I’m Nina – a mother, a wife, a daughter, an artist, a writer, a thinker, a salty food addict, and a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I believe in the worth of every soul and the love of Heavenly Parents. My life began fresh when I joined the church at 18 while going to school in Berkeley. The gospel of Christ was a breath of fresh air after the trials of my childhood, and the ward that welcomed me in became a new family at a time when my own family had abandoned me. The gospel truths rang clear and true to me as I was taught by loving missionaries and church members. When I was baptized I felt I had found a place I had been searching for my whole life.
There were practices and teachings within the culture of the Church that had given me pause while I was an investigator; not enough to keep me away from the Church, but 13 years later these things have begun to come more fully to my mind. I’ve always felt women should have a greater, more dynamic voice within the Church and that the worth of women within the structure of the Church was greatly overlooked. What solidified this even more for me was my struggle with fertility and hearing over and over how my worth was in motherhood. I felt that I had much to offer, but fell short because I had failed at becoming a mother. And although I have two beautiful children now, the pain of those years I felt completely inadequate still persists through the rhetoric of motherhood and priesthood.
Recently I have begun to take to heart the idea in the ninth article of faith, which states “…we believe that [God} will yet reveal many great and important things pertaining to the Kingdom of God.” I believe that now is the time to bring the faithful women of Christ’s church out of the shadows to rejoice and partake in all aspects of the Church. I long for the day I can place my hands upon the heads of my wonderful children and give them a mother’s blessing alongside my husband. I find joy in the idea that someday women will serve right next to men as counselors and bishops. I look forward with hope and excitement that the ordination of women will open the doors of the church to a more inclusive faith. A church where we are serving and loving and opening our arms to all those who need to feel the Savior’s love, and doing that alongside our brethren.
“Service is the signature of the Savior. . . . In nothing do we resemble the Savior more than in serving others.” (Chieko Okazaki) I can only imagine with all the brightness of hope the amazing service we can provide within a Church structure where all are equal and available to bless. I know that that is the Church that Christ wants for us all. I have a deep and unending love for Jesus Christ and all that He stands for. I believe women should be ordained.