Posts Tagged Life in Utah
Almost three out of four people in Utah are Mormon, but you can’t fully understand what that means until you live here. Knowing that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS) is one of the fastest growing in the world with more than 14 million members, or watching Big Love on HBO or The Book of Mormon on Broadway cannot prepare you. Even the intense media attention on Mormonism with the presidential campaigns of Mitt Romney and Jon Huntsman barely touches the surface of the faith. Mormons themselves who come to live in Utah from other parts of the country make the distinction between Mormons and Utah Mormons. The climate is so different here. In this theocracy, in a place Mormons refer to as Zion, I will always be an outsider, but I have made a kind of peace with the state. You have to if you want to remain. The peace is both hard earned and uneasy, tested continually. And it has been the stance of the LDS Church on homosexuality that has most recently challenged any goodwill I have fostered over the years.
For them, evidence of the world’s corruption is all around us, in those magazine covers, in R-rated movies, in men having sex with men. But in the celestial kingdom all will be restored. So, for example, if your child has Down’s syndrome in this life, then in the celestial kingdom her body will be made whole. If your child is gay, as long as he never acts on his homosexuality and remains a church member in good standing, in the celestial kingdom he will marry a woman and populate the world with spirit children.
When you are 20, eternity has a fairly strong pull on you, especially if all your family will be hanging out in the celestial kingdom forever. The promise of a whole body is compelling when you are taught that the body you have is impure.