Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Voices of Hope by Ty Mansfield

So, this guy is my hero. :) I have lots of heroes. But Ty is definitely one of them. I absolutely love his courage in moving out of the victim role. He takes action for making a positive change in the world around him. I'm grateful to have the privilege of participating in his efforts.

Last week, I got my copies of Voices of Hope. I will say that I haven't read all of the personal essays yet. I have read the plenary chapters, and I am in love. I love the frank compassionate voice that comes through in all of the writing. I love the courage with which the authors teach the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I wish everyone I know would read this book. Individuals who experience SSA, my family, friends, priesthood leaders, everyone can benefit from the principles discussed and the love shared in this book.

I can say that for myself, a single reading is not going to be sufficient. There is so much truth and valuable insight packaged in there, that I will study and re-read. I recently read a scripture that struck me. In 2 Nephi 27:20 the Lord says "I am able to do mine own work; wherefore thou shalt read the words which I shall give unto thee."

I can truly say that the Lord has given me these words. I believe He would like to give them to you as well.

13 comments:

Troy said...

i want a copy! while i'm sure it's worth every penny, $26 bucks is, well, pricey for poor person like me.

Andy said...

I am glad you find the book so inspiring! I am wondering if I should read it as well...

K. L. said...

Troy

It is pretty steep for a paperback. I wonder if part of that is Deseret Book being afraid they aren't going to sell enough to make it cost efficient. The electronic version is about half that, which is still quite a bit. Hopefully the price comes down.

K. L. said...

Andy,

I understand that we are all different and that this book may not speak as powerfully to everyone. That said, I think that one of the strengths of the book is that it doesn't come from a single perspective. With over 20 different Voices linked by a common faith in Christ, it's likely that some part of it will be helpful.

Thanks for reading. :)

Bravone said...

It's a thick book! You can purchase a copy at Seagull Book cheaper than Deseret. KL, I understand there are some pretty interesting contributors in this book...

Darren Kennedy said...

Oh brother! In love? This is just more LDS corporate drivel to get us gays to believe that the only way to be connceted to God is by repressing our true sexual orientation and clinging tightly to a church that will never fully accept us. Before you know it, we'll be dead and we'll only have regreat that we never lived the life that we were meant to live. We are not broken! We've been brainwashed by an organization that we accept as absolute truth because we prayed and got a special feeling. Facts and history be damned. I for one will not make Ty Mansfield and company richer by buying this overpriced manual for self loathing.

"Lucky Jake" said...

Got my copy in the mail yesterday... The wife and I are reading it together.

Loving it so far.

K. L. said...

Darren,

I respect your right to disagree. I will say that it's pretty hard to make any convincing arguments against something you don't know about. One of the best things about this book is that it takes an approach exactly opposite from the one you've described. No honest person can read the first person stories without recognizing their sincerity. The plenary chapters are packed full of love and acceptance.

Also, I'm intrigued by your strong emotional reaction. What is it about an organization which you clearly disagree with that you just can't let go of? Why not just leave it alone? I mean I disagree with communism and hardly ever even give it a thought. What's preventing you from just living your life without feeling the need to berate and harass those who choose a path different from yours?

K. L. said...

Bravone,

They were a bit liberal in who'd they'd let contribute weren't they? :) It's almost like they wanted to include real people who are a long way from perfect.;)

Darren Kennedy said...

K.L. -

Wow, you were quick on the draw with the "just leave the church alone" card. I was merely sharing my opinion. However, you're right, I do have strong antagonistic feelings towards the church because for 4 decades I sat in the pews trying to follow their inspired advice as to how to reconcile my spirit with my inate sexual orientation. It harmed me and it hurt and I have scars. They advised me to marry a woman and have children as a theraputic solution to my sexual orientation. Now we have 3 additional lives that are negativly impacted because I believed in the "inspired leaders and prophets." That's my beef. Clear now?

I don't activly campaign against the chruch but I do think it's important for those of us who have left and have found health and peace on the outside to let those who remain know that it's all lie and they can escape it too. Especially young gay men and women just entering primary and YM/YW who will likely be fed the same poison. You know as well as I do that the church has been very ugly towards people like us. They have only softened their approach recently. The internal damadge is still the same. Those of us that can attest to that are many. So continue on your path. Pretend to be happy and fulfilled. It's just a matter of time. Pointing that out gives me NO pleasure.

I'll leave the church alone when the church quits making second class saints out of perfectly wonderful homosexuals. It worked for the blacks!!!!

P.S. You weren't "Intrigued." Quit being so smug! Haha.

K. L. said...

Darren,

Regarding me being so quick on the draw, I've had this discussion often.

I am sorry about the pain that you experienced. So much of that was unnecessary. I also hope that the Church leaders and member will continue to grow and progress in their understanding and acceptance of all members, regardless of their experiences.

In reference to the pain experienced by member of the church who experience homosexual attractions, I refer to my earlier post about Francis Weber. I stand by that.

I firmly believe that in the face of trial - regardless of the source - we still have a choice regarding how we respond. I choose to respond in faith. As I make that choice I continue to experience increasing joy and happiness.

Also, regardless of the source of our pain, the Atonement of Jesus Christ is powerful enough to bind up wounds, heal hearts, and transform souls.

I recognize that not everybody will make the same choices I have. Choices are a very personal matter. But that does not stop me from presenting a third alternative to the false dichotomy you suggest.

It is true that many individuals leave the Church and find happiness. It is also true that many individuals remain in the Church and feel rejected and miserable. However, some who leave the Church don't find the happiness they were looking for. Additionally, I offer my life as evidence that there are many who continue in the Gospel, seek repentance, utilize resources to grow, find love and acceptance, and also experience deep and abiding peace and joy.

It isn't my place to tell another person which to pick. It also isn't my place to mock or belittle another person's choice. I strive to keep a respectful tone and ask for the same.

Kevin

PS What you interpret as smugness, might just be my attempt to avoid reacting in anger to what was perceived as a personal attack.

"Lucky Jake" said...

Kevin, I join my voice with yours, and with everyone else who has shared their story in Voices of Hope. The Atonement of Jesus Christ has the power to heal our torn hearts.

While reading VOH, I could easily imagine many gays (mormon, ex-mormon, or non-mormon) rolling their eyes at the personal heartfelt stories and testimonies born in its pages, and its such a shame that the way choose to live our lives, remaining faithful to our covenants and to what we hold true, is seen as such an abomination to non-believing gays. It's disgusting really.

Just as you said, I do my best to respect the paths others have chosen for their own lives-- so why can't our chosen paths be met with equal respect!?

Your courage and faith is an inspiration to many, including myself.

Anonymous said...

thankyou