Friday, February 28, 2014

Am I A Mormon Feminist?

Here I go. I know I am in dangerous waters posting about this topic. I really don't want to start a debate. But these types of questions have come up a lot for me over the past year or so in reading things online and occasionally posting and discussing with others. I just took a survey about mormon feminism and I felt a lot of clarity in writing my responses so I thought I would share what I wrote.

This is not to convince anyone to share my beliefs. But I know there are other LDS women out there like me who have been taken aback at the debates that have been going on and have not quite known what to think. I am writing this for you. The truth is, we can't worry about what other people are doing, we have to live according to our own conscience. But this is my affirmation of what I believe.

Here are a few of the questions I just answered. Some of the questions weren't worded exactly like this. I didn't copy/paste all of them and I couldn't remember them word for word.

Do you consider yourself a feminist? 


How does this term apply or not apply to you?

Feminist is a huge term that has many meanings all of which I do not pretend to know about. All I know is that for the most part it implies some sort of dissatisfaction with how you are treated as a woman. Some sort of cause you are fighting for. I am not fighting for any cause except building up the kingdom of God. I know that we are all equal in the sight of God. I know that we all have divine potential. God has given us a perfect plan in which we can live up to this potential. What I am here to do is exercise faith in Christ unto repentance, to make and keep my temple covenants which includes being a wife, a mother, and building up zion. It includes learning (from scriptures and other good sources), serving (my family, my neighbors, the community, the world, the church) and growing (repenting, overcoming weaknesses with God's help, challenging myself, developing talents). So in that sense maybe past definitions of feminist would apply to me, but the current definition of "mormon feminist," does not. Since the gospel is completely true, looking at it through any kind of lens will not do. The gospel contains all truth (and the church is God's appointed way of living the gospel in this life) so rather we must look at life through a gospel lens.

How does being a mormon feminist affect your interactions and experiences with the church?

The gospel of Jesus Christ as taught in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is either completely true, or it is completely false. There is no room for middle ground. I have a testimony that it is true. You may say that 'the gospel is true but the church...not so much'. Well the fact is this is God's church. The members and even the leaders are not perfect. But it is His church, and it is in His hands. So I am not a mormon feminist. I am a disciple of Jesus Christ, trying to keep the covenants I have made with Him in His holy temple. As a covenant person I sustain the first presidency and quorum of the twelve apostles as prophets, seers and revelators. I do my best to follow their counsel, and it brings me so much peace and happiness! I LOVE the church. I love meeting with a ward and serving my fellow brothers and sisters. We build each other up. When I am sick people help me, when others are sick I help them. I gain so much from my interactions with other sisters through visiting teaching and other relief society activities. I am strengthened by the testimonies of the members of my ward and stake, and I hope they are strengthened by mine. I love the gospel of Jesus Christ, and I love His church.

Additional comments:

I know in doing this research you are looking for opinions. But the truth is, the church is not a political or social organization. It is not a place for debate. The gospel of Jesus Christ is the way of life and salvation. It is an individual relationship with God - faith in Jesus Christ unto repentance, personal conversion, personal revelation. I hope my comments have been helpful for your research, but more importantly, I hope I have spoken according to the Spirit and testimony that is in me about this important topic.