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Gender Identity FHE Lesson


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In a desire to prepare my children for some of the topics they will be faced with in the world about gender identity, I put together this family home evening (FHE) lesson to teach them what scriptures and LDS Church doctrine says about gender and gender roles, and give them some basic knowledge and advice to regarding how to approach questions on this topic.

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Gender Identity FHE Lesson

  1. 1. FHE Lesson by
  2. 2. 2 What does the gospel of Jesus Christ about gender? • Heard a political debate about whether there are only two genders or if there are more • One person was advocating two and only two genders • The other person suggested that there are infinite genders • It’s important to know what the world is teaching about gender and to arm our youth with the truth
  3. 3. 3 LDS Church Perspective: Gender = Male and Female • Genesis Chapter 1 talks about how God created the earth and on the sixth day “God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them” (Gen 1:27) • In The Family: A Proclamation to the World, modern prophets have said: “All human beings— male and female—are created in the image of God. Each is a beloved spirit son or daughter of heavenly parents, and, as such, each has a divine nature and destiny. Gender is an essential characteristic of individual premortal, mortal, and eternal identity and purpose.”
  4. 4. 4 Traditional Primary Definition of Gender: Biological Sex, Male and Female • Merriam-Webster’s primary definition of gender is one word, “sex” as in the biological sex, male or female, of a person or animal. • Secondarily, a relatively recent change has been made to define gender as behavioral or psychological, depending on how one feels or identifies
  5. 5. 5 Plain and Precious Truth of Gender is Being Lost in the World • Wikipedia’s definition of gender, which is reflective of the direction the world is heading, says: • “Gender is the range of characteristics pertaining to, and differentiating between, masculinity and femininity. Depending on the context, these characteristics may include biological sex (i.e., the state of being male, female, or an intersex variation), sex-based social structures (i.e., gender roles), or gender identity.” • Oh how the world has strayed from the “plain and precious” truths of the gospel of Jesus Christ (see 1 Nephi 13)
  6. 6. 6 Intersex, Gender Dysphoria, Transgender, and Disorders of Sex Development • Intersex = people born characteristics of both biological sexes • Transgender = a person whose personal identity does not correspond with their birth sex/gender • Gender Dysphoria = feeling one's emotional and psychological identity to be opposite to one's biological sex • Be aware of these terms and know that these conditions exist and are legitimate physical, mental, and emotional issues that some people deal with Image courtesy of Organisation Intersex International Australia
  7. 7. 7 Most People are XY or XX, Male or Female but Intersex People Should be Treated with Love • There are a wide variety of intersex conditions cause by numerous circumstances such as genetic, chromosomal, and biochemical factors, and enzyme deficiencies • These intersex conditions are rare, though, with estimates ranging anywhere from 0.01% to 1% of the population being affected • The vast majority of people, however, will carry either XX or XY chromosome pairs, women being XX and men being XY
  8. 8. 8 We Respectfully Disagree with the World • Do not argue with people about this topic • Be respectful and courtesy of those with differing opinions • Be firm in your belief and, as prompted by the Holy Ghost, simply state that the Church maintains the traditional definition of gender—biological sex, male and female • If people have further questions, refer them to your bishop, stake president, or mission president • “Many of the general principles shared on this website (for example, the importance of inclusion and kindness) apply to Latter-day Saints who experience gender dysphoria or identify as transgender.” • Mormons and Gay website
  9. 9. 9 Gender Roles are Deeply Rooted in LDS Doctrine • We believe that men and women are different, each with unique talents and characteristics that together complement each other and make each other whole. • Genesis 2:24 says “Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.” • 1 Corinthians 11:11 teaches that “neither is the man without the woman, neither the woman without the man, in the Lord.”
  10. 10. 10 Exaltation in the Celestial Kingdom • Modern revelation received by the prophet Joseph Smith confirms that husbands and wives need each other to be saved in the Celestial Kingdom of God. • “In the celestial glory there are three heavens or degrees; And in order to obtain the highest, a man must enter into this order of the priesthood [meaning the new and everlasting covenant of marriage]; And if he does not, he cannot obtain it” (D&C 131:1-3).
  11. 11. 11 Men and Women Have Different God-given Roles • “By divine design, fathers are to preside over their families in love and righteousness and are responsible to provide the necessities of life and protection for their families. Mothers are primarily responsible for the nurture of their children. In these sacred responsibilities, fathers and mothers are obligated to help one another as equal partners.” • The Family: A Proclamation to the World
  12. 12. 12 Males and Females, Joined in Eternal Marriage, Progress toward Exaltation • Elder David A. Bednar of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles said: • “Two compelling doctrinal reasons help us to understand why eternal marriage is essential to the Father’s plan. Reason 1: The natures of male and female spirits complete and perfect each other, and therefore men and women are intended to progress together toward exaltation.”
  13. 13. 13 By Divine Design, Men and Women Need Each Other • “Gender …in large measure defines who we are, why we are here upon the earth, and what we are to do and become. For divine purposes, male and female spirits are different, distinctive, and complementary. … The unique combination of spiritual, physical, mental, and emotional capacities of both males and females were needed to implement the plan of happiness. Alone, neither the man nor the woman could fulfill the purposes of his or her creation” (Marriage Is Essential to His Eternal Plan, Liahona, June 2006).