Bishop Robinson, in Salt Lake City for Equality Utah, thinks even Mormons will come around

Talk about going into the belly of the beast…

Bishop Gene Robinson was in Salt Lake City this week, on behalf of Equality Utah. And, he had hopeful words about the Mormon church while he was there:

Robinson predicted The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints — as well as other churches — will change its position.

“Pretty soon,” Robinson said, “even the LDS Church is going to realize that no one under 30 is interested in joining a church that discriminates against us.”

Those Mormon families enduring the conflict between what their church teaches and how many of their loved ones live will influence their leaders, he said. “They are going to wake up. They are going to see that the compassion they believe in extends to all of God’s children.”

While the LDS Church was at the forefront of advocating California’s Proposition 8 to ban gay marriage last year, the church increasingly encourages compassion for those with same-sex attraction.

A 2006 church pamphlet stresses that such attraction is not sinful, although acting on it is. The church less often advocates marriage as a “cure” for homosexuality and is more open than in the past to the contention that many gay and lesbian people are born with such sexuality.

Last year, the church said it would not oppose some basic rights, such as hospital visitation and housing nondiscrimination, for same-sex couples.

Bishop Robinson is more hopeful than I am. But, the Prop. 8 fallout has been a real problem for the church, as John reported last week:

A great AP story about just how badly the Mormons have been burned by their involvement in Prop 8.:

Church insiders say Prop. 8 has bred dissent among members and left families divided. Some members have quit or stopped attending services, while others have appealed to leadership to stay out of the same-sex marriage fight..

And, we’re keeping an eye on their activity in the Maine and Washington referenda. From what we hear, the Mormons really, really don’t like a lot of attention. For example, people take offense when they find out the Mormons are baptizing their dead relatives.

On October 27, 2010, Joe was one of five bloggers who interviewed President Obama. Joe is a DC-based political consultant with over twenty-five years of experience at both the state and federal level. Joe has managed political operations and legislative efforts for both candidates and issues-based organizations. For seven years, he was the Director of State Legislation at Handgun Control, Inc. He served as that organization's first Political Director during the 2000 cycle. Joe is a graduate of the University of Maine School of Law. In addition, he has a Masters in Public Administration from Lehigh University and received his B.A. from the University of New Hampshire. Joe also has a fun dog, Petey, a worthy successor to Boomer, who got Joe through eight years of Bush and Cheney. Joe likes to think he is a world class athlete having finished the 2005 Chicago Marathon in the time of 4:10. He has completed six other marathons as well -- and is still determined to break the four hour mark.

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