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A few weeks after officials from the LDS Church and Utah's gay-rights community jointly celebrated the passage of an anti-discrimination law with religious freedom protections, the two sides once again are critiquing each other.

On Saturday, Mormon apostle L. Tom Perry, 92, defended "traditional families" — a legally married mother and father, who rear their children together — and warned against the dangers of "counterfeit and alternative lifestyles."

On Wednesday, the Human Rights Campaign, the nation's largest lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender civil-rights organization, expressed "deep disappointment" in Perry's comments, which it believes "disparag[ed] LGBT families and children as 'counterfeit.' "

Perry's comments were "disheartening and wrong, and remind us yet again that the journey to full inclusion for LGBT people — including our families and children — is not done," Jeff Krehely, vice president and chief foundation officer at HRC, said in a news release. The apostle "needs to understand how damaging his words are to LGBT youth struggling for acceptance in the church, and in their own Mormon families."

Such families "are not counterfeit — they are real and beautiful," Krehely said in the release. "We encourage Mr. Perry and his fellow apostles to embrace the diversity that already exists within their own church, and reject the language and practice of intolerance."

Peggy Fletcher Stack