Readers’ Forum: 10/6/2020


Love your neighbor

“Be not ashamed” is a phrase I have heard since my primary days, when shame was not even something I could comprehend. It is a phrase I have repeated, oft and confidently.
And I am not ashamed. Not of Christ, not of His gospel, and not of being a member of His church.

But I am ashamed to be a Mormon. I am ashamed to be associated with a culture I want no part in. “Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself” (Matthew 22:37-40).

These are the words Jesus spoke to Pharisees. These are the teachings I have heard since my youth. Love thy neighbor. There is no caveat, no condition, no qualification. Jesus does not say love thy neighbor, only if thy neighbor is not an illegal immigrant. He does not say love thy neighbor, only if that love does not infringe upon your perceived personal freedoms. He does not say love thy neighbor, only if he or she or they resemble you. He says love thy neighbor. Period. Full stop. End of sentence.

There is no room for a comma. There is no room for a semi-colon. Love thy neighbor. That is it. That’s all there is. So, please, wear a mask. Register to vote. Support basic human rights. This isn’t about you. This is about your neighbor.

Kelly Woods
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Requiring world religion

Last Winter Semester I took REL C 351, or World Religions. It wasn’t the easiest religion course I’ve taken at BYU, but it was one of the most rewarding and I believe it should become one of the required religion classes.

After being at BYU for more than three years, I have noticed that there isn’t a lot of racial or religious diversity on campus or in Provo. Only 1% of BYU isn’t affiliated with the LDS church, which makes sense since it is an LDS organization, but 82% of students on campus are white.

One non-white, non-LDS student stated, “BYU students are kept in the ‘Provo bubble’ and aren’t very accustomed to interacting with other types of people.” Other non-white, non-LDS students have given the advice to not make judgements or assumption, to be open-minded, ask questions, and to keep your own position while respecting the positions of others.

Requiring this course would help many students at BYU achieve just that. Becoming more open-minded, not judging, asking questions and improving our interactions with people of other religions and races will create a greater sense of love and respect for all of God’s children.

Stuart Brown
Riverton, Utah

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