Yesterday we had some folks from a Seattle area LDS church come to WUUC to attend services. Lifelong Mormons, they found themselves unable to accept the LDS’ latest proclamation that children of same sex parents “cannot become members of the LDS Church unless they are of legal age, are no longer living with their parents, and have disavowed the practice of same-sex relationships.” The folks who came to us yesterday had been ostracized in their churches and received messages of hate for their vocal opposition to the ruling. For them, attending WUUC was an experience of being awash in love.
We need to be aware of just how brave these folks were who showed up. They love their tradition and as with many religious traditions, it is more than just a religion; it is a way of life, an entire culture, and worldview. And now they feel betrayed by that tradition. It is an incredibly painful place to be .We may not be able to fill of all their religious and spiritual needs. We may never understand their love for their tradition or why just leaving that church is not really a solution.
They may never come back. If they do, however, I hope that we can lead with compassion and embrace them. We may only be a stop over on their religious journey. What a gift they have offered us: to be a place of understanding, affirmation, and healing.
Peace, Shalom, Salaam,