Sentí que algo importante estaba a punto de afectar mi vida
abril 9, 2019
by Erik Kokkonen
Sometido a afirmación luego de que La Iglesia de Jesucristo de los Santos de los Últimos Días revocara sus cambios de política de noviembre de 2015 que prohibían que los hijos de padres LGBTQ fueran bendecidos y bautizados y caracterizaron a los miembros de la iglesia que contraen matrimonios del mismo sexo como apóstatas. Estos cambios se conocieron dentro de la comunidad LGBTQ mormona como la "política de exclusión", "política de exclusión" o "PoX". El día después de que se anunció la revocación de esta política, Nathan Kitchen, presidente de Afirmación, invitó a todos los que estuvieran dispuestos a compartir sus sentimientos auténticos y todas sus historias de dolor, ira, alivio, tristeza, felicidad, confusión, lo que sea que los rodea. la rescisión de esta política. “Como presidente de Afirmación, quiero asegurarme de que Afirmación no los oculte a usted ni a sus historias a medida que avanzamos”, escribió Kitchen en su invitación. Si tiene reacciones o una historia para compartir sobre la revocación de la política de exclusión, envíela a [email protected]. Tú también puedes leer otras historias y reacciones a la revocación de la política de exclusión.
In the months leading up to the November 2015 exclusion policy, I had slowly accepted that I am gay. Years of internal conflict and of trying to change my sexuality forced me to develop and rely on my personal relationship with God. Developing this relationship required a price in terms of time, tears, countless prayers and near sleepless nights. I have had some brief but clear and powerful experiences from God that He loves me for who I am, including the gay part of me that does not need to change.
The November 2015 policy cast a dark shadow on the light I had started to see. Although I am unmarried and have no kids, I still felt the sting of the policy. How could God personally tell me one thing so clearly, then indirectly tell me through a policy that I’m different than everyone else, unwanted, and worthy of special punishment if I choose to marry another man? In the months that followed, I relied on the personal witnesses I had received from God about His love for me to carry me through some pretty dark moments.
Less than a week before the reversal, I told my parents I felt strongly that something significant in my life was about to happen. I didn’t know what it was or when it would happen. But I knew it was coming. This past Thursday, while eating lunch at Chipotle with an ally friend, I also told him that I felt something significant was about to affect my life, but didn’t know what it was or when it would happen. At that very moment, I received a text from my brother, excitedly informing me that the exclusion policy had been reversed. With a dose of doubt, my friend and I verified the accuracy of the text. With tears in our eyes and goosebumps on our arms, we both felt a huge weight had been lifted. It is a day that I’ll never forget.
In the hours that passed, I sobbed more than I thought was humanly possible. All sorts of emotions filled my heart and soul. Validation that my personal relationship with God is real. Regret that I didn’t rely on this personal relationship even more than I had. Sadness and anguish over the damage that has been inflicted, for the severed relationships and lost lives–whether directly or indirectly. Confusion as to why the policy was implemented in the first place and, eventually, grace towards those who implemented the policy (I’m still working on this one). I truly believe that the brethren have the best of intentions, but like all of us are fallible and capable of making mistakes. The scriptures have numerous examples of prophets/leaders making mistakes. Yet I also don’t want to dismiss or minimize the real pain that the policy has caused for others. Words can’t bring back the lives lost.
Mostly, though, I felt and still feel hope for a brighter future. I applaud any step that promotes more inclusion. Locally, since coming out to my ward a few months ago, I have felt much greater love and acceptance. My friendships have deepened. Hearts and minds are changing. Some ward members rejoiced with me via text when they heard the policy had been reversed. One member and friend requested to meet up with me that evening, telling me, “I wanted to see you on this important day,” while giving me a hug. This is why I choose to stay in the Church. I believe most people are good people trying to do the right thing.
Interestingly, the policy reversal has motivated me to speak up. To tell my story. To do better. To better rely on my Savior. My fear is that of complacency in the church. My job isn’t to know what the end result looks like, but I can speak up along with the other chorus of voices to share my experiences. 2 Nephi 31:20 is my motto: “Wherefore, ye must press forward with a steadfastness in Christ, having a perfect brightness of hope, and a love of God and of all men.”