By Crystal Losee of West Valley City, UT, USA
You who are my disciples must be found continuing in the forefront of those organizations and movements which are recognizing the worth of persons and are committed to bringing the ministry of my Son to bear on their lives. -Doctrine and Covenants 151:9
From 1967 to 1999, no one knew I was transgender. I hid in the storage room or in my room. In May 1999, after 25 years of marriage, my wife divorced me. I didn’t know what to do or where to go, so I lived with my parents in Provo, Utah, for the next year and a half.
The Spirit led me to contact the national transgender organization for a local support group in Salt Lake City, which I did. In September 1999 I, Crystal, came out of the closet and met a dozen other transgender members at the Gray Cliff Lodge Restaurant in Ogden Canyon. Our support group had one to three activities per month.
On my birthday, November 20, 2000, I attended my first Transgender Day of Remembrance, and I have attended this event for the past 16 years in Salt Lake City. I didn’t realize how many transgender people die or commit suicide each year, not only in the United States, but throughout the world. I personally have known two transgenders who died-one was murdered and one committed suicide.
I have been a member of Community of Christ since November 2014. At World Conference in June 2016, I met two other transgender Community of Christ members.
On April 19, a transgender friend who had been attending Community of Christ notified me that she had been brutally attacked and was in the emergency room in a Portland, Oregon, hospital. I sent a private message to a local church leader who was acquainted with her and told him what had happened. He quickly contacted two Community of Christ priesthood leaders in Portland. Within an hour Leah was blessed with the sacrament of laying on of hands for the sick. On April 22, she thanked everyone who helped her and was released from the hospital.
Thanks for the wonderful team effort the members of Community of Christ have been to me and my transgender friends.
“Awake, my soul!” (Psalm 57:8 NRSV)
The Prayer of the Heart
Early Christian disciples desired to take seriously the scripture mandate to pray “without ceasing” (1 Thessalonians 5:17). The prayer of the heart invites us to pray “continuously” by repeating and returning to a prayer phrase planted for intentional reflection and deepening. Choose a word or phrase (from scripture, hymnody, or personal reflection) that has meaning for you. The Jesus Prayer is one form of the prayer of the heart: “Lord Jesus Christ, have mercy on me” (Luke 18:35-43). Invite this simple phrase to repeat in your heart throughout the day, awakening your soul to God’s presence.
Today’s Prayer for Peace
Engage in a daily practice of praying for peace in our world. Click here to read today’s prayer and be part of this practice of peace.