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The Marriage Wars: Diverse views on Ordain Women movement
Mar 28, 2014 | 3486 views | 1 1 comments | 15 15 recommendations | email to a friend | print

By MARK GRAY

The Ordain Women movements seeking LDS priesthood status for females is not only on the radar of Mormon faithful, but also an area of interest and a talking point for non-LDS Utahns.  

At dinner last week, I overheard a couple – the woman a non-practicing Mormon, the man an evangelical Christian – taking opposite positions on the issue.  Similarly, my wife and I view the movement differently.

The LDS Church obviously wants and values female participation – but only in certain roles which have a long tradition in the organization.  There is something comforting about tradition and there is no indication that the current policy will change anytime soon, despite the women’s ardor.

In a spiritual sense, The Ordain Women followers should feel free to fast and pray for a change. But showing up at the doors of the all-male priesthood session and requesting entrance is an “in your face” tactic sure to fail.  

(Before the LDS Church changed its stance on black males being eligible for the priesthood, we didn’t see civil rights protestors hoisting signs at Temple Square.  Historically, dissent on church positions has not yielded major change in policy.)

The man discussing the issue at the dinner table told his wife, “If these women are not happy with their status in the church, they should leave and form their own religion!”  While simplistic, I understand the sentiment.

However, I do disagree with one statement made by church spokesperson Jessica Moody.  In a public letter to the Ordain Women movement, she wrote that women in the church “by a very large majority, do not shareЙadvocacy for priesthood ordinationЙand consider that position extreme.”  

Unlike a business corporation, a church is a special entity and should not base its position on what a majority of its members want.

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By DAWN BRANDVOLD-GRAY

The eleventh Article of Faith of the LDS Church states, “We believe all that God has revealed, all that He does now reveal, and we believe that He will yet reveal many great and important things pertaining to the Kingdom of God.”

One of the beauties of the LDS Church is the belief that God still speaks to a living prophet, that He is not silent and that the Gospel is still evolving.  Faithful Mormons surely believe that President Thomas S. Monson can receive revelation from God to lead the Church.

Why then is it so difficult to understand when faithful LDS women believe that God can speak to Pres. Monson and grant women priesthood authority?  Many of these women cut their spiritual eyeteeth on the premise that it is worthy and acceptable to pray for the righteous desires of their hearts.  

Some could argue that showing up at the doors of Priesthood meeting is not the appropriate way to advocate for change, but sometimes a visible show of unity is necessary for a movement to gain strength.  

Others may say that these women should seek another religion if they are so unhappy and oppressed in the LDS Church.  This is akin to telling suffragettes seeking the vote that if they didn’t like the current system, they should have left the U.S. and taken up residency elsewhere.

The Ordain Women movement is not made up of unbelievers and malcontents.  It is made up of faithful LDS women who 

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jfclarke
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March 28, 2014
Hooray for the Davis Clipper! I didn't realize it still had circulation. Thank you Mr. and Mrs Branvold-Gray.

I have thought a lot about the issue of ordaining women and I can't quite figure out what women want here. To show how weak and unimportant men are, all one need do is go to one of the many indian tribes registered in the United States which are no longer run by male chiefs. Why? Because the men are simply unavailable. They have headed for the exits. What happens? Well..Women run the tribes because there aren't any males. That's what happens in any organization because women are what? more superior? more diligent? more organized? more what? When men abandon families it's the mother who reins (mothers rein anyway), but you get the pattern. The number of women receiving 4-year degrees has been outnumbering men for quite some time and the difference is about 25% fewer men than women are in college today. I tell ya' women don't need any more propping up. When women take over we males just don't do well in organizations like that. We head for the exits and become drunks, non-participants, just lazy and slackards.

I tell my kids, God gave the responsibility of the priesthood to men so that we men will have roughly the same chance to be saved as women. It's pretty simple. Then there's all the emphasis recently to emasculate men; to make'em all like women. Why would any woman want a man to be like her. Yuck. Women and mothers: don't you want your boys to grow up ready to take responsibility and masculine enough to crave getting responsibility? The priesthood is just another way of affirming manhood and really shouldn't be conflated and merged in with womanhood. Any church which ordains women will soon find women outnumbering men because there won't be enough men to ordain :)

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