Affirmation Panel Discusses Five Areas of Healing
Listen to Teleconference (MP3 file, 55 MB)
A 2-hour conference on healing is now available for downloading in MP3 format. Sponsored by Affirmation: Gay and Lesbian Mormons, the May 22 conference was moderated by Tawnya Smith. Panelists included Carol Lynn Pearson, Karin Hendricks, Judy Finch, and Sam Noble. Karin Hendricks is Affirmation’s Spiritual Director. The conference explored five areas of relationship that might need healing, with special focus on some of the challenges faced by LGBT Latter-day Saints. The panelists took questions emailed by the listeners.
If you are human, you probably have some healing to do. Many of us move through the world carrying hurts of various sizes, but these weigh us down and interfere with our ability to more fully experience joy and happiness. This call explores five areas or types of relationship that might be in need of healing.
We first explore our relationship with the Divine (Creator, Heavenly Father/Mother, Universe, etc.). As Sam Noble beautifully explains, religion can provide scaffolding for our growth, but ultimately our relationship with the Divine happens inside of our Self. Carol Lynn Pearson offers insights about the feminine and masculine nature of God, and suggests that we are all a part of the Divine. The second area we discuss is our relationship with the Self. We explore issues such as self-care, positive versus negative self-talk, and finding the courage to trust and follow inner guidance even when it is contrary to what our family or church leaders might suggest. Karin shares how she learned that listening to the messages of the body is a form of inner guidance that is of utmost importance.
Next we focus upon our relationship with family. Judy Finch shares her experience as a mother of a gay son and grandmother of two gay grandsons, and offers insights from her family therapy practice. We also discuss our relationship with the LDS church. Whether we are active, inactive, or a partner of someone who is/was a member we all have a form of relationship with the LDS church. Sam discusses how as an active member he navigates issues with the church as a whole and with his local ward, while Karin offers thoughts about how to emotionally sift between what is healthy and life-promoting, versus letting go of what no longer serves us. Finally, due to time we only briefly discuss the relationship with a partner. Sam Noble offers his personal revelation about how being in love with a same-sex partner is different than lust, and he urges those who are partnered to articulate and demonstrate how our relationships are holy. In addition to these five ways to heal relationships, the panel also responds to comments and questions from the listeners.