On Thursday, November 5, 2015, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints published new policy updates to the Church’s handbook for stake presidents, bishops, and other local leaders. The updates instructed local leaders are to deal with members in a same-sex family and their children. The announcement of these new policies lit up social media and brought much public attention. Basically, the new policy is that members in same-sex marriages are now in apostasy, and their children, natural or adopted, cannot be given a name and a blessing, baptized, confirmed, ordained, or called on missions until they are of legal age and no longer living with their parents.
The policy, particularly as I have stated it, sounds very harsh, but in reality it is not. Elder D. Todd Christofferson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles was interviewed, and he “reaffirmed the Church’s position on marriage and outlined handbook changes in Church policy affecting same-sex couples and their children.” In the interview Elder Christofferson stated that the Church’s policy regarding same-sex couples and their children is nearly identical to that of members who become polygamists. The interview should help members and non-members alike to understand why the changes were made and why. I encourage you to watch the video.
If you want more information after listening to Elder Christofferson, I found this unofficial source very interesting. It explains the following nine myths about the Church’s new policies. (1) These changes punish children; (2) treats LGBT people worse than other sinners;
(3) Violates the Church’s second Article of Faith; (4) requires children to reject parents; (5) places newborn children in a state of apostasy;
(6) Church is depriving itself of LGBT members; (7) this hurts me personally; (8) the Church lost and should move on; and (9) these changes are eternal doctrine. I suggest that you check out this site if you believe any of these myths.
I found another interesting blog telling people to stop thinking Jesus Christ accepted all types of behavior. He did not condone wickedness although He always loved the sinner. Check out this site for this interesting insight.
The bottom line is, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints teaches principles and doctrines and conducts ordinances, all for the purpose of helping Heavenly Father’s children return to His presence. The principles, doctrines, and ordinances do not change because they are eternal and come from God. Church leaders institute policies under which they regulate Church actions of all kinds. These policies are contained in the Administrative handbook and change from time to time. It is important that everyone understand that the doctrines, principles, and ordinances did not change; it was the policies that changed. They were changed to better regulate the Church and to provide security for the children of same-sex couples.
I know that Jesus Christ stands at the head of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I know that President Thomas S. Monson is God’s prophet on earth today. I sustain President Monson and the other fourteen men in the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles as prophets, seers, and revelators. I will continue to keep God’s commandments, follow the Prophet, and trust God.