San Francisco Stories from StoryCorps and KALW: A military man finds peace with his sexuality and his Mormon faith
Olin Thomas grew up Mormon in the deep south, confused by his homosexuality and deeply in the closet, in no small part because of the church's attitude toward gays. But it turned out that a basic tenet of the Mormon faith was actually what would help him come out, and once he did, he found understanding in some very unexpected places. Olin sat down in the StoryCorps booth at the Contemporary Jewish Museum of San Francisco with his friend, Hugo Salinas, to tell his story.
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April 7, 2011
OLIN THOMAS: This is gonna sound, like, very very Mormon which is ironic because I’m not truly very Mormon any longer but, one of the things that is very Mormonism, that was very described or talked about when I was active was the whole idea of personal revelation, of God actually speaking to you and answering your prayers, essentially. And I had gone through the phase of accepting myself, accepting that I was gay, trying to come out to people and tell them that I was gay, but trying also to abide by the church's standards and therefore I was trying to be celibate.
At this point I was trying to celibate, I figured there was no way I could be gay and sexually active and still be acceptable. And so I was miserable, essentially. This was no way to live, and I was stuck in this limbo and I was getting more and more miserable.
It’s not that I felt suicidal, but I felt like had no joy. The f...
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