Episode 369: Carson Perez, Gay Latter-day Saint, Emmaus Board Member, Convert

Listen, Learn & Love Hosted by Richard Ostler show

Summary: My friend, Carson Perez, joins us to share his remarkable story. Carson begins by reading his spiritual journey, which includes being raised Pentecostal and embracing the Restored Gospel in July 1996, resigning from the LDS Church a year later, being involved with other faith traditions, including earning his Master of Divinity at Yale Divinity School and nearly becoming an Episcopal priest, and being rebaptized back into the LDS Church in August 2019. He shares his love for his partner, Alex, and how they support each other and help each other to be their best, authentic selves. Carson shares how he is actively following Christ and living with integrity, and being supported by his local ward and stake, in San Francisco, California. This episode ends with Carson's personal prayer for LGBTQ understanding. Carson talks about the unique aspects of our Church that are the foundation for his testimony of and commitment to the Church, and how it helps him come unto Christ. He also discusses feeling welcome and needed in his faith community, the Sunset Ward. Carson shares the evolution of his spiritual journey, from a rigid worldview to an expansive, living faith, and his full acceptance of his homosexuality and the important role that LGBTQ people have in building Zion. He invites everyone to unconditionally love and to effectively support LGBTQ people in every ward, around the world. Carson concludes with the powerful truth that Heavenly Father loves this part about him and that Carson is not a mistake—but created as intended. Carson describes Emmaus LGBTQ Ministry (a Church-affirming and LGBTQ-affirming LDS ministry) and invites our listeners to join this group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/emmauslgbtq. Emmaus's website is https://www.emmauslgbtq.org/. He is currently writing a book on LDS daily meditations that he hopes will be published eventually. Please reach out to Carson at carson@emmauslgbtq.org, with your questions or comments. If you are LGBTQ and want to feel hope, and that the world is better with you here, please listen to Carson’s story. If you want to do a better job of helping our LGBTQ members feel welcome and needed, please listen to Carson’s story. You are a great man, Carson. I was deeply moved and felt a powerful spirit listening to your story. On behalf of all of our listeners, thank you, Carson, for sharing your story. ** Please Check Out My New Book At: ** Deseret Book: www.deseretbook.com/p/listen-learn-and-love-embracing-lgbtq-latter-day-saints Amazon: www.amazon.com/dp/1462135773