Be a Part of the Safe Space Campaign
Grassroots Coalition Will Deliver Flowers to Church Headquarters
By Hugo Salinas
We invite Affirmation members, parents, friends, and other supporters to participate in the Safe Space Campaign. As part of this LDS grassroots campaign, pink carnations will be delivered to Church Headquarters on October 2nd to let the general authorities know that we "stand for a Church that is a beacon of hope for all people, a Church that opens its doors to all as a 'safe space,' a tolerant and embracing place." (Read full declaration)
The Safe Space Campaign was launched by Brecken Chinn wartz, the wife of an LDS bishop from Maryland. We invite individuals to be represented in the project by purchasing at least one carnation.
SLC Florist.com, a Utah-based company, is taking the orders and coordinating delivery. There is a cost of one dollar per carnation. Because of how the ordering system works, a minimum of five carnations must be processed with each order. This means, unfortunately, that you cannot purchase a single carnation for yourself as a single order. We recommend that interested individuals place their orders together--as a group of family and friends, or as a chapter, for example. SLC Florist will waive delivery fees if you enter the coupon code "SAFESPACE" in your shopping cart. You may also order carnations by phone at 801-984-2500.
You may complete an order for you or for your Affirmation chapter by
Safe Space Declaration
Dear General Authorities:
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints stands as a restoration of the fullness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. We read in the scriptures of the teachings and actions of our Savior, who taught us that, as children of our Heavenly Father, we are to respect one another, to shun none, and to truly love our neighbors as ourselves. We believe that every child of God shares a divine potential, and as Latter-day Saints, we welcome all, regardless of their circumstances.
We are aware that many suffer in the Church because of their sexual orientation. One good bishop wrote recently about his gay son's attempted suicide, and this family is not alone. Members who find that their gender identity or attractions do not fall within standardized expectations are too often marginalized, frightened, and taught that their feelings are an aberration that must be "corrected." Many try desperately to change their nature through church-sanctioned measures, and when those fail, they feel that the only options left are to leave the Church or to commit suicide. The number of suicides and attempted suicides within the Church over the issue of sexuality indicates the need for a new approach.
We have learned through experience, as well as through scientific research, that homosexuality is not simply a changeable lifestyle choice, but a deeply ingrained element of a person's created nature. We do not believe that God intends for some of his children to be treated differently than others, especially in the most significant matters of the heart.
We believe in standing for principles of truth and righteousness, and as such, we proclaim the following:
The color pink has been embraced worldwide as a symbol of "Safe Space," a reminder of the prejudices and torture of the past, and a commitment to creating safe spaces for all of God's children to progress together as equals. We believe that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints represents the highest of the ideals of the Enlightenment as a society based firmly on mutual respect, tolerance, and equality. The Church we believe in embodies the safest of all spaces, built firmly on the fullness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
- We stand up for our knowledge that God makes no mistakes in the creation of his children. He taught us in the scriptures that each one of us has a unique and cherished place in the Kingdom of God. All humans are endowed with both the desire and the right to form lasting, nurturing relationships built on honesty and love.
We stand for a Church that is a beacon of hope for all people, a Church that opens its doors to all as a "safe space," a tolerant and embracing place. We are committed to fostering the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints as a society where a homosexual member's options are not limited to eternal silence, repression, excommunication, or suicide.
We stand for the principle that love is not a sin. We believe that the focus on sexual orientation obscures the real underlying issues of sexual sin, which are founded on lust, greed, and sexual exploitation, found among both heterosexuals and homosexuals everywhere.
We stand for the institution of the family as the embodiment of love and commitment. The presence of a father, mother, and children living together is no guarantee of family success. The presence of true love and commitment within a family is a much better indicator. We believe that all families, regardless of the gender of those involved, should receive wholehearted sanction from our Church in establishing and nurturing eternal bonds.
We believe the prophet Nephi when he spoke from the dust:
"Behold, doth he cry unto any, saying: Depart from me? Behold, I say unto you, Nay; but he saith: Come unto me all ye ends of the earth, buy milk and honey, without money and without price. Behold, hath he commanded any that they should depart out of the synagogues, or out of the houses of worship? Behold, I say unto you, Nay. Hath he commanded any that they should not partake of his salvation? Behold I say unto you, Nay; but he hath given it free for all men; and he hath commanded his people that they should persuade all men to repentance. Behold, hath the Lord commanded any that they should not partake of his goodness? Behold I say unto you, Nay; but all men are privileged the one like unto the other, and none are forbidden"
(2 Nephi 26: 25-28).
As faithful citizens of the Lord's kingdom, we recognize that Church leaders are directed by inspiration and revelation, and that the Church's canon of scripture remains open. We ask and pray that there will come a time soon when all Latter-day Saints may live honestly and openly as full participants in the blessings of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
With love and respect,
The Safe Space Coalition,
Comprised of members and friends of
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints