SALT LAKE CITY, UT – During the biannual General Conference of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS), one of the highest ranked members of the church condemned “nontraditional” family arrangements, including same-sex parenthood, cohabitation, divorce, and single parenthood.
“Children need others to speak for them,” said church apostle Dallin Oaks, “and they need decision makers who put their well-being ahead of selfish adult interests.” Oaks, a member of the LDS Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, was one of several church leaders who spoke to the 20,000 attendees about topics mostly concerning maintaining traditions in a modern context. He called abortion a “great evil,” and condemned child abuse and neglect.
Although he called for the parents of children who experience same-sex attraction to treat them with “loving understanding, not bullying or ostracism,” Oaks warned about the impact to children of same-sex couples or single mothers, saying that, “Children are also victimized by marriages that do not occur.”
His fellow apostle Neil Andersen urged gay and single Mormons to remain chaste, despite external pressures. “The world protests: ‘How can you ask so much?’” said Andersen. “The Lord responds, ‘As the heavens are higher than the Earth, so are my ways higher than your ways.’”XXX LDS Apostle Quentin Cook said that many Mormon faithful apply the church’s teachings through a prism of modern sensibilities, and “allow intense cultural or political views to weaken their allegiance to the gospel of Jesus Christ.”