More Like a Greeting From an Old Friend

Public forum, tell us about yourself and what brings you to StayLDS!
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CandleLight25
Posts: 56
Joined: 17 May 2011, 17:37

More Like a Greeting From an Old Friend

Post by CandleLight25 » 07 Apr 2015, 22:17

Hello everyone!

I realize that most of you will not be aware of who I am since you were not around when I initially made contact with this forum. Nevertheless, I felt compelled tonight to log in and write a few words to those of you who do recognize my name. (And if you don't know who I am, I encourage you to creep through my old posts to see where I've been).

The last post I made to this forum was in early 2012, and I have been largely absent since. Over the last few years, I have checked in periodically and skimmed through the popular posts. It delights me to see so many of you still much more active in this site than I ever was, because I understand how desperately others need your wisdom. I was once new here too, and came to you with a heavy heart. I had no hope or sense of direction, but your kind words and clarity helped me put myself back together again, better than before. I just hope you all realize how valuable and unique your insights are to those who have recently fallen out of the wagon. Thank you for all that you do to support each other here.

In addition to expressing my appreciation to all of you, I also wanted to give you a brief update as to where my life has taken me since I last left you... read on if you wish!

When I left you, I had recently been disfellowshipped by my bishop (for LGBT related issues), and was headed off to school. I wrote to you with deep sorrow and confusion as I recounted a letter my mother wrote me concerning her fears that I was on the road to perdition. Admittedly, a part of me had thought my life was over when I reached this point. My how things have changed since! Since leaving for school, I've been blessed with the opportunity of forming close friendships with many wise people such as Greg Prince (a name that some of you may know). In my contact with him, it has been amazing for me to see a whole new side of Mormonism. It was here that I became more familiar with the efforts of individuals such as John Dehlin, Carol Lynn Pearson, and Wendy Williams Montgomery. I am extremely humbled to have had the opportunity to interact with this individuals, as they have helped me to reconstruct a foundation for myself upon which I can proudly stand. Although I no longer consider myself a "Mormon", I can proudly say that I have found a happiness for myself that is unparalleled to anything I knew before.

About a year ago I came out to my entire family and all of my friends. It was a terrifying experience, but I learned so much from the ordeal. I recognize that my struggles with growing up gay in the LDS church are not unique, and I understand that there are individuals here who can relate on some level. A large reason for why I wanted to write this post was to reach out to those of you who may be struggling or who are the relatives (parents, siblings, etc) of a struggling gay Mormon. First off, I want to make sure you understand this key point: You will never be defined by the ignorance of others. Go ahead and read that line again. Let it sink in until it resonates with you. After hearing key pieces of conference this weekend, I feel like some of you out there really need to hear that. Second, I want to highly recommend the book titled: "No More Goodbyes" by Carol Lynn Pearson. If you are a struggling gay Mormon, or the parents of a gay child, you need to read this book. Do your research. Look it up on Amazon. I promise you that you won't be disappointed. This book worked wonders for me, as well as my parents. After reading this book, my parents attitude towards me (and my partner) changed completely. Carol Lynn's words will heal your broken soul and give you the hope that you've been searching for. :thumbup:

Other then that, I don't really have much else to say right now. I just get these bursts of passion where I feel strongly that I need to share what I am feeling. However, now that I've been debating whether or not I should delete this post all together. Regardless, I wrote it so I might as well submit it now. Do with my words what you wish. Again, thank you all for your dedication and involvement in this site. You saved me. And I know that you have saved countless others. Keep fighting the good fight.
"You can only see as far as you think..."
Ephesians 5:8 "For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light"

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hawkgrrrl
Site Admin
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Joined: 22 Oct 2008, 16:27

Re: More Like a Greeting From an Old Friend

Post by hawkgrrrl » 07 Apr 2015, 22:29

CL: Thanks so much for the update! It's wonderful to hear how well things are going for you now.

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DarkJedi
Posts: 5766
Joined: 24 Aug 2013, 20:53

Re: More Like a Greeting From an Old Friend

Post by DarkJedi » 08 Apr 2015, 02:41

Welcome back, thanks for stopping by. I am happy you have found some peace and shared with us.
In the absence of knowledge or faith there is always hope.

Once there was a gentile...who came before Hillel. He said "Convert me on the condition that you teach me the whole Torah while I stand on one foot." Hillel converted him, saying: That which is despicable to you, do not do to your fellow, this is the whole Torah, and the rest is commentary, go and learn it."

My Introduction

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LookingHard
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Joined: 20 Oct 2014, 12:11

Re: More Like a Greeting From an Old Friend

Post by LookingHard » 08 Apr 2015, 04:36

I feel for your struggles the last few years and I am SO glad to hear you are reaching a place of peace! God be with you.

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SamBee
Posts: 4748
Joined: 14 Mar 2010, 04:55

Re: More Like a Greeting From an Old Friend

Post by SamBee » 08 Apr 2015, 04:42

I recognize that picture of a Candle. All the best!

I hope you find/have found resolution with the whole gay Mormon thing. Carol Lynn Pearson is a good woman.
DASH1730 "An Area Authority...[was] asked...who...would go to the Telestial kingdom. His answer: "murderers, adulterers and a lot of surprised Mormons!"'
1ST PRES 1978 "[LDS] believe...there is truth in many religions and philosophies...good and great religious leaders... have raised the spiritual, moral, and ethical awareness of their people. When we speak of The [LDS] as the only true church...it is...authorized to administer the ordinances...by Jesus Christ... we do not mean... it is the only teacher of truth."

Curt Sunshine
Site Admin
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Joined: 21 Oct 2008, 20:24

Re: More Like a Greeting From an Old Friend

Post by Curt Sunshine » 08 Apr 2015, 05:30

Thank you for the update and your very wise words. I wish everyone in the Church (and outside of it) could read what you have written with an open mind and heart.
I see through my glass, darkly - as I play my saxophone in harmony with the other instruments in God's orchestra. (h/t Elder Joseph Wirthlin)

Even if people view many things differently, the core Gospel principles (LOVE; belief in the unseen but hoped; self-reflective change; symbolic cleansing; striving to recognize the will of the divine; never giving up) are universal.

"For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong." H. L. Mencken

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mom3
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Joined: 02 Apr 2011, 14:11

Re: More Like a Greeting From an Old Friend

Post by mom3 » 08 Apr 2015, 10:49

Candlelight - So great to hear from you. Your peace just radiates through your words. I am jealous that you got to meet Greg Prince and Carol Lynn Pearson. I really wish Greg Prince would write another book, I think he has insights many people need to read. Most of all I am glad you are still with us, so many in your circumstances aren't. That breaks my heart.

Keep your flame burning. Who knows what life you may light as you go along.
"I stayed because it was God and Jesus Christ that I wanted to follow and be like, not individual human beings." Chieko Okazaki Dialogue interview

"I am coming to envision a new persona for the Church as humble followers of Jesus Christ....Joseph and his early followers came forth with lots of triumphalist rhetoric, but I think we need a new voice, one of humility, friendship and service. We should teach people to believe in God because it will soften their hearts and make them more willing to serve." - Richard Bushman

Minyan Man
Posts: 1423
Joined: 15 Sep 2011, 13:40

Re: More Like a Greeting From an Old Friend

Post by Minyan Man » 08 Apr 2015, 12:16

CL, it's good to hear from you again. I like everything you said. You really show a lot of maturity.
Especially when you said:
...I want to make sure you understand this key point: You will never be defined by the ignorance of others. Go ahead and read that line again. Let it sink in until it resonates with you. After hearing key pieces of conference this weekend, I feel like some of you out there really need to hear that.
Keep coming back on a regular basis. We need your voice.

Roy
Posts: 4825
Joined: 07 Oct 2010, 14:16
Location: Pacific Northwest

Re: More Like a Greeting From an Old Friend

Post by Roy » 08 Apr 2015, 14:48

Thank you Candlelight for giving us an update. I am so glad that you are in a better place.

Let your light shine!
"It is not so much the pain and suffering of life which crushes the individual as it is its meaninglessness and hopelessness." C. A. Elwood

“It is not the function of religion to answer all the questions about God’s moral government of the universe, but to give one courage, through faith, to go on in the face of questions he never finds the answer to in his present status.” TPC: Harold B. Lee 223

"I struggle now with establishing my faith that God may always be there, but may not always need to intervene" Heber13

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SunbeltRed
Posts: 349
Joined: 20 Jun 2014, 11:07

Re: More Like a Greeting From an Old Friend

Post by SunbeltRed » 12 Apr 2015, 17:33

Thanks for sharing! So glad you stopped bye.


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