I responded to someone (his nickname is “Crash”) who opined at Times and Seasons regarding recent statements of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints regarding its future with the Boy Scounts of America. Here’s the thread, last accessed August 3, 2015: http://timesandseasons.org/index.php/2015/07/mormons-and-scouting-a-messy-divorce/#comment-532863. The commenter spoke regarding the alleged position of the Church of Jesus Christ on homosexual intimacy, writing as follows:
Remember: Latter-day Saints can only look at same sex attraction in terms of sexuality. The idea most heterosexual LDS view the plan of salvation in terms on celestial and eternal procreation so the idea of non-hetero relations is viewed only through a prurient sexual worldview. Attraction in the LDS world is only for procreation. Since homosexuals cannot procreate in the traditional way, then the only possibility is that same sex attraction is simply lust.
“Crash” (and Burn?) (#42):
It’s amazing how one can take a germ of truth and build such a gargantuan straw man caricature around it. And thank you, so much!, for telling me, as a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, what I “can” think about sexuality: Where do you fit into the hierarchy, such that you have authority to do that?
(By the way, your second sentence is a run-on and a fragment, so it’s rather difficult to ferret out what you’re actually trying to say. I’ll do my best!) While I am aware of historical pronouncements by leaders in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints equating spiritual creation with its mortal counterpart, I’m aware of neither any united pronouncements from the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve about it,
nor of any previous pronouncements from individual Brethren being reiterated as current doctrine by being used in current curriculum. If you could point me to such a source, I’d be most grateful.
You sound like a devotee of Ed Decker and “The Godmakers” and the “endless celestial sex” crowd. (And yes, again, your gloss is a gross oversimplification of the belief of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.) Yes, news flash, the human species is propagated by the union of gametes between a male and a female of that species. Yes, that is one of the purposes (in many respects, it’s the primary purpose) of sexual intimacy. However, if it were the only one, then my long-term bachelor status in the Church of Jesus Christ would be solved very easily: if propagation of the species were all that mattered, I’m reasonably certain I could find someone who’s willing to engage in intimacy with me, provided that merely engaging in the act were the extent of her commitment to me (though finding someone who also would be willing to carry and give birth to resulting offspring would be much more difficult.)
But one of the reasons why I have remained single for so long in a family church is because propagation of the species, procreation, while it is very important (indeed, one of the reasons why the Church of Jesus Christ is so concerned with the shifting definition of marriage is because it considers marriage to form the core of the optimal set of circumstances under which offspring should be brought into the world) is not the ONLY reason for sexual intimacy: such intimacy bonds two (and perhaps three or four, counting any resulting offspring and God as critical components in the process of family formation) beings in a way that no other activity can; it is perhaps the greatest means husband and wife have of expressing their love for one another and of ensuring and increasing unity between them; these aspects, too, are critical factors of proper human intimacy. And, while physical attraction and intimacy is an important component of those I know who are in the best relationships, it is only a component of those relationships: such couples complement each other, not only physically, but intellectually, emotionally, socially, psychologically, and in a whole host of other ways. And you’ve got it exactly backward: it’s not the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints which has a skewed view of intimacy; that’s the problem in too much of the rest of the world.
On the other hand, how are spirits created? Beats me. I’m sure God will let me know about that process when He thinks I’m ready and when I need to know. While I’m most grateful to you, Crash-and-Burn, for your (no doubt heartfelt) desire to facilitate my learning on the topic, I would prefer to defer to God and to those whom He has authorized to speak on such matters for further light and knowledge.
Now, where does the position of the Church of Jesus Christ that: (1) sex outside of marriage is wrong; and (2) only marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God, leave our gay and lesbian brothers and sisters (or, for that matter, where does it leave those who happen never to marry)? While individual Brethren have weighed in that same-sex attraction is simply a burden of mortality and that it will be lifted in the afterlife, aside from the clear implications of “The Family: A Proclamation to the World,” I know of no official pronouncements on the subject. I gladly await any further light and knowledge.
“But Ken,” one might ask, “when it comes to gays and lesbians, is it fair to ‘condemn’ them to a life of celibacy if they wish to remain faithful?” Perhaps in many ways, it isn’t. But whoever said that life, at least in the short run or at least in mortality, is fair? One of the problems we have as mere mortals is that it’s difficult for us even to contemplate, much less to comprehend, the concept of “all that God has.” And what of those who say they won’t want to be straight, even in the next life? Well, life is full of trade-offs, even if such tradeoffs involve trading something good for something better. And, while I don’t know exactly what’s going to happen to celibate gays, lesbians, and straights in the next life, I find it hard to believe that the Omnipotent Lord of the Universe simply is going to tell us, “Well, gosh, I know you were expecting something more, or better, or at least different, and I know this means it sucks to be you, but … this is the best I could do; sorry.”
Latter-day Saints do not parallel the Amish in their conception of sexual intimacy.