Thursday, January 25, 2007

Gay and Mormon? How is that possible?

I was reading Beck's blog recently. In his post titled LABELS II he says
There was a time many years ago when I was first married that when I heard of someone referring to himself as a "Gay Mormon", I wrote him off as insane, and whacked out, and considered the combination of those two words as incompatible and non-existent!
Yup, that was me a year ago. Being gay and Mormon were completely incompatible. They were like oil and water, they simply could not be combined in a single person. A person had to decide one way or the other. Were they gay? Or were they Mormon? And then live their life accordingly.

I was also mildly homophobic. I say 'mildly' because I never went out of my way to bash homosexuals; but, I sometimes nodded in approval when others around me were doing it. Don't get me wrong, it wasn't like I was going around lamenting the destruction of fabric of our society because of homosexuals; but, I did express disapproval when my company announced health benefits for gay couples. And, I approved of the supreme court decision to allow the BSA to ban openly gay people from the Boy Scouts. As a side note, I'm not sure what I think of these now. Coming out to myself is forcing me to reevaluate some things that I thought I believed.

Yet, now I am calling myself a gay Mormon even while I remain active in the church, attend the Temple, etc. How is that possible? What has changed? Have I wandered off the straight and narrow path? Have I let go of the iron rod so that it is only a matter of time before I join other gay guys in the great and spacious building mocking others who try to remain active in the church?

I don't think so. Calling myself a Gay Mormon is simply my way of expressing acceptance that this is who I am. I accept that I am gay; I am starting to overcome being ashamed of being gay. But, that doesn't necessarily mean I'm glad I'm gay. Truth is, there are times when I wish I wasn't gay; but, is that any different than a tall person sometimes wishing they were a bit shorter?

So, what exactly is a Gay Mormon? To my simplistic mind, a Gay Mormon refers to a person who believes in LDS theology but also accepts the fact that they are gay - even though there are certain aspects of homosexuality which are in conflict with certain LDS teachings. I once wrote a verse about this Paradox.

I believe in the LDS church; but, I also believe it is OK for some of us to be gay. I liken this apparent contradiction to that of the garden of eden. I believe in the garden of eden as told in the scriptures; but, I also believe in scientific discoveries of dinosaurs and ancient humans. I can't explain this apparent contradiction. But, I'm only a mere mortal human being. Just because I can't explain it doesn't negate that, somehow, this all makes sense in the eyes of God.

So, today I am a happy gay Mormon. I'm especially happy because my wife comes home tonight. I never did finish putting away the Christmas decorations; but, I did clean up the kitchen and I washed the sheets on our bed. I can't wait to see her reaction to our reorganized spice cupboard. Overall it's been a long two weeks while she has been visiting our daughter and new granddaughter. She is ready to come home and I am ready for her to come home. I don't think I would do so good living on my own permanently. Truth is, I've never lived on my own. I've always had parents, college roommates, missionary companion, or a wife (and kids) living with me.

On another note, according to the Netflix queue, "States of Grace - God's Army II" is shipping tomorrow. So, hopefully, it will arrive on Saturday and I can watch it this weekend. When I told my wife I had added this movie to the queue, she responded sarcastically "Oh goody, God's Army I was so good" (I think she liked it even less than I did). Anyway, as I blogged earlier, I will approach this latest movie with an open mind and then write about it in my blog.

Now, I'm trying to decide if I tell my wife that the reason I need to watch it is because that is what my virtual book club picked for this month. I'm certainly not going to tell her it's the 'moho book club' as that would lead to other questions that I'm not prepared to discuss just now. I can just envision the conversation

me: I joined the "moho book club" and we're reviewing "States of Grace - God's Army II" this month

her: What does 'moho' stand for?

me: Mormon Homo's

her: Why did you join a Mormon Homo book club?

me: uhhhhhhhh, how was your plane trip? Was it a smooth ride? Read any good magazines on the plane? Were you able to sleep on the plane? Was the plane crowded? What do you want for dinner tomorrow night? Did I tell you what happened at church last Sunday? ...

Some things would be so much easier if I just came out of the closet. But, it's so warm and cozy here in the closet. And the world on the other side of the closet door is scary.


AttemptingthePath said...


Glad youre spreading the word around.

Enjoy the movie. One of my old best friends is an extra in it. I really enjoyed it. it was SO much better than the last one.

have you seen Crash? if you like God's Army the remix you might enjoy that, although it is rated R for a reason.

Beck said...

Thanks for quoting me. It's kind of weird seeing your words on another's blog.

I resonate with much of your feelings and situation. However, at some point, I've found having my wife join me in this journey of being a Moho, or Gay Mormon has made the journey definitely more interesting - and frankly not as scary as I once thought. Many times it has added stress to the relationship, but for the most part, it has strengthened us as "us" and brought us together. We were drifting apart as I came out only to myself. When I shared it with her (as horrific as that was) we have become closer.

So don't necessarily be scared to be open to your wife - but at the same time, I'm the last to tell you what to do, for I don't have a clue - just read my blog!

P.S. I really like States of Grace - it makes me cry. A movie that can do that is a sign of a good movie.

Gay BYU Student said...

I think most of us have gone through that stage of denial (by saying that one is either "gay" or "mormon" but not both at the same time). I call myself gay, but I don't fit any of the gay stereotypes or reflect the classical connotations of that word. It simply identifies a distinguishing portion of who I am. And even at that, just a mere portion.

Appreciated the post. And I definitely also loved States of Grace.