Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints expresses support for LGBTQ youth in historic LOVELOUD Fest statement

August 16, 2017

Today, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS) applauded the LOVELOUD festival, created by Dan Reynolds of Imagine Dragons and benefitting GLAAD, The Trevor Project, Encircle, and Stand4Kind. The LOVELOUD festival will be held in Orem, Utah at the Brent Brown Ballpark at UVU on August 26, 2017. The event, which includes a star-studded concert and activities for the youth in attendance, is designed to ignite the relevant and vital conversation of what it means to unconditionally love, understand, accept, and support LGBTQ youth. Tickets may be purchased here.

This morning the LDS Church released the following statement to press:

“We applaud the LoveLoud Festival for LGBTQ Youth’s aim to bring people together to address teen safety and to express respect and love for all of God’s children. We join our voice with all who come together to foster a community of inclusion in which no one is mistreated because of who they are or what they believe.

We share common beliefs, among them the pricelessness of our youth and the value of families. We earnestly hope this festival and other related efforts can build respectful communication, better understanding, and civility as we all learn from each other.”

LOVELOUD Fest will feature live music from Imagine Dragons, Neon Trees, Krewella, Nicholas Petricca of Walk the Moon (Acoustic), Joshua James, and Aja Volkman; all of whom are donating their time and performances to this cause. 

“I want the LOVELOUD concert to engage a passionate and supportive audience in the fight against teen suicide and to bring communities together to start the conversation and celebrate individuality,” said Dan Reynolds, lead singer of Imagine Dragons who identifies as Mormon. “We want to offer hope to young people, let them know they’re not alone and encourage acceptance in the home and community.”

“This powerful statement of support from the LDS Church today sends a life-changing – and in many cases, life-saving – message to Mormon youth and other people of faith that we can love and accept LGBTQ people because of our faith – not in spite of it,” said Zeke Stokes, Vice President of Programs at GLAAD. “Dan and Imagine Dragons have created an unforgettable event that will send a message of hope to LGBTQ youth, and one of acceptance to the world.

Reynolds created the concert in response to alarming statistics about young people in Utah and LGBTQ youth around the United States:

  • Suicide is the leading cause of teen deaths in Utah.
  • LGBTQ+ youth that come from a home or community where they are not accepted are eight times more likely to commit suicide.

All proceeds from this concert will go to the LOVELOUD Foundation which lends support to nonprofits Encircle and Stand4Kind, as well as national LGBTQ organizations, The Trevor Project and GLAAD.