I was born in the church and have found a tremendous amount of meaning in the church’s teachings. My husband and I met at BYU (at freshman orientation, no less!), got married young, and worked in the temple together until our daughter was born. I’m a postdoctoral research associate in plant genetics, I coordinate partnerships in our ward with domestic violence resources in our community, and I believe that female ordination should be a matter of serious consideration.
Working in the temple was such a formative experience. The traditional gender divide of “men formally exercise the priesthood and women don’t” disappears there. To lay my hands on someone’s head and proclaim blessings to them from God– what an experience. It’s something I thought I’d never do. The traditional female role of nurturing others through moral support and physical care is wonderful– in fact, it’s something I would strongly recommend that men avail themselves of. But I’m also here to tell you that working in a formal priesthood capacity is different. It is so different. It is a beautiful thing. It is so full of dignity. I miss it. I look forward, one way or another, to the day when I can work in that capacity again.
Why I’m a Mormon:
This is my home! Through this church, I found God. And as you can probably tell, the temple is a big part of my world, and it’s not a thing you’d find anywhere else.
Why I Think Mormon Women Should Have the Priesthood:
I would ask the leaders of the church to consider allowing women to be ordained and exercise priesthood duties because I want my life and family to look more like the pattern we see in the temple.
The scriptures teach us that people who searched for more knowledge, like Eve, or for more ability to work in God’s kingdom, like Abraham, Moses, and Joseph Smith, were good people– not rebels or power-grubbing apostates. Our own recent church history shows us that many things that are central to Mormonism today– the Relief Society, the Word of Wisdom, Primary, the Young Men’s and Young Women’s programs, to name a few– were initiated by people who weren’t the prophet, or even in general church leadership. They happened because of people on the ground who simply saw a need and spoke up. President Hinckley himself mentioned that an important factor preventing female ordination from happening was the fact that nobody had asked. That sounds like an invitation if I ever heard one!
Finally, it’s becoming more common for young LDS fathers to take on more family responsibilities. This is a wonderful thing and I’m so pleased. And, I don’t think it’s fair for LDS women to expect men to pick up this extra workload without being willing to take on some new things ourselves.