I have always considered myself the antifeminist. I would love to just be home, raising kids, chilling in the kitchen. Just call me Donna Reed.
I recently had a conversation with a friend who told me I had no ambition because I have no desire to go to school. Thanks. Rude. My ambition in life is to be a mom. I don't care to get a degree, because I just want to have kids, I have not now, nor ever had any desire to have a career. My mom is my hero, not because she is some high standing lawyer, or because she runs a business, but because she is first and foremost, my mom. That woman has raised 10 children side by side with my dad. He works hard out in the world while she works hard at home. You push 10 human beings out of your body after being pregnant for a collective 90 months, feed them, change their diapers, heal their hearts, clean their wounds, and teach them morals and values and say your job is harder.
This post however is not about my dream of being a mom, it's about the importance of women. The link above leads to a story about a group of women in the church who are protesting for equality in the church by wearing pants this Sunday to their meetings. Nevermind how completely inappropriate that is, but how sad it is to me that these women don't recognize their value. Earlier tonight I participated in one of those pointless facebook posts arguing my point (have you met my mother?) and I saw a lot of people arguing the degradation and oppression of women in the LDS church...hmm...
"The Relief Society is the oldest and largest women's organization in the world. Relief Society was established in 1842 for women 18 years of age and older. Its purpose is to build faith and personal righteousness, strengthen families and homes, and help those in need."
Really? We are oppressing women, but we have the oldest, largest woman's organization in the world? Good call. I was called a few weeks ago to be a secretary in my ward's Relief Society, and neither in this nor any other calling I have had, have I felt insignificant as a woman. The amount of service we do (not just in my ward, but as sisters) is incredible. We provide charity. Such an act is unsurpassable in this church, as stated in the scriptures. The women may not hold the priesthood or be prophets, but that's because we don't need to. Just like we are not charged with the duty of serving a mission the same as the boys, but we do have that ability. President Hinckley almost never gave talks that didn't at one point or another acknowledge the importance of women, and how special we should be treated. Men and women do have gender roles as defined in this church by The Family: A Proclamation to the World. But neither is superior. Merely different. I don't know if y'all have noticed by now, but men and women are different. Physically, mentally, spiritually. We are simply not built to do the same things or perform the same duties. Women think and feel differently than men. There's a divine reason we as women of this church are asked to stay home and have and raise and nurture children. There's a divine reason men are asked to go out and provide for their families. There's a reason they hold the priesthood.
Gordon B. Hinckley, prior President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, said:
“Women do not hold the priesthood because the Lord has put it that way. It is part of His program. Women have a very prominent place in this Church. Men hold the priesthood offices of the Church. But women have a tremendous place in this Church. They have their own organization. It was started in 1842 by the Prophet Joseph Smith, called the Relief Society, because its initial purpose was to administer help to those in need. It has grown to be, I think, the largest women’s organization in the world... They have their own offices, their own presidency, their own board. That reaches down to the smallest unit of the Church everywhere in the world...
“The men hold the priesthood, yes. But my wife is my companion. In this Church the man neither walks ahead of his wife nor behind his wife but at her side. They are co-equals in this life in a great enterprise.”
Joseph Fielding Smith explains further:
"Women do not hold the priesthood, but if they are faithful and true they will become priestesses and queens in the kingdom of God, and that implies that they will be given authority. The women do not hold the priesthood with their husbands, but they do reap the benefits coming from that priesthood."The priesthood is bestowed upon men by God. Once they receive the priesthood, it is their sacred calling and duty to honor and magnify it. Women have been given a different calling. They are chosen by God to be the mothers of men. Is one greater than the other? No, both are equally as important but each has its own responsibilities and tasks.
A man cannot receive exaltation without being married and sealed to a woman. And vice versa. "Nevertheless, neither is the man without the woman, neither the woman without the man, in the Lord." 1 Corinthians 11:11. Those feminists who don't agree with this and feel the need to protest this Sunday obviously do not understand the principles of this gospel. If the Lord ordained men to have the priesthood, He has His reasoning, so who are we to even question that? I have always felt precious in this church, like a daughter of God, like a princess. Because we all are. Even the feminists.