Love One Another Despite Differences, Apostles Tell Young Adults

Love One Another Despite Differences, Apostles Tell Young Adults

Elder Oaks and Elder Ballard say the Church should be a place of refuge and peace for all

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We need to love each other “despite the differences that inevitably exist in the world along so many different lines,” Elder Dallin H. Oaks said Sunday. Bridging the gap between us “is the commandment [of Christ] to love one another and help bear one another’s burdens.”

Elder Oaks and Elder M. Russell Ballard, both of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, answered questions from young single adults around the world ages 18 to 30 Sunday night in a live 90-minute Face to Face broadcast. The event originated from the campus of Utah State University in Logan, Utah.

 

Elder Oaks's comment above was in response to questions from Brazil and New York about same-sex attraction — specifically concerning how Latter-day Saints can show love to those who disagree with Church teachings on the topic.

“We have to be cautious and willing to listen. We have to be willing to talk to one another about this issue,” Elder Ballard added. Echoing comments he made last week at a Brigham Young University devotional, he said those who are gay “are God’s children. He loves them. There’s a place for them [in the Church] and for all of our Father’s children, regardless of what their circumstances may be. The Church is a place of refuge, to come and find peace and answers to life’s questions.”

Both apostles reminded viewers of the promises Latter-day Saints make in choosing to follow Christ — among them to live a chaste life, but also to simply be kind. Elder Oaks condemned verbal and physical abuse toward those who are gay, encouraging the audience to confront disagreement “in an atmosphere of love.”

“The most important label any of us can carry throughout our life is ‘I am a child of God,’” Elder Oaks said. “That’s the important label that stays with us all our lives. We shouldn’t label ourselves as ‘anti this or that,’ but carry on as children of God and realize that all of us have temptations, problems, inclinations [and] burdens we are wrestling with.”

Elder Oaks also fielded a question from a woman in Utah about whether women can and should pursue both family and career. Pointing to the experience of his mother, who was fortunate to have a college degree when her husband died when Elder Oaks was 7, he said there’s no reason a woman can’t have both.

“The contest is not between a family and a career. And it’s not between a family and education. Women can have both,” Elder Oaks said. “The question is timing in the individual circumstances. I’m glad my mother had both an education and a family. In other individual circumstances, it may work out differently. But in the timing of our individual lives, we don’t have to choose one or another.”

The apostles answered a wide variety of other questions from young adults in Peru, Mexico, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, Uganda, California, New York and Utah. Of some 4,000 questions submitted prior to the broadcast, others chosen touched on topics of how to gain knowledge of spiritual truth, understanding the difference between genuine questions and doubts, how to deal with anxiety, what the Church is doing to foster historical transparency and how to help others keep the faith.

This was the second Face to Face broadcast for young adults ages 18 to 30. The first was in March 2016 with Elder Jeffrey R. Holland. Many other Face to Face broadcasts have been held for teenagers, including one earlier this year in Ghana with Elder Dale G. Renlund and his wife, Ruth.

Watch the full broadcast from Logan, Utah, of Elder Oaks and Elder Ballard.

 

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