LDS church to exclude children of same-sex couples from membership

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.

RELATED: LDS Church adds same-sex marriage to definition of apostasy

"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.

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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.

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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.

RELATED: LDS church issues letter to members in response to same-sex marriage ruling

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.

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