The Good from the Internet
It is amazing what the internet can do! Imagine last week happening twenty years ago. This policy change would have not been realized by anyone but leadership until maybe years after the new handbooks were mailed out. Those who were directly affected with the consequences of the policy would be few and far between and they would have a hard time convincing anyone it was real. Those who did learn about the policy and believed, would have to suffer in silence with no one to talk to, share with or commune with in mutual pain.
Instead, within twenty four hours the entire church membership heard about the policy. Major national news outlets posted stories and videos. Facebook groups were formed. Blogs were commented on. Stories were shared and went viral. People communed with like minded saints, suffering pain or affirming their leaders. Within a few days the sting has begun to subside and people are beginning to move on.
It is simply unbelievable what the internet has become. I still remember the days of MS-DOS (now you all know I'm a grandpa). The world was so lonely when one suffered back then. I struggled to understand the Strength For Youth pamphlet's paragraph on homosexual relations and the Bible Dictionary provided little help.
The Good in my Family
The policy, aside from all its hurt, pain and confusion brought about some good. My sister who has been the slowest of all my siblings to understand my world of being a gay mormon reached out more than anyone. She call multiple times, listened to my hurt and searched her own heart to express sadness. She listened and understood mine thoughts and feelings more than her own. She expressed the realization that she can do more to be accepting for all around her regardless of their struggles. She showed love and empathy without trying to preach or condemn my thoughts. In short, she was Christ-like. She mourned with me. She cared for me. She love me.
My siblings are all at different places when it comes to my being gay. They are all amazing humans and love me beyond the stars. But I am so heartened to know that my sister has come so far from where she was. I am so proud of her and love her so much. And I don't think she or I would have had this same opportunity without the policy change from the church.