When Utah Senator Steve Urquhart criticized the LDS Church by asserting that the Church’s “light went out” yesterday, he was publicly opposing the LDS Church and its leaders. As a member of the faith, he is subject to discipline based on the recently revised Handbook 1. There, those who “repeatedly act in clear, open, and deliberate public opposition to the of the Church or its leaders” are in apostasy. Those who are found to be in apostasy that “repent not, shall not be numbered among [Jesus’s] people, that he may not destroy [His] people. ” 3 Nephi 18:31.
This is a fascinating problem because if the Church pursues disciplinary action against a State Senator, then, it begs the question John F. Kennedy had to overcome. Can Mormon politicians make decisions independent from the political will of their church leaders? In the case that the Church ignores Senator Urquhart’s public opposition, many wonder why Kate Kelly and Rock Waterman were stripped of their membership while LDS politicians are afforded more liberties to publicly oppose the Church and its leaders.
The Senator’s public opposition to the Official LDS press release may be tolerated but the media loves stories where a religion attempts to prevent the protection of popular minority groups. Hopefully, Senator Urquhart’s indictment will draw attention to the Church’s seemingly hypocritical position on disciplining for apostasy. The one clear insight we can draw with confidence is that the Church is addicted to homosexuality and will risk all of its social capital to discourage its acceptance in at least Utah. Coincidentally, that is exactly where church most top brass resides. Is it possible that the Church’s political focus ignores global visions in exchange for the convenience of discouraging contact with gays in a state already unappealing to those with such uncorrelated proclivities.