On Friday, September 26, 2014, Affirmation received an Ally Award at Equality Utah”s Annual Gala in downtown Salt Lake City. Randall Thacker, Affirmation President, and 15 other Affirmation Leadership Team members were there to receive the award.
“We provide a loving and inclusive community to thousands of LGBT Mormons, their family members and friends worldwide,” said Randall Thacker upon receiving the award. He then invited the other 15 team members to introduce themselves and share a brief statement about what Affirmation means in their life. Statements shared by team members included, “family acceptance,” “authenticity,” and “a real Zion.”
The following video was shared prior to receiving the award in front of a packed house of almost 2000 attendees. It was a moving tribute to the work that goes on in the lives of LGBT Mormon, Families & Friends every day and features some Affirmation Leadership Team and Board Members.
The evening served as an opportunity for Affirmation team members to reflect on their accomplishments and socialize with other LGBT Mormons and the broader Utah LGBT community.
Below is the language used by Equality Utah to describe our work as an organization that affirms the lives of LGBT people of faith.
Affirmation — LGBT Mormons, Families, and Friends
Affirmation supports LGBTQ Mormons and their families, friends and Church leaders in seeking to live healthy and productive lives consistent with their faith or heritage. They provide a loving, inclusive community for all LGBTQ people, regardless of how they identify in their sexual orientation, gender identity, or faith.
They encourage spirituality and empower LGBTQ Mormons to make valuable contributions within and outside of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. They organize local gatherings and international conferences, provide informational resources, and work for dialogue within the Church.
Affirmation recognizes that, while full inclusion of LGBTQ people in the social contract that undergirds every democratic society is essential, we are more than just social or political beings. We are also spiritual beings who yearn for answers to fundamental questions about who we are, where we come from, and what is the purpose of our existence.
Affirmation is the largest and oldest organization of, by and for LGBTQ Mormons, their families and friends, has active chapters throughout North and South America, and members on six continents. It was founded in faith that, despite widespread views to the contrary, there is a place for LGBTQ Mormons in their Church and in the Kingdom of God, and that faith can be a guide and a light to us in achieving our birthright as children of God.
In recent years, Affirmation’s recommitment to its founding purposes has reenergized the LGBTQ Mormon community in Utah and beyond, and is attracting larger numbers of straight Mormon allies to this cause than ever before in its history.
In the process, more and more LGBTQ individuals are finding an inclusive community where they feel worth, wholeness and love, and where they are supported in their individual quests for meaning and integrity. Affirmation is playing a vital role in providing individuals the spiritual strength they need to give meaning to all their other endeavors as full and equal members of our society.