My wife called me about it. When she heard my long silence and emotional noises, she broke into tears. She has seen how isolated I am from my family, and now, in my religion (over the past few years).
I have extremely mixed feelings. Yes, I am glad it's changed -- hallelujah, praise God.
After we got off the phone, I went through a period of intense, controlled anger at how I always knew this @#$%^ policy was unnecessary, and that it took again, threats to our way of religion for them to change it -- the gay marriage wave. Not concern for the family unity of non-members like me. Again, this is further evidence that church centricity trumps doing what was best for the greatest number on many issues.
What about the argument that separate marriages "cheapen the temple ceremony"?? Are we having a sale on temple marriages now?
No, it's about church self-interest, not the concern for harmony in non-member families. They are smart people at the top, and had to know the implication of welded together temple and civil marriages on marriages where one side is non-mem and the other is not. Yet they did nothing for decades.
OK, I got it out. Back to the forgiveness thread as this is where I need to apply forgiveness.
I don't want my sarcasm and unhappiness to eclipse the fact that this is a positive change. It's good for other couples. I need to explore the policy now, their reasons for it, etcetera. I notice they tend to save face with their changes wherever possible. Gospel Topic essays and disavowell of past doctrine (don't try to convince me the priesthood ban wasn't considered doctrine by people at the highest levels of the church, the FP in presidencies past) are buried on LDS.org in a corner somewhere. Uncontroversial, programmatic changes are mentioned in conference. Controversial but now overly damning policies are handled outside of conferencewhere they attract only medium attention.
Here is where I need to give credit where credit is due though. They DID make this change, even if for a selfish reason. There are three emotions here -- thanksfulness other couple don't have to endure what I have, severe angst about how this reversal means the past policy was not necessary, and entrenchment of my belief the church thinks about what is best for the church first and foremost.
But perhaps we are seeing a better church than in the past? One that we can trust more?
"It doesn't have to be about the Church (church) all the time!" -- SD
"The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. No price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself."
A man asked Jesus "do all roads lead to you?" Jesus responds,”most roads don’t lead anywhere, but I will travel any road to find you.” Adapted from The Shack, William Young