Twenty Years of Reparative Therapy
I’ve been stewing on that all afternoon. Finally, decided to blog it.
Heart rending Heart breaking. Heart sickening.
As I pondered what had happened for TWENTY YEARS, my eyes welled up with tears….then outrage.
Lunch with a New Friend
Today, I lunched with a man and his fascinating story. I won’t recount much of it here, except what struck me in the heart.
He’s gay. Just a few years younger than me. Growing up, we were taught that gay people were evil perverts. They chose to be gay and could be cured. We completely believed this line, as it came from the church and its leaders. At 19, he served an honorable mission. Then married. Knowing full well that his attraction to men would subsequently go away. Of course it didn’t.
TWENTY YEARS of reparative therapy followed. Demeaning, disheartening, debasing, depressing…and now discredited. How faithful this man must have been to endure twenty years. How loyal he was to the church and to what it had told him.
My friend survived those TWENTY YEARS. But, he, his wife and his children still bear the scars of two dehumanizing decades.
How can any reasonable, compassionate person look upon this without feeling outrage? Reparative therapy was supported, sustained and championed by the LDS church. Its leaders referred both children and adults to endure this dreadful ‘cure.’ It didn’t work. It never worked. In only harmed.
No one spoke out. No one spoke up. We watched and listened. We trusted whatever came from leadership. No one terribly interested in what was happening to gay people. Bad things were happening. All sanctioned by the church that we believed could not err. It errs.
I Will Obey
I have been waffling a bit about continuing to obey the Law of Common Consent. In today’s Mormon culture, it’s uncomfortable and costly to cast a disapproving vote. It’s so much easier to take the cafeteria approach to the commandments and just ignore our role in church governance.
Today’s lunchtime horror has steeled my resolve to continue in obedience to the gorgeous Law of Common Consent.
Things have gone so awry that the current apostles have seen fit to condemn and disavow past practices and teachings. Good for them! Doctrines that were in the church for the vast majority of our history have now been denounced.
Jesus, through Joseph Smith, mandated a self-correcting system for governing the church. If we were to follow and obey Christ, we would get a lot less wrong. We could correct missteps before centuries passed.
We have hurt so many gay people with our discredited theories and practices. The church hasn’t yet condemned and disavowed reparative therapy or even worse ‘treatments.’ Well, I do condemn what we have done to our LGBT brothers and sisters in the past. Especially, after hearing of this man’s TWENTY YEAR subjugation. What we did was outrageous and wrong.
So…I’ve steeled my resolve to obey the Law of Common Consent. There are problems in the church. It’s time that the membership lived up to the responsibility that Jesus has given to us.
Are You Opposed?
If you are a member of the LDS church. If you are opposed to “policies, major decisions and other things that affect the lives of the Saints,” especially, policies that have never seen the light of Common Consent, then consider voting your true opinion and feelings.
Common Consent is the Law of God and the Law of the Church. It’s up to you and me, the common members, to make Common Consent the common rule of Christ’s church.
You have a voice. Consider standing up for what is right. Consider speaking up for those who can’t speak for themselves.
Consider taking the step to publicly register your disapproval on the Register of Common Consent HERE. I’m not alone in living Christ’s law of consent. We are now 311 strong.
- Information on LDS.ORG regarding Common Consent, click HERE. Please take note of this paragraph: “Not only are Church officers sustained by common consent, but this same principle operates for policies, major decisions, acceptance of new scripture, and other things that affect the lives of the Saints.”
- Scriptural information about Common Consent, click HERE.
- Disturbing membership Trends, click HERE.
- Do We Love Jesus Enough?, click HERE.
- The Only True Hope for The Only True Church, click HERE.
- My personal sadness over my friends and family leaving, click HERE.