Shirley grew up in a home with little religion. Throughout her life though, she has had the opportunity to study or be a part of several different religions, including Christian Science, Methodist, Catholic, and Episcopalian. She eventually came into contacted with missionaries from the Church of Jesus Christ of latter-day Saints, and with all of her religious experience and study, what they taught her rang true. She and her children joined the church and eventually moved to Utah. After a while, her son decided he didn’t want to take part in the church any more. It wasn’t until many years later that she learned why, when he revealed that he felt he was a woman, not a man. While she was shocked at first, she eventually decided to accept and love her daughter, Candice, because Shirley could see that her daughter was blossoming and finally becoming the person she was meant to be. While she believes the LDS church is the closest thing she has seen to a true church, Shirley is disappointed that more isn’t being done by the church to show love and acceptance to the LGBT community, as she believes Christ would do.

by Matt Balls

(The views expressed in this interview do not necessarily reflect those of the producers of Far Between but are reflective of a part of what it means to be LGBT and Mormon.)