Monday, December 31, 2012

What else matters?

President Hinckley once shared the story of a young man who came to the US for training purposes and converted to the gospel.  However, when it was time to return to his home country, he knew his conversion would not be received well.  President Hinckley asked this man what would happen?

Friday, December 28, 2012

Charity, the Pure Love of Christ

If I had to choose just one gospel topic that I wish I could teach everyone, it would be charity, not because it's something I'm particularly good at, but rather it's something I value, but I know I lack.  Paul teaches the Corinthians that regardless of any other greatness I possess, if I "have not charity, I am nothing. . . . And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity." (1 Cor. 13)

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

St. Stephen's Day

Have you ever found yourself singing a Boxing Day carol and not realized it?  If you've ever sung Good King Wenceslas and thought it was a Christmas carol, then you qualify.  In fact, Good King Wenceslas is the only Boxing Day (a.k.a. St. Stephen's Day) carol I know.  It's a day to give to the poor.  Box up food and goods and deliver them to those in need.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Merry Merry

'Twas the day before Christmas and all through the blogsphere ...

Friday, December 21, 2012

And Work as Missionaries Do

A mission is such a powerful experience regardless of orientation.  I think that's why it's talked about so much among gay-oriented Mormons.  So, what was it like for me serving as a Mormon missionary who was attracted to guys?  Well, my orientation scared me. It led me to be a bit hyper-obedient, hoping that if I was just a little more righteous, my orientation would be miraculously changed.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

I hope by then I will be ready

My father, all his brothers, all their sons, their sister's sons, and several daughters have gone on full time missions for the church.  The youngest of all my male cousins recently got his call, so that's 100 percent of the boys.  I'm not telling you this to brag, but so you can understand a little about my family.  Now imagine growing up in this family, knowing that you're attracted to guys instead of girls.  I had always been taught that I would be serving a mission.  I usually just accepted the fact, but in the back of my mind I wondered if I would really be able to serve.  What if someone found out about me?  My father had a friend from his mission who eventually left his wife and family to follow his homosexual attractions, so I knew that there were missionaries who were gay, but this guy wasn't exactly the role model I wanted to follow.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Double Standards

I sometimes feel that there is a double standard when it comes to orientation, and there shouldn't be.  For example, the Boy Scouts of America have emphasized homosexuality as violating the "morally straight" phrase of the scout oath, but there is no similarly strong caution against irresponsible heterosexual behavior.  In fact, it appears that behavior is less important than ideology.  There's no statement that a man who lives with his girlfriend would not be allowed to be a scout leader.  But a celibate homosexual would not be allowed.  That appears to be a double standard.

Friday, December 14, 2012

I don't understand

I want to be understanding of others, if they ever come to me with troubles involving their orientation.  However, I realize that I have only my own experiences to draw upon.  It's a very limited viewpoint.  Cosmologists have this problem as they try to understand the cosmos through the lenses of their telescopes.  We can only look at the universe from the viewpoint of our own solar system, and that makes it somewhat difficult to get a complete picture of the physical universe.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

To Bear One Another's Burdens

When Alma was teaching the people of King Noah by the waters of Mormon, he explained what it would mean to be baptized and enter into the Church of Jesus Christ.  He knew these people were ready because, among other things, they were "willing to bear one another’s burdens, that they may be light" (Mosiah 18:8).  This is expected of all members of the church.

My problem is that I often find it easy to expect these things of others.  I want others to be welcoming and supportive of their gay oriented brothers and sisters, to help support them and help bear their burdens.  But how often do we expect it of ourselves?  Can we bear burdens for those who have backgrounds that have not prepared them to deal with others of different orientations?  Or are we quick to judge them as biased or bigoted?

Monday, December 10, 2012

Love and Marriage

One concern that many people have raised in the comments of other blogs is that if a man is attracted to other men, it is unfair to ask a woman to marry him.  She is deserving of his wholehearted adoration, and should not have to compete with men for his infatuation.  My usual response to this argument is that the bar is not raised that high for heterosexual husbands, why should we have a different standard for those with gay orientation?  (Nobody complains that a man shouldn't have married his wife because she may still have to compete with other girls for his attention.)  But I think that there is some other misconception behind this argument that I would like to address.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Getting Married

Ding-dong, the bells are gonna chime!

I'm a guy, married to an incredible girl.  I am so amazingly happy in my marriage.  We have a number of children and our family is generally healthy and happy.  We're not without our flaws and struggles, but overall, life is good.  This may seem more remarkable due to the fact that my orientation is gay, but I don't think it's really all that remarkable at all.  I think of it as rather normal.

Monday, December 3, 2012


Of all my experiences, probably the one I'm least able to shed light on is courtship.  I have no idea how a gay oriented Latter-day Saint should court someone of the opposite gender.  While I dated all the time, I never dated seriously, or at least I never intended to.