Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Feminism At Its Best: The Gospel of Jesus Christ

 journalism to become a stay-home mother.  Others might look askew at the fact that in the Mormon church the duty of administering the ordinances of the Priesthood falls upon men only.

As a woman, and as a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, I feel empowered by the doctrine of Jesus Christ.  I also feel supported by my
 husband as I pursue the dreams and passions that have always been a part of who I am.

The following quotes should shed some light on how Women are viewed and valued in the eyes of Latter-day Saints as well as in the eyes of God himself:
"In some cultures, tradition places a man in a role to dominate, control, and regulate all family affairs. That is not the way of the Lord. In some places the wife is almost owned by her husband, as if she were another of his personal possessions. That is a cruel, unproductive, mistaken vision of marriage encouraged by Lucifer that every priesthood holder must reject. It is founded on the false premise that a man is somehow superior to a woman. Nothing could be farther from the truth. The scriptures confirm that Father in Heaven saved His greatest, most splendid, supreme creation, woman, to the end. Only after all else was completed was woman created. Only then was the work pronounced complete and good." - Richard G. Scott (November 2008)

"Blessings of the priesthood are shared by men and women. All may qualify for baptism and the gift of the Holy Ghost. All may take upon themselves the name of the Lord and partake of the sacrament. All may pray and receive answers to their prayers. Gifts of the Spirit and testimon
ies of the truth are bestowed regardless of gender. Men and women receive the highest ordinance in the house of the Lord together and equally, or not at all (see D&C 131:1–3)." - Russell M. Nelson (Nov. 1989)

"A woman can and must have an identity and feel useful, valued, and needed whether she is single or married. She must feel that she can do something for someone else that no one else ever born can do." - James E. Faust (Nov. 1999)

When speaking to the youth, President Gordon B. Hinckley said, "In this day and time, a girl needs an education. She needs the means and skills by which to earn a living should she find herself in a situation where it becomes necessary to do so. 

You can include in the dream of the woman you would like to be a picture of one qualified to serve society and make a significant contribution to the world of which she will be a part. Set your priorities in terms of marriage and family, but also pursue educational programs which will lead to satisfying work and productive employment in case you do not marry, or to a sense of security and fulfillment in the event you do marry. Education will increase your appreciation and refine your talent."

General Relief Society President Julie B. Beck gave women of the church this advice, “I have a testimony gained from pondering and studying the scriptures of a plan of happiness given to us by our Father in Heaven. That plan has a part for His daughters. We have the female half to take care of, and if we don’t do our part, no one else is going to do it for us. The half of our Father’s plan that creates life, that nurtures souls, that promotes growth, that influences everything else was given to us. We can’t delegate it. We can’t pass it off to anyone. It’s ours. We can refuse it, we can deny it, but it’s still our part, and we’re accountable for it. There will come a day when we will all remember what we knew before we were born. We will remember that we fought in a great conflict for this privilege. How do we meet this responsibility? We daily put our energies into the work that is uniquely ours to do.”

M. Russell Ballard has said, "The adversary is having a heyday distorting attitudes about gender and roles and about families and individual worth. He is the author of mass confusion about the value, the role, the contribution, and the unique nature of women. Today’s popular culture, which is preached by every form of media from the silver screen to the Internet, celebrates the sexy, saucy, socially aggressive woman. 

My deep desire is to clarify how we in the presiding councils of the Church feel about the sisters of this Church, how our Heavenly Father feels about His daughters, and what He expects of them. My dear sisters, we believe in you. We believe in and are counting on your goodness and your strength, your propensity for virtue and valor, your kindness and courage, your strength and resilience. We believe in your mission as women of God. We realize that you are the emotional (and sometimes spiritual) glue that holds families and often ward families together. We believe that the Church simply will not accomplish what it must without your faith and faithfulness, your innate tendency to put the well-being of others ahead of your own, and your spiritual strength and tenacity. And we believe that God’s plan is for you to become queens and to receive the highest blessings any woman can receive in time or eternity. On the other hand, Satan’s plan is to get you so preoccupied with the world’s glitzy lie about women that you completely miss what you have come here to do and to become. Remember, he wants us to “be miserable like unto himself” (2 Ne. 2:27). Never lose your precious identity by doing anything that would jeopardize the promised eternal future your Heavenly Father has provided for you."

Here are two great talks on this topic:

3 comments:

  1. I read an article the other day in a church magazine can't remember the author but he said...no man (or woman) is ever going to say at the end of his life...I wish I'd spent more time at the office. The real value of this life is in raising our families and equiping them with the tools to thrive in life. Working moms have a real challenge to do that and not completely drain themselves...

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  2. Yes, and I like that in the church women are told "You don't HAVE to do IT ALL." Whereas in the world we are told "You SHOULD be able to do it all. You should also WANT to do it all at the same time." Also, in the gospel we are taught that there is a season for everything, including the interests that we pursue...

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  3. I particularly enjoyed stumbling across this tonight. Where was this post when I texted you those many moons ago?? (Or maybe that text prompted this post??)
    It's always wonderful to be reminded of how valued we are as women, especially when it's so easy to get down on feeling as though we're not quite good enough.
    Thank you for the wonderful thoughts! Love you-

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