The experience of same-sex attraction is a complex reality for many people. The attraction itself is not a sin, but acting on it is. Even though individuals do not choose to have such attractions, they do choose how to respond to them. With love and understanding, the Church reaches out to all God’s children, including our gay and lesbian brothers and sisters. – Mormonsandgays.org
Church’s website: Mormonsandgays.org
- Attraction to those of the same sex should not be viewed as a disease or illness.
- No change in the Church’s position, but what is changing — and what needs to change — is to help Church members respond sensitively and thoughtfully when they encounter same-sex attraction in their own families, among other Church members, or elsewhere.
- We may know individuals with same-sex attraction in our workplaces, congregations and town halls. As people with hopes, fears and aspirations like everyone else, these neighbors deserve our love.
- Elder Quentin L. Cook: “Let us be at the forefront in terms of expressing love, compassion and outreach. Let’s not have families exclude or be disrespectful of those who choose a different lifestyle as a result of their feelings about their own gender.”
- Pres. Roger Carter: “The best case scenarios that I have dealt with are where families have been unequivocal about their love and compassion for a family member who is gay and who has decided that they are not going to live the standards of the Church.”
- Unlike in times past, the Church does not necessarily advise those with same-sex attraction to marry those of the opposite sex.
Leader/Ministering Resources: Same-Sex Attraction (at providentliving.lds.org)
- Acknowledge the member’s faith and courage in disclosing his or her same-sex attraction and help relieve [any] shame. Reassure the individual that God loves him or her and express your love and willingness to provide emotional and spiritual support.
- Seek to measure success by the member’s efforts to come unto Christ and to strengthen emotional connections with others, rather than by attempts to eliminate same-sex attraction.
- Avoid offering quick fixes, such as the idea that marriage or missionary service will eliminate same-sex attraction.
- Seek to remove shame and combat stereotypes and myths.
- Establish a support system and help others understand how they can be supportive.
- Encourage family members to respond with love and acceptance of the individual.
- Create an environment and culture for all members to feel welcome and loved.
Family Acceptance Project booklet for LDS families: familyproject.sfsu.edu/LDS-booklet
Video interviews of LDS families with gay members: LDSwalkwithyou.org
Other LDS-related resources: mormonsbuildingbridges.org