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About 1,300 people Wednesday night had signed a petition asking Mormon Tabernacle Choir guest performers to cancel their upcoming appearances in protest of a new policy by the LDS Church to restrict membership for LGBT couples and their children.
"Please show the LDS Church that you disapprove of this type of bullying of children and discrimination by canceling your guest performance next month with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir for their Christmas performances," states the petition, posted this week on Change.org by Salt Lake City resident Scott Fausett and promoted by a group called LGBT Mormons and Allies.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints declined to comment on the petition or whether anyone in its lineup of holiday performers had canceled.
The Tribune reached out to the six performers addressed in the petition: Broadway singer Laura Osnes, soprano Erin Morley, mezzo-soprano Tamara Mumford, tenor Ben Bliss, bass Tyler Simpson and actor Martin Jarvis. Representatives for Morley and Mumford declined to comment; the Tribune could not immediately reach the other performers or their agents for comment.
Church documents leaked last week revealed a new policy defining any Mormon in a same-sex marriage to be an apostate. The policy forbids baby blessings and baptisms for the children of anyone who has cohabited in a same-sex relationship.
Those children also are banned from church membership as adults unless they move from their parents' homes, disavow gay marriage and acquire special permission from the church's governing First Presidency.
News of the policy has led to multiple protests and intense disputes among Mormons on social media and in congregations, known as wards. In a separate petition, about 4,100 signers ask members of the NCAA to boycott games against Brigham Young University, which is owned by the LDS Church.
Several people who signed the petition to the holiday performers noted that the Mormon Tabernacle Choir also performed for the World Congress of Families, a conservative social activism organization deemed by the Southern Poverty Law Center to be a hate group. The group's international meeting took place last month in Salt Lake City, with multiple LDS and local political leaders participating.
"Performers should seriously consider if they want to be affiliated with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir," wrote Shanna Thurber, of Provo.