By John Mack Freeman
This past Thursday, the Mormon Church made a change to its practices that blocks all children of same-sex parents from receiving baptism in the church. The Mormon Church has long been opposed to same-sex marriage, and it was principal backer of several initiatives that sought to block same-sex unions in several states. Via Advocate.com:
“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,” reads the policy on baptism.
Once those children reach age 18, they can be baptized and become church members if they stop living with parents who are same-sex relationships and take a position opposing such relationships, although this would still require approval of the top church governing body, known as the First Presidency, KUTV reports.
For apostasy, the penalty is up to and including excommunication, which is the severing of all ties to the church. Same-sex marriage will now be listed alongside other actions already considered apostate, such as joining another church and advocating its teachings, or repeatedly advocating any teaching contrary to Mormon doctrine.
The full new definition of apostasy can be read below: