News Briefs

Transgender BYU student may get the boot

Kris Irvin, 31, is a transgender student at Brigham Young University and faces expulsion if they follow through a top surgery procedure, which typically involves breast removal and male-chest reconstruction. Irvin went through a hysterectomy at age 24, which they said in an interview, “has been the best thing I’ve done for my dysphoria. Top surgery is the last thing I need to do to be happy.”

However, Irvin’s bishop, Jake King, considers top surgery an affront to church teachings and would be cause for church discipline they told The Washinton Post.

Irvin sought justification in scripture, specifically in Psalms 139:13-16.

“It says that God knitted us together in the womb,” they wrote to King. “If God does not make mistakes, and we are created in His image, then it stands to reason that He made me transgender on purpose and for a reason.”

The bishop saw matters differently. In a response, which Irvin provided to The Washington Post, King told them that “no surgery can bring you true peace and comfort in this life. Only Jesus Christ, your personal Savior, can do that.”

In response, Irvin wrote that one of the reasons God “made me this way is to help church members and leaders see and get to know queer Mormons who are trying to stay faithful.”

Catholic Charities of Buffalo ends adoption program following New York’s ban on discrimination

The Catholic Charities of Buffalo is ending its adoption program, citing New York’s ban on discrimination as the reason. Catholic Charities of Buffalo, though, said that placing children in homes with same-sex couples is not “consistent with the teaching of the church.”

“We’re a Catholic organization,” said Dennis Walczyk, CEO of Catholic Charities. “[Placing children in homes with same-sex couples is not] consistent with the teaching of the church.”

This isn’t the first time the Catholic Church has come under scrutiny this month, reports LGBTQ Nation. Several weeks ago, a grand jury in Pennsylvania released a report detailing the sexual abuse of over 1000 children and the church’s attempts to cover it up.

Courts are leading the global battle for LGBT equality

At the Peter Tatchell Foundation, they have noticed that courts around the globe are increasingly stepping in and supporting LGBT+ human rights.

Look at the list so far this year:

  • Costa Rica’s Supreme Court rules marriage equality must be law by 2020.
  • A top court in Lebanon says homosexuality is not a crime.
  • Bulgarian courts recognize the marriage of same-sex couples.
  • Romania’s Constitutional Court affirms the right of residence of same-sex married couples if one of the spouses is an EU citizen.
  • Bermuda’s courts rule the government ban on same-sex marriages is illegal.
  • Trinidad and Tobago’s judiciary strikes down the criminalization of homosexuality.

Judges are now playing a significant and increasing role in the battle for LGBT+ equality. They are showing leadership where politicians too often display weakness and cowardice.

The courts are fast becoming our friends and allies. Long may that continue.

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