man with bag of cash running away from mormon temple
Utah's richest man is taking his money out of the collection plate and into the hands of LGBTQ charities.

Utah’s richest man is saying goodbye to the Mormon Church, resigning in protest due to the church’s apparent feet-dragging on a host of progressive social issues.

Billionaire Jeff Green wrote in a letter to church leadership that he’s leaving the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints because they’ve "hindered global progress in women’s rights, civil rights and racial equality, and LGBTQ+ rights,” arguing that the church is no longer a force for good.

He’s also giving some $600,000 to Equality Utah, an LGBTQ advocacy group.

Is the Mormon Church as harmful to these groups as Jeff Green believes?

Making a Statement

The December 23rd letter, sent directly to church president Russell M. Nelson, pulled no punches. “While most members are good people trying to do right, I believe the church is actively and currently doing harm in the world,” it read.

Eleven of Green’s family members are also leaving the church, and he’s requested that the only further correspondence between the parties be a letter confirming he’s been removed from church rolls.

It’s clear that from the very public resignation to the subsequent donation to an LGBTQ advocacy group, that he's hoping to send a message to LDS leadership.

Green’s most obvious objection appears to be the church’s treatment of its gay members, particularly at his own alma mater, Brigham Young University (BYU), a private religious university founded in 1875 by the eponymous Mormon leader. 

BYU is frequently ranked one of the least gay-friendly universities in the United States, largely for its requirement that all students adhere to its strict honor code.

BYU’s honor code requires students “live a chaste and virtuous life,” including abstinence from sex outside of heterosexual marriage. Prior to 2020, all ‘homosexual behavior’ was prohibited, putting LGBTQ students at risk for punishment for something as innocuous as a same-sex hug.

Clearly, recent changes – including removal of punishment for ‘homosexual behavior’ – were not enough for Jeff Green, who says almost half of his donation to Equality Utah will be used to set up a scholarship fund for LGBTQ students who’d like to leave Brigham Young University.

A Strong Ally

While the church has yet to respond, Equality Utah is happy to have Jeff Green on their side. “[We are] grateful for Jeff’s generosity and support," said Executive Director Troy Williams.

"In Utah, we have made enormous strides forward toward LGBTQ equality. Jeff’s financial support will ensure that we will remain a prominent force in Utah politics for years to come."

Strides have been made on that front. From a bill that prohibits discrimination in housing and employment on the basis of sexual orientation to a ban on conversion therapy, LGBTQ advocates in Utah have celebrated big wins in recent years.

That’s just the tip of the iceberg for Green. He says he’ll be “personally engaged” to ensure further strides for LGBTQ equality happen in Utah, whether the Mormon Church wants that or not.

What is your reaction?

38 comments

  1. Rev Mark D's Avatar Rev Mark D

    Obviously someone very high in the church will soon have one of those epiphanous Revelation miracle dreams where God tells the flock it's ok now, God has found all those gays etc. have now paid their penance and now are welcomed into the hand of the Lamb, as with all those other propitious revelations that make policy for this religion.

  1. Timothy K Pitts's Avatar Timothy K Pitts

    Good for him and us ALL.

  1. Lionheart's Avatar Lionheart

    And it's not just the LDS church. USA is finally becoming a secular nation, it's not just the rich that are seeing religion for what it is.

    🦁♥️

  1. Lena Marie Adams's Avatar Lena Marie Adams

    An applause for him! Jeff Green is doing a good thing. Noone should be discriminated against. I only hope he goes mainstream with his advocacy. New York City could use some help.

  1. William Dusenberry's Avatar William Dusenberry

    One becomes a Mormon (LDS’er) usually, due to the accident of birth — and such applies to anyone else, who self-identifies with any other type of religious-silliness — tribal, church member, or whatever.

    Truth, is of little, or of no concern to such religiously-motivated individuals — tribal unity and tribal power are all that counts.

    The best thing about LDS’ers, is that Mormonism is not as silly as their Christian counterparts.

    How anyone, who adheres to the scientific method, and who has a rudimentary understanding of objective Christian history, can accept (believe in) an actual Jesus.

    As the Earths most well known theoretical physicist (Ernest Haeckel) said in the 1880’s “there is nothing supernatural, known to humankind, that the human brain can comprehend.”

    The best that can be said, in this regard, is that all religions are silly; but some far more sillier than others.

    Read “The Savvy Converts Guide to Choosing a Religion” if you’re interested in ranking all religions in their respective order of silliness —you’ll find that the LDS’ers should be categorized as “moderately silly” even though an occasional billionaire might claim to be one.

  1. Alexander Clarke's Avatar Alexander Clarke

    The purpose of religion is to control; control what you think, say and do. All religions require some sort of payment. They all need your money to function. No all knowing all powerful God needs your money. Religion was created by man to control man and to keep women from gaining equality. Religion at its core is evil. Religion is big business.

    1. Kelly W Devenish's Avatar Kelly W Devenish

      I agree with the "control"!! Religion is believing in someone else's belief and makes people live in guilt. I choice Spirituality...I believe in what I believe!!!

  1. Daniel Gray's Avatar Daniel Gray

    So what? Its his money he can do whatever he wants with it. So why even have this thread here. Its like the site and the person who wrote it somehow wants to make a mountain out of a speck of sand.

  1. Rev Nolan's Avatar Rev Nolan

    As a former Latter-day Saint, I affirm what Brother Green states in his communication. Even though Negroes are now allowed to hold all the same priesthood privileges as their non-Negro brothers and sisters in the Church, The Book of Abraham, a proven fraud, still is held among their Standard Works and claims that due to genetics, Negroes will never have a right to the Priesthood. That being said, Negroes are at risk of racial challenges in the Church. Women are still treated as second class members even though they seem to justify male dominance as being the way of the Lord. The LGBT+ community is limited on their rights as members as well, so they risk all for nothing. As a former member, I found that to question these and other things places one at risk of being called into "A Court Of Love" where the local brethren grill you to justify excommunication for Apostasy. A Negro member challenging The Book of Abraham, a female member challenging a woman's right to hold the Priesthood, and a homosexual challenging his or her right to enjoy temple rites with someone of the same gender, and me questioning these and other things, have no place in the Church. That means all we have to offer in time, talents, and of all things money, something the Church really no longer needs.

    I think Jeff Green's move was only because he believes in the teachings of the Church in "...being honest, true, chaste, benevolent, virtuous, and doing good to all men.." (13th Article of Faith). This also includes Scripture Chase Scripture to "Prove all things; hold fast to that which is good." If you as a member truly believe this aspect of the Church, you would follow suit with Brother Green. To remain a member of the Church is a conflict with the very doctrines of truth in the Church itself.

    1. Lionheart's Avatar Lionheart

      Also as an ex-member, once I saw the DNA results of Native Americans showing they did not descend from what the LDS church calls Lamanites, the writing was on the wall for me. That then caused me look as the authenticity of all religions, but with very open eyes this time. Using logic and reason, which I didn't use when looking into the LDS faith, I determined that no one has any real evidence to back up their claims.

      All churches have to rely on is "faith". It's all every religion on earth has, ever since man decided the Sun was a god being as they didn't know where it went at night, but their faith was strong enough to make the sun come up the next day, so I guess that justified their faith. Plus....you were not condemned to an everlasting Hell if you didn't believe in the Sun god. At least their god showed up every day, (unless it rained) which is more than can be said for all the other pathetic imaginary gods that mankind has created.

      🦁♥️

  1. Gary Richard Noce's Avatar Gary Richard Noce

    Any organization that promotes bigotry should not be supported in anyway.

  1. Penny L Larsen's Avatar Penny L Larsen

    Religion is all subjective. If you do not believe or can stand behind teachings or beliefs of the "Church" you should not be a member. That is what Mr. Green did here. I believe we should all practice that in our lives. If we do not like the policies of an organization, don't support that organization. I caution that unless it is a business or religion started by you, you are going to find some fault or something you do not agree with. When the amount of disagreement reaches a level you no longer can tolerate, it is time to move on.

  1. Penny L Larsen's Avatar Penny L Larsen

    Life is a journey. On his journey Mr. Green found he could no longer accept or tolerate (as I don't know his feelings) aspects of his church and took action to distance himself. That is his right. Unless you have started and controlled our own religion/group/business, you will find fault or contradictions to your beliefs. It is up to each individual to determine what level of tolerance is acceptable to them. If the threshold is met or exceeded, they must be willing to take a stand or make a change. Do not expect everyone to follow as we are all individuals.

    I am not LDS but have friends who are. They do not believe in all the teachings of the church but have decided the good out weigh the bad for them. They live in the 21st century. That is their choice.

    1. Eric Norrbom's Avatar Eric Norrbom

      A very reasonable response. Each individual chooses his own path to follow in the journey through life. Peace exists when understanding and acceptance prevails.

  1. Kevin Joseph Kervick's Avatar Kevin Joseph Kervick

    A relatedly important development is Milo Yiannapoulos coming out as a victim of homosexual rape when he was a child and attributing his homosexuality to that trauma. Milo is now working for Militant Catholic, a reform group for Orthodox Catholics (and opposed to the mother church corruption) and is supporting Reparative Therapy for men living dysfunctional homosexual lifestyles that can be traced to their childhood trauma. He is helping many men heal while debunking the 100% born gay hypothesis. Milo credits God for rescuing him from his promiscuity and moving him to celibacy.

  1. Nicholas J Page's Avatar Nicholas J Page

    Well I agree on him leaving the LDS Church I would guess I'm not sure about funding LGBT Not that I'm against them .But I was under the impression they were funded by the group who knows

  1. Dave J's Avatar Dave J

    Good for him. I am curious why now, since he left the LDS church 10 years ago. But still, good for him.

  1. Douglas Robert Spindler's Avatar Douglas Robert Spindler

    Is Jeff Green the richest man in Utah? I thought it was Trevor Milton. He's the billionaire Mormon who swindled GM into a 2 billion dollar deal with Nikola Trucks as well as many other companies.

    If you know anything about the Mormon religion they are slow to modernize their beliefs. It's been 70 years since God told them to allow blacks into the church. And it was over 100 years ago when God told them to stop practicing polygamy. And it's not forget the Christians passes the Mormon Extermination act, Executive Order 44 and could be shot on site. It took until 1976 for that law to be rescinded.

  1. The Gray Minister 's Avatar The Gray Minister

    That’s awesome more people should do that. Them all following the old ways. The Word working threw Jesus Christ was trying to bring about a new age & yet most are stuck in the old book

    The Word Taught threw Jesus Christ that we should except each other’s differences

    Minister Gray

  1. Kevin T. Corcoran's Avatar Kevin T. Corcoran

    The core tenet of the ULC is "Do only that which is right." I think most religions believe that they are doing which is right. Religious text and philosophical writings can always be found to justify ones beliefs and actions. Discrimination in general and specifically that directed against LGBTQ community changes throughout history to one of acceptance to one of persecution. There are indeed times in the past when same sex relationship and living life opposed to one birth gender was quietly accepted. Our time has seen "the love that dare not speak it's name" change to a need for public acceptance. We are living in a time when acceptance needs to be codified. This seems to offer some protection of equal treatment but our laws can and will change. Changing how people react and accept people different than, is an on going evolution. We can dream that some day the cycle of discrimination ends and ends with acceptance. But fear that big religious organization run by men will continue to control beliefs. Hopeful that those in control can truly do which is right.

  1. Gary Richard Noce's Avatar Gary Richard Noce

    Any organization that promotes bigotry should not be supported in anyway.

  1. Selecia Elizabeth Young-Jones's Avatar Selecia Elizabeth Young-Jones

    I LOVE THIS SO MUCH!!!

  1. HARVEY Bailey's Avatar HARVEY Bailey

    WE ARE SUSPOSE TO LOVE ONE ANOTHER ! IT DID NOT ASK WHAT YOU DO IN YOUR BEDROOM!

    1. Lionheart's Avatar Lionheart

      The world will forever change. Love ❤️ stays!

      🦁❤️

  1. Marina Leigh Catalano's Avatar Marina Leigh Catalano

    I certainly hope he dies quickly.

    1. Aron Mark Doherty's Avatar Aron Mark Doherty

      You really are an evil soul, so much hate spewed from your nasty mouth and so often. I wonder how many people are hoping the same thing for you… probably more than you think. .

  1. John Hernandez's Avatar John Hernandez

    Green is coming out of the closet.

    1. DianaF's Avatar DianaF

      If he is, then GOOD FOR HIM!! He'll be refusing to let worldly ignorance and prejudice intimidate him from living a lie, and finally embracing the truth of whom GOD created him to be. In any case, thou shalt not judge, Mr. Hernandez.

  1. Patrick Ryan Dior's Avatar Patrick Ryan Dior

    How dare this money orientated Church condemn gods creation.

    1. Lionheart's Avatar Lionheart

      Which God are you referencing Patrick? Mankind seems to have created so many.

      🦁❤️

  1. Roger Carl Alicea's Avatar Roger Carl Alicea

    Comment removed by user.

  1. Roger Carl Alicea's Avatar Roger Carl Alicea

    LGTBQ activists have also increasingly pushed the envelope toward child abuse and their own deeply intolerant philosophy. It is a political movement that has achieved cult status as dangerous as any fanatical religious practice. If you don't want to be LDS, then fine, but don't confuse your seduction of flesh and emotion with virtue.

    1. Cheryl Pettijohn's Avatar Cheryl Pettijohn

      Your blanket statement about the LGBTQIA+ community shows it's own prejudice. There are bad people in every group. I am a proud Christian, and a proud ACE.

    2. Kevin Joseph Kervick's Avatar Kevin Joseph Kervick

      Yes, we should avoid glorifying one cult when we criticize another.

  1. Marathuzula's Avatar Marathuzula

    Good on him

  1. Cheryl Pettijohn's Avatar Cheryl Pettijohn

    Good for you, sir.

  1. Sven Olaf Gunnarsson-Wiener's Avatar Sven Olaf Gunnarsson-Wiener

    I assume ElevateBaby.com egg donor agency CEO Taylor Frey (formerly a Mormon missionary) is a Mormon infiltrator into the LGBTI community, working to ensure that any children they have through surrogacy, are heterosexual.

  1. Gordon Carroll Outlaw's Avatar Gordon Carroll Outlaw

    I think the church should stand by God's word not man's word a man can't change the Bible is a Living Word and it will never change

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