31 July 2008

Change (and Prop 8)

Life has been great since graduation. No complaints. Which is part of why I haven't been blogging. I've pretty much moved on to other things. I should reconsider making this blog public now that I've graduated, I have a diploma, and I'm free from censoring myself.

The fear is over.

And it feels so good.

And then I move to Cali. And then Prop 8 happens. I've heard stories from Pinetree about what happened last time with Stuart Matis, as well as read In Quiet Desperation, (but who hasn't?)

And then Prop 8. Gah. I tell myself that it's over, that I don't care, that stuff like this doesn't determine anything about my testimony, but the ache is still there and I can't hide from it.

I don't remember when or where I heard about the letter coming from the First Presidency, but I knew it was coming. I knew it. I was still in Provo the day they were supposed to read it, and I went to Sacrament Meeting (I think) and our new Bishop didn't read it. Thank goodness. Which was surprising to me, since I was in P-town.

Anyway, the next week we were at OTR's single ward, and figured we were safe because it was the week before. Not so much. The counselor got up and said he failed to read something the week before. We couldn't believe it! As soon as he started reading and I knew it was what I thought it was, I walked out. Stood up and LEFT.

The ache and pain this causes is still surprising to me. I'm comfortable with who I am, I'm secure in my testimony, and I pray for the strength to follow and understand the counsel God's servants give to me... it's still just so freaking hard. Why? Why are they doing this?

I really like Max Power's email on Prop 8, and fully agree with him:
"It boggles my mind that we as a church can recite the 13 Articles of Faith, but we don't seem to actually believe number 11: We claim the privilege of worshiping Almighty God according to the dictates of our own conscience, and allow all men the same privilege, let them worship how, where, or what they may.

"You don't have to like gay marriage. You don't have to accept it as part of your beliefs. But you do have to respect the freedom of choice that God gave all his children in this life."

3 weeks later, last Sunday, we went to one of my favorite areas from my mission, and it was brought up! I couldn't believe it! Most of the time the Spanish branches are in their own little gospel world that isn't affected by any of the larger political stuff. Most of them can't even vote! The 1st counselor whom I've always respected stood up and showed off a paper they'd drawn up to assist the members by showing them specifically all the ways they could help Prop 8 be successful, whether a little or a lot.

I wanted to throw up. Our church is supposed to be POLITICALLY NEUTRAL and yet they continue to disregard that and do what they feel is in the interest of all of us. I really don't know how to respond to their restricting other's agency as acceptable and reasonable... I just don't.

I vowed that I would steal every last form as I sat there listening. Then, of course, I got swarmed by all the people happy to see me and I forgot. I remembered as we were driving away and pounded the steering wheel. Gah!

My hope resonates right now with the life of just one. Hopefully Californians with open minds and hearts will outnumber those of the Church and define for the rest of the United States that we all have unalienable rights, including the right to choose who we marry. This is not the destruction of the family. It's really not. I just wish the people who are freaking out about this and moving money and power into this proposition would see that.

That's all I have to say right now.

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