Church to allow baptisms, blessings for children of LGBT parents, updates handbook regarding 'apostasy'

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nibbler
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Church to allow baptisms, blessings for children of LGBT parents, updates handbook regarding 'apostasy'

Post by nibbler » 04 Apr 2019, 08:49

No one mentioned this one in the changes thread. An unexpected, pleasant surprise.

https://www.deseretnews.com/article/900 ... stasy.html
Children of parents who identify themselves as lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender may now be blessed as infants and later baptized as members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, according to updates announced Thursday to November 2015 church policies intended at the time to maintain family harmony but perceived as painful among some supporters of the LGBT community.

The church also will update its handbook of instructions for leaders to remove the label of apostasy for homosexual behavior that also was applied in November 2015, said President Dallin H. Oaks, first counselor in the First Presidency, who announced the changes on behalf of the First Presidency on Thursday morning during the leadership session of the church’s 189th Annual General Conference.
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DarkJedi
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Re: Church to allow baptisms, blessings for children of LGBT parents, updates handbook regarding 'apostasy'

Post by DarkJedi » 04 Apr 2019, 09:07

I just saw this too and you beat me to posting Nibbler. I gotta say while I did expect this to happen eventually, I did not expect it now or in the near future.

:clap: :clap: :clap:

Just two other notes surrounding this that I think are interesting:

1. This was announced by Oaks, perceived by many as one of the chief anti-LBGTQ+ in the Q15.

2. Deseret News points out that Nelson once said the policy was revelation. Not the Trib, DN.
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."

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On Own Now
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Re: Church to allow baptisms, blessings for children of LGBT parents, updates handbook regarding 'apostasy'

Post by On Own Now » 04 Apr 2019, 09:10

I love it because it reinforces the idea that the Church can tweak policies. More reinforcement of the change-is-OK concept.

Also, I love it because it walks back a really bad, heartless, hardliner policy. I'm a bit surprised that THIS group of leaders where willing to do that, because they are basically the same people that put it in.
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Re: Church to allow baptisms, blessings for children of LGBT parents, updates handbook regarding 'apostasy'

Post by Curt Sunshine » 04 Apr 2019, 09:15

I am stunned it happened so quickly.

I am grateful it happened so quickly.

Today, I am happy.
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.

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Re: Church to allow baptisms, blessings for children of LGBT parents, updates handbook regarding 'apostasy'

Post by dande48 » 04 Apr 2019, 09:37

Local church leaders should instruct the parent or parents that the blessing, an ordinance that places the child's name on formal church records and triggers a lifelong series of church contact, would mean congregation members will contact them periodically and propose baptism when the child turns 8.
This is the "problem" see with baby blessings, and probably why the Nov 2015 policy was put into place in the first place. It was practical, it "made sense", but it offended a lot of people. I feel it is, in effect, making babies "members" without their consent, and to be frank, we need to either get rid of baby blessings, or directly separate the blessing from making the infant a "child of record".

That being said, Kudos.
While same-gender marriage by a church member still is considered a serious transgression, President Oaks said, it no longer will be treated as apostasy for purposes of church discipline. The clarification aligns the church's response to violations of the church's doctrine of the law of chastity — sexual relations are proper only between a man and a woman who are legally and lawfully wedded as husband and wife — whether they occur in heterosexual or homosexual relationships.
:thumbup:
Throughout the church’s history, Latter-day Saint leaders have instructed church members that current revelation overtakes past teachings. For example, after the 1978 revelation that extended the priesthood to members of African descent, the late apostle Elder Bruce R. McConkie said faithful people would get in line with a modern, living prophet and forget everything Elder McConkie and other leaders had said about blacks and the priesthood "with limited understanding and without the light and knowledge that now has come into the world."
Lol.
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Re: Church to allow baptisms, blessings for children of LGBT parents, updates handbook regarding 'apostasy'

Post by Curt Sunshine » 04 Apr 2019, 09:38

One more thing in the announcement that is getting lost:

Homosexual activity within a same-sex marriage is no longer considered apostasy. Also, homosexual activity outside of marriage will be treated the exact same way heterosexual activity is treated - as a serious transgression. In other words, "fornication" will be treated the same way for everyone. Local leaders no longer can justify punishing LGBTQ+ members differently for their sexual activity.

That is HUGE.
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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Re: Church to allow baptisms, blessings for children of LGBT parents, updates handbook regarding 'apostasy'

Post by grobert93 » 04 Apr 2019, 09:41

I am stunned. Elder Oaks has done a good job clarifying the changes and in a sense, asking for "forgiveness" for the pain that has been caused. I am very excited and hopefull, as he said... last year I think, that the church was "not familiar enough" with the transgender side of the community and this change could be a stepping stone into seeing how the church handles situations in the future. I am so excited!

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Re: Church to allow baptisms, blessings for children of LGBT parents, updates handbook regarding 'apostasy'

Post by DarkJedi » 04 Apr 2019, 09:53

Curt Sunshine wrote:
04 Apr 2019, 09:38
One more thing in the announcement that is getting lost:

Homosexual activity within a same-sex marriage is no longer considered apostasy. Also, homosexual activity outside of marriage will be treated the exact same way heterosexual activity is treated - as a serious transgression. In other words, "fornication" will be treated the same way for everyone. Local leaders no longer can justify punishing LGBTQ+ members differently for their sexual activity.

That is HUGE.
Agreed, Curt. My main objection to the policy was that it was unfair compared to how heterosexuals were treated for the same sin. I have had that conversation with my SP (partly in his effort to try to understand why people are troubled by it). It is indeed HUGE. It's more than just a reversal of one policy.

I am honestly at least as happy right now as I was when I found out missionaries can call home.
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."

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Re: Church to allow baptisms, blessings for children of LGBT parents, updates handbook regarding 'apostasy'

Post by SilentDawning » 04 Apr 2019, 10:16

Question -- is homosexuality within a same-sex marriage considered a breach of the law of chastity, but not apostasy? That is a question nothing more...

Anyway, I take all this to mean the November policy has been reversed. Very happy about that. It never was very fair to the children who had no say in what family they ended up in. Not sure who implemented the policy (instigated, formulated it) but I'm glad its reversed. Too bad RMN had said previously it was revelation. That statement paints leaders into a corner. Very glad RMN didn't let it paint him into that corner.

Now, if they will reverse the policy on the one year waiting period for the sake of family unity that will be balm to my soul. Let us hope.

We are fast transitioning from being a backward, stilted, egocentric church to one that is "trying" to be inclusive and kind. Let us hope this continues.

God bless the Internet and how it gives church leaders lots of information about the mind of its membership, without having to ask.
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Re: Church to allow baptisms, blessings for children of LGBT parents, updates handbook regarding 'apostasy'

Post by felixfabulous » 04 Apr 2019, 10:49

Very happy about the announcement as well. It's been interesting to see that it really highlighted some cognitive dissonance for very orthodox members of my family. I wonder if it will highlight prophetic fallibility for a lot of people who had not considered it before.

The implications for this are huge. Say there is a married gay couple in the ward. They could now participate on some level and have their kids involved. They could hold some kind of minor calling and be part of the ward. It seems like the main goal of the 2015 policy was to cut off this kind of involvement. It will be interesting to see if some gay members find a way to participate in wards.

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