I have been holding back my tears since I learned the LDS Church was launching an extensive campaign to support Proposition 8 in California. I am a convert to the Mormon Church since 1968. I went on a mission in my home country in Latin America, I came here with a scholarship to BYU got as far as an MBA, and now I am a college professor with a PhD. In essence, my life could have only been possible in this country and because of the support of the Church. However, even before I became an educated critical thinker, I knew by reading the scriptures that our Heavenly Father does not want us to be ignorant but to gain in wisdom and increase in our degrees of intelligence. I also understood Joseph Smiths statement, "I teach them correct principles and they govern themselves" (D&C 130: 18-19).
I left Utah many years ago, I was going crazy there. At the same time, I took 20-years leave of absence from the Church; I had to be honest with myself and accept the fact I have always been attracted to women and I had fallen for someone in the Church who I could never have.
Throughout all these years, I missed the spirit of partaking of the sacrament, participating in worshiping services; and, no, I did not break many of the covenants I have made, and I kept the law of chastity. But more importantly, I did not miss the political efforts of some powerful LDS Priesthood holders determined to impose their world view and morality on others that are not even LDS.
Unfortunately, now that I am back into the fold, I realize some things do not change. Once again, using their never-questioned decision making processes, the institutional leaders decide to take away the only solace that my Gay and Lesbian brothers and sisters have at making family from "scratch". Yes, that is what we have to do sometimes. Among my many gay and lesbian friends we identify each other as family when referring to another friend when we may not be sure whether he or she is gay. Our families, the families we construct from scratch, are very important to us for they keeps whole and sane, and give us the sense of community we desperately need.
Many of us have no families of our own for various reasons, the most common is disenfranchisement and abandonment from our own families and communities like the church, who fear us or are ashamed of us. So, in our yearning for family, community and companionship, we create our own. We find friends that accepts us unconditionally and who are there for us with kindness and generosity.
How sad it is that the same religious community that rejects us, it is at the same time so powerful that command the loyalty of its wealthy saints to collect 20 million dollars to take away our meager accomplishments in securing an earthly, temporal, symbol of comfort and belonging, a family of our own. A family and community they deny us.
Ironically, the same week when supporters of Proposition 8 were collecting money by the millions for this unjust political cause, my LDS Bishop in my current Ward visited our Relief Society meeting to ask us sisters to do away with unnecessary luxuries and donate more in our fast offerings because the local funds dedicated to help the needy in our Ward were depleted. See, our Ward in the state of Nevada is one with many needs because of high unemployment, bankruptcies, and home foreclosures within our congregation. Yes, that same week hundreds of thousands of dollars were channeled from Arizona, Nevada, and Utah (only a few miles away from my needy Ward) to support this unjust political cause.
Somehow something does not seem right within my LDS Church... It is a challenge to be back into the fold and to work at loving and supporting the same Priesthood holders that agreed to collude with the San Francisco's Catholic Archbishop and joined them in a political effort that has little or nothing to do with the Mission of the LDS Church.
What solace is it to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, the institution that purports to have the keys of the priesthood and the restoration of the Gospel of Christ to get letters from another religious institution with such a cruel history of persecution during the inquisition years... Why is this "good" What is this of solace to the LDS Church? Have we forgotten the last sentence in our Articles of Faith? "If there is anything virtuous, lovely, or of good report or praiseworthy, we seek after these things."
What is more disturbing is the little effort made by the legal minds of the Church to look into all the misinformation printed and handed out with the support of the LDS church to pass and in support of Proposition 8, these are very sad days indeed.
I am sorry my friends, brothers and sisters, and true family my heart is broken as well.