Kyle & Amy Merkley

Kyle and Amy both grew up in home with loving families who taught them the importance of agency and the power of the Atonement. These lessons have helped them strengthen their relationship and trust in good things to come.

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Randy Meier

Randy believes God has always tried to direct him into paths that would bring about his greatest happiness. Though he is no stranger to the frustrations, loneliness, and isolation of same-sex attraction, he has learned to trust God; indeed, he feels that God is mindful of him in all situations.

Justin DeLong

Justin grew up as a member of the Church in Mesa, Arizona and is now a student at Brigham Young University majoring in commercial music. He has a passion for music of all kinds (especially contemporary a cappella) and enjoys singing, playing the piano, and spending time with those he loves. In his words, same-sex attraction has been the vehicle by which he was brought to God. Since returning home from serving for two years in the Massachusetts Boston Mission, the main theme of his life has been learning to rely on the Lord in all he does. By taking things one day at a time, Justin has ultimately come to develop a personal relationship with the Savior and trust in Heavenly Father’s plan for him.

Kim Shores

Kim Shores was born and raised in Boise, Idaho in a loving LDS family. As a youth she was very involved in church and school programs. She has always had a spiritual connection with her Heavenly Father and has continually felt His guidance throughout her life. Including her husband, Lance, in her journey with same-sex attraction has helped them become stronger and more united as they strive to live the commandments. The joy that marriage and family has brought to their lives in immeasurable. Kim and Lance continue to rely on their love and trust for one another—and for God—to foster an environment of love, growth, and support.

Kylie Lawson

Kylie has been married for two years to a wonderful man named Jordan who experiences same-sex-attraction. She likes to be outside, especially when working with plants. She plays the violin, loves to read and is the author of a blog. She belongs to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. For her whole life, she wanted to grow up to be a mom. She recently graduated from USU with a degree in plant science, and now she and Jordan are lucky to announce that they are going to be parents to a little boy come late December 2015.

Jordan Lawson

Jordan is a twenty-nine year old man who experiences same-gender attraction. He and his wife live in northern Utah and are expecting a son in late December.  Jordan was raised as a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and loves the Church and the God he believes in.  He is the lead vocalist in a local rock band and works in manufacturing. Jordan has a bachelor’s degree in Visual Art from Brigham Young University-Idaho.  He loves to spend time with friends and family.  He enjoys reading and writing.

David Rickey

David is a lifelong educator. An elementary and middle school teacher for many years, he is now a school counselor in Henderson, Nevada. He believes strongly that the blessing he received as a 16-year-old boy, gave him the guidance he needed to endure the challenges of same-sex attraction throughout his life. He and his wife Ann have been married for 38 years and currently serve together as ordinance workers in the Las Vegas Temple. This is their story.

Rod Olson

Rod Olson engaged in a period of self-discovery by pursuing short- and long-term relationships with men. Toward the end of this period he fell into addiction, losing relationships, his career, friends, money, health, hope, and the ability to love in the process. With nowhere to turn, he entered a 12-step recovery program. This program, along with the gospel, saved Rod’s life and gave him renewed faith in Jesus Christ. Rod is now active in the Church and rejoices in his testimony of the restored gospel.

John Bowers

John Bowers knows that Christ’s gospel and authority are real and have been restored through the prophet, Joseph Smith. Beyond anything else, experiencing same-sex attraction has honed his spirit and continues to teach him to rely on the Atonement of Christ every day. Childhood abuse left scars on his heart which have only been healed by his Savior. The prospect of living with his family and Savior and eternity brings hope to John’s yearning heart.

Jenn Curtis

Jennifer was raised as a member of the Church in Southern California. Though several childhood experiences created a shadow over her life, she kept turning back to Jesus Christ for help. While getting married young and raising two children has been a journey in and of itself, telling her husband after 15 years of marriage she experienced same-sex attraction was a completely different journey. Through it all, Jennifer has learned more about the purposes of the Savior and the purposes of this life. She has also come to believe that every trial, affliction, and heartache is a blessing from a loving Heavenly Father. She and her family make their home in Corona, California.

Jacob Taylor

Jacob is a full-time student of creative writing, a poet and fantasy writer who uses metaphors to explain his thoughts. He was raised in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and strongly believes in the mission of the Savior. He knows that each experience he encounters is for his benefit and can either be viewed as a stumbling block or a stepping stone. He believes we have the opportunity to choose how to respond to our experiences and become better through them.

Jimmy Merrell

Jimmy works as a music therapist and enjoys helping people with cancer, emotional disabilities, neurological disabilities, AIDS, and terminal illnesses. He serves as first counselor in a bishopric and has also served as the choir directors and ward mission leader. Through his experiences with same-sex attraction, Jimmy has learned that the Lord will lighten his burdens by giving him opportunities to serve others. That sounds paradoxical, but it's a practice that has brought Jimmy much joy. Accordingly, Jimmy has served within the North Star organization as a moderator for the men's group, online groups coordinator, treasurer of the executive committee, and director of the online community.

Jack Kettering

Jack Kettering lives with faith in Christ’s healing power. Through experiences spanning many years he has learned that a change of heart is always possible.

Kevin Randall

"Little by little, one person at a time, I talked with close friends in the neighborhood, at work, and at church about my same-gender attraction. Each responded with love and understanding. This helped rid me of the shame I had been carrying with me my entire life. I became more confident and began to learn more about what my needs are as a man: my needs for male connection, friendship, and natural affection."

Alex Lindstrom

A Utah native, Alex served as a library attendant in the Family and Church History Mission before graduating with a bachelor's degree in accounting. He now works as a financial analyst for a hydroelectric utility and sings in the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. Due in part to his experience with same-sex attraction, Alex has grown to understand the love Heavenly Father has for all of his children. He is grateful for the love and support he feels from family and priesthood leaders.

Jena Peterson

Known as someone who exudes light in all she does, Jena Peterson says her passion for life stems from her love for her Father in Heaven. She actively seeks opportunities to serve and loves to learn and teach about the Atonement of Jesus Christ. Jena is married to a wonderful, loving man and has three beautiful children, two girls and a boy.

Nick Gregory

Gender dysphoria (transgenderism) is a complex reality for Nick Gregory, BYU student of mechanical engineering. Some things remain unclear, but this much is certain: God loves his children, and Nick is determined to stay close to God.

Rick Hall

The council’s decision to excommunicate me drove me to my knees in a way that I had never experienced before. I learned that the Atonement is not just a vehicle for the forgiveness of sins, but it is a vehicle to help us to endure our pains, our injustices, and to heal our wounds. It also gave me an opportunity to be guided, loved and embraced by both my Father in Heaven and my Savior.

Becky Mackintosh

Becky Mackintosh found her beliefs about homosexuality being challenged when her son, Sean, told her he was gay. Her ensuing journey is based in love—love for the Savior and his gospel, love for her son, and even love for the bumps and bruises that make life what it is. Becky aims to enlighten minds, strengthen families, and heal wounded hearts.

Scott Mackintosh

Scott Mackintosh found his beliefs about homosexuality being challenged when his son, Sean, told him he was gay. Scott learned that he needed to understand his son in order to truly love him. His journey is a story of hope and healing. Scott and his wife, Becky, have seven children.

Randy Dodge

Before I was born my mother had an affair with her bishop. During this affair she became pregnant with me. My mother shared this information with me when I was just a small boy of five. The family insisted I was my father’s child, not the bishop’s offspring. But for much of my life I had to live with the idea that I may have a different father than I thought I had.

Lindsay Hickman

After struggling for three days with my fear of making such a big decision, I finally decided to talk with Blaine. I told him that I loved him and that I was ready to date him. He asked me if I had any questions about his attractions to men, and to be completely honest, I had a lot of questions.

Blaine Hickman

While high school experiences offered some acceptance of my differences, I still felt pressured to participate in discussions about who I “liked” and I often found myself working on having crushes that were more like the general consensus of who I should have a crush on, rather than crushes based on my true feelings.

Andrew Harvey

Despite having this realization, over the next several months I continued to act on my feelings of same-sex attraction, but with greater emptiness and lack of fulfillment. The Spirit and Tom persistently and patiently worked with me. I loved the gospel and wanted it to be part of my life, but still somehow hoped this included being in a relationship with another man.

Charlotte Maughan

I asked Adam if he felt he was attracted to men. He assured me he wasn’t. (What son wants to tell his mother that?) I don’t think he was ready to admit that to himself at the time. He was still trying to come to grips with the whole thing. He had heard a lot of negative things about “gay guys,” and he knew those things didn’t describe who he was.

Jeff Case

The previous four hours had nearly drained my batteries and I was looking for someone to talk to. After just a few minutes of small talk, Matt showed me a chain that he wore around his neck but under his shirt. It had rainbow-patterned charms on it, in spectrum order. I always loved when colors were aligned in spectrum order.

Craig Florence

The intersection with this LDS individual brought me back to a LDS Sacrament meeting. I was not thrilled about going. I thought the building would collapse on me, or the building was certain to be struck by lightning. I knew my dark past and I was not feeling comfortable about being in a church building, or being amongst those who I perceived to be far more worthy than I.

Kathy Hulick

We started dating, and on our second date, I was really beginning to like him. After our date, we went back to my parent's house and sat in the living room and talked for a long time. He began to tell me a story about his life, about how he and his father didn’t get along and how he’d been bullied in school. I started to feel uneasy. “Where is he going with this?” I wondered.

Arlo Hulick

Eventually, I moved to San Diego, and by then I had completely stopped going to church. I got involved with Act Up!, a group of activists demanding funding for AIDS research and assistance. I worked for Neil Good’s campaign to become the first openly gay councilman in San Diego, and I volunteered for security duty for the gay pride festival. I became a political cartoonist, and my work was published weekly in gay newspapers from San Diego to the District of Columbia.

John Grover

My mind, my values, my hopes, my dreams, and my goals, didn’t allow for male bonding. Any type of male intimacy was totally unacceptable. I was someone who wanted more than anything to have a family and to be a dad, a husband, and a worthy priesthood holder.

Kent Flake

As for marriage, I do not know if I will ever be married. All I know is that right now I do not need to focus on that. I can be perfectly happy if I never get married. I feel like I am doing what God wants me to in sharing my story so others know they are not alone. There is no shame in being attracted to other men. I do not want others to feel the loneliness, shame, and isolation that I felt so much growing up.

Jeff Gray

Nine years ago, I packed up my bags and moved back from my shrinking social life in Utah to my familiar surroundings of home in Oklahoma. I began working for my dad as his dental office manager and enjoyed being close to family. One day, my mom handed me a book she bought at a LDS bookstore. “Wonderful...another SSA book to add to my library of theories!" However, out of all the years in therapy and self-discovery, this book gave me a prompting by the Spirit to read i.

Christine Fitz

Shortly after that, I came across Josh Weed's blog post that went viral on Facebook entitled, "Club Unicorn" in which he equated a mixed-orientation, faithful Mormon marriage to discovering that unicorns exist. Another man who experienced SSA and was happily married to a woman?

Meagan Jackson

Tears started streaming down my face as I vocalized for the first time, “Bishop, I kind of, sort of, just a little bit, really really minorly… struggle with same-sex attraction” (I could not bring myself to be 100% honest with him about the depth of my struggle). I kept my eyes on the ground, waiting for his reaction, but I didn't have to wait long.

Jordan Jantz

Lying in my room thinking about life and how much time I had left, I was surprised to see two young men in white shirts and ties standing in my doorway. They asked if they could come in and visit. They looked like insurance salesmen. Swearing inwardly, I let them in, but I told them up front that I wasn't into whatever they were selling. I then asked them who they were.

Paul Peterson

Over the last few years as the discussion on homosexuality has expanded, I have felt quite voiceless, that my views didn’t matter, and that there was no middle ground. No room amidst this “war of words and tumult of opinions” (Joseph Smith—History 1:10) for someone like me, who wants to live true to himself and to his faith.

Myrna Moll

Life was good; the past was long gone. I had a testimony of the gospel, a loving family and good friends. It all came crashing down one day when my girlfriend from college knocked on my door. We talked for a while and I thought naively that we could be friends. I was mistaken.

Stu Back

A shadow fell over my life during that first year in AF. Not content to simply ignore me (which was hard enough), boys my age, most especially those in my new LDS ward, seemed determined to bully, intimidate, and tease me. In my nine-year-old mind, school and church were warzones. I started avoiding the other kids. I would stay in the classroom at recess, preferring books to bullies.

Spencer Ficiur

Ten years ago, I would have never expected that I would come home from my mission early (twice) or that I’d be completely public about my SSA, which I was only barely aware of at that point. However, I also never expected that I’d have learned what I have about the power of the Atonement.

Sallie Ferguson

But I still had questions, lots and lots of questions that I couldn’t find the answers to. Not even Garrett knew the answers to them. For a few months, the conversation at the temple was put on a shelf while we both tried to reconcile our feelings. Luckily, we both had enough faith to trust that if Heavenly Father made it clear to both of us that we were supposed to get married, things would work out in their own time.

Garrett Ferguson

During this time, I wanted everyone to continue to see me as the perfect church boy who excelled in school and had lots of friends. For the most part I was successful convincing others that the careful façade I had constructed was reality. I hid what I believed was my “true” self from everyone except my gay friends.

Joshua Naea

Although I was born and raised in America, I grew up in the Samoan culture. I was constantly surrounded by friends and family who maintained Samoan culture and traditions, and I always attended Samoan wards. This made it easy to be myself as I grew up.

Brandon Langford

Growing up as a faithful Latter-day Saint, I often heard my parents and others describe what it means to have faith. I knew that my childhood heroes such as Nephi, Alma, and...

K. B. Harding

Since the beginning of my Facebook tenure, the little box in the "About Me" section has contained the phrase, "I have exactly the life I've always wanted."

Steven Wilson

The youngest of three boys, I've always been more emotionally sensitive and expressive than my brothers. You could say I've always liked the softer side of life.

Stephen Rex Goode

"You will never be a real man." The words stung and, incredibly, I believed them. I don't know if every boy wonders about his own...

Ed Hayward

In 1988, my wife, Kieko, and I had our first child. We had been married for five years and were beginning to worry that we might not be able to have children.

Joshua Johanson

God has blessed me in many ways, including the blessing of same-sex attraction. I didn't always feel that way. I used to be ashamed of my attractions and didn't want to acknowledge them, but God...

Greg Barnett

When I was about 15 my dad walked into my bedroom one day and asked if he could use my scriptures to find a specific verse. I thought this was a little weird as my bedroom was in the far corner of the basement, so he couldn't have just been wandering by, but I said sure and handed him my turquoise green, button-front mini quad. He looked up Ether 12:27...

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