My name is Jess. I was raised a member of the Mormon Church and I spent most of my life a very active and believing member. I graduated seminary, served a mission, and I’ve served in many callings including recently being the executive secretary for a ward I have since moved out of.
I am no longer a believer, and a part of what has lead me down that path is the way that the church interacts with its female members. I’ve heard from the pulpit at conference and in local congregations how women and men are equal in the sight of God, but with different responsibilities. My experience in the Church has taught me that the most members give this lip service, but do not actually believe it to be true. Why would they? If an organization tells two groups that they are equal within it, but then gives one group final say in all decisions, control over the budget and monetary decisions, and all the highest ranking positions; do they really mean it? Especially when the primary responsibilities of the other group include childcare, catering, and housekeeping?
The disparity is there for anyone to see, even if it isn’t publicly acknowledged by members of the Church. The young men and women of the Church see this and internalize it, they see it and understand that their personal worth and value to the church are reflected in the budgets for their respective organizations. They see it when the young men have responsibilities in the Church including preparing, blessing, and passing the sacrament, as well as home teaching; but the young women have no equivalent responsibilities. They see it when the young women have lessons on marriage and motherhood while the young men learn about leadership. The knowledge that men are valued more than women in the church has led to many abuses of power by male leaders over female members, and I believe the only way to fix the problem is to ordain women to the priesthood.
If the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is in fact the only true church and God is directing it, then he must let the members and leaders make mistakes so that they can learn to correct them. This is apparent from the precedent the Church set with giving the priesthood to all worthy males starting in 1978. What I take from that precedent is that God wants us to advocate for the right, even to the leadership, when we see ways in which we are failing to do the right thing as a church.
The Church has been failing its female members for too long, and it is time we corrected that.
I believe that women should be ordained.