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to Section One | to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, March 4, 2016 - Volume 44 Issue 10
There are no Gay Mormons, LDS apostle says
Section One
ALL STORIES
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There are no Gay Mormons, LDS apostle says

by Mike Andrew - SGN Staff Writer

In a statement eerily reminiscent of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's claim that there are no Gay Iranians, a leader of the LDS Church says there are no Gay Mormons.

At an event in Chile, David A. Bednar was asked, 'How can homosexual members of the church live and remain steadfast in the gospel?'

'There are no homosexual members of the church,' Bednar answered.

'We are not defined by sexual attraction. We are not defined by sexual behavior. We are sons and daughters of God. And all of us have different challenges in the flesh.'

No one is actually born Gay, Bednar claimed, but God gives people challenges they are to overcome, homosexuality being one of them.

Bednar is a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, which is more or less the executive committee of the Mormon Church.

While there are no Gay Mormons, he continued, even if there were, they would only be sinning if they actually had sex.

'Simply being attracted to someone of the same gender is not a sin,' Bednar said. 'There are many members of the church who may have some manifestation of that attraction. They honor their covenants, they keep the commandments, they are worthy, they can receive the blessings of the temple, and they can serve in the church.

'It is when we act on the inclination or the attraction, that's when it becomes a sin. We do not discriminate and we are not bigots. We extend Christ-like love to all sons and daughters of God.'

Bednar's statement comes only two months after the Quorum of Twelve Apostles announced that Mormons in same-sex relationships are 'apostates' subject to excommunication. Even their children should be excluded from the church until they turn 18 and denounce their parents, the Apostles said.

According to the head of the Quorum of Twelve Apostles, Russell M. Nelson, God personally informed LDS president Thomas S. Monson that that should be Church policy.

According to the Mormon mothers group Mama Dragons, 32 young Mormons have committed suicide since the Church decree. More than 2,000 Mormons have left the LDS Church since the ruling.

Only a week before Bednar's comments, another apostle, Dallin Oaks, said that responsibility for the suicides could only be 'answered on Judgment Day.'

'[T]hose things have to be judged by a higher authority than exists on this earth,' Oaks said, 'and I am ready to be accountable to that authority, but I think part of what my responsibility extends to is trying to teach people to be loving and civil and sensitive to one another, so that people will not feel driven, whatever the policy disagreements, whatever the rules of the church, or the practices of a church, or any other organization, if they are administered with kindness, at the highest level or at the level of the congregation or the ward, they won't drive people to take those extreme measures...'

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