When Women Don’t Want The Priesthood

Christian J - February 25, 2013

Imagine for a moment a Northeastern urban ward. The average age is 32, a large number of RMs/temple married, both men and women college educated and the most common political affiliation you would find is “moderate”.

If there are those who identify as Democrats or Republicans, I would at least call it an even balance. When it comes to family, the vast majority of couples started having children after both husband and wife had finished their higher education and in many cases, the woman has had a number of successful years as a professional. When it comes to homosexuality, let’s take for granted that its a very inviting, loving and non judgmental place – when it comes to members of the ward who would identify as gay but also concerning the broader gay community (the proof of this assertion could be another post entirely).

As for basic testimony and teaching, this ward is full of very committed and even passionate believers in the Atonement of Jesus, the Restoration and in today’s Church structure and leadership. I would also add though, that its not uncommon to hear the less-talked-about aspects of Church history or doctrine in this ward, particularly in relation to peep stones, polyandry or anything else you might find in Rough Stone Rolling (for example). In fact, Bushman might be the most quoted individual in GD after Church leaders and C.S. Lewis.

Now take this ward and insert a Gospel Doctrine Lesson on the Priesthood. The whole of the lesson goes as you might think – “power to act in the name of…” etc, etc. With about 5 minutes remaining, the teacher throws out the question, “What is the role of women in the priesthood?” Chirp, chirp, no one says a word for at least a solid minute. “I would love to get a woman’s perspective on how you operate in the priesthood and what is your role.”, the teacher encourages.

Finally, a man in the class raises his hand and says a few words about revelation and the changes that have taken place in Church doctrine and policy. “There’s no reason to think that women won’t one day hold the same authority as men”, is the gist of what the man says. Suddenly, a number of hands shoot up – all women. One by one, they give articulate responses to the question, none of which talk of something missing. None that speak of a future day. In fact, without exception, they each describe the joy in their present “partnership” and role. Each answer is unique and not entirely predictable or rehashed. Each answer is, in the end, in support of the current status of women in relation to the priesthood. Now, imagine the lesson ends and the women in the room swarm around those who spoke and thank them for what they said and express solidarity and support.

Yes, this happened in my ward and, I have to admit, it left me feeling a little humbled. To put it plain, I have a fairly radical view of women and the priesthood. In short, I think they should hold it, the same as men. And I think the best reason is that it might benefit us all. That is, female voices in leadership at all levels of the Church would better accomplish the goals and missions of the Church and in carrying out the teachings of Jesus. Women being able to lay hands on their children, bless their infants, baptize and confirm their converts and bestow God’s power, when no man is in sight would work for the greater good.

Sure, it would turn the whole Church structure upside down. But, I see no doctrinal justification for a male only priesthood. I mainly view it as a tradition that may have been useful at one time, but less so now and in the perceivable future.

As a man, does my opinion count in the face of so many women in support of the existing state of affairs? I’m finding that the answer is – not so much.

Sure, this was a very small sample of the opinions of women of the Church. I know that there are many women who do, in fact, agree with me and my views (to some degree or another). But, the world in which we operate is our local, face to face world. I know the internet has great power but, at the end of the day, the world that we live in and influence most is among the people we see and associate with in real time. And when I look at the women in my sphere who smash to pieces the common stereotypes of the oppressed, submissive or blind Mormon woman, I find their words extremely compelling – if only because they are women and I am not.

In fact, I happen to know one of these women quite well. A woman that I have so much respect for – not just for her abilities and work as a mom, but for her intellect, integrity and broad range of talents. A woman who’s views in so many other aspects of life I would describe as “feminist”. And after giving her my best argument for why women should hold the priesthood, the response was essentially this: “I think you undervalue the current contribution of women in the Church. I think you don’t realize how vital the role is that we currently play.”

What is a man supposed to say to that? My rebuttal was received respectfully, but in the end my gender seems to put me at a disadvantage.

I essentially said this: I don’t undervalue women’s role in the Church regarding the priesthood, I correctly value the role of an ordained priesthood holder in the Church. Because that is exactly what I’ve been taught my whole life – to hold the priesthood is HUGE. In fact, we are semi-annually chided for not exalting it enough!

The conversation was long and detailed. Suffice it to say, I still hold to my views and still worry about the future of the Church in regards to the lack of female influence. But, I’ve been forced again to rethink things a bit and maybe even consider that I’m wrong. At the end of the day, maybe advocating for a genderless priesthood is unrealistic. Especially if the chorus of voices against such a policy change are women. As it currently stands, I find a long held theory of mine continually validated: If the majority of Mormon women wanted the priesthood, they would have it.

89 Comments »

  1. A ward full of married women of child bearing age? Ask them why they don’t want the priesthood. Often it seems to be because they are pretty darn busy right now don’t want or need any more responsibilities or because their lives so far have followed the church script and they feel they are blessed for it. These are the years that women most easily and often fit into the church’s model. Those who’s lives for various reasons (often no apparent fault of their own) have not followed the script often become more introspective about their narrow role as defined by the church and reach for more.

    This is the reason the church will not extend the priesthood to women yet although it could be done on a voluntary basis and say required for leadership positions given women the ability to opt in or out.

    I agree the church would benefit from more female influence and from adding doctrine or tolerance for non-traditional family roles that is more inclusive.

    Comment by Howard — February 25, 2013 @ 12:02 pm

  2. I suspect that virtually all faithful LDS women would gladly accept and serve in the priesthood if it were extended to us after the announcement of a revelation or other acceptable process. I suspect that most of the time when women say we don’t want the priesthood, even when giving reasons like “I’m too busy already,” we mean that we don’t want the bottom-to-top activism and the challenge to authority and other unpleasantness that is implied by the “alternate voices” aspect of current discussion. It’s a rejection of the perceived agenda, not of the priesthood.

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — February 25, 2013 @ 12:58 pm

  3. Howard, I agree that the married Mormon woman is more likely to feel satisfied with the status quo. Of course. And again, I’m only going on my local experience. But when my relatively liberal ward of highly educated women (at least in the ball park of those *most likely* to want a change) seem to, not just accept their role but find a great deal of value and “order” in it, I have to pause and think.

    Ardis, I don’t like comparing every liberal pet project to the race-based priesthood ban, but I think the following thought exercise is illustrative. Were black men as content with their status in the Church as women are today? Since eternal marriage was at stake, I’m going to say def. not. If the broader culture (and I know a good portion of the Church) was as uneasy/outraged at the gender ban as they were with the race ban, would a change occur? Or at the very least *a question asked*? My view of prophetic revelation based on a humble reading of Church history tells me the answer is yes.

    Will bottom-top activism work? – maybe not. But if a majority of women in the Church told their husband/father/bishop that they had a desire to be ordained – it would happen tomorrow.

    Comment by CJ Douglass — February 25, 2013 @ 1:36 pm

  4. Ardis,
    If it were offered soon would you consider it bottom-to-top activism? Would you accept, reject or reluctantly accept? If it were offered soon on voluntary basis would you accept, reject or reluctantly accept?

    Comment by Howard — February 25, 2013 @ 1:55 pm

  5. Your questions are silly, Howard. 1. An offering from above and a demanding from below are mutually exclusive. 2. A personal response to a hypothetical non sequitur is meaningless. 3. All priesthood ordinations are voluntarily.

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — February 25, 2013 @ 4:33 pm

  6. The question is not if women want the priesthood. The question is where is my Mother in Heaven. Start sincerely seeking answers to that and it’s likely the house of prejudice the patriarchy has built and maintained will start collapsing.

    Comment by wreddyornot — February 25, 2013 @ 5:01 pm

  7. Ardis,
    You’re being difficult and inconsistent; if an offering from above and a demanding from below are mutually exclusive then bottom-to-top activism has no affect on the outcome, so you are objecting to something that by your own assertion cannot occur!

    Are you really so literal that you didn’t understand my use of voluntarily? Is priesthood ordination voluntarily for males to fulfill their roles within the church?

    Comment by Howard — February 25, 2013 @ 5:02 pm

  8. Where is my Mother in Heaven? I don’t know. As a man this doesn’t seem like a patriarchy collapsing question because it seems to go nowhere except to the song O My Father. Are you saying the absence of an answer is profoundly motivating for women?

    Comment by Howard — February 25, 2013 @ 5:19 pm

  9. Imagine for a moment a Northeastern urban ward. The average age is 32, a large number of RMs/temple married, both men and women college educated and the most common political affiliation you would find is “moderate”.

    If there are those who identify as Democrats or Republicans, I would at least call it an even balance. When it comes to family, the vast majority of couples started having children after both husband and wife had finished their higher education and in many cases, the woman has had a number of successful years as a professional. When it comes to homosexuality, let’s take for granted that its a very inviting, loving and non judgmental place

    Is the bishop a unicorn?? Because I would swear that I live in the most “liberal” stake in the country, and there is no ward like this in it…

    Comment by Kristine — February 25, 2013 @ 5:20 pm

  10. And, sorry–I know that’s a threadjack!

    Comment by Kristine — February 25, 2013 @ 5:22 pm

  11. Kristine, I often find myself saying this to Red Sox fans: No, Boston is not the center of the universe. :)

    Seriously though, my ward is pretty transient, but I think more or less true to my description over the past 8 years.

    Comment by CJ Dougalss — February 25, 2013 @ 6:52 pm

  12. I am a seventy year old educated woman who has never held the slightest interest in holding the Priesthood. And the reason we don’t know more about Heavenly Mother is because Heavenly Father, He only, has withheld the information.

    Comment by Joy — February 25, 2013 @ 7:11 pm

  13. “Were is my Mother in Heaven? I don’t know.”

    “And the reason we don’t know more about Heavenly Mother is because Heavenly Father, He only, has withheld the information.”

    Exactly.

    Really?

    Well, have you asked?

    What if as I boy or a girl you’d been raised without knowledge of you mother? Wouldn’t you at some point ask your dad/parent/caregiver about her?

    It seems to me a fundamental moral — or spiritual, if you will — question. It goes nowhere if you don’t ask. That’s our history. Not asking. Not caring? Well, I’ve decided I care. I’m asking. And I don’t think sex — male-female-whatever — has anything to do with it. I think it goes to caring enough to inquire.

    Comment by wreddyornot — February 25, 2013 @ 7:43 pm

  14. To get a real read on how women felt about getting the priesthood, you’d have to get them to have the sense of receiving it without feeling like they did anything “subordinate” or “unloyal” to do so. Given the current environment, I doubt it’s possible for most people to conceive of such a scenario.

    Comment by Trevor — February 25, 2013 @ 8:06 pm

  15. wreddyornot,
    I enjoy easy access to the Spirit and often receive profound personal revelation. I have asked and asked and asked and for me the question only brings science, an extremely rare experience for me! Have you received an answer?

    Comment by Howard — February 25, 2013 @ 8:28 pm

  16. Sorry; silence not science

    Comment by Howard — February 25, 2013 @ 8:29 pm

  17. Trevor,
    In my experience women are capable of thinking, feeling, hypothesizing and speaking for themselves. But most of my experience is secular are you suggesting this is not true of faithful Mormon women?

    Comment by Howard — February 25, 2013 @ 8:41 pm

  18. My wife and I have three adopted children and one biological. One of the three adopteds asked and found his biological mother and father after asking and searching for them. We gave him the info we had to assist his search. We felt it the loving thing to do. He knocked on their doors and got to know them. The other two kids — born across the ocean in a foreign land, one of whom is also physically and mentally impaired — either didn’t have the will or desire to ask and search. Or perhaps felt it futile. We had little to help them with.

    For now, in the search for Heavenly Mother in the LDS faith, I feel more akin to my son who found than to my son and daughter who didn’t seek yet.

    I’ve decided to seek HM. I’m asking and looking for my Mother in Heaven, although I feel about as certain about Her as I do about Him. Not knowing isn’t an impediment to belief or to searching, right?

    When you, Howard, as you say, have “easy access” to the Spirit, does your experience go to the sexual identity of the Spirit? I take it from the silence that you have you sighted relative to Mother in Heaven that it has. So, is the Spirit of you experience asexual? Male?

    Comment by wreddyornot — February 25, 2013 @ 9:53 pm

  19. wreddyornot,
    In my experience the Spirit has both masculine and feminine traits but prefers to be addressed using masculine pronouns.

    Comment by Howard — February 25, 2013 @ 10:05 pm

  20. But if a majority of women in the Church told their husband/father/bishop that they had a desire to be ordained – it would happen tomorrow.

    I think if you really believe that you are seriously deluded.

    But I have found the same thing as you have, i.e. when I talk to most Mormon women about the priesthood and their role in the Church, they don’t express any desire to be ordained to the priesthood.

    It may have something to do with what Trevor said in #14 (though the words he was searching for are “insubordinate” and “disloyal”) but I think it has more to do with the fact that many women do see some value in the current structure.

    In short, do we need to make serious changes in the Church in order to create a better and more inclusive place for women? Absolutely. Do those changes necessarily include ordaining women to the priesthood and calling them as bishops and stake presidents? Maybe not.

    Comment by MCQ — February 25, 2013 @ 11:00 pm

  21. Kristine, I often find myself saying this to Red Sox fans: No, Boston is not the center of the universe. :)

    Hilarious.

    Comment by MCQ — February 25, 2013 @ 11:01 pm

  22. CJ, I have had the same experience. Women who I admire greatly will say “you know, I’d really like to bless and baptize my children, but then I’d risk being called as a bishop – so no way.” Our current priesthood restriction is man’s construct, not God’s, but God will not force the issue until we are prepared, and the sisters are simply not prepared right now (speaking collectively, not individually). They say they’re too busy. But really they’re too comfortable.

    What will change things? Pragmatically, it will be the same process as with the racial priesthood ban. That changed because the church couldn’t function in Brazil with the ban. The holdout brethren finally said “we see that this must be.” Likewise, as men continue to leave the church and an ever increasing burden is placed on the remaining men (and believe me, we are crushing our young fathers) the sisters will eventually yield and say “we see that this must be.”

    The next time the issue arises consider asking this question instead: “Is it acceptable for men to decline (or return) their priesthood authority?” In other words, do we grant men the same privilege as women to be too busy? Assume the man is busy with really good things, like raising his children.

    Most women I’ve put this question to find it very uncomfortable because it exposes their natural tendacy to dictate men’s roles, just as men’s natural tendacy is to dictate women’s. Their gut reaction is to say “sure, men deserve the same freedom to chose”, but they quickly divulge into patronizing (matronizing?) compliments such as “but we really love how you honor your priesthood and serve others … you are such a great leader … please say and we’ll make you some cookies … etc etc.”

    Priesthood is a blessing AND a burden. We talk a lot about the blessings. But unfortunately, when it comes time to put the money where our mouth is, most women view priesthood’s burdens as outweighing its blessings. Nothing will change until that balance is reversed.

    Comment by Dave K — February 26, 2013 @ 6:46 am

  23. Kristine,

    What CJ says is true only because they kicked me out. Otherwise, I skew all the averages on the unreconstructed conservative side. To say nothing of age–my third child, who doesn’t live here anymore, will hit CJ’s average this summer.

    Comment by Mark B. — February 26, 2013 @ 7:09 am

  24. I think if you really believe that you are seriously deluded.

    MCQ, while I’m glad you feel comfortable enough around me to call me deluded :), I was exaggerating. It wouldn’t happen tomorrow. But, if the desire was equal to that of black men prior ’78 coupled with the same public outrage, I think it would be on the horizon.

    Dave, I don’t find women using the “busy” excuse very much. It’s more common for me to hear the words “balance” and “order”. But considering how we view men who decline the priesthood – is a good way to approach it IMO.

    Comment by CJ Douglass — February 26, 2013 @ 7:33 am

  25. Also M, taking ordination off the table and advocating for more female influence, in spite of the priesthood, is a brilliant approach – which I’ve seen work in the past.

    Comment by CJ Douglass — February 26, 2013 @ 7:36 am

  26. I’m glad MCQ was able to parse my inscrutable post. Yeah, that’s what I meant. :)

    In other words, the topic of women’s ordination seems inextricably tied to activism. The well is poisoned.

    Comment by Trevor — February 26, 2013 @ 8:58 am

  27. I don’t want the priesthood because I’m too tired. I also don’t want a lot of other things because I’m too tired. I don’t care who does all the work as long as it’s not me.

    Comment by annegb — February 26, 2013 @ 9:03 am

  28. The well is poisoned because some people didn’t wait for God to bestow it? So how does that play out? What happens now that the well is poisoned when he does finally bestow it?

    Comment by Howard — February 26, 2013 @ 9:09 am

  29. I sounds very immature to me. Don’t publicly dialog with other members, the church or God because you might hurt faithful ladies feelings and poison the well! Are most faithful Mormon women really this childlike?

    Comment by Howard — February 26, 2013 @ 9:17 am

  30. What? Boston is not the center of the universe? I’ve been betrayed! That’s it! I’m moving to NYC!!

    Comment by Kristine — February 26, 2013 @ 9:42 am

  31. Howard, I’m not defending the status quo. I’m pointing out what *is*, not what *should be*. It’s a reality that most Mormon women associate any thoughts of female ordination with activism. That’s unfortunate. It’s a reality that any form of activism is often viewed as insubordinate and disloyal (h/t MCQ).

    For the record, I’m completely fine with female ordination and I think that gender roles and differences in sex are ridiculously overplayed in current church rhetoric.

    Comment by Trevor — February 26, 2013 @ 10:08 am

  32. Instead of anecdotes and supposition — although it’s fun to hear stories and to speculate; we do it so well at it — I’d like to see someone qualified take a viable poll on women getting the priesthood. Ask the women, the girls, the men, the boys. Anonymous polling of opinion, of course. Discreet. Comprehensive as practical. It’d be interesting to see if a youthful enthusiasm for priesthood ebbed with age and inculcation into the way things are or just what the dynamic might be across ages, geographies, sexes. My experience is that the vocal I-don’t-wanters — and I’ve experienced them too — come from the ranks of the ranks of the women whose men have and do already wield the priesthood fully and they tend to bask in its releif.

    Comment by wreddyornot — February 26, 2013 @ 10:18 am

  33. Sorry about the typos above.

    Comment by wreddyornot — February 26, 2013 @ 10:21 am

  34. Thanks Trevor, I guess you’re educating me although I find it very odd that faithful women have little to say for themselves on this issue so men are talking for them! I’m surrounded by high functioning secular women who are engaged in philanthropic organizations. Don’t talk about it because you might jinx it sounds more like superstitious children. Have they been sheltered to the detriment of their own growth?

    Comment by Howard — February 26, 2013 @ 10:23 am

  35. “Our current priesthood restriction is man’s construct, not God’s, but God will not force the issue until we are prepared, and the sisters are simply not prepared right now (speaking collectively, not individually). They say they’re too busy. But really they’re too comfortable.” Since, as best we know, the priesthood has never been given to females in mortality, are you saying sisters have been unprepared and comfortable since Eve? I’m not sure what prophetic revelation you’ve received to say it’s man’s construct.

    Comment by IDIAT — February 26, 2013 @ 12:19 pm

  36. IDIAT, the fact that we have no record of women’s ordination doesn’t actually mean it never happened. And we have little scriptural support for most of the organizational structure. Deborah, Huldah, Mary Magdalene, Anna, Junia, Phoebe, Priscilla, and many women in the early days of the LDS church performed functions that we now treat as “restricted” to those who hold priesthood office. There’s simply no way to draw a straight line from either current practice or historical precedent to some unproblematic instantiation of God’s will in this matter.

    Comment by Kristine — February 26, 2013 @ 1:45 pm

  37. My ward would probably fit the description of your ward dynamics.

    I am interested in your friend’s suggestion that you undervalue the contribution of the women in your ward. I can’t say whether you do, but it is pretty clear to me that, without the work women put into a ward, the ward would absolutely not function. No primary or nursery or scouts; no youth program unless you call “basketball” a program; little music, very poor teaching, not even Sacrament bread; no compassionate service or food orders or people to clean the Temple. Granted, I have a very unbalanced view: I have little to no interaction with LDS males aside from very superficial small talk with my home teacher for 15 minutes a month. I may be in serious trouble of undervaluing the priesthood, but yeah, I just don’t see the need for it. I attended the temple at 12 with no priesthood. I was endowed at 20 with no M. Priesthood. I served a mission and did God’s work 24/7 without any ordination. Little old Priesthoodless me is the leader in my home and I am fully capable of receiving divine direction and making godly choices with my family. When I am in a position of making decisions for and about people at Church, I can do that too. With no priesthood. Thankfully, none of my children have needed a blessing, but I have no doubt that God will hear my prayer and blessing when I need to offer it. None.

    So I guess what I am expressing is that when I say I don’t need it, I don’t even think YOU need it. Do you? I’m not talking about the rules about holding it for certain administrative positions–women administrate without it, often very effectively. What about the fundamentals of the gospel of Loving God and Loving your fellow men actually require Priesthood?

    As for the idea that if only we all wanted it, our husbands/fathers/bishops would definitely give it: nutso. If that were true, we would have equal funding and programs for our boys and girls programs from age 8-18. I don’t know ANY women who are satisfied with the status quo and it is a completely non-controversial and non-doctrinal issue. And yet we carry on with Girls Camps that cost $75 for a week (once a year!) and Cub Scouts who blow that much on one Wednesday.

    Comment by ESO — February 26, 2013 @ 2:48 pm

  38. I don’t even think YOU need it. Do you? This is an excellent point! And one that brings clarity to the reason for women to hold the priesthood or not! Ordination does not bestow God’s POWER, it provides authority and offers a formal invitation to engage God’s power and use it (or pretend to) within the LDS community as prescribed by LDS leaders. It is membership in an exclusive club but that club has no monopoly whatsoever on God’s power. Beyond that it is required to hold callings that are taken seriously, respected by and included in the patriarchy and THIS is the reason for women to hold the priesthood – to be taken seriously.

    Comment by Howard — February 26, 2013 @ 3:08 pm

  39. Of course if you believe in jinxing the ordination of women by discussing it before it is bestowed, being taken seriously by the patriarchy may not be that important to you.

    Comment by Howard — February 26, 2013 @ 3:10 pm

  40. ESO, If we could just decide whether the priesthood is super cool or not that big a deal, I would be satisfied. But we want to have it both ways in the Church, depending on who we’re talking to. In a way, I agree with you – it shouldn’t be so vital to everything. But the Church structure (if it could talk) tells us that it is.

    Comment by CJ Douglass — February 26, 2013 @ 5:34 pm

  41. without the work women put into a ward, the ward would absolutely not function. No primary or nursery or scouts; no youth program unless you call “basketball” a program; little music, very poor teaching, not even Sacrament bread; no compassionate service or food orders or people to clean the Temple.

    I have to call BS on this ridiculous screed. Get real.

    Comment by MCQ — February 26, 2013 @ 8:54 pm

  42. Welcome to blogging, MCQ. It’s fun.

    Comment by ESO — February 26, 2013 @ 9:23 pm

  43. ESO if you were a man and said the same things about women that you are saying about men you would be labeled a mysoginist. Maybe you ought to think about that and see if you are really being honest and fair about the men in your ward. I have been in a lot of wards and have never seen one like that. I strongly suspect your experience is colored by your skewed perception.

    Comment by MCQ — February 27, 2013 @ 12:21 am

  44. I want the priesthood because I long to serve God, to be an instrument of His power to bless His children and my family.

    But I don’t want the priesthood, because I feel there is more the Lord had in mind for me as a woman. Why would I settle for what the men have, when I believe there is a unique, powerful, and tailored way the Lord will call me to serve?

    I want what He wants for me, whatever that is. I know I don’t need to be called or ordained to wield the power of God. I don’t need to predetermine how I must serve, or dictate to him what I will be satisfied with.

    Comment by SilverRain — February 27, 2013 @ 5:15 am

  45. Of course it is! As I said in my comment. As absolutely anyone basses their opinions on their perceptions! Could men pick up the slack and do those things? Sure. But if women did not put work into my ward this week and did not show up, lots of this stuff just wouldn’t happen. If men didn’t show up? We wouldn’t have a Sacrament meeting and our tithing would not get banked and no new callings would be announced. Those are all important aspects of our religious practice. But a whole lot of the rest of the program could carry on uninterrupted. All I am saying is: women are vital to this operation. Anyone who thinks we are waiting to receive the Priesthood before we can do anything important is mistaken.

    Comment by ESO — February 27, 2013 @ 5:34 am

  46. The fact that women are vital is a given, ESO. No one I know would argue with that. But your comment went much further. You said that none of those things you listed would happen without women. That’s going a bit too far. Men I know participate and are even deeply involved in doing all those things you mentioned. They prepare lessons, and teach them with great dedication, not just play basketball. You do a disservice to the cause of women in the church when you behave as though the gender roles are so completely seperate from one another and have no overlap. It’s just not true. Not in any ward I’ve seen. Women have roles in making sacrament meeting happen and in getting callings made too. Your picture of how the church functions is just weirdly off.

    Comment by MCQ — February 27, 2013 @ 5:48 pm

  47. Silverrain I think that’s precisely what other intelligent women have said when I have discussed this issue with them, and it’s about the way I feel too. I don’t want to dictate too the Lord, but I also don’t want our leaders to fail to ask the right questions and thereby delay our progress either. If the Lord is willing and waiting to call prophetesses (as he clearly has in the past in some form or other) then I want it to happen, not have it wait further through our own inaction and and inertia.

    Comment by MCQ — February 27, 2013 @ 5:52 pm

  48. If the leaders are failing, that is their stewardship. I don’t concern myself overmuch with the stewardships of others. I speak up when the Lord specifically asks me to, which has so far generally been directly to them. The rest I leave up to God.

    Comment by SilverRain — February 27, 2013 @ 6:52 pm

  49. That’s a good attitude I suppose, but I think you know as well as I do that if everyone had followed that path, we would probably never have gotten rid of the priesthood ban. Just sayin’.

    Comment by MCQ — February 27, 2013 @ 10:04 pm

  50. No, I don’t. I doubt strongly that public suggestion had much to do with it, as is clear when you read the accounts of those who were involved in the revelation.

    It is a myth that this is a divine way to effect change.

    Comment by SilverRain — February 28, 2013 @ 10:36 am

  51. Sorry, I’m in some pain today and it’s making me abrupt. To clarify, I don’t think anyone can do the Lord’s work without being a tool in His hands, compliant in every way to His will and no other.

    In my experience, the Lord had never asked me to approach change in the Church as an adversary. That isn’t to say He couldn’t, just that I haven’t experienced it. I would guess that He would only do so if there was no other way, since He loves all His children, even those who have not yet learned His will. Approaching Church leadership as ignorant adversaries genders contention, and contention between His beloved children does not come from God. Patient entreaty and personal strength to endure are more likely fruits of the Spirit.

    Comment by SilverRain — February 28, 2013 @ 10:45 am

  52. My experience is different than SilverRain’s. Speaking truth to power and to those who defend power is not contentious unless they make it so. It is consciousness raising and so are resulting good faith dialogs. President Kimball admits that his biases were in the way of receiving the answer he did, so apparently prophets can occasionally use a little consciousness raising too! Prior to internet discussions like these the church, church history and the brethren themselves were surrounded in a well crafted aura of grandiosity that can easily destroy fragile belief once the truth is uncovered.

    Comment by Howard — February 28, 2013 @ 1:02 pm

  53. So, only leadership can make disagreement contentious? There is no kind way to respond to that assertion, so I shall leave it there but to say the leadership are not nearly as sheltered as many bloggers who accuse them. Perhaps that would be better understood, were they not so completely dismissed and dehumanized as the enemy.

    Comment by SilverRain — February 28, 2013 @ 4:45 pm

  54. There is no kind way to respond to that assertion I didn’t make that assertion, you did.

    Comment by Howard — February 28, 2013 @ 5:21 pm

  55. SilverRain, this article by Edward Kimball:

    https://byustudies.byu.edu/PDFLibrary/47.2KimballSpencerb0a083df-b26b-430b-9ce2-3efec584dcd9.pdf

    clearly confirms the influence of scholars and others who wrote articles and discussed the issue for years prior to the revelation. It seems to me more than obvious that those who were willing to dicuss and research and write to the bretheren on this subject were able to move them, especially President Kimball, to seek new revelation from the Lord on the issue. See especialy this statement by President Kimball to his son:

    Revelations will probably never come unless they are desired. I think few people receive revelations while lounging on the couch or while playing cards or while relaxing. I believe most revelations would come when a man is on his tip toes, reaching as high as he can for something which he knows he needs, and then there bursts upon him the answer to his problems.117

    This shows that the prophet was actively seeking the revelation. Why? Edward Kimball cites this as one of the influences:

    Study by General Authorities and independent scholars had weakened the traditional idea that Joseph Smith taught priesthood exclusion and cast a shadow on the policy’s purported scriptural justifications.109

    The obvious conclusion? Discussion and study and writing and talking about an issue can and does make a difference. and can create the environment where revelation can be received.

    Comment by MCQ — February 28, 2013 @ 7:59 pm

  56. President Kimball was not the first prophet to be concerned about the priesthood ban. There is evidence that President David O. McKay also petitioned the Lord concerning the matter, but was basically told to wait. I could dig the reference up if desired.

    President Kimball asked several people to research the question and the answers were almost unanimous (including Mark E. Peterson) that there was no doctrinal basis for the ban. It was rather a policy.

    The same could be applied to women holding the priesthood. There seems to be no scriptural basis for a doctrinal ban on women holding the priesthood. There may be a doctrinal basis. I don’t know. But it does seem to be a policy, although one that goes back to the beginnings.

    I think that it was MCQ that said that there were certain women who performed ordinances that require priesthood authority. That may be true. There are women who perform ordinances in the temple that require priesthood authority. They perform those ordinances through the authority given required by their callings as temple workers.

    I do not know if the Lord will require women to hold the priesthood in this life or the next. I do not see anything against it. If it is the will of the Lord, then it will happen.

    And, to paraphrase SilverRain, I think that is what we all should be seeking.

    Glenn

    Comment by Glenn Thigpen — March 2, 2013 @ 4:53 am

  57. I wish we could edit our posts. I had another idea I wanted to present, but being my normal brain dead self, forgot.

    Whatever we ask for, we must be prepared to act upon when the word comes in response to our questions submitted to God. Sometimes that action may not be something that we anticipate. I don’t think that Joseph Smith was prepared for the answer that he got when he prayed to the Lord about polygamy in the Old Testament.

    I’m not saying that this would be the same type of thing with women and the priesthood, but I do believe that it would prove to a pretty radical shift in the religious world that we have as LDS.

    That, to me, is part of praying “with real intent”. The intent to take whatever the Lord tells us and to run wih it. It would do a person no good to ask if the Restored Gospel is true, only to say, “Well, that is interesting” and go on about business as usual when told that “Yes, it is true.”

    As men, we are duty bound to receive the priesthood and run with it at the age of twelve. Maybe all too many of us to not magnify that Priesthood peoperly. The world would be a much better place and the Church much more dynamic and strong if we did.

    Glenn

    Comment by Glenn Thigpen — March 2, 2013 @ 5:06 am

  58. Glenn, I think the reference you are referring to in regard to DOM is in the Greg Prince book, pages 103-105.

    But I sometimes wonder if the answers (if they can be called that; he sometimes said he got no answer at all) were more a result of the way the question was asked. DOM concluded early on that the ban was not doctrinal or scriptural, but was merely a policy. Given that, I wonder if the Lord was silent mostly because he expected us to solve the problem without his intervention, since the ban was started without him in the first place.

    To me, that seems to be the difference between the approach taken by SWK versus others. He made the decision based on his own study and after speaking to many many people about it. He then sought confirmation that the decision was right. He didn’t approach the Lord and just ask for a revelation rescinding the ban. Or at least, he didn’t get the answer that way. He had to do the heavy lifting himself and then just ask if it was right. I think that’s the only way the ban was ever going to be rescinded.

    Comment by MCQ — March 2, 2013 @ 4:18 pm

  59. MCQ, The wording that I read was that President Mckay was told not to bother the Lord with it any more and that the time was not yet. I have not read the Prince book, but I have read an article by him published by Dialogue. It did not have that bit in it. It was reported by his secretary, if I re,e,ber correctly. I just have not been able to find the source. It would be hearsay in any event.

    The Prince article does show that President McKay was deeply troubled by the ban and would have lifted it if he felt that he could, but he felt that it would require a revelation from the Lord.

    I maybe derailed this thread a bit with this aside. My main point was that there was no doctrinal basis for the priesthood ban. It was a policy, but one which the leadership felt must be changed via a revelation.

    And, after perusing the scriptures, I find that there is no doctrine that I can discern banning women from holding the priesthood. It has been a policy, maybe from the beginning ofour mortal life, but yet it is one that the Lord could change if He willed it. That, a least, is my opinion.

    Glenn

    Comment by Glenn Thigpen — March 2, 2013 @ 9:29 pm

  60. Glenn, the story you mention is in the Prince book on page 104.

    But there are essentially three stories mentioned in that book, all of which take place during roughly the same time period: the late 60s.

    One is the one you mention, where he tells the church architect that he had been inquiring of the Lord about the ban the night before and was told

    “not to bring the subject up with the Lord again; that the time will come but will not be during my time and to leave the subject alone.”

    Another story is told by Marion Hanks that McKay told him

    “I have prayed and prayed but there has been no answer.”

    The third story is told by a secretary that McKay said he

    “had inquired of the Lord several times on the matter and that the answer was, ‘Not yet.’”

    Did McKay say all of those things? If so, was he speaking about the same experiences and just told three different stories, or was he talking about three different experiences? I don’t know that it matters, because, again, I think McKay may have been asking the wrong question and that’s why he didn’t get anywhere.

    You say that McKay:

    would have lifted it if he felt that he could, but he felt that it would require a revelation from the Lord.

    And I agree. But the problem was that he felt the Lord needed to initiate the action, whereas it appears to me that Kimball initiated the action (after long study and discussion) and just asked the Lord for confirmation. I think that was the right answer.

    Comment by MCQ — March 3, 2013 @ 12:22 am

  61. Bringing the discussion back to the issue of women and the priesthood, I’m not sure we can say with certainty whether women have held the priesthood or not in other dispensations.

    We know there have been women referred to as prophetesses (Miriam Ex. 15:20, Deborah Judg. 4:4, Huldah 2 Kgs. 22:14, 2 Chr. 34:22, and Anna Luke 2:36), and other women prophesied, including Rebekah, Hannah, Elisabeth, and Mary.

    We also know that even in this dispensation women have performed healings and other ordinances, and even today women administer ordinances to other women in the temple. Does any of this mean that women have held the priesthood? Not necessarily, though it doesn’t show they have never held it either.

    Comment by MCQ — March 3, 2013 @ 12:33 am

  62. MCQ in #62 said “And I agree. But the problem was that he felt the Lord needed to initiate the action, whereas it appears to me that Kimball initiated the action (after long study and discussion) and just asked the Lord for confirmation. I think that was the right answer.”

    With all due respect, I believe that you are extrapolating too far afield on this. You seem to be saying that a prophet has to phrase the question just so in order to get an answer and all of the prophets who asked prior to Spencer W. Kimball were not asking the right questions. There is no scriptural or doctrinal basis for such a position that I know of.

    I do recall the several scriptures about would a father give his son a stone if the son were asking for bread. This is from Matthew, chapter 7:
    “Matthew 7:
    7 Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you:
    8 For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.
    9 Or what man is there of you, whom if his son ask bread, will he give him a stone?
    10 Or if he ask a fish, will he give him a serpent?
    11 If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?”

    I appreciate your comments.

    Glenn

    Comment by Glenn Thigpen — March 3, 2013 @ 10:12 am

  63. Actually Glenn, I think there is a scriptural basis for what I’m saying:

    7 Behold, you have not understood; you have supposed that I would give it unto you, when you took no thought save it was to ask me.

    8 But, behold, I say unto you, that you must study it out in your mind; then you must cask me if it be right, and if it is right I will cause that your bosom shall burn within you; therefore, you shall feel that it is right.

    9 But if it be not right you shall have no such feelings, but you shall have a stupor of thought that shall cause you to forget the thing which is wrong; therefore, you cannot write that which is sacred save it be given you from me.

    10 Now, if you had known this you could have translated; nevertheless, it is not expedient that you should translate now.

    D&C 9

    This is of course the attempt that Olver Cowdery made to translate from the plates, which he failed to do for the reasons stated in these verses.

    The lesson here has often been applied to revelation in general and I think others have had similar experiences to that of Oliver.

    I don’t interpret that to mean that the Lord is going against the things he says in Matthew 7. He is simply laying out a means whereby revelation is received and asking that we put in the work before we get the reward.

    In the case of the priesthood ban, I think this may have been even more important. Think about how the Lord may have felt if this ban was begun without his permission or input, as seems to be the case. Do you think he would have been eager to jump in and fix the problem for us, or do you think he would have expected us to fix it on our own?

    Comment by MCQ — March 3, 2013 @ 4:23 pm

  64. Joseph was a great Prophet and he was very prolific when it came to revelation it seemed he had a conversational level of communication with God due to God personally training him. We and our ordained and sustained prophets cannot expect this level of communication to just be bestowed upon us without being similarly trained by God ourselves! We must reach for the Spirit to begin that training and Oliver is being instructed how to do that. This is why President of the church does not equal Prophet! Prophet, Seer and Revelator is a calling and a title, not a description of skills! It requires work to get there Pres. Kimball was just beginning some of that work after at least months effort when he received the OD2 relelation which put him roughly at Oliver’s skill level and certainly no where near Joseph’s!

    Comment by Howard — March 3, 2013 @ 4:56 pm

  65. How do women know that they don’t already have the priesthood? If God didn’t offer it, maybe it’s because they already have the authority to act in the name of God.

    Comment by Bradley — March 3, 2013 @ 7:18 pm

  66. Bradley you’ve made that same comment elsewhere and it’s kinda silly. If women have some unofficial authority that gives them the right to act in God’s name, but no acknowledgement of keys or authority, then that’s pretty unequal treatment wouldn’t you say? Why would that be the preferred state of affairs for anyone? If women have authority, it should be acknowledged and understood and should come with keys and offices just like the men, otherwise, what’s the point?

    Comment by MCQ — March 3, 2013 @ 8:46 pm

  67. MCQ, “Studying it out in your own mind” is a far cry from saying that a prophet must not have been asking the right question, especially when we do not know exactly what the question was nor how it was framed.

    It does seem that President Mckay did study the issue out in his own mind and was asking for the revelation.

    Glenn

    Comment by Glenn Thigpen — March 3, 2013 @ 8:52 pm

  68. “Studying it out in your own mind” is a far cry from saying that a prophet must not have been asking the right question

    Well that’s what I meant when I said he wasn’t asking the right question. I meant he was just asking for a revelation ending the ban, when it seems to me that what Kimball did was much different. He not only studied it out but he made a plan and asked for confirmation of that plan. It doen’t appear that McKay ever did that.

    But you’re right that we don’t know much about that. All we know is that he says he “inquired of the Lord” and he didn’t get the revelation he was apparently seeking. We don’t know why that is. That’s a fact, and I’m just speculating about the reason, so feel free to ignore me if you want but it does seem to me that there is a difference in the way he described his approach and the way Kimball described his.

    In any case, I think there is support for the idea that we, and even the prophets, do need to ask the right questions in the right way, or at the right time. It’s axiomatic that revelation very often does not come easy or exactly when we want it. It often takes a lot of trial and effort to get it. If you think it comes whenever we ask, even to a prophet, then I think you haven’t read much of the words of our prophets. Have you ever read Kimball’s account of his attempt to get a confirmation of his calling when called as an apostle? Here’s part of it:

    Never had I prayed before as I now prayed. What I wanted and felt I must have was an assurance that I was acceptable to the Lord. I told Him that I neither wanted nor was worthy of a vision or appearance of angels or any special manifestation. I wanted only the calm peaceful assurance that my offering was accepted. Never before had I been tortured as I was now being tortured. And the assurance did not come. …

    How do you apply Mathew 7 to that?

    Comment by MCQ — March 4, 2013 @ 3:42 am

  69. MCQ in number 68 asked, “How do you apply Mathew 7 to that?”

    If you will read the Conference Report, October of 1943, maybe the answer will be clear. I guess that it may be confirmation bias, because what he said was in line with my own feelings on the matter. But I did not have to comb through all of his speeches to come up with that information.

    It took me twenty years of pleading with the Lord to get an assurance of something in my life.

    In some, maybe many cases, answers do not come quickly or easily. We have to wait upon the due time of the Lord.

    Thanks,
    Glenn

    Comment by Glenn Thigpen — March 4, 2013 @ 6:09 am

  70. Back onto the Women and Priesthood subject:

    When I was in the military, I was supposed to want what my superiors wanted. I did not always understand just why they wanted it, nut I was told that was not my affair. I had to rely upon the arm of flesh which did not always get things right.

    But, in that respect, my relationship with God is the same. I want (or need to want, I am not always exactly in line) what God wants for meand the rest of His children.

    If God wants women to hold the priesthood, it will come via revelation and I will accpet it wholeheartledly. Right now, we just need to find out if that is what the Lord wants.

    Comment by Glenn Thigpen — March 4, 2013 @ 6:20 am

  71. Glen,
    How do we find out if our prophets don’t ask? Why would they as? What would motivate them to do the work required to receive an answer?

    Comment by Howard — March 4, 2013 @ 6:52 am

  72. Howard, You’re asking questions I am not sure I have the answers for. What questions are you talking about? Women receiving the Priesthood?

    What would motivate them would be a perception that a question needs to be asked.

    In this context, if there are women who wish to receive the priesthood, then I think that they need to petition the Lord in mighty prayer. It might only take one person to do the trick. But I think that we can take the Book of Enos in the Book of Mormon as an example of the type of prayer that we need to engage in in order for the Lord to heed our petitions, to move Him to change the order of things as they now stand.

    Glenn

    Comment by Glenn Thigpen — March 4, 2013 @ 10:24 am

  73. Glenn,
    Well that’s where we disagree. Plenty of people petitioned God

    Comment by Howard — March 4, 2013 @ 12:28 pm

  74. Glenn,
    Well that’s where we seem to disagree. Plenty of people petitioned God in prayer about the ban on blacks but nothing happened until our prophets petitioned God. God is not the one needing motivation, our prophets are!

    Comment by Howard — March 4, 2013 @ 12:32 pm

  75. In #74 Howard said, “Well that’s where we seem to disagree. Plenty of people petitioned God in prayer about the ban on blacks but nothing happened until our prophets petitioned God. God is not the one needing motivation, our prophets are!”

    Howard, the prophets were petitioning the Lord about the ban before Spencer W. Kimball. We do not know if any prophet before David O. McKay did so.

    As far as the priesthood for women is concerned, we do not know if it is something the Lord has plans for in this life or the next. We have not been told that someday they will hold the priesthood.

    And I don’t think that in the church, the tail wags the dog. I am not going to stand up on a tower and proclaim that our prophets need to take up that issue.

    If you feel that you have the necessary credentials to counsel the prophets, by all means take you case to them.

    Glenn

    Comment by Glenn Thigpen — March 4, 2013 @ 2:14 pm

  76. Glenn,
    A lot of years passed between the beginning of the ban and McKay, I wouldn’t be surprised if a black or two petitioned God before the civil rights movement began in 1948. That gave God a lot of time to tap one of those prophets on the shoulder and mention a course correction was in order but he didn’t. Kimball made it clear that revelation doesn’t come unless prophet is reaching for it, it wouldn’t come to him just sitting on the couch! Also he acknowledged he had to struggle with himself over his bias.

    We have not been told that someday they will hold the priesthood. We have not been told they won’t! So how are we going to find out if revelation isn’t coming unless our prophets reach for it? Our prophets must be motivated to do the work to find out.

    Comment by Howard — March 4, 2013 @ 4:26 pm

  77. Glenn, the problem is that your view of things just does not stand up to the facts.

    Comment by MCQ — March 4, 2013 @ 4:51 pm

  78. I would answer pretty much as the women in your ward.

    I am totally ambivalent on the issue of women getting the priesthood. I can imagine the benefits that you point out, but I also see the many benefits of the current system.

    And I cringe when people make claims along the lines that women will only be respected when they have the priesthood. Ugh! So nothing that they do now is of value? Women will only be respected if they do the things men do, because only those male things matter? That doesn’t seem like progress to me.

    Comment by Naismith — March 4, 2013 @ 9:54 pm

  79. In #77 MCQ said said, “Glenn, the problem is that your view of things just does not stand up to the facts.”

    And Glenn is not sure what view that MCQ is referring to and what facts that have knocked his viewpoint to the ground.

    Glenn

    Comment by Glenn Thigpen — March 5, 2013 @ 12:02 am

  80. Naismith,
    Women will only be respected when they have the priesthood says much more about men and patriarchy than it does women. It was not offered as a statement about woman.

    Comment by Howard — March 5, 2013 @ 6:01 am

  81. What’s with the third person Glenn? Are you suddenly Karl Malone now?

    The facts I’m referring to are those that we have been discussing. The facts that I have quoted from the experiences of the prophets. In the face of that you still want to say that the prophet is the dog and the entire church is the tail? Is that really what you are trying to say?

    People who discuss their beliefs and their needs and desires for the church they love are not “counselling the prophet” Glenn, and they don’t need credentials to do that. They just need the light of Christ. People speaking from their heart are never a threat to the church, nor to anyone of good conscience anywhere.

    You want to believe that God will take care of everything and that all we need to do is sit down and shut up and go along for the ride. History shows, however, that changes don’t happen unless we ask for them. They may not happen even then, but at least we can say we tried. There’s no harm in trying for something that might be better.

    Comment by MCQ — March 5, 2013 @ 3:47 pm

  82. In number 81 MCQ said, “You want to believe that God will take care of everything and that all we need to do is sit down and shut up and go along for the ride. History shows, however, that changes don’t happen unless we ask for them. They may not happen even then, but at least we can say we tried. There’s no harm in trying for something that might be better.”

    Thanks for clarifying your comments, although they do not anywhere come close to accurately diagnosing my mindset nor do they offer an accurate appraisal of my comments.

    But I will leave it there because I have drifted far off the op of the blog and this thread.

    Glenn

    Comment by Glenn Thigpen — March 5, 2013 @ 6:35 pm

  83. Glenn I was responding directly to your comment:

    And I don’t think that in the church, the tail wags the dog. I am not going to stand up on a tower and proclaim that our prophets need to take up that issue.

    If you feel that you have the necessary credentials to counsel the prophets, by all means take you case to them.

    Comment by MCQ — March 5, 2013 @ 7:09 pm

  84. In some missions, the number of sisters will exceed the number of Elders in a few short months. Think about that now….More non-Priesthood-bearing missionaries in a mission than those with the Priesthood. The Church is on the cusp of some very significant and comprehensive reformulating. Keep watching….

    Comment by John — March 18, 2013 @ 11:08 am

  85. I really really really want to hear what SilverRain, Greg et al have to say about this report: http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/news/56026380-78/women-general-conference-lds.html.csp

    Not as a gotcha – just really really interested in your reaction.

    Comment by CJ Douglass — March 19, 2013 @ 8:51 am

  86. No gotcha at all, CJ, I’m delighted! I kind of suck because I never noticed women DIDN’T pray in general conference. But I support that wholeheartedly. I suspect it took about ten seconds for the prophet to say “we don’t have women pray in general conference? Crud, I never noticed, sure, why not?”

    Matt Bowman’s book sheds some light on women giving blessings. Guys, read this book, I love it. What I’m gleaning (sorry, Matt, if I got you all wrong) is that much of our practices simply develop according to the mind-set of certain leaders, ie progressives, dogmatics, etc.—-rather than actual revelation (which is my total conclusion about race and the church).

    As I get older, I more and more feel uncomfortable when we are mean to each other on the blog. gernacle :). I think because we are mostly strong willed people who (in my case, anyway) are sort of “outside” in our wards, we’re more sensitive to disagreement. And because we’re smart (in my case, anyway), and good with words, we eviscerate each other. Rob Taber came to our blog and taught me a lot about disagreeing agreeably. Well, that’s off the subject.

    CJ, I am infamous in my stake (perhaps the world) for griping, griping again, and again about the stupidity of whoever took a general authority’s request that a priesthood holder give the opening prayer in a regional meeting and ran with it. The result is that wards all over the church adopted an “it’s in the handbook” policy of only allowing men to open the meetings.

    And you know, if it were the opposite, I’d bellyache, too. Because it’s a dumb policy.

    I’m confusing myself now. Well, my work here is done.

    Comment by annegb — March 22, 2013 @ 10:52 am

  87. Three points:

    1. Women are more likely to notice gender issues that affect women, but that doesn’t automatically make every woman (or even the majority of women) right on gender issues. Gender issues, like all issues, depend on logic and ethics. One’s gender does not automatically make one more logical or more ethical on gender issues.

    2. Would these women want the priesthood if they had grown up in a world where women already had it? My guess would be yes. Their opinion may be greatly influenced by the world they grew up in.

    3. I’d also say to these women the same thing I say to anti-gay marriage crusaders: If you don’t want one, don’t get one. If a woman doesn’t want the priesthood, she shouldn’t be required to have it, but she also shouldn’t stop other women from having it if they want.

    Comment by Hibernia86 — July 13, 2013 @ 12:13 am

  88. I don’t know, I always wanted women to pray more in meetings until I was the one asked to pray. Theoretically, I’m not opposed to women having the priesthood. But I sure as heck don’t want to be one of them having it.

    Comment by annegb — July 22, 2013 @ 8:43 am

  89. annegb, you are hilarious, but I suspect you speak for a lot of people. Theoretically, I would like to be a bishop, but I know I would really not want to do most of the stuff that the bishop actually does.

    Comment by MCQ — July 22, 2013 @ 5:03 pm

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