Saturday, January 24, 2015

Are revelations ready for us? Will we be ready?

I try to keep tabs on world events that have ties to what I am trying to accomplish at GayMormonMan/PriesthoodMen; which is to support homosexuals as worthy of love while following the teachings of the latter day prophets of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. With that end in mind... 

News agencies reported last week that Catholic leaders had taken down their "welcome all ye gays" shingle. 

Don't you believe it. The "welcome all ye gays" shingle had not been hung. It hadn't even been painted, at least not in the sense the press was referring to. 

There was a document that was created weeks ago and released to the media that supported allowing gays to marry in the church/with the churches blessings. Last weeks meetings in the Vatican to ratify the document were spearheaded by Pope Frances. The document was actually written by Monsignor Bruno Forte at the Pope's request. Monsignor Forte is known for supporting those who are in what has come to be known as an "irregular" union -- read, gay marriage.
Once the document was written the Pope put out a call to clergy of importance to attend  a conference to have the document voted on and signed into "doctrine", or as a representation as the Catholic churches position on a number of different topic -- treatment of gays in the church one of them. 

The current policy allows that "People with homosexual tendencies must be welcomed with respect and delicacy."  

US based DignityUSA said in a statement at the end of last week: "Unfortunately, today, doctrine won out over pastoral need. It is disappointing that those who recognized the need for a more inclusive Church were defeated." 

(It was defeated by a clear margin in a vote. The men voted on what would be considered their doctrine.)

By "inclusive" I am assuming that they mean allowance of gay marriage as church policy.

Marriage between a man and a woman is still taught as the norm by Catholics, and same sex marriage is not acceptable Catholic doctrine -- meaning that gay people may not marry in traditional Catholic settings and they may not take communion. Speaking of, another controversial topic, that of communion being available to divorced and civilly remarried Catholics failed to make the cut to accepted doctrine as well.

The 118-62 vote on what is being called "the gay section" is considered by Catholic liberals to be a protest by progressive bishops who refused to sign off on a watered-down compromise. 

The draft presented was considered by Catholic conservatives to represent an overly progressive point of view, one held by a political minority. It should be pointed out again that while Catholic conservatives believe that gay sex is "intrinsically disordered," homosexuals are to be respected.  Marriage, however, should only be between a man and woman.

In an unexpected gesture after the voting, Pope Francis approached a group of journalists waiting nearby in press areas to thank them for their work covering the event

 "Grazie tante" -- "Thanks to you and your colleagues for the work you have done," the Pope said. "Christ wanted his church to be a house with the door always open to welcome everyone, without excluding anyone."

The bottom line:  I believe that these are good men who are doing their best to meet the needs of their church. I appreciate opening up conversations and attempts at appropriate transparency and the effort to respect everyone.

By the same token, I am glad that the LDS church is led by a prophet of God who speaks for him and is able to receive communication from him. The Church is lead by Jesus Christ, and he alone is at the head. I firmly believe this.  

I pray that we may be worthy as a people to accept the revelations that He may have ready for us. Even if the revelation is as simple as follow the prophet.

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Gay Mormon blessings (not talking about shoes)

Someone on Facebook told me that the Bible says that homosexuals are going to hell. 

The bible does not say that homosexuals are going to hell. It does say that sinners are going to hell without intervention, and then stated that we are all sinners. The bottom line is to intervene or go to hell.

“No righteous person will be denied any blessings which come from God. We have no control over the heartbeats or the affections of men [or women], but pray that you may find fulfillment. And in the meantime, we promise you that insofar as eternity is concerned, no soul will be deprived of rich and high and eternal blessings for anything which that person could not help, that the Lord never fails in his promises, and that every righteous person will receive eventually all to which the person is entitled and which he or she has not forfeited through any fault of his or her own”  -Spencer W. Kimball Ensign, Oct. 1979, p. 5

Love this quote. Let's break it down

1) Who is a righteous person? 

The terms "righteous" and "righteousness" apply to mortals who, though beset with weaknesses and frailties, are seeking to come unto Christ. In this sense, righteousness is not synonymous with perfection. It is a condition in which a person is moving toward the Lord, yearning for godliness, continuously repenting of sins, and striving honestly to know and love God and to follow the principles and ordinances of the gospel. Saints of God are urged to do "the works of righteousness" (D&C 59:23) and to "bring to pass much righteousness" (D&C 58:27)

So, no one who is trying to move towards the Lord will be denied any blessings which come from God. No one -- gay or straight or male of female or of one race or another. President Kimball said "no one".

2) Important to re-state from the quote: We have no control over the heartbeats or the affections of men [or women], but pray that you may find fulfillment. 

3) Also important from the Quote: And in the meantime, we promise you that insofar as eternity is concerned, no soul will be deprived of rich and high and eternal blessings for anything which that person could not help 

4) To remember: The Lord never fails in his promises, 

5) To remember: Every person who is trying to move towards the Lord will receive eventually all to which the person is entitled and which he or she has not forfeited through any fault of his or her own".

My understanding is that there are several ways and several directions. When we move towards the Lord -- regardless of who we are or what we look like on the surface, He will give us blessings that we might not receive if we go another direction.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Moments in the woods

Back when I was young and beau-d-ful I attended one of those motivational self-awareness group where we were broken down a bit and then re-programmed. Re-programmed isn't exactly the right word but it gives you an idea. 

It was painful. I had to look at myself from a different angle and do a little fix-er-up-ing in a concentrated few days. While I don't necessarily recommend that particular experience for everyone, I believe that the concept behind it was solid.

It made me more aware. And one of the key things it brought to my attention was that every challenge or difficulty gave me experiences that brought on change. 

Improvement. With every challenge I improved. 

With that in mind, 
I would like to shout from my rooftop 
that I think today 
is a great day 
to be a Mormon!  

Maybe just a great day to be alive regardless of who you are or what you are dealing with. 

People are pondering and asking questions and getting answers. Some answers are slower coming, but options are being considered and people are opening up a little... and then a little more.  

The TLC program brought up a lot of issues for us. Some of us were disgusted by those liberal gay people, or appalled by those liberal gay people who were trying to be conservative and be straight. Others got what they needed to support their political stance regardless of direction, and facebook lit up and ain't it great!

Ain't it freaking great that we are talking about important issues and life altering complications that force us to re-examine what we think and who we are and how we show love. And after we have struggled and cried (and maybe yelled a little) we show our family and friends how much we love them and pack it in for the night. 

I am taking a moment to be thankful for those moments in the woods that make our lives worth living. Regardless of what side you are on, please take a moment to thank the Lord for choice and change, for love and reason, for family and friends, for the ability to improve.