The Church has issued the following information at the on-line Newsroom:
THE CHURCH OF JESUS CHRIST OF LATTER-DAY SAINTS
OFFICE OF THE FIRST PRESIDENCY
47 EAST SOUTH TEMPLE STREET, SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH 84150-1200
June 29, 2015
TO: General Authorities; General Auxiliary Presidencies; and the following leaders in the United States and Canada: Area Seventies; Temple, Stake Mission and District Presidencies; Bishops and Branch Presidents
Dear Brethren and Sisters:
Enclosed is a statement by the Council of the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve in response to the recent Supreme Court decision legalizing same-sex marriage in the United States. The statement also pertains to the situation in Canada. Local leaders are asked to meet with all adults, young men, and young women on either July 5 or July 12 in a setting other than sacrament meeting and read to them the entire statement.
Also included is background material which may be helpful in answering questions that arise.
Stake presidents are asked to see that bishops receive copies of this letter and the enclosures.
Thomas S. Monson
Henry B. Eyring
Dieter F. Uchtdorf
RESPONSE TO THE SUPREME COURT DECISION LEGALIZING SAME‐SEX MARRIAGE IN THE UNITED STATES
June 29, 2015
Because of the recent decision of the United States Supreme Court and similar legal proceedings and legislative actions in a number of countries that have given civil recognition to same‐sex marriage relationships, the Council of the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter‐day Saints restates and reaffirms the doctrinal foundation of Church teachings on morality, marriage, and the family. As we do, we encourage all to consider these teachings in the context of the Plan of Salvation and our Heavenly Father’s purposes in creating the earth and providing for our mortal birth and experience here as His children.
We wanted to bring your attention this this article.
The other day, as the missionaries visited us, we discussed repentance.
My daughter and I both thought of our foreign language experience and proposed that repent seemed to come from the Latin for “think.” Thus, re-pent would seem to mean re-think.
I happily looked up the etymology of the English term repentance, and was dismayed to find that my insight was not accurate. Yet the search also brought up articles discussing scholarly disagreement on this point.
At this point, inspired by Reid Litchfield’s exploration of the original Greek and Hebrew terms in the Bible (related to slavery), I dug further to see which Hebrew and Greek words have been translated as “repent.” I found the following at Bill Fallon’s Free Grace Resources, discussing the three words translated as a form of “repent”:
“Nacham” is used 108 times in the OT and is translated some form of “repent” 41 times. It is translated as “comfort” or “comforter” 66 times. Whereas “shuwb” means something similar to “turn” or “return,” “nacham” has a different meaning similar to being “eased” or “comforted.” Neither word seems to have the identical meaning as the most common New Testament Greek word for “repent” (metanoeo), which basically means ” a change of mind.”
If we consider a view that God is our Father, a beloved parent acknowledged by us as God before this life, then the idea of returning and being comforted make perfect sense for “repent.” Continue reading
This week a series of intense storms blew through the area where I live. The debris closed roads around the region, the intense rains caused flooding in other regions, and thousands lost power.
There are times in our own lives when it seems our lives are being blown about, when the troubles raining down on us dampen our spirits, and when it seems we are cut off from the power of God.
These times of trouble will pass. Like the sunny sky after an intense storm, we will see a time when our troubles have passed, and the now in which we live in that future will be bright and fresh.
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I haven’t written much on the topic of gay marriage in recent months because I felt that pretty much everything on the legal merits had been said ad nauseum. I also had little pretension or doubt as to what the outcome of the Supreme Court case would be, though I was eager to see what rationale the Court would use as it created a constitutional right to same-sex marriage.
This morning, knowing that the decision was pending, I spent time in the temple praying for peace and clarity regarding the opinion. As I did so, I again received a reassurance that I have received frequently over the past several months. Ultimately, while there are reasons to despair over the changes that have swept the nation, we should be filled with hope because the Lord is in charge.
While many are celebrating today, I know that many others are afraid of the impact this decision will have on the Church and the cause of religious freedom. And many are wondering how to respond as our views increasingly become a minority position. While these thoughts are purely my own, I hope that some of what I express in this post will provide comfort and consolation for those who are anxious as a result of the Supreme Court’s decision.
Opponents of same-sex marriage have frequently warned that when the Supreme Court legalizes same-sex marriage (which it did today), it will be this generation’s Roe v. Wade and lead to a never ending cultural war on the topic. I sincerely hope not. Though I have frequently and strongly spoken up against the legalization of same-sex marriage, I hope that the fighting will recede and that those who see the urgent need to defend the family from decay and destruction will be able to move on to fighting for other pro-family measures.