For today’s episode as June and Pride month come to a close, we brought on two really special guests, Ben Schilaty and Charlie Bird. Charlie and Ben are both gay Latter-day Saints as well as authors published by Deseret Book. They host a podcast together called Questions from the Closet.
In this conversation, Ben and Charlie share a little bit about their backgrounds and faith, what “pride” really represents and why it’s important to them, their thoughts on the process of coming out to faithful friends and family, loving without an agenda, and how leaders, friends, and loved ones can be effective allies to the LGBTQ community.
To give you just a little bit more background on these two: Ben works as an Honor Code administrator at BYU and as a therapist at Family Services in Provo, Utah. He holds three degrees from BYU and a PhD in second language acquisition and teaching from the University of Arizona. He serves as a high councilor in his stake.
Charlie was Cosmo the Cougar at Brigham Young University from 2016 to 2018 — and was the Cosmo from the original viral dance with the Cougarettes that was viewed over a billion times across social media platforms. He graduated from BYU in 2018 and is an active LBGTQ advocate, involved with multiple nonprofit LGBTQ organizations nationally and across Utah.
We are super grateful to Ben and Charlie for coming on, and learned so much from them. We hope you enjoy the conversation.
For more resources from Faith Matters on loving our LGBTQ brothers and sisters, check out our Big Questions resource page, and our conversations with Tom Christofferson.