To Whom It May Concern:
This letter is my formal resignation from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and it is effective immediately. I hereby withdraw my consent to being treated as a member and I withdraw my consent to being subject to church rules, policies, beliefs and ‘discipline’. As I am no longer a member, I want my name permanently and completely removed from the membership rolls of the church.
I have given this matter considerable thought. I understand what you consider the ‘seriousness’ and the ‘consequences’ of my actions. I am aware that the church handbook says that my resignation “cancels the effects of baptism and confirmation, withdraws the priesthood held by a male member and revokes temple blessings.” I also understand that I will be “readmitted to the church by baptism only after a thorough interview.” (quotes from the current Church Handbook of Instructions)
Though I was born and raised a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, I have not been an active member for many years. Despite the fact that I have not attended church services these past years for reasons other than special occasions for members of my family (e.g. baptisms, mission farewells), I saw no reason to remove my name from the records of the church at the time. I believed it was harmless to have my name remain on the membership rolls of the church. However, with the recent actions of the Mormon Church in funding and promoting the passage of Proposition 8 in California, I realize now that to keep my name on the records of the Mormon Church is no longer an option for me. I have no desire to be associated on any level with a religion that uses its power and influence to spread intolerance and discrimination in this world.
I have many close friends and family members in the Mormon community who have always ‘accepted’ me as a part of their lives, regardless of the choices I made to disassociate myself with the Church. But now I can see the true hypocrisy of their actions, also representative of the Mormon community at large – actions that on the outside may preach love, acceptance, and tolerance of your neighbors and fellow citizens, yet on the inside are so full of bigotry and intolerance that the vast majority of you would vote to take away the fundamental rights of a minority group in the state of California (as well as, in slightly less publicized battles last month, in the states of Arizona, Florida, and Arkansas).
I am grateful for members of your church who are speaking out against the misguided leadership of your church, and you should be grateful for them as well, for they are the only hope you have left of mending the damage you have done to your reputation both in this country and around the world. I applaud those members who are not afraid to call you out on your shameful and reprehensible actions.
My resignation should be processed immediately, without any ‘waiting periods’. I am not going to be dissuaded and I am not going to change my mind.
I expect this matter to be handled promptly, with respect and with full confidentiality.
After today, the only contact I want from the church is a single letter of confirmation to let me know that I am no longer listed as a member of the church.
Steven Ladd Jones