Adopted April 5, 2004

RGCR1064.       An Official Statement on Marriage, Family and Moral Values.

Responding to the evident need for a current statement relating to a number of social, moral, and ethical issues we are pleased to issue the following statement for guidance to the Church and by way of information for public dissemination.-THE FIRST PRESIDENCY

Adherents of the gospel restored to earth by divine intervention April 6, 1830 through the prophet Joseph Smith, Jr. have long been aware of warnings to these latter days. Further, we of the Remnant Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, with sober-minded and concerned persons of many religious persuasions, observe with alarm the deterioration of moral standards, and the encroachment of evil and its effect upon the physical and spiritual well-being of humankind everywhere. Consequently, we view with concern the impact of these destructive elements upon the sanctity of marriage, the family, and other institutions ordained of God for the well-being of humanity.

WE AFFIRM that all human beings, both male and female, are created "in the image of God." The Holy Scriptures teach us that natural man is an enemy to God and became separated from the Creator by rebellion and pride. That separation required redemption and thus the great plan of salvation was taught from the beginning and has been reiterated through the ages of time. (Gen 6:61, Mos 8:28, etc.; D&C 18:2h, etc.)

It has been further declared that natural unredeemed mankind will become carnal, sensual, and devilish when separated from God and give themselves over to every imaginable sin with reckless abandon. Because of this all-too-obvious abandonment of the principles of righteousness, virtue, and goodness, we sense an urgent need to restate long-held positions of the Church. The onslaught of violence and abandonment of righteous standards are becoming more prevalent in almost every form and are being exploited by the media in grosser and more insidious ways. The pressures in society for relaxed standards, aided by recent civil judicial rulings, clearly signify that the very bedrock of societal order, the sacrament of marriage and the institution of family, is under attack.

For these, and many other reasons, there is an urgent need for the influence and application of Christlike behavior in our interpersonal relations. The Standing High Council of the Remnant Church has therefore prepared and offers this restatement of, and commitment to proclaim and live out, these principles of His Church.

THE SACRAMENT OF MARRIAGE-We declare, as a fundamental principle of the gospel of Jesus Christ, our commitment to the sanctity of marriage based upon the divine plan, that one man shall have one wife, and one woman, one husband, in harmony with the creation of, and commission to, Adam and Eve our first parents.

It is within the framework of the divinely appointed institution of marriage that procreation is intended, and in which setting husband and wife have the solemn privilege and responsibility to bear and nurture children. It is further declared that parents have a sacred duty to rear their children in love and righteousness, providing for their spiritual and physical well-being. In instances where individual members, male or female, molest children, they should be reported to the civil authorities. Where such persons deny any complicity, administrative officers must take the greatest possible care that available evidence supports the charges before they identify themselves therewith.

The practice of chastity was consistently taught by Jesus and is foundational to saintly lives and homes. Neither fornication nor the gross sin of adultery are countenanced in the law of Christ.

We believe that husbands and wives-mothers and fathers-will be held responsible before God for the discharge of these obligations, and that individuals who violate the covenants of chastity, who abuse either spouse or offspring, or who fail to fulfill family responsibilities, will all stand accountable before the Lord their God.

In view of the growing violation of these basic commandments of God, we again speak out against the disintegration of marriage and family and the encroachment of unnatural and sinful alternate lifestyles, contrary to the teachings of our Lord.

ABORTION-We deplore the trend and advocacy, especially during recent decades, of the sinful practice of willfully induced abortions. We further declare that abortions willfully­ induced for any cause other than that of protecting the life of the mother are sinful. Priesthood and members alike should labor and counsel against abortion in all situations except where morally-committed and competent medical authority recommend abortion as a means of saving the life of the mother. [Standing High Council of Reorganized Church, April 24, 1958)

We further urge the Saints to exercise their right of citizenship and commitment to gospel principles to proclaim against the practice of abortion at every appropriate occasion.

HOMOSEXUALITY-We affirm in the strongest terms that the advocating of and engaging in any homosexual activity, or relationship, is sinful and contrary to the laws of God. We therefore reconfirm former action by the Standing High Council of the Reorganized Church of October 18, 1962 as follows: "The concern of the Church in connection with the practice of homosexuality is to set up safeguards against it, to protect the innocent and unsuspecting against enticements to it, and to reclaim those who engage in it." In the discharge of its responsibilities in relation to the growing promotion and acceptance of homosexuality the Church must support those teachings and relationships which promote normal and healthy Christlike associations, and offer guidance to all in the ministry who are called upon to provide preventive and remedial teaching and counseling. A basic essential toward forsaking such unnatural practice is that the individual shall, him- or herself, have a strong desire to repent and forsake such temptations or involvements.

Any member found to be practicing or promoting homosexuality will be removed from any leadership position, thus avoiding opportunities for the involvement with others. They should thereafter be given ministry or assisted in receiving appropriate counseling with a view to rehabilitation.

Priesthood found to be practicing or promoting homosexuality shall be placed under silence. Ministerial labor should be performed promptly to determine what further action, if any, may be required in relation to membership status.

Where individuals, men or women, engage in, or seek to influence any other person to engage in this sinful practice, they shall be labored with to the end that they may be reclaimed there-from.

Any member found to be either practicing or advocating the practice of homosexualism, and persisting therein, is to be brought to trial before a Church court, and if found guilty and refusing to discontinue such teachings and advocacy, should be excommunicated from the Church.

SAME GENDER UNION-The growing acceptance and practice of same-gender unions, (i.e., men with men, and women with women), is sinful and contrary to God's divine plan for family life and procreation. Therefore, be it known that the Remnant Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints will neither countenance, have part in, nor look with any approval whatsoever upon the union, marriage, bonding, or any other similar identifiable process, whether civil or religious, of individuals of the same sex.

Any priesthood member found to be supportive of, or in any way involved with, such a union, regardless of whatever civil laws or judicial opinions may obtain [be decided], shall be placed under ministerial silence.

The formal and unyielding position of the Remnant Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in relation to marriage is clearly and specifically set forth in D&C 111. This position is further undergirded and supported by many other citations in all three standard books of Scripture.

PORNOGRAPHY-We hereby acknowledge with grave concern the increasing acceptance of, and involvement in, the growing presence of pornography in society. We further declare it to be, in all its insidious forms, both spiritually and morally destructive to the human character and spirit. The position of the Church shall be to warn against it, and teach and practice a level of saintly life free from the debasing effects of its presence.

Our dedication to the Lord Jesus Christ and His standards of righteousness for all of life requires that we use every means to urge against the debasing of human beings and the resultant inclination toward carnal and sensual instincts so destructive to the higher levels of life required of all who will come unto Him and His kingdom.

After careful and prayerful deliberation, by issuing the above statement of belief and practice, we hereby declare that members of the Remnant Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints are called to live exemplary lives while proclaiming against the inroads of all of the above morally-debasing and spiritually-destructive elements, exercising every opportunity to uphold and support honorable men and women in public office who will legislate against any form of advertising, lifestyle, or monetary benefit derived from the use, distribution, or promotion thereof - THE STANDING HIGH COUNCIL, February 12, 2004