Woman in Mormon church photo voices support for gay marriage
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Mormon Sylvia Cabus was thrilled with the U.S. Supreme Court's decision to legalize gay marriage, but those checking out her church's website likely wouldn't have known it.
Soon after last week's ruling, friends flooded the Washington, D.C., woman with messages pointing out her family's photograph on the site, which explained the faith's belief that marriage should be between a man and woman.
Cabus said Thursday she and her family posed for the photo in December outside the Supreme Court after responding to a casting call by the Utah-based Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
The image was widely viewed following the high court's decision, so Cabus decided to speak out on Facebook and clarify her beliefs. She used the photo from the church's site as her profile picture but added a Facebook-supplied rainbow-hued overlay.
"I've also been very open about my liberal political beliefs and my feminist activities both in person and online and believe that this action was in line with my personal philosophy," Cabus wrote in a Facebook message to The Associated Press.
Cabus said that while church officials told her the images were intended primarily for a religious freedom website, she signed paperwork acknowledging they could be used for any purpose. She added she is fine with the church keeping the picture on its website and doesn't regret doing the photo shoot.
Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints spokesman Eric Hawkins declined to comment.
Cabus said her family responded to the church casting call seeking interfaith and multicultural families last fall. Cabus, a Filipino-American and Mormon, volunteered for the shoot with her husband, a Muslim of Moroccan descent, and their young son.
Cabus said the church used the image on a webpage once before, when it announced in April that it filed a brief with the Supreme Court asking it to let states limit marriage to a man and a woman.
Cabus said she didn't feel compelled to state her views at the time because that post wasn't widely circulated.
KUTV first reported the story (http://bit.ly/1CdEtuh ).
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on the court ruling, http://bit.ly/1KfNuUw