All Enlisted April Action- All Are Alike Unto God

Posted by on April 18, 2013 in Belief, feminism, Gender, Policy | 5 comments

Since Pants, Prayers, Priesthood (Oh My!), more church members than ever before are talking about and considering the potential for changing women’s responsibilities and opportunities in the church. All Enlisted kicked off what at least one Exponent II blogger has called the Mormon Spring. It even seems that Elder Holland was speaking directly to feminist’s concerns when he said at conference this month, “Time to time issues arise that need to be examined, understood, and resolved. They do and they will.”

He then asked for church members to be kind regarding human frailty, including the imperfection of church leaders. He implores church members to be kind and patient with them by remembering this: “when you see imperfection, remember that the limitation is not in the divinity of the work. As one gifted writer has suggested, when the infinite fulness is poured forth, it is not the oil’s fault if there is some loss because finite vessels can’t quite contain it all. Those finite vessels include you and me, so be patient and kind and forgiving.” (Citation)

Elder Holland was also the apostle who said in reference to women’s issues in the church: “This church probably needs to do better…We need to ask ourselves how to make our actions follow our sermons. I think that is a task that is still ahead of all of us.” (Citation)

allThe current All Enlisted effort is show faith in both the divinity of the work of the church and to demonstrate patience, kindness and a willingness to work with church leaders as they go through the process of examining, understanding and resolving the issues that we have brought into the open. Using the open letter All Are Alike Unto God as a reference, All Enlisted is encouraging church members to continue having conversations on women’s issues by sharing the link to All Are Alike broadly through the month of April, with the goal of doubling the number of people who sign it in support.

In the month of May, supporters are invited to join All Enlisted in sharing and/or delivering the letter to as many church leaders as possible, all the way down to local bishops and Relief Society Presidents.

You personally may not agree with everything written in the All Are Alike letter but it can provide a springboard for important discussions that can prepare the way for church members to be accepting and open to whatever future policy changes may result.

Please join us in using this document to spur some discussions with your family and friends this month. The public conversations were started back in December and we can know take the opportunity to focus the attention on some of the most core issues relating to women’s participation in church activity. Stay tuned for next month when we talk about taking this discussion to church leaders.

All Are Alike Unto God letter
All Are Alike Unto God Facebook Page
Sign All Are Alike Unto God

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5 Comments

  1. Pants …. Prayers …. and now Patience. (a trio even President Monson would be proud of)

    I can do that. :)

    Suzette

    • I love that, Suzette. (And Guest Poster!)

    • Patience of the active, cooperative support. Many feminists are tried of waiting for things to change and All Enlisted was created to for us to be able to do something about it. We’ve seen that part of the patience process requires some education and outreach with church members and the same goes for leadership, hence the gist of this current effort.

  2. I signed this document several months ago. I like it because it so clearly points out how many policy-based inequities exist within the church at present. Of course, since there are so many inequities, the list is long, and naturally, some of the items on the list are more important to me than others. Here are some of the items on the list that resonated with me most:

    Change temple marriage policies so that men and women have equal opportunity to be sealed to their second spouses after they are widowed or divorced. We already seal women by proxy to all men they were married to during life after they die. Why are we denying widowed women (and only women) the opportunity of becoming sealed to their second spouses while they are alive?

    Consider further wording changes to temple ceremonies and ordinances such that both men and women make the same covenants and enjoy the same promises. I am ready to covenant to hearken unto God. In fact, I was ready the first time I attended the temple. This is actually what I was told throughout my whole youth that I would be doing in the temple, so that is what I prepared for. It was a bit of a surprise that, after all of those preparations I made to covenant with God, I attended the temple and instead, covenanted to hearken unto my nonexistant mortal husband, instead.

    Expand hiring practices in the Seminaries and Institutes of Religion and within the religion departments at Church universities to provide women the same placement, advancement, and tenure opportunities as men. I want to send my kids to seminary when they are old enough. So I am hoping against hope that the church will stop firing married female seminary teachers when they become pregnant, so I that I won’t feel guilty for allowing my kids to be educated by an institution that discriminates against women.

    Examine all Church positions to determine whether they can be filled without regard to gender. Ward clerk? Sunday School president? Ward mission leader?

    Include women among stake and ward leaders who hear evidence and offer judgment in Church disciplinary councils. See my comment here: http://www.feministmormonhousewives.org/2013/04/all-are-alike-unto-god-petition/#comment-1232276

  3. I didn’t hear the whole talk, but i’m pretty impressed with what you’ve shared here from Elder Holland.

    Reading this post has inspired me to share the All Are Alike Unto God statement with a member of my stake presidency. In fact, I’m going to email it to him right now.

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