Tuesday, December 7, 2010

LDS Church Presiding Bishop H. David Burton One Of 26 Co-Signatories To A Letter, "The Protection Of Marriage: A Shared Commitment"

Leaders of some of the largest religious communities in the United States have come together to express their commitment toward the protection of marriage as the union of one man and one woman. In an open letter released on December 6th, 2010, entitled “The Protection of Marriage: A Shared Commitment,” leaders from Anglican, Baptist, Catholic, Evangelical, Jewish, Lutheran, Mormon, Orthodox, Pentecostal and Sikh communities in the United States affirmed the importance of preserving marriage’s unique meaning.

Archbishop Timothy Dolan of New York, newly elected president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, said “The broad consensus reflected in this letter — across great religious divides — is clear: The law of marriage is not about imposing the religion of anyone, but about protecting the common good of everyone”.

Representing the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was Presiding Bishop H. David Burton; the LDS Church also issued its own press release. In 2008, the LDS Church released a document called “The Divine Institution of Marriage”, which further explains the Church’s position on the sanctity of marriage. The full text of today's letter appears below:

Dear Friends,

Marriage is the permanent and faithful union of one man and one woman. As such, marriage is the natural basis of the family. Marriage is an institution fundamental to the well-being of all of society, not just religious communities.

As religious leaders across different faith communities, we join together and affirm our shared commitment to promote and protect marriage as the union of one man and one woman. We honor the unique love between husbands and wives; the indispensible place of fathers and mothers; and the corresponding rights and dignity of all children.

Marriage thus defined is a great good in itself, and it also serves the good of others and society in innumerable ways. The preservation of the unique meaning of marriage is not a special or limited interest but serves the good of all. Therefore, we invite and encourage all people, both within and beyond our faith communities, to stand with us in promoting and protecting marriage as the union of one man and one woman.

Sincerely yours,

(Signatures of 26 different religious representatives)

The Presiding Bishop is listed as one of the General Authorities of the LDS Church, so he is empowered to make official statements on behalf of the Church. Consequently, this shows that the LDS Church remains irrevocably committed to the definition of marriage being between one man and one woman for the foreseeable future. But instead of sticking its neck up individually and risking getting it chopped off, the LDS leadership has wisely decided to merge its efforts to defend marriage with a host of other like-minded denominations. There is safety in numbers.

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