Listen, Learn & Love Hosted by Richard Ostler show

Listen, Learn & Love Hosted by Richard Ostler

Summary: Welcome to our podcast! My name is Richard Ostler (twitter: @papaostler) and am a native of Salt Lake City. I have degrees from the University of Utah and Brigham Young University (business). I married my best friend and eternal companion Sheila Juergens of Houston, Texas in 1990 and we are the parents of six children and two grandchildren and live near Cottonwood High School in Salt Lake City. I believe in and am deeply committed to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and want it to work for a wider group. The name ‘Papa Ostler’ resulting from being introduced to Twitter by my High School age son Matt in 2010. I wanted the high school age youth to know I wasn’t their age as I interacted with them … hence the name Papa Ostler. I served as a YSA Bishop in the West Valley City/Magna area of Salt Lake (released in 2016) and met some of the finest people I will ever know. In addition to meeting with wonderful active members of my Ward, I reached out and connected via social media (mostly via the private messaging features of FB and Twitter) with many of our inactive members and their non-member friends. Over time, many felt comfortable meeting with me and sharing their stories. Through hundreds of interviews and ‘listening to understand’, I was able to ‘see’ the church from the eyes of those on the outside. Many feel the church is their ‘spiritual home’ but feel uncomfortable attending for a variety of reasons such as work-in-progress testimonies, concerns about church history, feeling unworthy because of past or current sin, don't fit the cultural mold, role of women, are LGBTQ and/or feel God's LGBTQ childen should be more welcomed in our congregations, etc. This podcast is designed to 'Have a Conversation' about some of the more complicated issues in our church to help all of us 'listen, learn and love' so we can minister in a more effective way to all of Heavenly Father’s children. Most podcasts will be from our LDS LGBTQ friends to give them voice so we can better understand their road, touch their cross, learn from them, and minister to them as directed by President M. Russell Ballard when he said 'Mormon leaders, along with the rank and file, need to listen to and understand what LGBT members are feeling and experiencing (Nov 2017 BYU Devotional).' Some podcasts will be from LGBTQ allies sharing their experiences and how to be helpful. Other podcasts will be from guests talking about other complicated topics such as mental health, returning from a mission early, overcoming sin, and faith challenges. Thank you for joining us. You can't donate to this podcast. There are no sponsors. But you can leave a review/rate the podcast on the platform you are listening. With love, Richard 'Papa' Ostler ❤ *I respond to your e-mails. Check your spam folder*

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 Episode 104: Mikel (Dad) and Joe (21 Year Old Gay RM son) | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 01:21:49

Mikel tells the story of waking up one night and discovered his 16 year old son watching gay porn. If you are a parent, what would you do in that moment? If you were Joe, how would you feel knowing your Dad just found out this about you? Well, it is beautiful parental moment as Mikel and Wendy handled this situation with love which led to more family unity and understanding. Mikel and Joe share that experience as well as their family journey to come to terms with Joe being gay. Joe later come out to his entire early morning seminary class, served a mission and remains an active Latter-day Saint. Joe shares his journey as a gay Latter-day Saint, his strong relationship with Heavenly Father, feels no shame for being gay, and his hopes for the future. Joe is one of the most spiritually mature and gifted men I have met. I often feel that the LGBTQ people I meet are some of Heavenly Father’s most valiant pre-mortal spirits and Joe is one of those spirits. Please listen to the podcast to learn gain wonderful parental insights and how a family grew and became closer by having a gay son.

 Episode 103: Tiffany Fletcher, Active LDS, Author | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 01:05:22

My friend Tiffany shares the story of growing up in a home with a mother with mental illness (Dissociative identity disorder), bravely sharing this with her Mission President and his inspired response, writing a book called ‘Mother Had a Secret ( and now working on a shortfilm to bring more understanding to this topic (you can donate to the shortfilm at @SaltDance via Venmo). Tiffany, a frequent speaker on the Ward/Stake level and Women’s Conferences, has wonderful insights into the Atonement of Jesus Christ to heal and bring hope. Thank you for sharing some of your journey. You are awesome and your voice is helping so many.

 Episode 103: Tiffany Fletcher, Active LDS, Author | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 01:05:22

My friend Tiffany shares the story of growing up in a home with a mother with mental illness (Dissociative identity disorder), bravely sharing this with her Mission President and his inspired response, writing a book called ‘Mother Had a Secret ( and now working on a shortfilm to bring more understanding to this topic (you can donate to the shortfilm at @SaltDance via Venmo). Tiffany, a frequent speaker on the Ward/Stake level and Women’s Conferences, has wonderful insights into the Atonement of Jesus Christ to heal and bring hope. Thank you for sharing some of your journey. You are awesome and your voice is helping so many.

 Episode 102: Ben Schilaty, Gay Latter-Day Saint, Leadership Training | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 01:22:19

I attended a LDS Family Service leadership training meeting about ministering to our LGBTQ members where Ben Schilaty was the speaker. I wish everyone in the Church could have attended this meeting. Ben joins us on the podcast (not in an official Church capacity) to share what he taught at this meeting and to answer the questions that were asked. I encourage all my LDS friends to listen to the podcast and encourage you to share it with your local leaders. You are a great man Ben. Thanks for your helpful insights for all of us to become better disciples of Christ.

 Episode 101: Williamson Sintyl, Survivor of Haiti Earthquake, RM, Married, Founder of Arise | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 00:54:33

My friend Williamson Sintyl shares his story of being trapped and freed in the Haiti earthquake, becoming a Latter-day Saint, serving a mission, getting married (Sharla and Williamson are expecting their second son), and dedicating his life to bringing hope and vision to the people of Haiti. To accomplish this, Williamson started Arise, Project for Humanity (see Thank you for sharing your story, Williamson. You are a man of great courage and vision. It is someone like you that gives me hope for the future. You are making a huge difference for good in the lives of many and are a wonderful disciple of Christ.

 Episode 100: Jane Clayson Johnson, Journalist, Latter-day Saint, Author of ‘Silent Souls Weeping’ | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 01:20:19

My friend Jane Clayson Johnson shares her journey with clinical depression following a successful career as an American journalist at KSL-TV, ABC News, CBS News and now on the nationally syndicated NPR program On Point. Hers is a remarkable and brave story and is part of her new book published by Deseret Book called ‘Silent Souls Weeping’ ( Jane shares the story behind writing the book and her goals to bring voice to others on this road, eliminate stigma around mental illness, overcome toxic perfectionism and bring hope to those who are suicidal. Jane offers guidance for families and local church congregations about how to talk about this mental illness so we can better help others. I encourage everyone to listen to Jane’s story and insights and to read her book, Silent Souls Weeping so that we can better ‘mourn, bear and comfort’ our dear friends dealing with depression. Thank you Jane for sharing your journey and bringing voice to this important topic and hope to those living with depression. You are awesome!

 Episode 99: Kayden Carlos, RM, Temple Marriage, Former Drug Dealer, Disciple of Christ | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 01:20:41

My friend Kayden Carlos bravely shares his story of using/dealing drugs from age 12-18, feelings God’s hand and mercy in his life, finally ending this road because of a desire to serve a mission which happened with his call in 2014 to Baltimore, MD. Kayden shares about the power of the Atonement of Jesus Christ to save us and heal us. He bears testimony of a loving and merciful Heavenly Father. Kayden is joined by his wife Alexis who talks about why she married someone with such a difficult past and blessings, gifts and perspectives that are part of Kayden’s life that blesses their marriage and future family. I first became aware of Kayden with this story from November 2016. Look at the joy in Kayden’s mom Julie with the return of her son. Thank you Kayden for sharing your story. You bring healing, hope and perspective to our listeners. You and Alexis have great lives ahead of you!

 Episode 98: Arianna Rees, Active LDS, Mid-Twenties, Writer, Great Insights into the Gospel | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 00:54:59

My friend Arianna (Utah State University Graduate in degree in English) joins me to share her insights into the life of Christ and how to apply His teachings in our lives. I became aware of Arianna in January of 2018 with some of her insightful and thoughtful tweets (@AriWRees) about the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Thank you Arianna for joining us. It is people like you that give me hope in the future. You are remarkable and I’m glad you are a member of our Church. I think you will enjoy the podcast.

 Episode 97: Ryan Reese, Age 26, RM, Active LDS, Dealing with Curveballs | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 01:19:46

My friend Ryan Reese shares his journey to remain active LDS in spite of significant curveballs (near death sickness, a difficult mission experience, several difficult girlfriend breakups, and not really enjoying the culture of YSA Wards). Ryan is focusing on the things he can control such as his career, education (finishing up a MBA), fitness and his relationship with Heavenly Father. He is trying to leave the rest at the Savior feet with trust things will work out and believes one day he will walk hand-in-hand with his fiancée to his Temple marriage. You are a good friend Ryan. Glad to have you on the podcast. You story will help many others.

 Episode 96: Charlie Bird, Former BYU Cosmo, RM, Gay Latter-day-Saint | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 01:07:56

My friend Charlie Bird gives an in-depth interview following coming out as gay in his Deseret News Op-ed (link below). He answers many questions such as why did he come out, why is coming out important, when did he know he was gay, how did his wonderful family react, LGBTQ resources at BYU, life as Cosmo, how can LDS members show support, and how does he balance being gay and being LDS. I encourage all Latter-day Saints to listen to Charlie’s story to know how to better support our LDS LGBTQ members. Thank you Charlie for sharing your story. You are a great man with a depth of spiritual maturity and insights that is helpful for all of us to become better disciples of Christ. You have blessed 1000s and will continue to bless 1000s more. You a great life ahead of you!

 Episode 95: Julie Lee, Host of ‘I See You’ Podcast, Helping Others with Emotional Challenges | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 01:00:56

My friend Julie Lee, host of the podcast ‘I See You’, bravely tells her story of growing up in a family with mental illness, how this became part of her life, and how she has bravely confronted it. Julie is strong, courageous and remarkable. Her story (and the outreach she is doing) is helping so many others and giving them more hope, realistic expectations, and healing. Thank you Julie for sharing your story. It will help so many!

 Episode 94: Jenny Mathews, Married Mother of 4 in her 30’s, Active LDS, Gay Father | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 01:11:07

My friend Jenny Mathews shares the story of her father coming out as gay when she was 16 (and the oldest of 5), her parents’ marriage ending, seeing pain in both parents, staying close to both her wonderful mother and father. In particular, Jenny talks about how she navigated her relationship with her father (who is now out of the church), how their relationship is now strong and stable, how her father is involved with her siblings and a wonderful grandfather to her children. It’s a wonderful story of a family doing the best they can to keep the family circle together and see the good in everyone. Thank you Jenny for sharing this story. It will help so many!

 Episode 93: Jackson & Zeke Richards, Active LDS, Their Brother Connor in a Same-Sex Marriage | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 01:22:13

Jackson, Connor and Zeke Richards (children of Royal and Elissa Richards/Episode 54) grew up in our Ward and are three outstanding men who have all served missions and doing great things in their lives. Jackson (age 29/med school) and Zeke (age 23/future med school) talk about how the family navigated their brother Connor (age 28/working toward Law School) coming out as gay, dating men and his same-sex marriage in Feb 2019 to Jan (finishing an undergraduate degree in psychology). Jackson and Zeke share both their strong testimonies of the Church and their support of their brother Conner as he made his way forward in his life. It’s a beautiful story of using the Gospel as a framework for navigating this complicated space. We’ve been in the same Ward for 20 years and our family (and so many others) are indebted to the Richards family for their example of service, goodness and lifting others. I think you will enjoy the podcast.

 Episode 92: Jeff and Sarah Case, Married parents of three, Active LDS, Mixed-Orientation Marriage | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 01:21:01

My friends Sarah and Jeff Case share their beautiful, healthy and wonderful marriage with our listeners. It is a beautiful love story. This podcast has foundational principals that will help all marriages. Thank you Sarah and Jeff for sharing your journey. You two are wonderful. For Jeff’s insights into better understanding suicide, please listen to episode 86.

 Episode 91: Gaven Guthrie, Age 22, Family Friend, Christian, Mother Died by Suicide in Jan 2018 | File Type: audio/mpeg | Duration: 01:12:52

My friend Gaven (a key member of our local High School baseball team) bravely shares the story of his wonderful mother Kathy’s passing and speaking at her funeral. His talk is remarkable. He honors Kathy, her good heart, her legacy and their family. He also talks directly to those with darkness ‘that feels our head’. He invites people to stay and shares how our ‘house is so, so cold’. He gives hope and perspective to those that are suicidal. Please stay one more day. Gaven also shares how we are all just people and we need to see the potential of everyone. How we should not compare ourselves with others. How we need to learn to be vulnerable and confront pain so we can overcome it How we can overcome loneliness, anxiety and low self-worth. Thank you Gaven for sharing your insights, thoughts and perspective. You are wise beyond your years. You words lifted me and will do the same for our listeners. Thanks for being on the podcast.


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