An estimated 2,500 people attended a
Salt Lake City rally on Saturday to protest a new Mormon Church
policy that targets gays and their children.
The policy change sparked an outcry
that led to roughly 1,000 people submitting letters of resignation
online. Attorneys received 1,500 additional letters at the event.
Kyler McGhee, a former Mormon, told
KUTV that he feels “a sense of relief” about his decision to
leave the church.
“Unfortunately, the church decided to
slam their doors in our face,”he said.
Most of the people participating had
long left the church.
The changes to the Mormon handbook (the
Handbook of Instructions) were disseminated earlier this month to
local church leaders.
The Mormon Church said that it
considers gay married Mormons apostates, which could lead to
excommunication. A disciplinary council “may be necessary” for
gay cohabiting couples, the handbook states.
Additionally, the children of parents
in gay or lesbian relationships, married or cohabiting, cannot join
the Mormon Church until they turn 18 and then only if they are no
longer living with their parents, disavow same-sex relationships and
receive approval from the church's highest leaders.
Teresa Schofield told the AP that she
stopped attending Mormon services more than a decade ago.
“We're supposed to love our children
like God loves us. To ask someone to turn their back on their own
child or for a child to turn their back on a parent, that's
unnecessary,” she said.
“To call the exclusion and the
discrimination some type of protection, I don't believe it,” Misty
McGinnis told ABC4