Discussions of Book of Mormon issues and evidences, plus other topics related to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Meet the Real President Packer

Flames erupted last year when President Boyd K. Packer gave a talk at the October 2010 General Conference that included a seemingly insensitive remark regarding those facing same-sex attraction. Actually, the way I interpreted the controversial sentence as initially spoken also bothered me, but that's not the way he meant it. That point was clarified in the printed edition of his talk. The spoken talk, the printed edition, the press release about the change being made, and the unwavering anger of some critics is an interesting story of how messages can be misunderstood and how good-faith efforts can be interpreted in sinister ways. If you instantly formed an opinion and have felt angry toward President Packer ever since, I would ask you to reconsider and see what he has been teaching consistently on this complex and delicate topic. Gregory L. Smith digs into the story in detail in his article, "Shattered Glass: The Traditions of Mormon Same-Sex Marriage Advocates Encounter Boyd K. Packer" at the Maxwell Institute.


Anonymous said...

His spoken statement--that God wouldn't do that (have people born as homosexuals) was changed when it went into print. That suggests it was originally too ambiguous or undoctrinal. Not enough to hate on the man, but a window on his deeper feelings on the subject.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous, I don't think that you read the article Jeff posted. The article clearly shows that those are not President Packer's feeling.

-Daniel England

Unknown said...

I guess I interpreted that statement a little differently. I didn't get that God wouldn't allow people to be born as homosexuals - I got that he wouldn't allow them to be unable to overcome their feelings. Many people face strong urges and inclinations to do wrong, but Christ gives us the strength to ignore those urges and do right. Admittedly, I'm not homosexual, but I found nothing problematic in his statement.

ColleenaMareena said...

@Emily--That's how I interpreted as well, and what I believe President Packer meant, and what the article Jeff linked to argues. Thanks for stating it so simply and precisely!