Today’s episode was a tough one, to be honest. In the aftermath of a speech that Elder Jeffrey R. Holland gave recently to faculty and administration at BYU, we try to explore and understand why the message created such a firestorm. Among other things, the speech raised anew the Church's longstanding challenge in speaking to LGBTQ issues.
If you aren’t familiar with the speech that we’re talking about, don’t worry — we give a little more context once the discussion starts. The full transcript and video of the speech are available on the Church Newsroom website.
Most of the work we do in this podcast and at Faith Matters, generally, is to provide a forum where difficult issues can be explored in expansive ways through real dialogue and understanding, in a spirit of generosity. Doing that can be tricky on topics which feel particularly polarizing and raw.
Faith Matters is really trying to “broaden the circles” of our culture and community to help them become as expansive and inclusive as they can be—both for those who already feel super comfortable at Church, and for those that are trying to find a place to fit in. We definitely don’t always do this perfectly, and we’re sure we didn’t in this episode — so we really appreciate the grace we hope you’ll extend as we navigate this tricky territory.
As conversation partners, we brought on Patrick Mason and Tom Christofferson, both of whom have been close friends and advisors to Faith Matters for a long time. We felt like their perspectives would really help to round out both the theological and personal aspects of this issue, and we weren’t disappointed. We found their insights both realistic and reassuring, and as always, they modeled a Gospel and a Church that we’re proud to be a part of.