Earlier this month, Savannah, a 12-year-old from Eagle Mountain, Utah, garnered national attention when a video of her coming out to her Mormon congregation went viral.
The young pre-teen spoke during a monthly section of Sunday services when congregants are encouraged to share their beliefs.
“I believe that I was made the way I am, all parts of me, by my heavenly parents,” Savannah said. “They did not mess up when they gave me freckles… or when they made me gay. I believe that we should just love. I believe that I am good…I know I’m not a horrible sinner for being who I am.”
Her words stunned the congregation—in fact, her mic was cut off as she spoke.
But her speech also shook LGBT advocates around the world. Last weekend, HRC Utah invited Savanah to its gala in Salt Lake City, where she received a standing ovation from more than 650 guests.
“We have a message for you,” event chair Dustin Williams told a tearful Savannah, who was joined by her parents. “That we love you, that we’re proud of you. We want you to keep being yourself and don’t let anyone stop you.”
Choking back tears, Savannah took the dais and said, “Even though I’m small, and I don’t really have a video to go with what I’m saying, I have a lot of love to share—I love you guys so much.”
And we love you.