Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Reaction to 12-year-old Testimony

If you haven't seen the viral video of a 12-year-old girl coming out to her congregation from the pulpit yet, you will. Her prepared speech was filmed by friends (which is against the rules) during testimony meeting in May.

Obviously this is a sensitive issue and I'll try not to step on too many toes. 

I know people who have come out during testimony meetings, and it's gone well for them. I could see her experience being similar had she born her testimony in a similar fashion.

She did not.

This preteen brought a written speech which otherwise began following the pattern of a typical testimony. This involves testifying of the truthfulness of the Gospel of Christ. She expressed her belief that our Heavenly Parents intentionally created her with same-sex attractions and that They loved her for who she was.

Unfortunately, she then testified that God would approve of her living a lesbian lifestyle. As made unmistakably clear by repeated proclamations of the Church and prophets of God, same-sex marriage and similar homosexual relationships are a violation of Christ's Law of Chastity. Therefore, as sexual immorality is a serious sin, it's safe to conclude that proclaiming that such behaviors are worthy in the eyes of God is, if nothing else, inappropriate for a testimony meeting. 

It is at this moment that the bishop needed to make a split-second decision. I assume he anticipated further false doctrine to be taught to a captive audience within the walls of a consecrated church. 

The modern gay movement contests that children of younger and younger ages should be exposed to non-traditional sexual partnerships in an effort to normalize such relations, so obviously this testimony plays right into their narrative. However, it is the responsibility and right of parents to educate their children regarding sexuality. As this testimony discussed sexual issues, an interference from the presiding authority seems justifiable. 

I'm not trying to attack this young girl, especially since I believe her intentions are pure. I recognize her bravery as revealing something so personal to the congregation is understandably difficult. Her outraged mother, an ex-Mormon, might not have the best motives for taking this story to the press. 

I feel sorry for the girl and hope that she listened to the affirming words of her bishop as he testified of God's love for His children. There are forces in play that we don't know about, and I hope that she isn't being used to push the envelope further. Unfortunately, I believe that this is the case.

I testify that this is the true church of Jesus Christ and that His ways are higher than our ways. We don't understand His reasoning completely as we are mortals living in a fallen world, but I know that we can trust Him and His servants, the prophets. I know that the Lord does love our brothers and sisters who live homosexual lifestyles. This does not mean that He condones sexual behavior based on the sincerity of its affection. He cannot deny His word. I know that as we live His gospel we are entitled to His promises, whether in this life or the next, because He and His word are pure and unchanging. His path is the only way to true happiness.