Sunday, July 3, 2011


I went to church today.

It's always interesting to attend church when it was all you knew your entire life and now it's just somewhere I go to hear a family member speak, sing or like today, a baby blessing.

As most people know Sam has a very strong testimony of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day-Saints and I do not. It's hard for me to sit still in my pew and listen to things that are said. I strongly disagree with a lot of things that are said and I think people are oblivious to what they are saying and who it's affecting. I am reminded each time why I no longer attend church.

Half way through testimony meeting I leaned over to Sam and said, "Now it's your turn." She responded with, "I actually thought about it." I would have LOVED for Sam to go up and share her testimony with the members of the congregation, my family specifically. Someone who has every reason to disagree with the church, yet still loves it and supports it. While I stir uncomfortably in my seat, Sam experiences feelings of peace and love.

I have a lot to learn from Sam. Not that I should agree or believe what she does, but to relax. I was in the position of so many of the people in the chapel today for over 20 years. How can I be so quick to get offended and be angry at people who are living what they believe?

If I can't soften my heart and try to come to a place of understanding and love, then going to church isn't a place for me. So, since I would hate to miss out on separating my two nieces during sacrament because they have a case of the giggles, or winking back and forth at my nephews, I better change something. The church isn't going to be changing so I might as well. I know what members believe and I know what's going to be said before I enter those doors. Therefore, it's my choice to go and take a seat.

I am thankful for the life experiences I have had and that my mind has been opened. I have been able to have a better understanding of so many people I used to fear. I love the people in my life from every end of the spectrum.


  1. Weese, I just love you, and I think it was very brave of you to write this. I feel grateful you are in our lives.

  2. Very interesting insight. Thanks for sharing!

  3. Love this Elise. Hopefully I'll get to a point where I'm brave enough to share my changed feelings about the church with anyone who asks. Thanks for being such an inspiration always :) I LOVE you

  4. I always try to remember that the Church teaches Christ-like love and actions. People in the Church who don't follow that way of thinking are actually the hypocrites. I have dealt with many people in the Church who think they are better than everyone, not only people who are gay, but people who have struggled with addiction, people who don't have the "right" look, or people who don't profess to be perfect. It has been a difficult thing sometimes, and I can see how they may cause people to blame the Church in general. But, then I remember that none of us are perfect, and most of us, if not all, are constantly trying to figure out who we are and what we believe in, and we probably always will be! It's so important for all of us, LDS or not, to try to see each other as equally loved children of a caring and kind Father in Heaven. In the scriptures, it says that Heavenly Father loves us so much more than we could possibly ever love our own children. As a mother, I know how much I love my children, and it seems unbelievable that I could possibly be loved more than I love them!! If one of them were to struggle with a part of themselves that may go against what I believe in, it won't make me love them any less. I wish every parent felt that way. Elise, I know how much I love you as well. I always have, and even though at first it was kind of awkward, I have quickly fallen back into the same patterns we had at the very beginning, and honestly, better patterns in my opinion! You are a tremendous blessing to our family. I hope and pray that you know how grateful I am to have you as a sister, and I am sorry I haven't shared it enough with you. I am sorry your feelings for the Church have been so jaded by members who wear blinders and are unable to see past the end of their nose. I hope someday, when we all have a greater knowledge of the Plan of our Heavenly Father, we will all be able to look at each other the way Heavenly Father looks at us. Until then, just remember that when I look at you, I don't see someone who is gay, or any other label. I just see a sister that I love. Remind Samantha that this is for her too, but mostly you.

  5. Also, sorry for the rambling post. You know me, I tend to do that! =)

  6. Lindsay. Arlene. Jenkins. This post made my life. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. No post has every meant more. You are amazing, and a sister to me as well AND a good example of the mormon church. Thank you for that. Sam was definitely affected by this post as well because she couldn't even finish reading it because her emotions got the best of her. You go ahead and ramble all you want, it's much appreciated.

  7. Caradon, you as well are equally amazing. I needed to post this because I don't want your kind words to go unnoticed. You are always making me feel welcome and saying nice things to me, but Lindsay is usually a bully. So there. Love you.