#12 The youth is the leading voice in the reconciliation of faith and same-sex attraction

hands2It is amazing to see how stark the difference in attitudes about (homo)sexuality is between the rising generation and the generation of baby boomers. Here I do not think of attitudes that are unbecoming or hostile to the Gospel. Rather, I think the leading voices in the struggle of reconciling same-sex attraction with the commandments of God come more often than not from members of the Mormon church who are surprisingly young. There seems to be an inverse correlation between age and devotion in fighting for the good cause.

I am impressed by Ty Mansfield, Josh Weed, Joshua Johanson and many others, both single, and married young men and women who are in some way involved in the discourse about same-sex attraction in the context of faithfulness to God.

Something new is emerging

I live far, far away from Rocky Mountains and the Bible Belt. I live far, far away from anything American. I live in a former communist Eastern European country, and I have never lived anyplace else. So, when I see all the fierce debate between gay activists and religious conservatives in the US, I find it boringly predictable.

However, in the midst of that struggle, I find something new, special and precious emerging. Something that is quintessentially Christlike. I see people on the both sides of the divide coming together and understanding each other. I see people setting aside their differences and emphasizing commonalities. And I also see some people – on both sides of the divide – who simply cannot stand the fact that the divide is rapidly closing. They hate when deeply religious people have charity and understanding for those who are in a gay relationship, and they go berserk when staunch gay activists embrace with love and acceptance those who strictly adhere to a religious creed.

Some will argue that by accepting and embracing “the other,” we compromise our principles and weaken our capability to “help others in a proper context,” meaning “our context.” That it pretty much means that we loose the power to win converts for our side.

Well, I can be labeled as a member of the “religious side,” and my understanding is that the spirit of contention is not of God (see 3 Nephi 11:29). So, anything that promotes peace making and reconciliation, with the freedom to agree where we disagree, I find virtuous, lovely, of good report and praiseworthy (A-of-F 13).

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3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Arlo
    Dec 03, 2012 @ 07:19:07

    Amen, Jan!

    Reply

  2. WhoMe
    Dec 03, 2012 @ 08:03:38

    I have also noticed that most of the discussion among gay Mormons is among those younger than myself. I’m not old enough to be considered a baby boomer, but I’m older than Josh Weed and company. The people from my generation only came out when they decided to live the flamboyant gay lifestyle. So those of us who wanted to remain faithful to church tenets have largely been silent.

    Reply

  3. Tammy
    Dec 04, 2012 @ 04:36:11

    I love this:

    However, in the midst of that struggle, I find something new, special and precious emerging. Something that is quintessentially Christlike. I see people on the both sides of the divide coming together and understanding each other. I see people setting aside their differences and emphasizing commonalities.

    I’m excited to see that divide shrinking!

    Reply

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