LDS church to exclude children of same-sex couples from membership
(KUTV) In a major policy announcement, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints says children living in a same-sex household may not be blessed as babies or baptized.
The decision, which was released Thursday, takes effect immediately, LDS church spokesman Eric Hawkins told 2News.
"A natural or adopted child of a parent living in a same-gender relationship, whether the couple is married or cohabiting, may not receive a name and a blessing," the policy reads.
Natural or adopted children living in a same-sex household will only be allowed to be baptized once they are 18, disavow the practice of same-sex cohabitation or marriage, and stop living within the household, according to the policy. Such baptism would still require the approval of the church's governing First Presidency.
The update came to what is known as Handbook #1, which is used as a guide for administering in the church, and is only available to LDS bishops and stake presidents.
This comes on the same day the LDS church announced to its leaders that participating in a same-sex marriage falls under the definition of apostasy.