(SALT LAKE CITY) — A top Mormon leader reaffirmed the religion’s opposition to same-sex marriage on Saturday during a church conference watched by members around the world.
Dallin H. Oaks, a member of a top governing body called the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, urged members to follow church teachings that dictate that marriage should be reserved for heterosexual men and women. He said that’s the ideal home for children to be raised.
Oaks acknowledged that this belief can put Mormons at odds with family and friends and doesn’t match current laws, including the recent legalization of gay marriage in the United States. But he told the nearly 16-million members watching around the world that the religion’s 1995 document detailing the doctrine — “The Family: A Proclamation to the World” — isn’t’ a policy statement that will be changed.
“We have witnessed a rapid and increasing public acceptance of cohabitation without marriage and same-sex marriage. The corresponding media advocacy, education, and even occupational requirements pose difficult challenges for Latter-day Saints,” Oaks said. “We must try to balance the competing demands of following the gospel law in our personal lives and teachings even as we seek to show love for all.”