LDS Gender

For those seeking understanding of gender identity issues from an LDS perspective

Another Documented Case of Approved LDS Sex Change

Over at the By Common Consent blog there is a recent article talking about a sealing that was performed in a temple between a woman of transsexual history and a man. The sealing was approved (and performed) by someone at the general authority level (possibly a Seventy). Here is an excerpt from that blog entry:

In the late 1970s, while serving as an Elders Quorum president, I witnessed what may have been the only same-sex wedding (same-sex in the sense that both partners had Y-chromosomes) ever to be performed in a Latter-day Saint temple. A year earlier, a woman who had undergone transsexual surgery was baptized in our ward. Leaders in the mission and the ward were fully aware of her status—indeed, the baptism recommend (which the bishop later showed me, since the subsequent wedding involved a member of my quorum) bore the words, “She is a transsexual.” Several months later an elder moved into the ward, the two of them fell in love, and they announced their engagement. They expressed to the bishop a desire to be married in the temple, and after he and the stake president interviewed the couple, the stake president wrote a detailed letter to the General Authority who supervised that area of the country, explicitly stating that the bride-to-be had undergone transsexual surgery.
A short time later, that General Authority wrote back to the stake president, authorizing their temple marriage. (The bishop also allowed me to see that letter.) My wife and I were invited to attend the wedding, and when we got there we were surprised to see that the ceremony was performed by the same General Authority who wrote the letter.

Very interesting case. It should be noted that the admin behind the LDS Gender blog believes the sealing to not be a same-sex one but a sealing between a man and a woman, with the woman involved unfortunately having a body at the beginning of her mortal life that improperly conveyed that she was eternally a female. Also worthy of note is that it doesn’t clarify if the transsexual woman in the story was truly shown to have a Y-chromosome or if it was just assumed that she did. It has been shown elsewhere that people can have an XX DNA karyotype but appear outwardly to be male. Further, and along those same lines, nobody really knows if a person’s DNA is truly an indicator of what their gender is. The more science learns on this topic the more it gets confused, and modern-day revelation has never stated DNA to be the final determinant of someone’s gender.

(NOTE: The temple sealing mentioned here has not been substantiated, but at LDS Gender we take in and review all pertinent potential information on our topic as we await further light and knowledge.)

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8 thoughts on “Another Documented Case of Approved LDS Sex Change

  1. Sikarious on said:

    Sounds extremely suspicious since requests such as this doesn’t go to the area authority but to the first presidency for approval.

    It’s nice that after detailing the story there’s a note saying none of it has been substantiated…in other words, it’s heresay or another faith-promoting-rumor.

    • The statement that it hasn’t been substantiated doesn’t make the story false. It’s just the ldsgender team disclaiming that it’s not the originator of the story and therefore cannot vouch for its authenticity. However, two out of three times some information is better than nothing. Also, at the time the event is supposed to have taken place there may not have been any policy in place stating that such requests must go through the First Presidency. That policy may have been created though because of this incident.

  2. Matilda on said:

    Wow, this is really interesting to me…

    I was baptized at 12 under the name “Michael”, a name I no longer use because I feel like it doesn’t fit me (even though there are cisgender women named Michael). I’m 26 now and have been openly female for over 2 years. I wonder, if I ever felt like going back to Church to see how I feel about it as an adult, if they would change my records for me?
    Also, this post ends on a suprisingly, refreshingly enlightened note…

    “Also worthy of note is that it doesn’t clarify if the transsexual woman in the story was truly shown to have a Y-chromosome or if it was just assumed that she did. It has been shown elsewhere that people can have an XX DNA karyotype but appear outwardly to be male. Further, and along those same lines, nobody really knows if a person’s DNA is truly an indicator of what their gender is. The more science learns on this topic the more it gets confused, and modern-day revelation has never stated DNA to be the final determinant of someone’s gender.”

    These are actually exactly the kinds of conclusions that current trans politics are leading us to, that sex and gender are BOTH in fact socially constructed and that the concept of sex rooted in chromosomes and/or anatomy is fallacious and scientifically useless. We’re at a point where current scientific research on biology and the truths that trans people have known and been talking about for years are now meeting, and I really didn’t expect anyone involved in the Church to pick up on this.

    But maybe I shouldn’t be that surprised. Despite the fact that the Church has officially taken sides against LGBT rights, most of the Mormons I’ve met are much more respectful towards me than the majority of cisgender (non-transgender) people I meet. My Mormon friend at work, Anna, is one of the few people who will listen, apologize, and be better in the future if, for example, I correct her in misgendering me, or saying something that is insensitive or disrespectful towards trans people.
    With so many Mormons being, in reality, so much more tolerant and respectful than the right-wing positions that the Church tends to take, why does the Church still take such positions?
    If the LDS Church took a survey of how their followers actually feel about these topics, I wonder if the majority would actually say that they personally support gay and trans rights?

  3. As the person involved in the above: when I joined the church I was forbidden to go to the Temple. On reading Alma 11-43,44 I was shocked, I wanted to stay female for eternity. I wrote a letter to my Bishop asking about my eternal status and other with gender or physical abnormalities. I also requested my Patriarchs blessing. The letter ended up with President Kimball. During my Blessing I was told, among other things that the Lord wanted me to be a savior for my ancestors, and I would to the Temple and receive my endowment. About 3 months later my Bishop called me into his office and read a section a letter from First Presidency via Elder Hugh W. Pinnock that I was granted full Temple rites as a woman. During Stake Conference I met with Elder Pinnock. He asked me several personal questions the possibility of future marriage. He also stated that President Kimball had received revelation in my specific case. And that when he checked the word transsexual woman had been changed to woman on a sealed record. I met my husband to be while working on assignment in Connecticut, and was led to the chapel by the Holy Ghost. My husband to be was waiting. We were married in the Washington DC Temple in 1980 by Elder Hugh W Pinnock. As we were from the Celestial room to the sealing room we met my Patriarch who shock our hands and told me some blessing (marriage) were given and not spoken. We are still married today. The Lord has been with me through my life alerted me to stomach cancer, and other maladies. I know I am his spirit daughter and this life experience was to make me stronger. It seems also than all transsexuals have a brain opposite to our biological sex. I also may have had some internal female organs that were removed on the basis of removing my appendix. Shortly thereafter I became chronically sick diarrhea and vomiting lasted for over 23 years until I started taking estrogen at age 33. I was always feminine in behavior and changed role at work keeping the same job position. The only comments from co-workers being “what took you so long” The 5 woman friends who I have told in my present Ward consider me a girly girl.
    I know the church to me true and when I wrote to my Bishop I knew it would end up with President Kimball. I believe trusting in the Lord and his servants gave the blessing in my life. I recently wrote to President Monson as he is the last surviving member who were in the quorum when I sent my original letter to President Kimball

  4. Pingback: Important Update on Another Documented Case of Approved LDS Sex Change | LDS Gender

  5. Pingback: Important Update on Another Documented Case of Approved LDS Sex Change | LDS Gender

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