The leadership of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have issued an official statement, via the Mormon Newsroom, in response to yesterday’s Supreme Court decision stating the Court will not hear any reviews of same-sex marriage cases, effectively bringing marriage equality to five more states.
“Salt Lake City — The succession of federal court decisions in recent months, culminating in today’s announcement by the Supreme Court, will have no effect on the doctrinal position or practices of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which is that only marriage between a man and a woman is acceptable to God. In prizing freedom of conscience and Constitutional guarantees of the free exercise of religion, we will continue to teach that standard and uphold it in our religious practices.”
“Nevertheless, respectful coexistence is possible with those with differing values. As far as the civil law is concerned, the courts have spoken. Church leaders will continue to encourage our people to be persons of good will toward all, rejecting persecution of any kind based on race, ethnicity, religious belief or non-belief, and differences in sexual orientation.”
According to statements made by equal rights activist Fred Karger, and church documents acquired by Mother Jones Magazine, The Mormon Church has spent millions of dollars over the last decade fighting same-sex marriage here in the U.S.
The states that are affected by the latest ruling are Oklahoma, Wisconsin, Indiana, Virginia and Utah. Six other states, North Carolina, South Carolina, Kansas, Colorado, Wyoming and West Virginia, currently do not recognize same-sex marriage but are grouped into the same circuits as the other states whose rulings the court declined to hear yesterday. Many experts say same-sex marriage will likely become legal in all of these states, likely raising the total number of states where the practice is allowed from 19 to 30.