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Starting this Sunday, what the LDS Church says in a letter to its members about the Supreme Court ruling on gay marriage will make Obama and the left furious...

Starting this Sunday, what the LDS Church says in a letter to its members about the Supreme Court ruling on gay marriage will make Obama and the left furious...

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by Megan Marsden Christensen, KSL.com

SALT LAKE CITY — Starting this Sunday, LDS Church leaders will read a letter regarding the Supreme Court’s decision on same-sex marriage to members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the United States and Canada.

The letter, from the church's First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, reaffirms the church’s belief that marriage is between a man and a woman, according to a press release.

“Strong families, guided by a loving mother and father, serve as the fundamental institution for nurturing children, instilling faith, and transmitting to future generations the moral strengths and values that are important to civilization and vital to eternal salvation,” the letter states.

The letter states that changes in the civil law do not change God’s moral law and invites them to read “The Family: A Proclamation to the World.”

Church leaders with the authority to perform marriages will not marry a couple of the same gender, nor will same-sex marriages, receptions or any other events associated with a same-sex marriage take place in an LDS meetinghouse.

“Nevertheless, all visitors are welcome to our chapels and premises so long as they respect our standards of conduct while there,” the letter states. “The gospel of Jesus Christ teaches us to love and treat all people with kindness and civility — even when we disagree. We affirm that those who avail themselves of laws or court rulings authorizing same‐sex marriage should not be treated disrespectfully.”

The church recently advocated for same-sex couples’ rights in regards to hospitalization and medical care, fair housing and employment, and probate if they don’t “infringe on the integrity of the traditional family or the constitutional rights of churches.”

The letter also includes background information for bishops and branch presidents about the legalization of same-sex marriage.

The First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles address the church’s policy on homosexual relations and if the legalization of same-sex marriage affects one’s right to religious freedom.

“Our individual right to religious freedom is protected by the First Amendment to the United States’ Constitution and by the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms,” the background information reads. “As we exercise that right, we must also exercise tolerance and respect toward others’ rights but do so without condoning behavior that goes contrary to the laws of God.”

The background material concludes by addressing those who may have reservations about the church’s stance on same-sex marriage.

According to Handbook 2, 21.1.24, those who have questions about the doctrine of the church should earnestly pray and study the scriptures to find answers and seek guidance from the Holy Ghost. If they are still seeking help, they are encouraged to counsel with their bishop or, if necessary, he can refer them to the stake president.

“… Stake presidents who need clarification about doctrinal or other church matters may write in behalf of their members to the First Presidency.”

This letter follows a statement made by the LDS Church about same-sex marriage. The letter will be read by local church leaders on either July 5 or July 12 “in a setting other than sacrament meeting.”

 

Related Links

The Official letter and background material

The Family: A Proclamation to the World

Homage to the Home: Why Society Needs Strong Families

The Divine Institution of Marriage

 

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