Wednesday, December 30, 2009

BYU, Land of Oppurtunity

Essay gone missing

I recently looked back on a few of my Essays and edited/fixed a few of them that I felt were still relevant to what is going on today.  This essay is one of then.  The current edition is at the address listed below.  Feel free to comment. 

- Cal Thompson 12/20/2014   See the revised essay here

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Why The Blog?

Looking back at this blog I am embarrassed by the content and the style. I wont delete it however. It shows how far I have come since this was first posted. I might make one or two edits. Or three.  -Cal 12/27/2014

I am a gay man and I have a family. Though you may be startled (OK, that's funny because startled is the word my kids use for farting) ...startled because you think the words gay and family don't usually go together unless we are talking Prop 8, then I have news for you.

"Gay" and "family" have gone together for decades -- decades that I know about from first hand experience. There are active, card carrying members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints who are Homosexual. Many of them have families.

I happen to have three kids. And a wife. She is real. I say that because, as I am writing under a pseudonym, I could have made her up. But I haven't. She is kind and caring.  And she is a woman, and has been a woman since birth. We have been married for fifteen-ish years.

Most of you reading will know that "card-carrying" means that I hold a temple recommend.  A recommend is a little folded piece of paper I carry with me that says that I have permission to enter the LDS temple - a building Mormons have dedicated and set apart as a place to go where the things of this world can be set aside and we can focus on things of a spiritual nature and a little less of the "get the bills paid and the car to the shop" mode. More on this later.

One cannot be granted this recommend unless one passes two interviews and pays 10% of their gross income to the church for use by the church - for building of church infrastructure. We can discuss this later. Tithing is a hot topic in and out of the church. For now, understand that there is no kool-aid involved. We pay this of our own volition. There are times when I don't pay tithing and this keeps me from going to the temple until I am able to pay for long enough that a precedent is established, and then I am worthy or deserving of a recommend.

Now, you would think that I wouldn't be able to keep a temple recommend due to the fact that I am a Homosexual. Whether or not I am Homosexual is never asked. It's not a secret I am keeping. My bishop now (a leader of the church on a local level), and bishops I have had in the past know and have known that I am Homo. Again, There is not a question on the test that asks if I am a Homo or not. The question is whether or not I am morally clean.

Morally clean is defined by my church as "not having sexual relations outside of marriage." By this definition, even masturbating is hands off - though I have had a liberal bishop in the past tell me not to worry about it when I was single. I think he was running for office somewhere. If I get a temple recommend, it is because I have followed the instruction not to have sex outside of marriage with anyone. If I was single, the same questions would be asked of me.

In the Mormon church, we believe that sex is for marriage. Period. Any sex outside of marriage is wrong. This is a belief that is becoming increasing old fashioned as far as cable and prime time television shows, music lyrics and pop culture is concerned. There was a time a few years ago that not-having sex or saving ones self for marriage was considered a decent thing to do. Weird but decent. This was in the time of the discovery of AIDS or shortly after. 

Abstinence was hip because it kept one from getting STD's or having unwanted children. Not no more, honey. It's just weird now. We have gone full circle in a period of 20 years. 

I write this for the weirdos, who are not just gay but gay and Mormon. It is dedicated to those who were different from the word go and for those who love them.

And for gay Mormons or those who know gay Mormons and who are trying to understand.