God Loves You Individually, Speakers Tell LGBT Mormons at Affirmation Conference

by | Sep. 21, 2015

Mormon Life

Many notable Mormons--including Steve Young, Tyler Glenn, and Michael McLean--attended or presented at this year's affirmation conference. Watch Tyler Glenn sing a touching rendition of "Where Can I Turn for Peace?

The God of the Restoration nourishes each individual, especially "the hopeless, the helpless, the despised and marginalized," two prominent LDS intellectuals said Sunday at the annual Affirmation conference for LGBT Mormons.

"In our Mormon tradition we worship a God who chose to love us, and by so doing he made himself vulnerable to our suffering," said Fiona Givens, who with her husband Terryl is author of The God Who Weeps: How Mormonism Makes Sense of Life, and The Crucible of Doubt.

The couple spoke at a morning devotional on the final of the conference's three days.

The goal, Terryl Givens said in an interview after the devotional, was to remind conferencegoers that the inescapability of suffering is fundamental to Mormon understanding of mortality.

"As Elder Marlin K. Jensen so compassionately pointed out years ago, the particular challenges — quandaries — that face gays within our faith community are unique, but there may be more in common with the crosses they bear and the crosses that many other constituencies bear that it's good to be reminded that we all are confronted with feelings of alienation, of isolation, of not being understood, of not being recognized, of not being witnessed," he said.

Fiona Givens said the Restoration scriptures of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints portray a deep passion, one who's core attribute is love. In one chapter of the Book of Mormon — Jacob 5 — that divine love is illustrated by the use of the words preserve and save 20 times and the word nourish 22 times.

Lead image from Deseret News.
Read the rest of this story at deseret.com
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