Elder Quentin L. Cook in an emotional interview about a sensitive subject.
Clearly the hardest thing that I had when I was stake president is I was president when AIDS, the medical community first became aware of AIDS. We had a significant number of our men who found that they had AIDS, some of them had not been in the Church, the majority of them, a few had we found that we had seventeen men with AIDS and at that point there was no cure. And all seventeen of them ultimately died of AIDS while I was stake president. I learned some incredible lessons through that process, that as a Mormon community, it’s a loving and compassionate community. I watched Bishops who made incredible sacrifices to take care of some of these young men who were dying. I watched them try very hard to reconnect them with their families and to have their families take care of them, and again at that time there was no cure, and no abeyance of it. I watched them take care of each other. And I watched some of them, one of them comes to mind in particular, a returned missionary, in a single incidence of conduct, took it upon himself to take care of the most difficult situations, those that were the most ill, and he was the last one to die. I think the lesson that I learned from that is that as a Church nobody should be more loving and compassionate. No family who has anybody who has a same-gender issue should exclude them from the family circle. They need to be part of the family circle. Do we teach the Proclamation on the Family, do we teach Heavenly Father’s plan, do we teach the first chapter in the second handbook, yes we do. We have a plan of salvation. And having children come into our lives is part of Heavenly Father’s plan. But let us be at the forefront in terms of expressing love, compassion, and outreach to those and lets not have families exclude or be disrespectful of those who choose a different lifestyle as a result of their feelings about their own gender. I’m sorry, I feel very strongly about this as you can tell. I think it’s a very important principle. (Quentin L. Cook, video on mormonsandgays.org)