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Mormon Feminists Openly Seek Priesthood Ordination

Today's Mormon Feminists are bolder than ever, likely due to the support of liberal media outlets willing to exploit, at the drop of a lace hankie, the slightest negative tale to come across their inbox that could potentially convict what they perceive as the male dominant leadership of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints -- in the sacred name of social justice and gender equality.





The last few months have seen an overabundance of attention given to these types of advocacy's --one of the latest claiming success.

However, the most recent campaign is by far the most brazen of them all, and one that the majority of conservative and faithful members of the LDS Church will be shocked to find out (and honestly question the claims that are made) that these are, many of them, also active members of the Church, -- though specifically women -- who have come together to question, what they believe to be a history of withholding, and to publicly advocate for, ordination to the priesthood.

SLC Fox 13 News Reports:
The push for women’s ordination within the LDS Church came after the Sunstone Foundation’s recent symposium in California, where Mormon and Catholic feminists joined together to talk about women’s roles in their patriarchal churches. 
“It’s difficult to be members only when you don’t have much of a say in how the organization is run,” said Mary Ellen Robertson, the executive director of the Sunstone Foundation, a group independent of the LDS Church that discusses Mormonism. 
Robertson said the Mormon feminists have launched a website, OrdainWomen.org, to encourage the dialogue. The group wants to know if men holding the priesthood is doctrinal — or merely the product of more than a hundred years of tradition. 
“I’m sure there are going to be some people who are threatened by those questions about whether or not we should ordain women, or who think that’s heretical to even suggest let alone advocate for it,” she said. “But I think it opens the doors to having those kinds of conversations.”
"In a statement to FOX 13, LDS Church spokesman Scott Trotter said, “It is the doctrine of the Church that men and women are equal. The Church follows the pattern of the Savior when it comes to priesthood ordination.”"


Mission Statement of Ordain Women:

The fundamental tenets of Mormonism support gender equality: God is male and female, father and mother, and all of us can progress to be like them someday. 
Priesthood, we are taught, is essential to this process. Ordain Woman believes women must be ordained in order for our faith to reflect the equity and expansiveness of these teachings. 
Last year the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints reaffirmed its commitment to equality: “The Book of Mormon states, ‘black and white, bond and free, male and female; … all are alike unto God’ (2 Nephi 26:33). This is the Church’s official teaching.” Ordain Women embraces this statement. We are committed to work for equality and the ordination of Mormon women to the priesthood. 
Based on the principle of strategic non-violent action, Ordain Women aspires to create a space for Mormon women to articulate issues of gender inequality they may be hesitant to raise alone. As a group we intend to put ourselves in the public eye and call attention to the need for the ordination of Mormon women to the priesthood.


This is unprecedented: that individual female members unite online to organize a campaign against LDS Church leaders to lobby for priesthood ordination -- by utilizing the media as their advocates to both protect themselves and to put pressure on the Church in an attempt to force desired change. In hopes of strengthening their case, based on numbers alone, they have joined forces with another faith, in which although we are great friends in together defending family values, we do not recognize priesthood authority.

J. Max Wilson has written some very interesting thoughts about this and the recent progression of Mormon feminism, that I think deserves some serious consideration. I've been following some of the conversations and activities of progressive Mormon women, online, for few years, and I feel that he's made some accurate observations. I've written about some of these things myself, but not to the extent that he has -- but I've certainly had concerns.

Over the last few years we’ve seen that Feminist Mormon Activists have encouraged a kind of civil disobedience to the prophets and apostles.

They have used self-referential echo chambers to amplify propaganda and magnify the perception of support based on demonstrably faulty data and unfounded claims.
They’ve organized protests for women to break LDS cultural norms during worship services by wearing pants to church and run media campaigns and petitions to pressure the church to allow women to give prayers in the LDS Church’s General Conference.

And they have blatantly misrepresented facts in order to stir up outrage at church leaders. 
But now they have taken things to a whole new level.

Read post:  Rules for Feminist Mormon Radicals – Moving the Overton Window


I honestly don't know what to completely make of all of this, other than to trust that the Lord, in is patience and long suffering, is in control -- and that we might want to keep in our minds the very recent words of His Prophet,  President Thomas S. Monson:

I assure you that the Church is in good hands. The system set up for the Council of the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve assures that it will always be in good hands and that, come what may, there is no need to worry or to fear. Our Savior, Jesus Christ, whom we follow, whom we worship, and whom we serve, is ever at the helm. 
As we now go forward, may we follow His example. He left His footprints in the sands of the seashore, but He left His teaching principles in the hearts and in the lives of all whom He taught. He instructed His disciples, and to us He speaks the same words, "Follow thou me" (John 21:22). May we ever be found doing so.

As of late there doesn't seem to be a day that goes by, that I am not acutely thankful for prophets of God among us, who are ever upon the tower keeping watch so that we might know what is about, and how to navigate the darkness that surrounds us and our families.

In two weeks we will feast upon the words of the Lord, for an entire weekend of inspired General Conference messages -- of which I know we are all eagerly waiting to receive. I believe that the best thing we can do to prepare, is to follow previous counsel that we've been given: begin to ponder now, what we should seek an answer for, or about, during General Conference.

tDMg
Kathryn Skaggs

Updated: April 2013 Ensign -  Eternal Partnership in Marriage
BY VALERIE M. HUDSON, PROFESSOR OF GOVERNMENT AND PUBLIC SERVICE AT TEXAS A&M UNIVERSITY, AND RICHARD B. MILLER, PROFESSOR OF FAMILY LIFE AT BRIGHAM YOUNG UNIVERSITY



61 comments :

  1. Let the sifting begin! Good grief, how tainted by the "philosophies of men" have some women become. You want change? Change yourself to fit the patterns and standards and commandments of God, Our Eternal Father.

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  2. I suspect these women would take umbrage no matter what the church as most are predominantly male in appointment of leadership. Seriously, other than maybe some bad personal experiences on a local level, I really don't see the issue. Every Sacrament or Sunday school meeting I've ever gone to there has been nothing but reverence and respect for the role of women in the church. This is all about agenda and has nothing to do with obeying Heavenly Father's will and everything to do with catering to the feminist ego.

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    1. Your experience is not everyone, so don't pretend to know what we've been through. Don't you DARE think you have the right to say anything about my supposed "ego" when you have not had the spiritual experiences (or lack thereof) I have within this church.

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  3. Thanks for your post. When I started reading it, I looked for that quote from President Monson, what he had said after his five year mark. I'm glad you included it. That is what has given me the most immediate hope in holding onto the faith that I have always held dear.

    What many do not realize is that these feminist groups include many men as well. They seem to be the most fierce in driving these feminist page of the month clubs. Also, many who are adding fuel to the fire are apostate or excommunicated members already. Caught up in it all though are people who honestly feel disenfranchised and who do not understand God's plan or His scriptures. It is difficult for me to remember to be charitable when I feel like the Lord's church is being attacked so fiercely. But that is exactly what we need to be now and in the coming days.

    I have seen many parallels to anti-Christs in the Book of Mormon. That does not mean that I am judging all of these individuals as anti-Christ; but, they indeed appear to be pawns in Lucifer's hands.

    I am thankful for the understanding that I have of both priesthood power and authority. Ultimately, it is priestcraft when one sets himself or herself up to be a light to the world, to promote his or her own agenda, and when he or she is not seeking to build up Zion.

    There are two points in my own testimony that help me deal more appropriately with this new battle. Maybe they can be of help to others as well:

    It's important that we learn and claim our identity as children of God. So many would rather identify themselves with factions, thinking that they are promoting themselves better by doing so; but, there is no better position to be in than to know that we are children of God and that He desires us to feel His love and acceptance and to, eventually, become like Him.

    I thoroughly trust that the prophets are called of God and that they are not running this Church alone, but that Jesus Christ stands at the head. So I will put my trust in the Lord and His prophets. And, therefore, anyone who issues calls to action to members of the Church on behalf of the Church, who does not have authority to do so, I will not follow.

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    1. THIS is what I'm interested in: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3oRFlTV43fc

      Best,

      Patricia Baer

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  4. Kathryn, thanks for sharing. It makes me sad that these sisters feel the need to seek for higher validation? A stake president once told the men in a priesthood leadership meeting that one of the reasons that men hold the priesthood and women don't is because "caring for the needy comes so naturally to women. When women perceive a need they get in there and take care of it. Men are so busy trying to provide for their families that they need the priesthood responsibility to hold them accountable for caring for the needy." Just a thought.

    I hope these women realize the damage they are doing to new or struggling testimonies of other who may be investigating or just having the seeds planted for membership later.

    Heavenly Father IS in charge. The church is run by HIM. The leadership is of HIS choosing. We need to focus on the callings we have been given and magnify those callings.

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    1. I completely agree with the OP. But apologetics such as "women are so much more naturally . . . " are not helpful.

      I feel the best thing we can do is stick to what we know to be true, our testimonies of our redemption through Christ, and leave the broad generalizations and hypothetical explanations alone.

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    2. I think the reason that women don't hold the priesthood is even deep than our "natural ability to care". I think it comes down to the fact that women are giving a small portion of God's ability to create life. Men can't do that, they can't give life. Yes I know not all women will or can have children, but that doesn't change the fact that our bodies are designed to bring mortality and life to Heavenly Father's children. Do we really comprehend the magnitude of that power. If the Priesthood is the ability to use God's power on earth, women are given that ability without the need for a calling or laying of hands. The women and those who fight for so called Priesthood equality and undermining and underestimating that Power granted to women. I find that sad.

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  5. When the "wear pants to church" campaign came out, I learned a girl who I met on study abroad was a front runner of the campaign. I could care less about what people wear to church, but it bothers me that she and others (on the more radical end of Mormon Feminism) seek to claim the priesthood for themselves.

    I'm convinced women seeking the priesthood in this life are on the high road to apostasy.

    I have learned that other friends of mine are interested in seeing women be more recognized in the church (e.g., saying prayers in General Conference), and I fully support those initiatives. Know that not all MF's are seeking the priesthood, and there is a broad spectrum.

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    1. There are too many groups with varying intents to support such initiatives. All Enlisted is taking advantage of such division. When a group asks you to send letters to them to deliver to the brethren, there's something fishy in that. When they single out Elder Holland as someone they think will listen to them, while not trusting the president and prophet of the church, there is something amiss.Ultimately, there isn't anything wrong with either having women offer prayers in general sessions of general conference or having the Seventy continue to do so. But there is much wrong with not trusting the Lord to run His church in the manner He sees fit through His living prophets.

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  6. Sadly these women seek for 'equality', but fail to realize that granting the priesthood to the men was the final act of equality. With such a weak grasp of the fundamental principles of the gospel one wonders why they would want to retain membership in the church at all. Everything else hinges on this and their understanding of other things will be thwarted by their perspectives.

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  7. I'm so glad, happy and grateful that there will be no chance of women holding the Priesthood!! Don't we do enough? This is one calling I could not cope with!

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    1. Absolutely. I see what the bishop does and I admire it, though I would never wish for the job. I think his wife has an equal amount of responsibility. Because he knows she can care for their family it allows him the love to care for others. But he carries burdens of others. Why lobby to be placed in leadership roles?! there is enough serving to be done if it is assigned or not. you want responsiblity? Serve... there is plenty to go around...

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    2. Funny. People used to say the exact same thing about people of color holding the priesthood.
      I would suggest never saying "there will be no chance" for anything, because most of the time, you'll be wrong.

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  8. There are plenty of Mormon echo chambers floating around out there -- this being part of a conservative one.

    After stumbling over the pieces of sky littering the ground, and looking at what's really going on here, it's really not that big of a deal -- nothing new, nothing unusual, and nothing threatening. The principle of change initiated by questions from the membership is as old as Moses (at least). This initiative has more to do with making space where the notion of ordaining women can be discussed than with trying to "force" change on the Brethren. Some women want to be ordained. Some do not. Some believe they hold the Priesthood without needing ordination. There's quite a variety of opinions on the topic, and talking about it does no harm.

    I'm aware of no prophetic utterance to the effect that women would never be ordained or receive the priesthood -- I've seen none offered here -- so how this is seen to be going against the prophets escapes me entirely.

    When we get past the massive over-reaction I'm pushing at here ("anti-Christs"? "Apostacy"? Seriously? And the assumption that those who disagree lack fundamental understanding is amazingly arrogant), I do not think this was a particularly fruitful approach for these folks to have taken. The Brethren do listen to what the members ask for, and they do respond to what they hear. This is a good thing. But trying to leverage it into something that's unlikely to bring much change struck me as unwise.

    I'm all over being conservative, as I is one myself. But let's not kid ourselves that all and only truth is found in conservatism, while all and only error is found in liberalism. It's just not so.

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    1. Blain,

      I'm perfectly fine with your choosing to take the kick-back approach to this move. Most of the other campaigns, I have as well. But not this, this crosses the line. So this is where I choose to use my voice and say not okay -- and that I support the First Presidency of the Church and what I think this group is doing to advocate for priesthood ordination using the media and Internet presence to do it not according to the Lord's way.

      I know it's fine in how other people see advocating for a cause, but it's not the way we do things within the structure of the Church and you know that. These sisters have made a choice to step away from the Church and work outside the appointed priesthood councils, (of those having keys) to form their own plan to get what they want, with zero regard for the Church and the very men, authorized to exercise priesthood, which they claim to sustain as prophets, seers and revelators.

      Now please, make sense of this to me, Blain, that this process is in harmony with the gospel of Jesus Christ, and with those whom He has called to direct the affairs of His Church? Because as I see it, it is not -- and I honestly do not feel one needs to be a conservative member to see things this way.

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    2. And this is surely not a matter of conservatism or liberalism. This is not a 'political' issue at all -- save it be an ecclesiastical one. There is nothing to BE considered here. The choice was made long ago and we all agreed to it.

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    3. I don't know why some think it is okay to impose the limited understanding of men's politics in relation to the Lord's church. To imply that we are like the little chicken who said the sky was falling because we can see parallels to what we have found in God's words unfolding before our eyes, does not make us alarmists. Nor does following the Spirit and refuting the philosophies of men make us stupid. Nor does not agreeing with every "liberal" whim make us arrogant any more than it makes those who run to them sophisticated.

      One thing is correct though. No one has ever said that women will not hold the priesthood. We already share in the power of the priesthood and act under the direction of the priesthood. Ultimately, priesthood power will be held jointly between husbands and wives who are faithful and become exalted.

      In my opinion, women will never hold the same offices of the priesthood as men do. This has never been the order in the Church or Gospel of Jesus Christ. I love the gospel, and I am grateful for Christ's atonement, and that is sufficient for me. It should be for all of us. I think it is arrogant to demand anything more from the Lord or from our Father than what they have already provided us and promised us.

      Here on earth, the priesthood is known to be the authority to act in the name of God. No one can receive that authority except from God. Seeking it by relying on the arm of flesh is godless. There is no pretense or arrogance in saying so.

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    4. After reading your post (and comments) on the church's response to the BSA announcement, I had to see what you had written about all the feminist happenings!!! I wanted to comment specifically on your comment above: "I know it's fine in how other people see advocating for a cause, but it's not the way we do things within the structure of the Church and you know that. These sisters have made a choice to step away from the Church and work outside the appointed priesthood councils, (of those having keys) to form their own plan to get what they want, with zero regard for the Church and the very men, authorized to exercise priesthood, which they claim to sustain as prophets, seers and revelators."

      I wonder how many people realize how (and why) it was that the priesthood was finally made available to all worthy male members?? It was through prayer........ prayer of the members, prayer of the church leadership.

      If the feminists think something should change, maybe they should address it directly with Heavenly Father, through prayer. Of course, they might be surprised at the answer they get.

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  9. Kathryn -- If it needs saying, the sharpest of my pushing back was not directed at you.

    I also support the Brethren in their ability to lead the Church as God wishes them to (give or take a smidge for fallability's sake). These folks doing what they are doing in no way obligates the Brethren to do anything God doesn't want them to. Nor could they seriously expect otherwise. Mary Ellen is a friend of mine, and she's neither stupid nor delusional. So, can we dispense with the notion that they expect that they're going to build this the way they want and impose it on the Church, or will I need to taunt it a second time? (lessee, is it hamster-elderberry or elderberry-hamster....)

    With that aside, what is there to be pissy about? There's just disagreement on the issue, which isn't likely to change anytime soon. We can have a conversation about the whats and whys without needing to throw around words like "apostate" and "anti-Christ," can't we?

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    1. I submit that the problem is because what you're saying isn't true, Blain. They are not just trying to create space for discussion, which is perfectly clear once you listen to ALL they are saying.

      I'm of the opinion to let them dig their graves, personally. I'm not alarmist. I have seen that the important work of the Lord is primarily going on elsewhere, and have chosen to engage in it. But they aren't fooling anyone with eyes to see.

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    2. "But they aren't fooling anyone with eyes to see."

      Amen!

      " We can have a conversation about the whats and whys without needing to throw around words like "apostate" and "anti-Christ," can't we? "

      So, Blain, let me ask you a question: When IS the right time to use words like "apostate"?

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  10. It's important to note that the Ordain Women site represents a very small minority of self-identified Mormon feminists. Viewing their agenda as representative of that of all feminists is something like believing that PETA is the voice of all animal lovers.

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  11. In his book Mormon Doctrine under the subject heading of Patriarchal Order, the late Elder Bruce R. McConkie stated "The Lord's government is patriarchal in nature...With the placing of man on earth, the Lord began by patterning earthly government after that which is heavenly." The Lord's house is a house of order, not of confusion. He, meaning our Heavenly Father, has set this patriarchal order, not the prophets or the apostles.

    Also in Mormon Doctrine under the subject heading of Priestesses Elder McConkie said "Women do not have the priesthood conferred upon them and are not ordained to offices therein, but they are entitled to all priesthood blessings. Those women who go on to their exaltation, ruling and reigning with husbands who are kings and priests, will themselves be queens and priestesses. They will hold positions of power, authority and preferment in eternity." Is there any greater glory that that which is promised by the Lord to those women who are faithful? As a Latter-day Saint woman, I feel no need to be ordained to the priesthood when I am given the same opportunities to lead and teach as are our brethren. Why would I want more responsibility placed on top of the responsibility I already have? No thank you!

    These women are trying to turn the order established by God upside down. They are saying, in essence, that God is wrong. If they, or anyone, wants to know if a principal or practice of the gospel and of the Church is true then "let him ask of God, that giveth to all men literally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed." James 1:5-6.

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  12. We really need to be careful that we are not also putting words into the prophet's or God's mouth. "Definitely will" and "never will" are two sides of the exact same coin.

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  13. Chess -- In polite company? I'd say it's in reference to yourself, whether you're being ironic or not. Apostacy is something determined by a council presided over by a judge in Israel. Those saying they would like to see women ordained are no more apostate than those saying that such a thing couldn't possibly happen.

    SilverRain -- There are some in this that are unreasonable. Certainly. Given any movement of any size, unreasonable people will be found among them -- and reasonable people can have bad days, too. But there is simply no mechanism whereby the Brethren can be bypassed on this in any substantial way. Someone could put hands on a woman's head and say the words of ordaining them, but the keys to that ordinance are reserved for those who preside over the priesthood, and the ordinance would not be recorded or recognized by the Church. It would be symbolic at most.

    When they say this is about wanting to be heard, saying what they want, I believe them. It does no harm to hear them.

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    1. It seems you are deflecting. I am speaking of those who are unreasonable, and you are pleading for those who are. Unnecessary, I assure you.

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  14. This comment was left by "anonymous". I decided to delete it after re-reading it because of the over abundance of false doctrine, before I realized that someone had taken the time to respond. Unfortunately once it was deleted, Blogger does not allow the followup reply to be published. Therefore I have taken both comments and placed them together here:

    Anonymous:
    Early prophets and apostles taught that it was against the plan of God to give Blacks the priesthood and that blacks would never hold the priesthood in this life until after the second coming. Well, they were wrong on that and God changed his mind and gave blacks the priesthood. Maybe God will change his mind about giving women the priesthood. Women were never allowed to pray in General conference before and it looks like God has had a change of heart in that regard. So you never know what this ever changing church will bring.

    Denise:
    Early prophets and apostles did not teach anything of the sort, in fact Joseph Smith ordained African-Americans to the priesthood. Brigham Young was in fact reluctant to give the priesthood to AA's precisely because they were persecuted by non church members for having the priesthood and exercising it when they were 'in authority' over white members. Consequently that stopped happening to protect them. It never was a core doctrine and was a cultural doctrine that developed (go to FAIR for a historical outline). Men holding the priesthood is a fundamental doctrine for whatever reason. We need to have faith the Heavenly Father knows what he is doing. However to insinuate that holding the priesthood in some way makes a person 'better' or 'more favoured' is ludicrous. Heavenly Father has actually given women the more favoured role (in my opinion) as we are co-creators with Heavenly Father in providing bodies for His spirit children - bodies which are essential in His Plan

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  15. Thanks, as always, for you great words of wisdom Kathryn. I messaged you about the response this has gotten on my facebook today. I am sad for these sisters, because I know they are loved and precious to the Lord. I worry that they are murmuring themselves out of the church like Laman and Lemuel did. I know that was a sad thing for Lehi and Sariah, and it's sad for me as well that they are causing contention to get their point across. We always can do better at how we treat each other, but it's best to do point out ways to improve with charity and love, not anger and protest.

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    1. Thanks for your genuine words of concern. I agree. Their souls are precious and many of them are our brothers and sisters, or our sons and daughters.

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  16. Wow. Somewhat speechless. I mean, with everything else going on in this crazy world, there are those immutable things we hold on to, in which we have faith, that sustain and anchor our souls. I appreciate the dialogue and the thoughtful remarks. Likewise, I think it all boils down to whether or not the Church is the true living Church of Jesus Christ, directed by Him. You either believe it or you don't, it's all or nothing. We're not perfect, but the Church is. "And they did murmur because they knew not the dealings of that God who had created them." - 1Nephi 2:12

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  17. I have a tough time understanding why a woman would even want the priesthood anyway. Agreeing with Catherine Gardner up above there, I think we have enough to do without adding that to our plates!

    Besides that, there is a quote that my husband has used as a tagline for quite some time now that I think says a lot and would bring peace to some people if only they could manage to do it. It is this:

    "What a tremendous benefit we could bestow upon ourselves by calling off the war and learning to live at peace with God, not only in obeying him but also in agreeing with him." - Sterling W. Sill

    If people could just manage to let go, and agree with God, life would be so much easier and more pleasant for them, but I guess some just never can quit struggling against His words or gospel. I know they don't see it that way though. I just think it's a shame they don't want to accept the gospel as it is and want to change key, fundamental elements. Little stuff here and there is no big deal, sure, ask for some changes here or there, but the bigger, more important things like priesthood should be left alone.

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  18. I can see both sides of this issue and also recognize the deep differences of the many sides of this subject. Just a thought that was prompted by a comment on another blog. There seems to be an attitude of all or nothing in this discussion. As I recall the Lord suggested on several occasions to proceed without haste but in the natural order of things. may I a mention a few areas of the church organization where sisters already take an equal leadership role along side the priesthood, usually their husbands, as temple president and matron, as mission president and mission mom, as mom and Dad is an orderly worthy LDS home. It is not such an outlandish idea that a worthy sister may in time and order be given the authority and public acknowledgement of the roles many already fill. It is unfortunate that a few are pushing now and all on this subject and using harsher tactics than necessary.

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    1. I appreciate your desire to see the complimentary rolls that men and women currently share in the Church and in the home. However, in the examples that you've given these are not acceptable to what is being advocated by the members of ordainwomen.org. They do not consider these equal rolls at all. Until women are fully ordained, there is no true equality. Sure, they'll take whatever morsel is handed them as a step closer to their goal. But they will not be content until they have full equality as they see it.

      I realize that it is somewhat tedious, but I would encourage you to take the time and read J. Max Wilson's article, and follow each of the links provided, and decided for yourself if his observations are worthy of his conclusion.

      Personally, there's enough that I've observed on my own that gives me reason to not look back, and keep my eye on the leaders of the Church -- and to be highly suspect of those who are inspired by, among others, former excommunicated members, some considered apostates, whom they look to as authorities on Mormon women and priesthood -- looking to these to take counsel as to how to act.

      But no, it is not outlandish at all that the day will come when the the Daughters of Eve will stand in full glory next to their husbands, exactly as they understand His Plan. But until then, as we are here in mortality, we shall each take our part in the Plan now, and press forward...

      "When the frailities and imperfections of mortality are left behind, in the glorified state of the blessed hereafter, husband and wife will administer in their respective stations, seeing and understanding alike, and co-operating to the full in the government of their family kingdom.

      Then shall woman be recompensed in rich measure for all the injustice that womanhood has endured in mortality. Then shall woman reign by Divine right, a queen in the resplendent realm of her glorified state, even as exalted man shall stand, priest and king unto the Most High God.

      Mortal eye cannot see nor mind comprehend the beauty, glory, and majesty of a righteous woman made perfect in the celestial kingdom of God." (from the Young Woman’s Journal 25 [October 1914]: 600-604, link) -James E. Talmage

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  19. The Salt Lake Tribune has written that a woman will be praying in General Conference for the first time. Hardliners will say it has nothing to do with recent demonstrations, but common sense says otherwise.

    In a 1997 Australian television interview, Pres. Hinckley was asked about a chage in the policy of women not having the priesthood. Specifically, he was asked "...if rules could change in the future as the rules on blacks..would it take a revelation.?" He answered, "Yes, but there's no agitation for that. We don't find it. Our women are happy. They're satisfied."

    He chose the word agitation. He could have said that it would never change because it is not God's will that women have the priesthood. He chose to say there is no agitation because our women are happy.

    In a church that supposedly honors thinking for oneself, I don't see the value in disparaging members who want to continue as members. If Pres Hinckley saw "agitation" as having value why shouldn't we?


    'S

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    1. Deseret News, Joseph Walker: "“Decisions on speakers and prayers at general conference were made late last year,” said Scott Trotter, spokesman for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. “Customarily, details of the conference programs are not announced until general conference.”

      The reason for not releasing the list of conference participants at the time the assignments are made is simple, according to Elder L. Tom Perry, a senior member of the church's Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.

      “While we make assignments and plan ahead for our meetings, there is always the option in the church for the presiding authority to make changes as led by the Spirit,” Elder Perry said. “We rely on heaven’s guidance in our meetings. General conference is no different. That’s why we do not typically publish a program in advance.”"

      First of all, women not having priesthood has nothing to do with policy. And I'm not sure why you feel President Hinckley was required to tell a reporter exactly what God was thinking on such important matters, other than to give him a friendly PR interview. There is absolutely no reason why he should be held accountable to anything he said is a casual interview he said in a t.v. interview.

      I seriously doubt that President Hinckley would have chosen that word had he known it would be so brazenly exploited. I imagine he would be more than happy if people would stop giving him all the credit for inspiring work he likely would find unpleasing.

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    2. "I imagine he would be more than happy if people would stop giving him all the credit for inspiring work he likely would find unpleasing."

      What is the point of Mormonism if we cannot question, prod, doubt, and continue to seek the will of God? I do not believe that God expects us to follow without question. That would be Satan's plan. God's plan requires and demands intellectual inquiry. Hugh B. Brown once said, "We are not so much concerned with whether your thoughts are orthodox or heterodox as we are that you shall have thoughts."

      The problem with modern Mormon culture is that we cannot have unorthodox thoughts without being called apostates. Why do you think that these women are encouraging change in the Church? Is it because they want to destroy the Kingdom of God? I do not believe so. To think that they all believe that is naive. If someone loves an organization, they want it to be the best that it possibly can.

      Revelation comes when people (including members) ask questions and ask leaders to reconsider matters. Revelation doesn't come from a vacuum.

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    3. Seagulljaap,

      "What is the point of Mormonism if we cannot question, prod, doubt, and continue to seek the will of God? "

      The point of "Mormonism", or rather the gospel of Jesus Christ, which He organized in setting up His Church (His way) here upon the earth, at anytime, has only ever been to proclaim His gospel to the inhabitants of the earth and administer the ordinances of salvation to as many of the children of God as possible, and at this time in preparation for His Second Coming; to administer such by those ordained (having authority) to do so through the power of the priesthood.

      Now, within that great mission comes the priceless gift of the Holy Ghost, which is personal to you; which enables you to pursue for yourself personal revelation on many matters so that you might find understanding on those things which baffle you; even the mysteries of heaven; even God Himself.

      In my personal opinion, feel free to have all the unorthodox thoughts and/or questions you care to. Heck, I have tons myself. However, I take those thoughts into the scriptures and to the Lord Himself; the Great Teacher. I must tell you… and I mean this sincerely, that I find Him to be of the greatest Comfort and Enlightener to my understanding of the way things are in helping me to personally understand things that don't always make sense to my finite mind; even the feelings of peace I've often received in just the approach. I highly recommend this avenue when seeking for answers to questions that are difficult to reconcile.

      In this particular post my issue is taking policies/or the revealed will of the Lord currently established within the Church, outside of the Church and using outside influences (media, public pressure, etc,) to then force changes within. It is wrong to advocate for change in this manner and not, in my opinion, according to how the Lord would see change brought about, if it were going to happen. This does not promote unity within the Church and among the people of God.

      I have no issue with any sister who desires priesthood ordination, as I see that as a completely separate issue. It is this form of advocacy by ordain women dot org, and others similar to it, that I strongly oppose -- and not necessarily the concerns or struggles that you, or others have. I do have compassion for individuals' personal pains and challenges.

      Revelation does not come, ever, to anyone, when contention of any kind is present. The Spirit actually withdraws from such circumstances. It is a fallacy to find oneself believing that such could possibly happen through such a process. These principles are revealed in the scriptures if you will take the time to study them out. These principles/laws of receiving revelation are not my thoughts.

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  20. Amen! So glad we have a living prophet. We should start a fb group: "LDS members who sustain the Prophet and wait patiently on the Lord." That wouldn't be too exclusive, but it would be pretty clear that any changes in church policy, and especially in doctrine, must first come from God! :)

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  21. What Pals said: "As a Latter-day Saint woman, I feel no need to be ordained to the priesthood when I am given the same opportunities to lead and teach as are our brethren. Why would I want more responsibility placed on top of the responsibility I already have? No thank you!

    These women are trying to turn the order established by God upside down. They are saying, in essence, that God is wrong. If they, or anyone, wants to know if a principal or practice of the gospel and of the Church is true then "let him ask of God, that giveth to all men literally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed." James 1:5-6."

    These women don't realize how "ordained" they already are! ;-)

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  22. Im always surprised at women who have a desire to have the priesthood and feel like they "aren't important" in the church since they don't. What could be more powerful than a righteous woman? Who has more influence on family and children than a mother? No we don't have the priesthood but that doesn't mean we are impotent. It means that in the Lords plan our power is else where. Our power is within our own family and communities.
    Another thing to consider is that the Lord loves and wants to protect his daughters. Being a priesthood leader throws you into the fray which isn't what the Lord would want. He wants us protected. Could it be that is one of the reasons we don't have the priesthood? Because the Lord loves his daughters so much he wants us protected from the fray.

    The Lord's plan is perfect. He has a design that we don't know and can't understand. We just need to go in faith and continue to follow him. One day it will all make sense and we will be glad we followed his plan.

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    1. The Lord's plan is perfect and simple in all its beauty. We can know and understand it. In fact, we are instructed to 'ask and seek, ponder and pray', 'seek knowledge by study and faith'. All questions will be answered when WE are ready for the answers. Every one of us can know much more than we do if we are willing to learn and accept the answers that come from the Lord thru study, prayer, obedience, humility and faith. There is much to learn from! Once we have our own testimony, we need to be faithful to what we know and keep learning! Starting with scriptures and words of the prophets ... ask in prayer and know how to receive answers. He never said that there is anything we shouldn't ask about, but has stated that if any of us lack wisdom or knowledge we should ask!

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    2. Mrs. M---very interesting thoughts about 'protecting us from the fray'...had never thought of it like that before.

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  23. Thanks for posting this. I, too, have been concerned about this movement and actually posted something on my religion blog too. I appreciate the quote from President Monson. I know the church is in good hands.

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  24. This post came after I had an unfortunate conversation with another couple at a ward party. It was uncomfortable because I was the only one at the table to defend our priesthood holders authority. While the rest of the table didn't come to support or aid me. When I said that "I had enough to do" I was told that that was a mean thing to say. I said, "your kidding right?" And they said in unison "No!" So, I looked around at the rest of the table who remained silent. I didn't know what to think. (Was I being intolerant? Seriously?) After that conversation that was far from uplifting. I found your post and felt much better about the stand I took and was reminded about all the priesthood blessings that I do share in. Then I read the comments and was disturbed that one commenter could come along and try to make wreckage of your words that I felt were well thought out and very diplomatic. Coming to the conclusion that there will always be people who wants to start a fight when it comes to standing for what is right and that we will find people from the world (even in our own church) like those in Lehi's dream in the large and spacious building. I look to my own knowledge or lack of, and ask if I am being closed minded on this subject. I resent that a small number of women think it is their mission to speak for all of us. Yes, we must 'wait' for any revelation from God. I think bad things come from forcing God to submit to our demands. We may be left lone women without strong men.

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    1. Sharon,

      So sorry you had to go through an experience like that, among those who you didn't feel support. Just know that it's not necessarily because they didn't support you, but rather they aren't comfortable with the subject; which is most likely the case. Always keep in mind that you can state your position, without feeling the need to defend it. If you can do that, others will see your example and follow it in the future.

      The reason people avoid the kind of situation you were in, is because they fear the inevitable contention they believe will result. We need to change that. Our position needs to simply be our opinion on a matter. I hope that makes sense.

      And since I wrote this post, the Mormon Newsroom released an excellent video-conversation with all three of the General Presidents discussing equality and priesthood; it's fabulous! I blogged about it here, but you can also just head over to the Newsroom and watch it. Make sure and share it with your friends. The more our sisters become comfortable with the subject of women and priesthood, the more apt they will be to state their feelings in a situation like you were in recently.

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    2. Thank you Kathryn, I will share this with my friende and continue to read your blog. You seem very fearless in tackling these delicate subjects.

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  25. Hi Kathryn! Thanks for your blog! Just wondering if there is any reason you didn't publish my comment?

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    1. Yes, Derrick. There are actually two reasons.

      1) I never saw the first and never would have unless you posted this one. I had to go search for the first and find it. Not sure what happened, but it was never sent to my inbox, which is where I moderate from.

      2) Although I normally don't give a reason why I don't post a person's comment, but since you asked, I'll just respectfully say that I feel that I've given enough of a platform here on WBMW to an advocacy that I strongly disagree with, and for that reason alone, I've decided not to add your comment to my blog. I hope you can respect my decision.

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  26. Many women are shouting, "Look at what I will gain when I'm ordained to the priesthood!" but I feel not enough women are asking the question: "What will men lose if women are ordained?" I'm a Mormon feminist but I'm also a wife. I deeply value the growth that my husband has gained through his service in the church. Service that he has never asked for, sought for, fought for or even wanted...service that I could have easily done like teaching, leading a meeting, conducting Sacrament meeting etc. If women are ordained to the priesthood, I'm afraid for what opportunities men will lose...in the name of what women might gain...

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  27. Lets make it REALLY fair...when men have the babies, women get the priesthood.

    Why do so many downplay the GOD like nature of bearing a child! Seriously! Women can grow another human...and we want the priesthood so it's "fair"? in my mind women were already granted the superior gift of motherhood.

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  28. First, I do NOT believe that women should be ordained to the priesthood. I believe God set it up for men to hold that ordination, to help them with their own specific challenges, and to further their refining in this life.

    That said, I believe that much more is reserved to the priesthood than is doctrinal. There are spiritual gifts named in the Doctrine and Covenants that, right now, are culturally assigned to priesthood (the gift to heal, for example), which are not reserved for priesthood, but are proclaimed as spiritual gifts available to all. If the church at large could acknowledge (and the membership accept--a crucial step) that there are many spiritual gifts that we, as women, have access to on our own merit, without ordination, I think it would go a long way towards helping to support equality between Mars & Venus in the church.

    My brother-in-law's temple sealer said, in his counsel to the couple before performing the sealing ordinance, that he must always remember that women are worthy to enter the temple just as they are--but brethren must have the mantle of the priesthood placed upon them before they are worthy to enter. The priesthood is, if you'll excuse the analogy, more of a summer school program for the men than it is an AP track.

    Add to that the very real pressure I've seen some leaders exert on their members (men & women alike) to follow their (male) leaders instead of the spirit, and of course you'll have women wanting to be able to be more in control.

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  29. Interesting thoughts, Annalea. There's no question that when we serve others, we are blessed; a true principle.

    However, in order to qualify to exercise priesthood authority, thus its administrative power, one who has been ordained must not seek any personal benefit from his own use of it. In fact, if one who is ordained has need of a priesthood blessing to "help them with their own specific challenges", he must seek one out from another who is ordained, and exercise faith in the same manner as you or I.

    I do agree in the availability of all spiritual gifts to male and females, through faith and prayer, to all those who seek after them. I've heard it said that, and maintained this position for many years: faith is the power of the priesthood. That rests well with me, personally and considering much of the recent counsel from, in particular, our female leaders, I would say, 'very' well these days.

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

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  30. Thanks for sharing this. Whenever I hear about these kinds of things, I remember something my Mom says, "Either the church is true or it isn't." That pretty much sums it up for me. You can't pick and choose. It's all or nothing. Personally, I don't want the priesthood. I have enough resposibility, thanks.

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  31. i wish i would have known about your blog a few months ago!! so grateful to know about it now. i loved this post and the comments. what i really love was when you said "In my personal opinion, feel free to have all the unorthodox thoughts and/or questions you care to. Heck, I have tons myself. However, I take those thoughts into the scriptures and to the Lord Himself; the Great Teacher." YES!!! i am not opposed to questions or concerns about the church, but the campaigning for change that i heard about left me sick to my stomach. that just isn't how it works.
    look forward to reading more. and thanks!!

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    1. Hi Danelle,

      Joseph Smith is our great example of this principle, as he pointed all of us directly to the scriptures (James) and then followed the instructions therein, to ask God, and not man, for the answer to his heartfelt and sincere, personal, inquiry: to know which church was true?

      Each of us, can find peace regarding that which we struggle to understand, through this same process if we so desire. I truly believe this and have found it to be so regarding this particular issue. If God will answer my prayer, then I know he will answer all others. Perhaps in not the exact way He answer my question, because others have different concerns and questions, but He will speak peace to each soul and give needed understanding so that each can be at peace within His kingdom.

      I'm happy this was helpful to you. Thanks for your comment.

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  32. quote
    "Mission Statement of Ordain Women:

    The fundamental tenets of Mormonism support gender equality: God is male and female, father and mother, and all of us can progress to be like them someday.
    Priesthood, we are taught, is essential to this process. Ordain Woman believes"

    endquote


    God is not male and female. God is not our Father and Mother. Noe of the scriptures ever say "Our heavenly Father and Mother". Her job is different.

    Gender equality does not mean men and women are the same, just equal (with different jobs). Why is this so hard for people to understand?

    You ladies can keep the bearing of children duties, I am very glad I don't have to do it. :)

    (Background on me, haven't attended church for 20+ years, can still read the books...)

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  33. This article is just ridiculous. You obviously have no real familiarity with the Mormon Feminist movement. It would do you some good to actually read Feminist Mormon Housewives for an extended period of time to actually become familiar with how they feel. The Ordain Women movement is not AGAINST the leaders of this Church. Not in the slightest. This is not some militant, radical campaign. It is a well thought out and well reasoned appeal to our leaders to consider the ordination of women so that women can better serve those around us. Aren't we encouraged to seek out the best spiritual gifts, after all? I just felt this was incredibly biased and not fair to the movement at all.

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  34. Its all about obedience. The church of Jesus Christ and it's gospel principles is black and white. There is no room for grey matters. These dumb feminist issues reminds me of the tree of life/iron rod and the big and spacious building....having your feet touch both places isn't possible and you will fall off the cliff.

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