Carlos Andrés Uribe Cortes:
I am happy and full at the moment, but I will talk about how I was a few years ago. I was a Mormon, I grew up in a loving family that lives, or at least tries to live, the commandments of God. Talking about the Church can be uncomfortable for some of you since we’ve always been rejected for being who we are. I had been searching for my true identity for more than ten years; years of struggle and frustration, of pleading to my Heavenly Father. Why did I to be different? Why could I not be like the others? That’s what I thought. I asked God to allow me to have feelings for women.
I thought that in the mission these feelings would change and that Heavenly Father would exercise this miracle in me, but let me tell you this never happened.
José David Mora Olarte:
To remember my childhood is to think of the words of Nephi: “I was born […] of good parents and therefore received some instruction in all the science of my father.” I grew up as a faithful member of the Church with a loving family. At the age of eleven, something happened that marked my path in life. After a year of fighting cancer, my mother died. My last words to her were, “Mom, I’m going on a mission, I’m getting married and I promise to see you again.”
My life was guided by this promise; I served as a missionary in the Pachuca Mexico Mission and met a beautiful young woman with whom I thought about having my eternal family. I would follow what God and my family expected of me. But I knew it was not my way. When I got home, I remember seeing myself in my room and asking myself, “Is this what I want?” Will I be happy? Will I lie to my wife and the rest of my life lie about who I really am?
I made the decision to tell my family that I was gay and that I wanted something very different for me.
Love in All Things
We never thought we would have each other in our lives. Or thinking was in total harmony with the teachings of the Church.
On a fine Sunday morning, our eyes were intertwined and also our stories. Who would have thought that everything would change from that moment on! We do not know if it was fate or chance, but, at that moment, a beautiful friendship began. We support each other in our personal battles and, little by little, we began to grow a genuine and unconditional love. We decided to give ourselves a chance. We were discovered, separated, and were open about our relationship. Those who we thought were our friends in the Church were no longer there. Little by little the hopes were extinguished.
Affirmation has helped us to understand that there are many ways to be happy and that everything requires decision and sacrifice. This understanding remained in our hearts. We decided to be together and we were excommunicated, but this began a beautiful story that still continues.
Loving ourselves as we are is the path of happiness that we must follow. We all have divine potential, and if we look beyond our imperfections, we will know that we are truly perfect as we are.