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Nine Moons » Blog Archive : “Women Don’t Have The Priesthood Because The Q12 Haven’t Asked God About It” » “Women Don’t Have The Priesthood Because The Q12 Haven’t Asked God About It”

“Women Don’t Have The Priesthood Because The Q12 Haven’t Asked God About It”

Rusty - January 5, 2007

I’m actually not all that interested in feminism in general. So much of what they (or certain brands of them) espouse seem like foregone conclusions to me. What I’ve always considered to be “the way it should be” is what many of these different brands of feminism use as their megaphones. Of course there are things I don’t agree with (i.e. some of their definitions of choice (my simplified definition here); sensitivities to phantom sexism; etc.) but on the whole I’d have to say that I agree with most of their ideals.

All that being said, my feeling on the women/priesthood issue is somewhere between “this is the eternal way of things” and “I don’t know” with a healthy dose of “no righteous priesthood holder would abuse that priesthood”. If it were ever revealed that women could get the priesthood I wouldn’t even bat an eye. A female bishop? Fine. Whatever. But I personally don’t think the system is broken the way that it is, I think it’s the people (men abusing their priesthood) that are broken.

I’ve had a couple conversations about this issue with a friend of mine in my ward. She’s a very intelligent Mormon feminist. The title of this post is her basic sentiment. I’ve heard a number of different explanations as to why women don’t have the priesthood in our church, many of which are reasonable, others that are ridiculous. This one is intriguing to me because the same could have been said about blacks and the priesthood. This parallel raises the obvious question: the prophets did it once before and it worked, who’s to say it couldn’t happen again?

Of course the answer might be that they have asked and received an answer but don’t feel the need to tell the general membership, “we prayed about women and the priesthood and have been told that it’s not going to happen.” The other possibility (or probability) is that they haven’t asked that specific question because our current doctrine is fine just the way that it is (gender is different than race and has different implications). In other words, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

What do you guys/gals think? Why don’t women have the priesthood? And do you have a problem with the fact that they don’t?

NOTE: This topic has a propensity to heat up so I’ll warn you upfront that disparaging remarks about prophets will be deleted. Polite disagreement is welcome.

39 Comments »

  1. I think there is a greater complexity than that, I think. I don’t believe personally that even if Brigham Young had directly asked God if blacks should receive the priesthood, he would have been capable of receiving the answer yes, not because the answer was no, but because BY or the world at large was incapable of receiving the answer yes to the question.

    I do not know if this carries over to the Women and the priesthood issue. I do know that GBH is aware of the question and has entertained it, as he has noted so in public forums including on Larry King Live.

    Comment by Matt W. — January 5, 2007 @ 9:59 am

  2. You could also make the same case about same sex marriage. “Gays and lesbians are not permitted to marry because the Q12 haven’t asked God about it.”

    Come to think of it, you could probably put a number of different phrases at the beginning of the quote and have it work. What other ideas do you think we should have them ask about?

    Comment by Michael — January 5, 2007 @ 11:16 am

  3. Dogs don’t have the priesthood because the Q12 haven’t asked God about it.

    We all aren’t Catholics because the Q12 haven’t asked God about it.

    We all aren’t living in Independence because the Q12 haven’t asked God about it.

    Not everyone drives a Toyota because the Q12 haven’t asked God about it.

    There are 3 hours of Chruch instead of 2 because the Q12 haven’t asked God about it.

    We haven’t found the WMDs because the Q12 haven’t asked God about it.

    Michael, that was a fun exercise, thanks.

    Comment by Matt W. — January 5, 2007 @ 11:31 am

  4. “Women Don’t Have The Priesthood Because The Q12 Haven’t Asked God About It”

    That sentiment really rubs me the wrong way. It’s awfully presumptuous to claim to know the will of God for the Church.

    I can’t even speculate as to the reason women don’t have the priesthood. I think it’s a possibility, although an unlikely one, that the reason is that the prophets just haven’t thought about it enough to try and discern God’s will on the matter. But there are many other possible reasons as well, one possibility being that it is actually God’s will.

    I am more certain about this: the way things are is not “bad” for women in general. I see no reason to believe that women would be better off, that men would be better off, or that the Church would be better able to fulfill its mission if the priesthood were extended to women. At the same time, I see no reason to believe that we would be worse off in any of those respects if the priesthood were extended to women. All we can do is guess.

    I’m sure some women and men would be more comfortable with the Church if the priesthood were extended to women, but that alone isn’t reason enough for me to believe that a change in policy is needed.

    Comment by Tom — January 5, 2007 @ 11:36 am

  5. Sometimes we don’t ask because we know ahead of time what the answer is going to be. For us -”Mom, can I have some candy and a cookie right before dinner?” For the Q12 – “Can we have tithing reduced to 5%?”

    I’m not sure the scriptures provide any indication that women have held, or should hold the priesthood.

    If they had the priesthood then they would have control of everything – sex, cooking, house keeping, child rearing, the conversation, and men (because they control the sex), come-on men need something……by the way this is said with a big tongue in cheek!!!

    Actually it wouldn’t bother me at all if they did have the priesthood. A woman Bishop would be fine with me.

    Comment by Don Clifton — January 5, 2007 @ 11:41 am

  6. Isn’t it true that women who work in the temple (i.e. washings and anointings) are given (a form of?) the priesthood in order to officiate in those ordinances? It seems to me that God has no problem giving women the priesthood — it’s just in a restricted setting right now.

    Having said “right now,” however, does not mean I necessarily think that’s going to change. If it does at all, I personally think it may be in the next life. Or maybe I’m just hoping it’s not this life, anyway. Heaven knows that being RS president branded into my soul the fact I never want to be a bishop.

    Comment by Amy — January 5, 2007 @ 12:11 pm

  7. You could also make the same case about same sex marriage. “Gays and lesbians are not permitted to marry because the Q12 haven’t asked God about it.”

    Come to think of it, you could probably put a number of different phrases at the beginning of the quote and have it work. What other ideas do you think we should have them ask about?

    While it’s true you could go through this exercise and insert any number of ridiculous possibilities (as was subsequently done), I think the basic point is sound. There are areas of doctrine and belief that seem sufficiently settled (because of our understanding of scripture and tradition, the influence of the broader culture, etc.) that prophetic and prayerful inquiry may seem to be unnecessary–even absurd or sacreligious. And yet, isn’t it possible that inquiry into some of these areas may well be worth the effort, if for no other reason than to gain deeper understanding?

    I can certainly think of good reasons to inquire of God about women and the priesthood and the role of gays and lesbians in the church. I’m having a much more difficult time coming up with any reasons why God should be asked about dogs holding the priesthood or what brand of automobile we should all drive.

    Comment by Chris Williams — January 5, 2007 @ 12:31 pm

  8. “There are areas of doctrine and belief that seem sufficiently settled (because of our understanding of scripture and tradition, the influence of the broader culture, etc.)”

    Chris, you may want to be careful making that argument. That is how the evangelicals and catholics justify their denial of continuing revelation.

    Just a suggestion.

    Comment by Michael — January 5, 2007 @ 1:38 pm

  9. Don, you had me sincerly laughing again, the tongue-in-cheek part, that is.

    Rusty, my quesion would be if the twelve allowed women priests, how would they handle the apostle Paul’s words? Would they regulate Paul to a sexist as my high school teacher did in southeastern Idaho or would they just say those were cultural words of the time?

    Comment by Todd Wood — January 5, 2007 @ 1:41 pm

  10. And yet, isn’t it possible that inquiry into some of these areas may well be worth the effort, if for no other reason than to gain deeper understanding?

    Sure it is. But the sentiment behind that kind of statement isn’t “maybe the leadership of the Church should think and pray with open minds about issue X.” The sentiment is this: “I know what God wants the Church to do regarding issue X and the reason the Church doesn’t conform is that they aren’t seeking God’s will regarding issue X.” The former is fine. I want Church leadership to think and pray with open minds about every major issue facing the Church. I think they do. The latter is quite presumptuous.

    Comment by Tom — January 5, 2007 @ 1:46 pm

  11. Great discussion,
    I found somthing interesting the other day that I thought that I would put out there. In Romans 16:1 Paul thanks a woman he calls sister Phoebe, and calls her a deacon the the church. ( the KJV translates Decon as wervent, but most other transalations say deacon.) Any thoughts about this title given to sister Phoebe?

    Comment by adam — January 5, 2007 @ 1:57 pm

  12. Michael,

    I think you missed my point. I am not making the argument that Catholics and Evangelicals make — not even remotely. I’m suggesting that it is MORMONS who seem to approach many issues with a “this is settled” attitude that would preclude any need for futher inquiry or revelation. And I’m suggesting that that is wrong. I would even say it’s anti-thetical to the best of Mormon thought and philosophy.

    Also, in the interest of full disclosure: I am no longer an active or believing member of the Church. I am gay, and the LDS Church’s seemingly “settled” understanding of homosexuality and the many questions it raises was a catalyst for my departure from Mormonism. I am not an uninterested party in this discussion, but I also don’t feel the need to exercise caution or frame my arguments and discussion in a way that sustains or supports official church positions.

    Comment by Chris Williams — January 5, 2007 @ 2:14 pm

  13. Tom,

    I do not presume to know what Church leaders do and do not pray about. I do think that the Church–from the leadership on down–views certain issues (or aspects of certain issues) as settled that may not actually be settled. Women and the priesthood is the issue at hand in this thread; homosexuality is the issue that touches me most personally; and I think Mormon history provides examples of other such issues: polygamy and blacks and the priesthood are two that come to mind.

    Comment by Chris Williams — January 5, 2007 @ 2:21 pm

  14. I do think that the Church–from the leadership on down–views certain issues (or aspects of certain issues) as settled that may not actually be settled.

    You and I don’t know what is or is not actually “settled.” We do not know what the leadership considers “settled.” To say that the leadership consideres “settled” things that aren’t actually “settled” is a guess. People who sustain the leadership trust that they are doing OK by God. It is not our place to lead the Church. Hopefully we are paying attention to what the leadership is doing and saying and seeking to know from God whether or not we should be sustaining them, but it’s contrary to the order of the Priesthood to claim to know better than the leadership the will of God concerning the Church.

    Comment by Tom — January 5, 2007 @ 2:40 pm

  15. Tom,

    I don’t know the will of God for anyone but myself, I freely admit that. But since I don’t believe in the LDS Church (or any other) as the “true” church, we’ve probably reached an impasse in this discussion.

    Comment by Chris Williams — January 5, 2007 @ 2:48 pm

  16. Chris,
    You’re probably right. I’m not so concerned about outsiders disbelieving the Church and considering its leaders misguided. Most people believe that way. I’m more concerned about people who claim to sustain the leadership and who presume to know better than them God’s will concerning the Church.

    Comment by Tom — January 5, 2007 @ 3:02 pm

  17. Tom,

    Fair enough. For what it’s worth, when I was active I never considered questioning the Church to be an act of disloyalty or repudiation of my sustaining votes. It seems that thoughtful questioning is necessary for many of us to sustain faith, and for the overall health of the community. I also think that Mormonism and LDS Church leaders, especially early Church leaders, historically have encouraged people to study things out for themselves. I tried to trust the guidance I received, even when I didn’t understand or fully agree, and when I was in positions of leadership I always tried to sincerely and honestly support Church leaders. When I could no longer do that and when I could no longer deny the conflict between what was being taught and what my own experience and truth told me–when studying it out led me in a direction other than where the Church told me studying should take me–I left.

    Thanks for engaging with me respectfully. I appreciate it.

    Comment by Chris Williams — January 5, 2007 @ 3:19 pm

  18. I can certainly respect your decision. All we can do is what we think is best.

    For the record, I’m not against questioning. Like I said, we should be making sure that the leadership is deserving of our sustaining vote. I do think, though, that when we members claim to be sure that the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve is failing to lead the Church according to God’s will we are not sustaining them and we should not hold a temple recommend. That’s the standard I intend follow for myself if I find myself in that kind of situation.

    Comment by Tom — January 5, 2007 @ 3:33 pm

  19. On the other hand, there are degrees of “sustaining” and different people probably draw different lines. So I won’t say that anyone who’s ever said “Women Don’t Have The Priesthood Because The Q12 Haven’t Asked God About It” should turn in their recommend. That would be quite a bit beyond my line—I couldn’t say that kind of thing without feeling like I should turn in my recommend—but unless I’m a Bishop (heaven forbid!) I don’t have to worry about drawing the line for others. I’ll still be critical of those kinds of statements, though.

    Comment by Tom — January 5, 2007 @ 4:11 pm

  20. Chris and Tom,

    I’ve very much enjoyed reading your conversation here. Thank you.

    Tom, I fully agtree with everything you’ve said here. Anyway, you have Official Declaration number 1 to back you up (or rather President Woodruff’s commentary on the matter). The Lord will not allow a president of the church to lead it astray. It is not in the program.

    I agree with most everyone here that it would not bother me at all if the Priesthood were given to women. However, through my limited vision, I see no reason for it. Both genders are offered all the same blessings from God, a previous post discussed the fact that all priesthood duties of a temporal nature (i.e. giving blessings for the sick and afflicted) can be accomplished through faith, everything else would just be a formality.

    And hey, if a woman can become a bishop, can I become a homemaking chairMAN?

    Comment by Bret — January 5, 2007 @ 9:19 pm

  21. Can I just add something?

    Women are actually blessed with MORE than the men. I’m not talking about being able to bare children (although that is certainly one of the best things in my book), but in the Temple (without getting explicit), women are blessed with something that the men are not. Next time someone’s in a session, listen to what God promised the women and see how it compares to the men. It seems God has much more in store for women then they (and men, too, I’m sure) realize–temporal and eternal…

    P.S. I agree with what has been said –there’s no reason for the women to have the Priesthood. I don’t want it –why would I want that extra responsibility? Oh, and Don’s #5? Seriously, that was funny… :) :)

    Comment by cheryl — January 5, 2007 @ 9:48 pm

  22. Adam, as an evangelical Baptist pastor, I would clearly accept Phoebe’s position in Romans 16 as deaconess. She is a marvelous servant to the church. Romans 16 is loaded with the ministry of influential, godly women.

    Comment by Todd Wood — January 6, 2007 @ 7:27 am

  23. It has been taught in the church that conferral of the priesthood is related to roles assigned to man and woman. One that comes to mind is a talk by Sister Dew http://library.lds.org/nxt/gateway.dll?f=templates$fn=default.htm (Maybe a woman giving this kind of talk is even more powerful than an apostle) And we’ve recieved some fairly concrete information about gender roles, for example The Family: A Proclamation to the World I always viewed this document as atleast one piece of evidence that the FP Q12 have asked the question. The question being the roles that men and women play in the plan of salvation. Whether or not we stand by the family proc, its certainly clear that the brethern do. I’m not sure why we assume that they haven’t asked. In most feminist issues I find myself a sympathizer and really think that women have been given a raw deal in the work place and other areas of our society. But I have little choice but to leave those sympathies at the church door. Not that the brethren are infallible but there is a lot of evidence that God’s plan is to withhold the priesthood from women. After all, did not God create the patriarchal system starting with his call of Adam, Noah and Isaiah? How can we then say that the only reason that system is still intact is because we have not asked for it to be otherwise. After all, we can see a precedent for polygimy and all worthy males recieving the priesthood but I’m not aware of one for women. I would love for my wife to be able to give me a priesthood blessing but I don’t see it happening.

    Comment by cj douglass — January 6, 2007 @ 9:30 am

  24. Female priesthood might benefit single sisters, who by definition DO NOT have control of sex, husband, household, children, etc.

    Comment by anon — January 6, 2007 @ 11:09 am

  25. I like what my man cj douglass had to say. Geez! You guys stray so far from the fundamentals. The discussion comes down to different roles. Men and women are different.

    Why do women have the babies and not men? I guess Heavenly Father could have set us up in different way biologically, but that is the way things are. Men have been God’s prophets and bore his priesthood. Things didn’t change w/ the Restoration.

    You know, if you guys were really interested in more than speculation among amateurs (I’m one, too) you could seek answers to these topics (women and the priesthood and Elohim) by getting an article from FARMS or FAIR. I’m sure many who have credentials and understand the LDS literature have written on these and other topics. But, I guess that is what blogs are for–blabbering and wondering aloud w/ others who know little more.

    Along the same lines, these topics seem so far out. Ever wonder why we don’t have lessons on these in Sunday School? One reason may be that we know virtually nothing about these things and all kinds of misunderstandings/disagreements would spring up.

    Whether Heavenly Mother is really a component of Elohim or whether Sis. Smith in our ward should bear the priesthood to better care for her three fatherless children seem like dispensable questions. Instead, we need to follow Elohim’s (whatever you feel that means) commandments and help Sis. Smith and others care for all of God’s children.

    All this dragging on about what nobody knows for sure is unproductive and out in left field. We’ve got so far to go w/ the Gospel basics, I’m amazed by those who are obsessed w/ or have so much time for the mysteries/unknowns.

    Let’s do “How to be a good parent” for the next blog. Not so exciting or speculative, but maybe we’ll be better after participating. All done. Finally, I know.

    -Velvet E.

    Comment by velvet — January 6, 2007 @ 9:11 pm

  26. “whether Sis. Smith in our ward should bear the priesthood to better care for her three fatherless children seem like dispensable questions”

    I’m a Sister Smith. I have three children. I have a husband, but if heaven forbid that should change, the best way to care for my children would be the least dispensable question I could imagine.

    Comment by Julie M. Smith — January 6, 2007 @ 9:34 pm

  27. Yes, but Julie, would dwelling on those “unanswerable” (my addition because for now, it is unanswerable) questions get you anywhere?

    Wow, Velvet, you’ve got a very strong point. I find myself so at odds with many things that are asked throughout the LDS blog world, that sometimes I just have to skip it altogether. Mostly because I don’t have the knowledge base to deal with it, and I’m usually searching for things that actually affect my current life (not to diminish or put down those whose lives revolve around these type of discussions).

    Maybe you are right. Focusing on questions that can be answered might not be a bad idea…

    Comment by cheryl — January 6, 2007 @ 9:56 pm

  28. I maintain that the authority a woman holds in each of the offices of daughter, sister, and mother is greater and more real than the authority that anyone does now or ever will hold by virtue of ordination to priesthood office. The same goes for every man and the offices of son, brother, and father, respectively (when exercised in righteousness, of course).

    Comment by Mark Butler — January 7, 2007 @ 2:12 pm

  29. cheryl,

    Since I don’t see these questions as unanswerable, I consider it very useful to think about them.

    Comment by Julie M. Smith — January 7, 2007 @ 4:28 pm

  30. Thanks, Cheryl. If people want to know answers they should visit credible sources of information (FARMS and FAIR are good suggestions). If they want to socialize and visit usually taboo topics, they should continue to go to these blogs and converse w/ others about stuff nobody seems to have good answers for.

    Why should I listen to what random members of the church on Nine Moons have to say if I really want credible answers? I personally don’t. I only step into this zone when my wife tells me there’s another doozy topic. If I can’t stand what’s going on, I take the time to post something. Yep. This was an instance when I couldn’t just stand by w/ these left-field topics and associate discussion.

    So, why do so many of you come here? For real answers? Or social life? Or a blend? I worry that many of you spend a lot of time here. And what are you really getting? I bet some of this is fun. But what of the real substance and application for life?

    Especially, when the topics are about the “Q12″ inquiring about women and the priesthood or the real meaning of Elohim, I can’t help but express what I have already. Why the fascination w/ these topics in the LDS blogosphere that are not formally discussed in church?

    I believe some of you are missing the mark. All this amateur, without-a-credible-moderator, back-and-forth commentary is in part ridiculous. I know that is what makes a blog a blog. But that is what makes blogs ridiculous.

    Comment by velvet — January 7, 2007 @ 8:54 pm

  31. This (the title) is a sentiment that I simply don’t agree with. I haven’t read other comments so forgive if this is a repeat. Consider the scripture in 3 Ne. 19:24 “And it came to pass that when Jesus had thus prayed unto the Father, he came unto his disciples, and behold, they did still continue, without ceasing, to pray unto him; and they did not multiply many words, for it was given unto them what they should pray, and they were filled with desire.

    I believe our leaders are inspired, not only about what we hear on the end of their teachings, but also are inspired about what to be concerned about and what to pray about. There are 15 of them considering things of highest import. God is not going to let them lead us astray in any way that will thwart His work or His will. If God wants something done, He will let these men know He needs it done, and/or will put people in place who are ready and able to bring the issues to the table. While I do believe God gives us room to work things out, I think we sometimes underestimate how directly and intimately involved He is in this work, and how much our leaders seek His will — how CLOSE they are to the Lord. Read Elder Holland’s talk again about how our leaders consider old and new very, very carefully, and make decisions based on all factors. They are not blind to these issues. And yet things remain the way they are. We should trust that, not question it and assume we know better than they.

    We haven’t heard anything about women and the priesthood not because they don’t care and not because they aren’t aware that this is a concern for some (just some) people. Rather, it’s because either they aren’t inspired to ask about it (like pound the doors of heaven about it) or they have asked and have gotten their answer. I tend to think they just KNOW that it’s not something that needs to be asked about (at least not at this time) because they know what IS God’s will concerning these things. And I think it’s folly to assume that all we need to do is do some grass-roots revolution, “raising their awareness” so they will want to ask about and that will change things (which is what i have heard more than once from the LDS feminist activist point of view). They deserve more trust than that. They are in touch with the Lord probably more than we will ever really know.

    Comment by m&m — January 8, 2007 @ 12:52 am

  32. Velvet,
    I appreciate your concern for us (who “spend a lot of time here”). Your implication, however, that nothing can be gained from these discussions is patently false. The title of this post is a real concern of a real member of my ward (over which I have a certain amount of stewardship). If this concern keeps her from fully participating as a member of the church in any way then I think it’s important to better understand her concern. This conversation here has helped me do just that.

    Regarding Elohim, I actually find that a fascinating insight into language and the depth of our understanding of the Gospel. That’s something that I’d probably share with a Gospel Doctrine class (if I were the teacher). Did you actually read that post?

    I understand that you may not get much out of these conversations or that you may be bothered that we have these discussions. That’s okay, you’re not the first nor will you be the last. I’d just invite you to take a gander through our archives and see all of the correlated discussions we’ve had (the majority) and hopefully you can enjoy those. If not, that’s okay, my feelings won’t be hurt.

    Comment by Rusty — January 8, 2007 @ 8:02 am

  33. M&M–
    Once again, you put my thoughts into words (regarding the title question), and you did it very well. :)

    Regarding velvet and Rusty’s comments:

    I’ve thought a lot about what Velvet said this weekend and I’m trying to understand why I enjoy this blogging world so much. I’ve come to the conclusion that there are wonderful things to discuss that I haven’t thought about before. However, when there are discussions that will become heated and a distraction from real truth and/or what I should be focusing on in my life, I have chosen to just skip them altogether. So what Rusty said is fairly accurate: Enjoy what there is, and if not, oh, well.

    Julie-
    How is this question answerable? Perhaps it will be later…is that what you mean?

    Comment by cheryl — January 8, 2007 @ 11:03 am

  34. I’m a Sister Smith. I have three children. I have a husband, but if heaven forbid that should change, the best way to care for my children would be the least dispensable question I could imagine.

    Of course you should care about caring for your children, but Julie, are you saying you would clamor for the priesthood if you became a widow so you could “better care for them”? If not (and I would have guessed/hoped you wouldnt’ be the type to get into that mindset), I don’t understand why the flippant comment….

    Comment by m&m — January 8, 2007 @ 5:11 pm

  35. While we’re speculating, I’ve wondered what kind of different circumstances would be created if women were given the priesthood. Would everyone just join the elders quorum? If so, would there be a table cloth? Would they do away with visit teaching and just make husband/wife the new hometeaching companions? Would a female bishop need a worthy priesthood sister to hang around while she’s interviewing a brother? Would the women be counceled to wear a white blouse or dress while passing the sacrament? Would some sisters look down on other sisters for not wearing a white blouse to church? Would sister missionaries be called at 19? Would men start to be called as primary president? Would the young womens program blow up? Would old single men start getting sealed to Eliza R. Snow? Would my 96 year old great grandmothers head explode?

    Comment by cj douglass — January 9, 2007 @ 12:26 am

  36. m&m,

    No, *I* wouldn’t clamour for it. But I am extremely sympathetic for those who are at loose ends on this issue. I’m pretty sure that I’ve had this conversation with you before–no one is helped when women who are concerned about this issue are told to just stop worrying about it.

    cheryl, I have answers that feel very comfortable to me. I’m not claiming that anyone else should give any credence to my answers, but I just don’t see questions related to women’s roles as unanswerable.

    Comment by Julie M. Smith — January 9, 2007 @ 1:22 am

  37. Julie, OK. But I also don’t think it does any good for people who struggle to give them false hopes of things “changing” to suit what they think might help them feel better, or to feed their desire to clamor for change. I don’t know how you came to peace with these issues, but I think sometimes we do more harm then good if we focus on the concerns so much that they take on a life of their own and make people think they are more in tune with how things should be than the prophets are. That is what concerns me about this kind of issue…it’s not lack of sympathy at all, but deep concern that these people not pull themselves away from the Spirit (One who can help them find peace amidst their questions) by undermining or speaking out against the prophets re: these topics.

    Comment by m&m — January 9, 2007 @ 2:09 am

  38. I think the most correct answer is “we don’t know”. Have they asked? We don’t know. Would asking and receiving the answer to that question result in a change of any kind? We don’t know. Why are there earthly priests and not earthly priestesses? We don’t know.

    I think one reason the issue can be frustrating comes from the priesthood (its powers, oath & covenant, duties, blessings, etc) being more easily defined and quantifiable than the ‘separate but equal’ role(s) of women.

    In the same ‘breath’ as introducing me to God, the Holy Spirit told me I would understand someday why I did not have the priesthood now, and it is with that testimony I can say it does not bother me. What I do yearn for is the understanding of what I as a woman am to bring to the Lord’s table here and now. Without that initial reassurance (which to me doesn’t preclude God changing anything tomorrow or whenever), I can see it would be much much harder to feel like something wasn’t broken or sadly incomplete.

    Comment by Téa — January 10, 2007 @ 1:43 am

  39. Wow, Téa. What a “breath” that was. :)

    Having met you, I can think of some pretty cute and energetic evidences of ways that you are making a huge difference at the Lord’s table. Huge. :) For generations to come, I’d say…. Just my two cents on that. :)

    Comment by m&m — January 11, 2007 @ 12:05 am

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