Blog

Two Men Cuddling Holding Smiling

Two Degrees off Center: It Is Not Good That Man Should Be Alone

May 14, 2020 |

All of us have been seriously affected by this evil little microbe, from rationing our toilet paper to being out of a job to a sudden and painful death of a person close to us. Fortunately, I’m better off than many others. I have plenty of TP, I’m retired, and I don’t know anyone close who’s suffered from it. I’ve also tested negative, and I stay six feet away from others and wear a mask whenever I make a run for essentials. But my biggest loss during this stay-at-home order—the issue that hits me where it really hurts—is not having someone to cuddle.

I am a Child of God Poster BYU Honor Code by Jacob Payne

Be one: Listening to the LGBTQ+ students at BYU

April 22, 2020 |

They were born into OUR Mormon families. They grew up singing the same Primary songs, learning the value of family relationships and wanting that for themselves, being taught they are each a child of God, learning to love one another, learning to get their own answers through prayer, and learning to stand up for what is right, even if they must stand alone.

Sacred Grove

The long night and the rising sun

April 19, 2020 |

For those who believe that Joseph indeed saw God the Father and Jesus Christ and seek to partake of the restored gospel, we are subject to the whims of those who have been called to lead the Church and must find a balance in living a full and fulfilling life without risking our relationship with and activity in the Church that we believe is important.

David Doyle Faces of Affirmation

I don’t think God views being gay as incompatible with the gospel

April 19, 2020 |

There are many things about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints that I really like, things that resonate with me. I like that our God isn’t silent, that God answers prayers, and wants to reveal new things to us. It’s just that where church intersects with how I was made by our Creator, there is tension.

Mousetrap

Two Degrees off Center: The big picture

April 13, 2020 |

A prophet is sometimes as clueless as we are. We don’t know why God asks us to do something that makes no sense, but we have faith that we’ll understand somewhere down the line, because that’s how faith usually works.

Thanks Gratitute Grateful Lock HeThanks Gratitude Grateful Lock Heart

Two Degrees off Center: The new norm

March 23, 2020 |

The anchor in each of our lives, whoever it is, who’s there when the times get tough, who helps our boat stay afloat and stop rocking so much in the storm until things calm down again, and who assures us that it will.

Car Driving Sepia Winter Spring

COVID-19 and the Honor Code debacle – An existential meditation

March 17, 2020 |

As I began my drive, I viewed the hillsides, fields, and woodlands here in upstate New York. Such scenery has become my chapel of holy reflection, and I was lost in the beauty of my surroundings. Despite the fact that the snows have only just receded and the color scheme is still tawny, slate, and charcoal, I still see God’s creation in all of it. I find God in nature, and God finds me there, too. 

BYU Provo Honor Code March by Jacob Payne

Not so fast: Honor code changes not so black and white

March 13, 2020 |

There is no mention in Church policy of any prohibition of any form of physical intimacy for unmarried couples of any sexual orientation outside of abstaining from sexual relations. It’s not unreasonable that living a chaste and virtuous life at BYU would mean anything different than what has been expected of students their whole lives as active and worthy members of the Church.

A Peculiar People

Two Degrees off Center: A peculiar people

March 13, 2020 |

How do I handle this anger I’m feeling and still be authentic?  How do I bridle these passions, and channel this anger so I can feel Christlike love again?  The Lord and I talked it over quite a bit in the past week, and I’ve found an answer.  It’s not everyone’s answer, but it’s mine.