Not many people can say they were both raised in the church and have been a “re-baptized member” later in life.
I grew up in Southern California to a single (convert) mother. She instilled the gospel teachings into my life from an early age. I was able to have various callings in the church (YW presidencies, RS pianist, church sorority president, LDSSA member, primary teacher) and even served a mission to Charlotte North Carolina. It was while I was there that I experienced negativity and just how much the patriarchy reacts towards women.
I came home and made some unwise choices which lead me to remove my name from the church records; I never wavered in my testimony however, in fact the truth of it was that I wasn’t completely converted, nor did I understand the atonement and my role as a daughter of Heavenly Parents. After years of being homeless and turned away from my family, I was able to get my life back on track. I was re-baptized and am now married, about ready to move soon to continue my studies in Art History and Special Education.
I first became aware that I was a feminist at an early age but felt that there was a negative stigma attached so I decided not to tell anyone for fear of being ostracized. I saw how women in the church were talked to and treated and the phrase “separate but equal” never sat well with me. A friend posted on social media regarding Kate Kelly’s excommunication and I decided to investigate and find out for myself through study and prayer if this movement was wrong.
I now count myself as a supporter not only of OW, but I can say out loud without shame or fear, “I am a Mormon Feminist”. I love this church and I believe in continuing revelation. I believe in equality for all. I have a testimony of the Gospel, my Savior, and my role as a woman in the church. I believe women should be ordained.