Posted by: Andee / Category: , , ,

It's no secret that I wander over to Mormon.org and chat with the missionaries every once in a while. I usually bring up things like racism, polygamy, the "translation" of the Book of Mormon, and general intolerance for other people, but lately I have been asking these questions over and over again:

"Why can't women become bishops, stake presidents, or hold the priesthood?"

"Why can't women bless their own babies?"

"Why are women told that they should stay home and raise children?"

"What if they don't want children?"

Now, you can probably imagine the wealth of information that spews from the young missionaries on their message program. They are not the best informed people, but don't try telling them that. It will get you nowhere. Especially if you are playing the role of an investigator. They assume you have no idea what you are talking about, and you can't possibly grasp the wonderful message the church gives because you simply haven't prayed enough.

Yesterday I was chatting with a young man named David. I told David that I was very curious why women were not given the same opportunities as men inside the church leadership structure.

He told me that men and women were perfectly equal.

Really? Equal, David? Really??

Call me crazy, but if it were equal women would be able to be bishops, stake presidents, apostles and so forth. Women wouldn't have to find a man to give her child a blessing. Women wouldn't need to confess her sins to a man. There is no equality there.

David tried. He really did. He went on and on about how God wanted it this way, and that we all have our "divine roles." I couldn't help it. I had to ask him.

"David, what is my divine role as a woman?"

To be a wife and mother.

I was so offended. I was sooooo angry. I told him that his statement was sexist, and it felt like I had stepped back in time 50 years. He told me that I just didn't understand the context of his statements and beliefs... yeah... it's *MY* fault.

He then went on to say that the power of the priesthood wasn't something he asked for. He even used the word "burden."

I said, "If you don't want the priesthood, and a woman does, how is that fair to anyone? Why must our entire lives revolve on what gender we are?"

He never responded.



  1. Cathryn Says:

    I totally agree. From what I've seen with the Young Men and Women they have both groups do something like paintball, or cooking classes so it's not divided. But in the end the girls will go to Relief Society where they make blankets for homeless people and so on. While the guys go to Priesthood where I have no idea what they do.

    And it's so ridiculous seeing all the couples who get married young and just start having babies. They "seem" happy, but it must be really taxing.

  1. Meredith Says:

    I'd like to think that he didn't respond because his head exploded. Or because he just burst out crying because he knew you had a point.

  1. [kɹeɪ̯ɡ̊] Says:

    They don't do anything in Priesthood. Maybe play basketball once in a while, or get guilted into helping someone move. That's about it. It's boring as hell, and even more useless. And priesthood class on sunday is the worst. some teacher drones on about some ridiculous topic that every person has heard 500 times that year alone, let alone all the years they've been Mormon, no one says anything remotely interesting or thought-provoking, because anything interesting is forbidden.

    And as for the treatment of women, hopefully you ignited some doubts in that poor little boy. He needs to radically change his views of gender roles and what "equal" means.