Hi, I’m Nigel. I grew up in Boise, Idaho, served a mission, graduated from BYU, married my beautiful wife, and am now a struggling musician in Los Angeles. While I have always fallen in the liberal mormon category, both socially and theologically, I have continually done my best to find where I fit within the church.
The first time I ever imagined what the church could be like if women were ordained was during my mission in the Philippines. My first area was a small branch of 40-50 that included exactly three aaronic priesthood holders, all under 16, and two Melchizedek priesthood holders, who would rarely attend. The rest of the members were women, including three returned missionaries (two of whom served in Hawaii and were very good at English), and a few children. Because there were no truly active Melchizedek priesthood holders, the branch president at the time did not live in the area but in the next city over, around 15 miles away. He did not know the families in the area and was put in a very difficult situation. He would have to take public transportation from where he lived any time there was a meeting or an event. This certainly was a difficult assignment for him and his family but he served faithfully. While there were 3 very capable, knowledgable, and spiritually strong women living blocks from the meeting house, and dozens more within the boundaries of the branch, the only way to keep the branch alive was to have a faithful male member come in from another town.