choose love, full stop.

Post by alas » Fri Oct 18, 2019 8:29 am

Blashyrkh wrote:
Fri Oct 18, 2019 3:47 am
So by your standards the church can't teach anything because no matter what they teach someone is going to be affected negatively. Can't teach the Word of Wisdom because some people really struggle with chemical/alcohol addiction like I do. Can't teach about the law of chastity because some people can't control their physical/sexual urges. Can't teach tithing because some people have medical bills and struggle to pay that 10% or they will lose their homes. And that would make then feel like unworthy piece of crap. Can't have any standards or beliefs because someone somewhere struggles with it.
No, by our standards, some battles are worth fighting and others are not worth fighting. I am fine if you think that protecting gay children is unimportant and not a battle worth fighting. You can draw your line at “nothing is worth bothering the church about”.

But leave those of us who think it is a battle worth fighting alone. Stop trying to tell us what is worth fighting and what is not. Accept that we put the line at a different place than you do. I really don’t care if the church continues to teach WoW. That is not causing children to commit suicide. It is just making the church look silly.

Oh, I also draw the line at the church’s sexism. I grew up hating myself because I was a girl because of some church teachings and how the church treats girls compared to boys. So, the sexism is also worth fighting. I don’t expect you to feel the same cause your experiences are different than mine.

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