In part one of his interview, Wilum, 60, describes himself as a punk rock, exhibitionist, gay Mormon.
After serving a full-time mission, Wilum came out to his family then attended therapy to “become heterosexual.” Wilum was ultimately excommunicated, but he found comfort and acceptance in the world of exhibitionism and punk rock where he felt free and authentic for the first time. “Being gay,” he says, “is natural for me. I did not choose to be gay, but thank God I am.”
Twenty-five years later a pair of missionaries knocked on Wilum’s door. After a two-year process, Wilum was again baptized into the church, and he hopes to receive the priesthood and participate in temple work in the future. Although Wilum is proud to be Mormon, he did not and will not abandon his pre-baptism lifestyle where he first found acceptance. Wilum has been celibate since 1985, which he feels makes it easier to live within both worlds of the Mormon faith and the gay and punk rock lifestyle he adores.
by Martha Ostergar
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(The views expressed in this interview do not necessarily reflect those of the producers of Far Between but are reflective of some aspects of what it means to be homosexual and Mormon today.)