Hi, I’m Eden.
I’m a world traveler and explorer. I like to read books, study languages and visit new places. I’m going to be a junior at my university. I am also a big geocaching nerd. I was born into the Church and had a lot of meaningful experiences growing up within it. I served as a Mia Maid president, on stake youth council, and on the seminary council at my high school. I felt the spirit at camps, at firesides, on pioneer trek–but I often felt that something was amiss.
I remember one time at Young Women’s camp, we were waiting until later that night to have a testimony meeting around the fire. I asked why we couldn’t just start when we wanted to, and I was told that we had to wait for a priesthood holder to arrive to preside over the meeting. My initial reaction was frustration. Even though I was young back then and had little understanding of the complex ways that gender hierarchies manifest themselves in today’s world, I immediately understood that women were not being treated as equals in the church.
I want women to be able to gather and have spiritual experiences all by themselves, celebrating their sisterhood and connectedness. I want to live in a world where my voice will be listened to just as much as a man’s voice. I want women and girls to feel strong and powerful and intelligent, because we are! I don’t want to have a role defined for me; I want to be what God has created me to become and follow that from my heart. I want to throw away all of those roles and stereotypes about being weak, bad at math, unable to carry heavy things, in love with the color pink. I also want boys to grow up in a world where they don’t always have to prove their masculinity–where they can be themselves as they are, whether they like football or sewing, whether they want to play with dolls or toy cars. People are much too complex to be put into two rigid boxes.
Women have all kinds of spiritual gifts that can be tapped into. When women don’t have the priesthood, half of the membership of the church is very limited in its contributions.
I believe women should be ordained.