The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints released the following statement on Tuesday, December 13, 2022.
We extend a heartfelt thank you and our congratulations to all who played a part in the passage of the amended Respect for Marriage Act. Their efforts to protect religious freedom as Congress sought to codify the Supreme Court’s same-sex marriage decision are both historic and commendable.
The amended Respect for Marriage Act specifically recognizes that “diverse beliefs about the role of gender in marriage are held by reasonable and sincere people based on decent and honorable religious or philosophical premises.”
As restated last month, “the doctrine of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints related to marriage between a man and a woman is well known and will remain unchanged.” Congress has now reaffirmed that our beliefs “are due proper respect.”
The new law demonstrates that respect. The law states that it can’t be used to harm religious or conscience rights for faith-based institutions. It protects the tax-exempt status of religious organizations. It protects the grants, licenses, contracts and accreditation of religious schools. And it ensures that religious organizations, religious schools and their employees do not have to perform or host same-sex marriages or celebrations. No law is perfect. But putting such protections in the federal code is a big step forward.
The Church has been pleased to participate with many others in the difficult but worthy work of civil engagement that accompanied the passage of this bill. Like the Church-supported Utah law in 2015, our efforts are helping the nation pursue freedom, fairness and respect for all.
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