Families affected by LDS Church policy on children of same-sex couples fear it will tear loved ones apart

SALT LAKE CITY -- There were strong reactions from some families after the LDS Church confirmed a policy change that some folks fear will rip loved ones apart, as children of same-sex couples might feel they have to pick religion over family.

From blessings to baptisms, the LDS Church says the children of same-sex couples cannot be members of the faith while living with their parents, and that is hitting some families hard.

"As a parent, I don't want any doors closed for my kid, even if it is becoming a member of the LDS Church," said Weston Clark of Salt Lake City.

For 15 years, Clark and his husband have been together. Now they're married and busy raising their two children, Zane and Zoey.

"This really struck personal to me because it was about the kids," Clark said.

In a handbook for Bishops and Stake Presidents, the new policy states that children of same-sex couples cannot become members of the LDS Church unless they're of legal age, are no longer living with their parents, and have disavowed the practice of same-sex relationships.

"If you just step back and think about that for a minute, you're asking children to disavow their parents and disavow their parents and the way they're living: It just blows my mind that anyone would think that is OK," Clark said.

Related story: LDS Church responds after policy change on same-sex couples, their children prompts strong reactions

Clark felt forced out of the Mormon culture. But an act of kindness from a stranger made a big impact.

"I had a neighbor today come over and bring me some flowers and a card, on the verge of tears, and telling me how hard this is for her to take as a member of the church," Clark said.

The change is striking families in all forms.

"To me it's just completely heartbreaking," Jill Rowe said.

Rowe's son is gay.

"If my child decides to be married and have children, it's heartbreaking to me that the church I've given my life to will not accept that child until they are of an adult's age," Rowe said.

She hopes for clarification and change.

"My plea is, when do we just get on with the business of loving each other, because that's what I think Christ would have us do," Rowe said.

Friday, FOX 13 received several notifications of mass resignations from the LDS Church that will be happening in the coming weeks.


  • Dan Gray

    g.a.y.s. have to understand that they cannot force people to change just because they want them to. and by trying to shove your lifestyle down peoples throats is not going to help, but instead it will backfire.

      • Dan Gray

        Sorry bob, you and the ones mentioned in the story joined the church, the church didnt join you. So by what right do you or anyone else claim to demand that the Church has to change their teachings to fit you?

  • bob

    But Jesus said, Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven . . . unless their parents are g a y.”

    • Dan Gray

      Again Bob, who are you and under what authority do you claim the right to force the church to change their teachings just because you or anyone else says so? Nobody is forcing you to stay, you and anyone else can leave at any time.

  • bobby

    The child does not bear the iniquity of the parent (Ezekiel 18:20). Human beings go astray; they are not born that way (cf. Isaiah 53:6).

    • Dan Gray

      use the Christian churches wont accept them and their lifestyles either.
      What confuses me is exactly how they can claim to follow the same religion that clearly says they are in the wrong?

  • Ellie Whetstone

    I don’t get it. Why would you let your kids be LDS? Gays shouldn’t even care. For the members who are having a hard time, there are TONS of religions out there. Find another one!

  • Jake

    “disavow their parents” … no, no, no. It says, “disavow the practice.”
    “disavow … the way they’re living.” Well ya, you don’t expect a religion to accept you if you believe in something they consider to be a serious sin do you? They are not denied membership because of their parents, for if that were the case, they would be denied membership for the rest of their lives. Since this is considered such a serious sin, they are merely extending the age to be when a child can move out and there is no longer a major conflict between what your parents are teaching you and what you learn in church. When I say major, I mean learning your parents’ marriage is wrong, as is every aspect of their romantic relationship. This policy really is for the child’s benefit.

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