The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints has a message for gay adherents: Don’t abandon the faith. A new web site, MormonsAndGays.com, has been launched to encourage understanding and dialogue among adherents. Titled, “Love One Another: A Discussion on Same-Sex Attraction,” the web site delves deeply into a controversial subject that the Mormon church has sometimes been criticized for.

The web site overwhelmingly embraces the notion that gays and lesbians who  are church members should stay, rather than exit the faith. The overarching theme is one of kindness, calling for both “love” and “hope” in dealing with this contentious issue.

MormonsAndGays.com: New LDS Web Site Urges Gay Mormons to Stick With the Church

A screen shot from the new LDS web site

“When people have those (same-sex) desires and attractions our attitude is, ‘stay with us,’” Elder D. Todd Christofferson of the LDS Church’s Quorum of the Twelve Apostles explained in a video announcing the decision. “I think that’s what God is saying: stay with me. And I think that’s what we want to say in the church: stay with us, and let’s work together in friendship and commonality and brotherhood and sisterhood.”

Deseret News has more about this intriguing project:

The website is part of an effort by the church “to teach and clarify the church’s positions” on various issues, said LDS spokesman Michael Purdy.

“There are some aspects of our belief and practice that are simply not well understood,” Purdy continued, adding that other issues will be addressed by the church in a similar fashion during the next few weeks.

Production for the site has been underway for more than two years, Purdy said.

“Too often these types of big, important issues are dealt with in sound bites, and often by individuals who do not have the complete picture of what the church is doing,” Purdy said. “We hope (the website) will be a resource for better understanding and better communication.”

Watch a video, below, that further explains the web site:

(H/T: Deseret News)