For the first time in its 23-year history, the Utah Pride Center this week received a donation from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
The $2,500 donation, which the Pride Center had asked the church to contribute, will be spent on food for a pantry the Pride Center uses for its homeless and low-income youth program.
The announcement from the Pride Center arrived on the heels of an official LDS Church statement
posted to its website that will be read this Sunday to its congregations around the world. In the statement, the church emphasizes that regardless of the decision by the U.S. Supreme Court to legalize gay marriage, the mores inside the church will remain the same: marriage is between a man and woman.
“Changes in the civil law do not, indeed cannot, change the moral law that God has established,” the statement says. “God expects us to uphold and keep his commandments regardless of divergent opinions or trends in society. His law of chastity is clear: sexual relations are proper only between a man and a woman who are legally and lawfully wedded as husband and wife.”
Though the church has remained steadfast in is opposition to gay marriage, 2015 has proven to be a year in which the institution has extended an olive branch of sorts to the LGBT community. As the Legislature contemplated a statewide ban on discrimination in housing and the workplace, church leaders gave the bill its endorsement—a nod that many believe was the key the law’s approval.
Kent Frogley, the Utah Pride Center’s board president, says the organization is “grateful for the church’s help in our efforts to provide food for those in our community who are in need.”
“We are grateful for their generosity and the emerging relationship with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints,” he says. “We know that this contribution marks a significant moment in the LDS/LGBTQ relationship.”