Sepulvida stands in front of the Mormon Church, imitating a Richard Nixon pose. He affectionately refers this relationship with the Mormon church over the past 2 years as Mormongate. Photo provided by Trevor Sepulvida.
by Danielle Bloom
Fueled by the Church of Jesus Christ and Latter-Day Saints’ new policy, on Nov. 8 senior Trevor Sepulvida wrote a rant to comedian-politician Lewis Black; later that evening Black read Sepulvida’s rant on his show.
“When [Black] said, ‘if you’re a Mormon, you might not want to watch’ I knew that he was talking about my rant. I was kind of shocked, the entire time I was watching it, it was a blur, thinking about it now. I was just shocked,” Sepulvida said.
On Nov. 4 Sepulvida turned 18, which is the legal age one can resign from the Church of Jesus Christ and Latter-Day Saints, otherwise known as the Mormon Church. He wrote his bishop a letter via e-mail, stating that he no longer wished to be a part of the Mormon Church. Coincidently, the next day the Church came out with their new policy stating that children of married same sex couples, cannot join the church until they turn 18, these children cannot be living with their parents, and they have to be against same sex marriages, disowning their parents.
“Those [policies] really upset a lot of people and they certainly upset me to see that kind of bigotry. It was a shock for people both inside and outside of the church,” Sepulvida said.
Even though Sepulvida submitted his rant without informing anyone, he got a vast amount of attention from friends, family, and viewers of his rant, including People Magazine.
“To me it stood out because it says that this is our life and we have the right to decide what we want, what we want to believe in. I think no matter how strong the church can be, they don’t have the right to tell us what to believe,” close friend, senior at Point Loma High School Beatriz Vazquez said.
To deliberately imitate Black’s style and to show passion, Sepulvida used a variety of profound words. The vulgarness of his rant resulted in both positive and negative responses from his family.
“My mother, she was disappointed to say the least. My father called me on the Thursday after the rant was read and he told me that he was extremely proud of me, which was something I wasn’t expecting. I did have a few family members who voiced their opposition to my whole rant, but for the most part I received a very positive reaction to the material I put out there,” Sepulvida said.
In his rant, Sepulvida stated that four years ago, he would have never imagined himself leaving the Church, but in fact he envisioned himself preparing to serve a mission at this point in time, which is a common thing for Mormons to do around the ages of 18 and 19.
“Many things have changed within those four years. My world view has definitely changed quite a bit. I feel more of an adult. I’d say that I live a more liberal lifestyle. I drink coffee now, which is different, a lot of things have changed,” Sepulvida said.
Ever since last year, Sepulvida had the intentions of leaving the Church as soon as he was of age. From time to time, he would rant to his friends about the Mormon Church, and his relationship with it. Sepulvida did not like the Church’s treatment towards LGBT and race issues, and how the Church was not honest about their history.
“I know he’s always had that sort of resentment for the church. This rant gave him a lot more confidence in his decision now that he’s out of it. It was more clarification, because if you make a big decision like that, there’s obviously skepticism, but I think to have the support for that rant clarifies that he made the right choice, and I’m sure he’s very happy for it,” friend of two years senior Seth D’Agostino said.