Our action on October 5th was a beautiful and transformative event for the hundreds of women and men who participated in person and the thousands who followed our journey from afar. We encourage those who are learning about Ordain Women to read our FAQs and the many beautiful profiles on this site to learn more.
As our goal is to advocate for female ordination, not simply to attend the priesthood session, we said several things with our action on October 5th:
-It is ok for faithful Mormon women to ask difficult questions
-It is ok for faithful Mormon women to make observations about the gender inequality they see in the church
-Many faithful Mormon women are actively seeking ordination, and we want our leaders to consider this and take it to God
-Many men also want women to be ordained
This beautiful mini-documentary was made by Emily Rampton‘s husband Rick. It captures the spirit and emotion of the event perfectly. It also demonstrates that all of the individuals who participated were extremely respectful and politely thanked the usher who refused them entrance. We were transformed by our own bravery and actions on October 5th.
Our action also put a few things into focus, specifically about the priesthood session:
-Non-Mormon men can attend the Priesthood session, but faithful Mormon women can’t, even though they can now watch it live
-There were extra seats in the Conference Center, but women were not even let into the Tabernacle to view it remotely
-The Relief Society meeting is not a session of general conference and not parallel to the Priesthood session
Emily’s words beautifully describe her motivation for participating and her experience on October 5th:
We question because we care.
One of the facets of Mormonism that I cherish the most is the pattern of authentic questioning followed by divine answers from heaven. The prophet Joseph Smith, who ushered in the restoration, was only able to do so by first pondering and asking questions. He was then humble enough to act on the answers that he received from above, even when they weren’t the answers he expected. I believe that we grow as individuals and as a church when we ask important questions, wait for responses from above, and graciously accept those answers.
Being a part of Ordain Women is a very tangible way for me to ask important questions. I can and do pray individually about gender inequality issues, but I feel led to bring forth these questions to the leaders of the church as well. I recognize it is they, not I, who have the authority to make the changes that would bring our church structure more in line with God’s grand vision for us.
As a woman in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, I have authentic questions. While I am grateful that those who lead do their best to listen to the females they serve, I question why the governing structure of our church is almost entirely comprised of males. I question why we don’t speak often of our Heavenly Mother, although I am grateful that She is acknowledged in documents like The Family Proclamation. I am grateful for the opportunities my daughter will have to grow and serve in the church, however, I question why my son will be able to spiritually lead both men and women, baptize, bless the sacrament, stand as a witness at ordinances, bless his children, anoint the sick with oil and pronounce blessings, while my daughter will not have those empowering experiences.
I question these things because I care; I care about the church, I care about the women who are currently hurt by the patriarchal structure of the church, and I care about future generations.
Waiting in line for the Priesthood Session of General Conference was a way for women to show that we care, and I hope that as you watch the women in the video, Mormon Women of October 5th, you will see that we are authentic in our questions, valiant in our faith and hopeful for further revelation from God.
Just as Joseph Smith did not expect the answer to his question “Which of all the sects is right?” to be “Join none of them,” we may be equally surprised by the answer received from our question “May women be ordained?” But I, for one, felt honored to ask this question with my fellow sisters and am so hopeful and excited to receive an answer in due time.