I’m an artist, but as my nephew explains, I’m “an artist who thinks he’s an explorer…” I’m an educator, I’m a son, I’m a brother, and I’m an uncle. It is because of all these titles that I care so much about the future of my community. I believe that the future will be made brighter through the ordination of Mormon women to the priesthood. In every way I support my family and look forward to the time when both my nieces and nephews will be treated as equals, having the same opportunities and possibilities.
Why I am a Mormon:
When I was in my early twenties I realized that the region where I had grown up, rural Utah, had done so much to shape my interest and worldview. I also realized that my experiences were vastly different from most of my peers. I, like Wallace Stegner, knew the sound of the spring winds as they whistled though the rows of Lombardy Poplar trees. I knew the smell of sagebrush, I adored listening to stories, stories of fantastic treasures, immortal begins, and the supernatural. I had the best childhood. In the summer I played outside, barefoot. On Saturday, my father would take me fishing. On Sunday, my Mother would take all of us (8 siblings + my father) to church. There in the church pews I would make paper airplanes and I would draw. I am a Mormon because of where I was born.
How my faith shaped my beliefs:
Mormonism taught me look for the good in everything. It taught me to love and respect others. It taught me to never be afraid to stand up for what is right or just. And with these teachings I strive daily to make the world a better place. I believe in the strength of communities and in wild places. I believe in the laying on of hands by those who love one another and care deeply, with their whole heart, for one another regardless of gender. I believe that life is poetic and that we share these experiences with one another. I believe in laughing, even loudly. I believe everyone should be allowed to worship how where and what they may.
Why I think Mormon women should have the priesthood:
Because Mormonism played such an important part in my own life I know how important it is in the shaping of the community experience. I support the ordination of women for my nieces and nephews, still in Utah, who should be able to grow up in community that will offer them equal chances and opportunities to serve where they want to. I support the ordination of women because I know the members of the church will benefit from an ideology of inclusion.