The one thing we all have in common is faith. For most of us it was faith that Joseph Smith is a prophet, that the church is true, and that Jesus Christ is our savior. I think a fair number of us still hold at least one of those points to be true, while many others have found faith in other things. Yet more have lost their faith still search for something to believe in. Our journey began in the same place, more or less, and so many of us are going somewhere entirely different.
Affirmation exists to do an number of things. Our primary function has been providing fellowship to those Latter-day Saints who come out as not straight and need someone to come to who understands where they come from. That is admirable and necessary, and it will not change.
There is also this interesting provision in the Charter that I’ve been thinking long and hard about for a very long time: “Encourage spirituality, prayer and the practice of all Christ-like and charitable behavior in the recognition of members as whole and complete children of God.” I don’t imagine, now many years after the Charter was written, that many of us can take issue it that directive, but I can guess that a few might. *
I wholeheartedly endorse Christ-like and charitable behavior, but as I’ve grown as a person I don’t know how I personally can encourage spirituality or prayer. My beliefs have moved on not just from Mormonism, not just from Christianity, but on to no faith whatsoever. I no longer “hope for things which are not seen, which are true.” *
I expect that I am in a minority view, but I can no longer continue in my capacity as a member of the Executive Committee leading an organization ostensibly full of people of faith without being honest with them. Given that there are other atheists who have held long and valued places of trust among our fellowship, I doubt this is an issue for most of you, but it has been an issue for me. You deserve transparency, honesty, and integrity from your leadership, and I intend to give it, for as long as you’ll allow me.
Assistant Executive Director
Affirmation: Gay and Lesbian Mormons