On letterhead of:
To: All Stake Presidents, bishops, and Branch Presidents in California,
To be Read in Sacrament Meeting Sunday, February 13, 2000
Dear Brothers and Sisters:
We take this opportunity to express our gratitude for your having given of your time, talents, and means to help with the Proteciton of Marriage Initiative that will be on the March 7 ballot in the State of California. Your continued efforts and support of this moral issue will be critical in the few weeks that remain before the election.
In the Family Proclamation the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve have made it very clear that marriage between a man and a woman [emphasis in original] is ordained of God.
The divinely-established institution of marriage will be protected as we vote YES, and as we urge family and friends to vote YES on Proposition 22. The proposition would close a loophole in the State Constitution that presently allows other states to determine whether or not same-gender marriages are recognized in California. Because of the "full faith and credit" clause of the U.S. Constitution, if same-gender marriages are legalized in other states, they would most likely be recognized in California. To close this loophole, Proposition 22 would add fourteen words to the State Constitution: "Only marriage between a man a [sic] woman is valid or recognized in California."
In the October 1999 general conference, President Gordon B. Hinckley stated, "Some portray legalization of so-called same-sex marriage as a civil right. This is not a matter of civil rights, it is a matter of morality....nevertheless,...Our opposition to legalize [sic] same-sex marriage should never be interpreted as justification for hatred, intolerance, or abuse of those who profess homosexual tendencies.
"...I commend those of our membership who have voluntarily joined with other like-minded people to defend the sanctity of traditional marriage. As part of a coalition that embraces those of other faiths, you are giving substantially of your means. You are contributing your time and talents in a cause that in some quarters may not be politically correct but which nevertheless lies at the heart of the Lord's eternal plan for His children."
In the remaining weeks between now and the election, there is much to be accomplished. We pray that all members of the Church will redouble their efforts in this noble cause. It will require telephoning, placement of yard signs, and contact with neighbors and other individuals to help them understand the urgency and moral nature of this matter. Above all else, we invite every individual, family, and ward to unite with us in fasting and prayer as we call upon the Lord to help us protect traditional marriage and maintain a morally safe environment for our children. We sincerely than you.
North America West Area Presidency
John B. Dickson
William R. Bradford
Richard H. Winkel