With the recent decision made in California regarding gay marriage, we thought it might be helpful to provide some links for more information about teachings of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on this topic.
First, we wanted to say, as a group of women who care deeply both about our faith and also about those who are directly affected either by the California decision or by the Church’s stand on this topic, that our beliefs about gay marriage do not stem from a place of hatred, bigotry, or insensitivity to those whose lives this issue personally touches. Many of us know and care about those who are in homosexual relationships. We understand some of the struggles that these people face, and the desires they have to have their relationships legally recognized and accepted by society.
But these feelings of sympathy and a desire to be sensitive to the emotional and often-divisive nature of this issue cannot change the position we believe to be true. And this is because of the overall beliefs we have about the purposes of life and the eternal potential we have as children of God. We understand the desire to pursue dreams and hopes and goals for this life. We understand the desire to solidify relationships that are significant to a person. But God’s purposes go beyond this life. It is this eternal perspective that influences our view on this issue. The plan of God centers around the institution of marriage, defined by God as a relationship between a man and a woman — a relationship that can continue beyond the grave.
As Boyd K. Packer has said, “In the center, we…know that the ultimate end of all activity in the Church is that a man and his wife and their children can be happy at home. When influences come that challenge or disturb the possibility that… home will exist in the next world, provided you have the ordinances, we find great dangers in them.”
In a sense, from our perspective, it wouldn’t fully be loving and caring behavior for us to uphold anything that threatens the potential blessing of an eternal family, for anyone. We realize we cannot force this blessing on anyone, and we recognize that not all share in these beliefs, but perhaps one can understand why we take the position we do, believing what we do about our eternal potential and what is necessary to obtain the blessings God has for us if we are faithful to His plan. Society may redefine marriage, but God will not, and so we cannot, no matter how much we care about those whom we know struggle with our position on this issue.
President Hinckley said this:
“We love them as sons and daughters of God. …
“We want to help these people, to strengthen them, to assist them with their problems and to help them with their difficulties. But we cannot stand idle if they indulge in immoral activity, if they try to uphold and defend and live in a so-called same-sex marriage situation. To permit such would be to make light of the very serious and sacred foundation of God-sanctioned marriage and its very purpose, the rearing of families.”
You can read more about our beliefs on this topic (and some people’s experiences with homosexuality) by linking to the following:
Compassion for Those Who Struggle
Loved One Struggles with Same-sex Attraction…and another article with a similar title
Marriage is Essential to His Eternal Plan
An interview with Dallin H. Oaks and Lance B. Wickman
The Proclamation to the World on the Family