President Dallin H. Oaks recently attended and spoke at the North America West Single Adult Conference. There, he shared “that as a Church and as a culture, we need to lead out in demonstrating inclusion.” Here is his own personal recap of the message as shared on social media:
We live in a time when inclusion is weak or absent in political relations, in cultural relations, and in some personal relations. Instead, there is worldly praise and pressure for divisions that draw us apart, for diversity that impairs our unity, for reliance on family descent instead of individual qualifications, and we are influenced by a culture of opposition.
Here are some brief definitions of what I mean:
Divisions: We have powerful forces that seek to draw us apart, dividing us from the unity that is our strength.
Diversity: At a time when diversity is earnestly sought and greatly praised, the restored Church opposes the popular definition of diversity in its organization and composition. We are all children of God, and that is our most important characteristic.
Descent: You don’t need to be descended from pioneers or notable leaders to be included in the choicest blessings of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ.
Opposition: We know that there must be opposition in all things, but we must resist being critical or pessimistic in these trying times. An attitude of reverence and trust in the Lord will keep us on the covenant path.
I promise that as you support the restored gospel and its policies, programs, and directions from our leaders, you will have great happiness and abundant blessings from the Lord.