Coming Out

Next weekend I'm devoting my Saturday to the Utah Pride Festival. Every year, members of the LGBT community gather in Salt Lake City to celebrate and endorse equal rights. I will be among those in celebration.

In light of this upcoming festival, it is time for me to come out of the closet regarding my feelings about homosexuality:

I support the LGBT community with no reservations--this includes a whole-hearted support of gay rights including gay marriage. 

It is scary for me to come out on my blog as I know that what I write here will be read by friends and others who passionately disagree with my convictions and may think less of me. It is always difficult to wonder if those closest to us will reject us or worse, patronize us, for speaking our truth. Many of the gay and lesbian men and women I associate with have navigated their way through a terrifying and often arduous coming-out process. I believe that straight allies of the LGBT community have their own coming out process. Perhaps not as gut wrenching, but certainly daunting in its own right.

As a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, I am particularly sensitive to sharing my feelings surrounding gay rights. Many, if not most, members of my religious community believe that homosexuality is a sin and NOT ordained of God. I do not share these beliefs but rather feel that gay men and lesbian women bring gifts to the spiritual table that have the potential to transform us all--gay and straight alike. Some Mormon friends I've talked with about these issues have been concerned for my spiritual welfare and membership in the church. As well meaning as it is, such concern angers me as it suggests that I am confused and a stranger to my own spirituality. I know that despite the torrential energy of opposition, there comes a point when all of us must find the courage to be honest about who we are and the direction in which our heart points.

I have a handful of close friends who are both gay and devoted to the gospel of Jesus Christ. Their courage, humility and sensitivity to the Spirit is what inspired me, ultimately, to devote my energy to this cause. To them I offer oceans of gratitude for gifting me with enough confidence to say the things that are difficult to say.