Almost three hundred members of the Mormon Church, all of whom define themselves as straight, joined the gay pride march in Salt Lake City, Utah, in order to show their support for gay rights.

The Mormon Church has been one of the most vocal opponents of equal marriage, ever since Hawaii attempted to legalise it in the mid-1990s. It released a statement two years ago saying it was ‘not a sin to have feelings,’ but only ‘in yielding to temptation.’

However, both LGBT members of the Church and their friends and family have become more vocal in their support for gay and trans rights in recent years, both recording videos for the ‘It Gets Better’ campaign in recent months.

During Sunday’s march, a group of current and former members of the Church of the Latter Day Saints, called Mormons Building Bridges, marched in Salt Lake City’s gay pride parade to show their support to gay and trans people.

Dressed in traditional Mormon attire, they held banners which read: ‘LDS ♡ LGBT’, and taking a line from a Mormon hymn, ‘Jesus said love everyone, treat them kindly too.’

Founder of the group, which is barely a month old, Erika Munson, told local the Guardian: “We wanted to invite faithful, practicing Mormons to show their unconditional love and support for the LGBT community.” She said although the faithful missed the Sunday Sabbath, attending the parade was in its own way an act of worship.

Almost three hundred members of the Mormon Church, all of whom define themselves as straight, joined the gay pride march in Salt Lake City, Utah, in order to show their support for gay rights.

The screenwriter for Milk and Proposition 8, Dustin Lance Black, who was also raised Mormon, tweeted: “In tears. Over 300 straight, active Mormons showed up to march with me at the Utah Pride parade in support of LGBT people.” He introduced Ms Munson and her fellow marchers to the parade crowd by announcing: “I want you to meet my new friends.”

On the huge financial and political support the Mormon Church offered for California’s anti-equality Proposition 8, Ms Munson told the Guardian: “Prop 8 was was heartbreaking and full of strife for a lot of people, not just for the gay non-Mormon community, but for the Mormon community… I think the wounds are starting to heal, and I think we are ready to start having a conversation again.”

Mitt Romney, the Republican presidential candidate for the forthcoming elections, opposes equal marriage, and reaffirmed that position in the wake of President Obama’s support for the measure.