12 September 2011

Words Kill. Again.

I am stunned to learn of another gay Mormon suicide. A returned missionary, married father who finally came out, was promptly excommunicated from the church for reasons I don't know, and his staunch Mormon wife--apparently believing she had to protect her kids from perversion--left him with their five children and wouldn't let him see or talk to them. Unable to bear the shame, separation or loneliness, yesterday he killed himself. All alone. And now the wife's family is not allowing these fatherless kids any contact with their dad's extended family either; apparently dad's family was "too tolerant" of homosexuality. So these kids not only lose dad, they lose half their family too.

Three weeks, start to finish.

What's it going to take for some people to wake up and see the damage, the tragedy that their myopia continues to inflict?

What's it going to take for Mormons, Christians, Catholics, anyone else who cloaks homophobia in religious "principle" to see that they're perpetuating an atmosphere of such poison?

Mormon children are taught a song when they're young that includes the words "Jesus walked away from none, He gave His love to everyone, So I will, I will."

Why do the adults who teach the kids that song never seem to get the message themselves?

If memory serves, the New Testament shows that the thing which drove Jesus to furious anger faster than anything else was hypocrisy, the smooth protestations of the outwardly religious that they were following all the rules, when inwardly they were corrupt as hell and blind to the greater principles of loving God and their neighbor as themselves. These were the ones for whom the Savior reserved His greatest scorn.

I think this man's wife and his local leaders deserve to take their place with the "scribes, Pharisees and hypocrites" the Savior condemned to the kind of punishment nobody would want. I pray for his children that they will be able to heal someday from this horrible, totally unnecessary tragedy. And I pray for their father that he'll find the peace he seeks as he waits for his children to live their lives and someday join him again.

In paradisum de ducant angeli in tuo adventu susipiant te maryres, et perducant te in civitatem sanctam Jerusalem. Chorus angelorum te suscipiat, et cum Lazaro quondam paupere aeternam habeas requiem, aeternam habeas requiem.

May angels lead you into paradise; upon your arrival, may the martyrs receive you and lead you to the holy city of Jerusalem. May the ranks of angels receive you, and with Lazarus, once a pauper but no longer, may you have eternal rest.


Michelle said...

This is infuriating. How can this still be happening?

Tim Trent said...

I am learning that the deeply fanatical religionuts celebrate such a pointless death. They consider it to be their deeply held bigotry justified in their deity's name. One more soul gone to hell.

cousin justin said...

What was the guy's name?

cousin justin said...

What was his name?

cousin justin said...

What was the man's name?

Steven B said...

This breaks my heart.

Jeff said...

Suicide is always a tragedy, and if this one-sided portrayal of the wife’s actions be accurate, this is a tragedy for more reasons than one. “Shunning,” as you put it, has never been part of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and if that is indeed what happened here, I expect that the wife will be held as accountable for her sins (both in the earthly Church and in Heaven) as the husband is, for his.

On the other hand, as you so rightly pointed out, the Savior’s greatest scorn was for the hypocrites: those who are judgmental of others, those who “beholdest… the mote that is in [their] brother’s eye, but considerest not the beam that is in [their] own eye[s]” (Matthew 7:3). By suggesting that “this man's wife and his local leaders deserve to take their place with the ‘scribes, Pharisees and hypocrites’ the Savior condemned to the kind of punishment nobody would want,” you’re doing the very thing you’re accusing them of. And how does that help anything?

My 2¢.

Rob said...


Thank you for your comment. You have assumed the negative, which is a logical error and a mistake.

I have stated my opinion about the actions of this man's family based on what I've been told of their beliefs and motivations by a source I trust. If they are as represented to me, then I stand by my statements.

I have said nothing about myself, or any "beam" in my own eye, or my own flaws. I have not claimed to be infallible or error-free, because I'm not.

Hypocrisy consists in publicly preaching one thing and privately doing the opposite. Not in merely pointing out the obvious hypocrisy of others. That's a popular myth and quite untrue.

Again, I stand by my statement. The Savior said to judge things by their fruits. The fruits of what this man's wife and his church leaders have done are evil. These people have driven a man to suicide, cost grieving parents a son, cost grieving siblings a brother, and cost five innocent children a father. All because of bigotry and prejudice. Their conduct is blatantly anti-Christian while ostensibly done in pursuit of what an allegedly Christian church teaches. THAT is hypocrisy.

I cannot hope to affect their individual situation. I do need to express my own anger and outrage. If just one person somewhere, reading or hearing of this, might be prompted to re-examine and temper some prejudice of any kind, then I will have done some good.

If I learn of additional information that warrants a change in my view of this story, you can be assured I will provide it.

tracy said...

This is so very sad...beyond heartbreaking. i am so very sorry that things like this continue to happen.....

Korihor's Second Cousin said...

Knowing the man's name will help bring exposure to the issue. I would imagine that this story would catch fire in the media. I understand if you want to keep the matter private but a lot of good can come of exposing a real life situation.

Mike said...

This is so sad. I hope somehow that the family learns from what has happened so that next time a family member goes through something similar support can be extended rather than rescinded.