The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints learned some lessons from serious controversy around 5 years ago when they invested a dangerous amount of support into California’s proposition 8. The problem is they didn’t learn they did something wrong. They learned that they did it the wrong way. Below is a copy of a letter sent out to wards in Hawaii. It was sent out from the stakes in the Hawaii area. Though they have been more careful about how they say things everyone still gets the same message of, the church teaches that we should not support same sex unions and you should get involved politically to stop it. They do leave some leeway to those who dissent but they make it clear what they should believe. The letter in essence says, Look up what the church says, then pass that on to your legislators and get involved as a good citizen. The only real thing that has changed is that they don’t directly ask for money and imply that they don’t care where you stand. This wording has the sole purpose of making the appearance of change. It is clear from this letter that the LDS faith has not been silent, at least behind closed doors, and is getting involved in political strife over gay marriage more than we think. They are however very careful to make sure that the letter states it is from the stake presidency and not the Governing body of the church. however it was sent to most of the stakes in Hawaii, this tells me the decision was made at a higher level. In an article written by Peggy Stack at the Salt Lake Tribune she quotes Owen Matsunaga, one of those stake presidents over a number of Mormon congregations and the church’s spokesman in Hawaii, affirmed that stance, saying that “senior church leaders … are certainly aware of the issues in Hawaii and elsewhere in the world, and are available to us to provide expertise as needed, but expect local leaders and members to make decisions specific to local circumstances.” This leads me to believe that they received encouragement to approach the topic and told how not to approach it while still letting them figure out specifically to do so. If you wonder why this Church is so invested in Hawaii it is because they already fought this battle there and they may see their efforts overturned in another state.
- Mormon Church Entering Hawaii Marriage Fight? (bilerico.com)
- Mormon Church Entering Hawaii Marriage Fight? (dailyqueernews.wordpress.com)
- After Prop 8, Mormons take different tack in Hawaii gay marriage fight (religionnews.com)