The Church’s Position against Homosexuality and Left-Handed Attraction

I'm left-handed

The following are actual quotes from LDS leaders and official publications, with one minor change in each. Each of the original quotes were made on the subject of gay members — these quotes have been changed to instead be about left-handed members.

Left-Handed Attraction

If you are left-handed, you are still welcome in the Church, as long as you don’t act on being left-handed. You must use your right hand, or don’t use your hands at all.

“As a doctrinal principle, based on the scriptures, the Church affirms that writing with the right hand is essential to the Creator’s plan for the eternal destiny of His children. Writing is proper only when done with the right hand. Any other method of writing, including writing with the left hand, is sinful and undermines divinely created institutions.” —Church Handbook of Instructions

“There are no left handed members of the Church. We are not defined by our handedness. We are not defined by handed behavior. We are sons and daughters of God… We may have an inclination to want to write with our left hand… Simply being attracted to writing with the left hand is not a sin… It’s when we act on that attraction, that’s when it becomes a sin.” —Elder Bednar

“Left handed people who live God’s laws can fully participate in the Church.” —Elder Christofferson

Left-handed attraction refers to emotional or physical attraction to using the left hand as your primary hand. The experience of left-handed attraction is not the same for everyone. Some people may feel exclusively attracted to using the left hand, while others may feel attracted to using both.

The Church distinguishes between left-handed attraction and left-handed behavior. People who experience left-handed attraction or identify as leftie, southpaw, or ambidextrous can make and keep covenants with God and fully and worthily participate in the Church. Identifying as leftie, southpaw, or ambidextrous or experiencing left-handed attraction is not a sin and does not prohibit one from participating in the Church, holding callings, or attending the temple.

Right-handed purity is an essential part of God’s plan for our happiness. Handed behavior is reserved for people who use their right hand. Left-handed behavior violates one of our Father in Heaven’s most important laws and gets in the way of our eternal progress… If we give in to left-handed temptations and violate the law of right-handedness, we can repent, be forgiven, and participate in full fellowship in the Church. —Gospel Topics – Left-handed Attraction

I didn’t highlight and modify these quotes to make people be more aware about the plight of left-handed people, but to emphasize the absurdity of the Church making these comments about gay members. Everyone would agree that it would be absurd to discipline or ostracize members simply because they are left-handed. Yet, this is what the Church does to members who are gay.

Just as one cannot choose to be right- or left-handed, gay people cannot choose to be straight any more than a straight person can choose to be gay. 

By reading these statements by the Church, it is my hope that everyone will be able to see how absurd and how hurtful the official Church position is toward gay members.

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2 thoughts on “The Church’s Position against Homosexuality and Left-Handed Attraction

  1. I was punished in school back in the 50s for being left handed. Children were only allowed to be right handed. But I went with my left hand as being me and refused to write with my right hand. I’m serious about this. Apparently left handedness was considered a sin back then, according to the Bible it pertains to the goats of Satan of the left hand and the sheep of Christ of the right hand. Just about as bad as being LGBT.

  2. Thanks Pamela. It seems that left-handed people can relate deeply from their childhood to what gay members experience today.

    The one difference is that for gay members, this pain is being inflicted intentionally by the Church and it’s leaders. The Church is the one place where members should feel welcomed and safe, no matter where we are in our journey. Instead, gay members are continually traumatized by the inflammatory and abusive comments and teachings made by the men who are supposed to be special witnesses of Christ.

    The Savior taught love and inclusion, especially to those who are the outcasts and downtrodden. He reserved his greatest condemnation for the Pharisees, the religious elites of the day, who obsessed more about keeping the commandments and preserving their authority than they were of loving others and ministering to the outcasts. Today, the leaders of the Church seem intent on creating more outcasts by excommunicating gay members, feminists, and intellectuals. What a huge loss for the Church.

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