Russell Nelson, president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, offered a devotional address to students at Brigham Young University on Tuesday and reaffirmed the Mormon church’s opposition to gay marriage. Nelson also explained why the LDS church lifted a ban on baptisms of children of gay parents.
The Salt Lake Tribune reports: ‘The original policy labeled same-sex Latter-day Saint couples “apostates” and barred the children of LGBT parents from religious rituals, including baptism, without permission from the church’s top officials. Latter-day Saint leaders reasoned that “because parents are the primary exemplars for their children, we did not want to put young children in the position of having to choose between beliefs and behavior they learned at home and what they were taught at church,” Nelson recalled. “We wanted to facilitate harmony in the home and avoid pitting children and parents against each other.” They believed the 2015 policy would “assist children and their parents in this circumstance,” he said.’
Said Nelson: “We knew that this policy created concern and confusion for some and heartache for others. That grieved us. Whenever the sons and daughters of God weep — for whatever reasons — we weep. So, our supplications to the Lord continued.”
Said Nelson of marriage: “In the beginning, marriage was ordained by God. And to this day it is defined by him as being between a man and a woman. God has not changed his definition of marriage.”
Nelson added that though the LDS church cannot change the laws of God, it is charged to “build up the church” and regulate its affairs, “thus we can adjust policy when the Lord directs us to do so.” Nelson used the aforementioned policy regarding the baptism of parents of gay children as an example.