Too old to hunt eggs?

Too old to hunt eggs?

When I was single and 21, I attended a memorable family Easter egg hunt. I am the oldest female cousin on that side of the family, and my sister (age 20) and next oldest female cousin (age 19) were already married. My older male cousin was a single returned missionary. No one invited any of them to hunt eggs, but everyone kept urging me to join the hunt with the kids. I finally explained that I was too old to hunt eggs, given that I was now of legal drinking age. They were confused. “You don’t drink.”

Not taking my word for it, they turned to my mother, who was known to be a key witness to my birth, to verify whether I had really aged out of the hunt.  ”April is too old,” she confirmed.  Then she added, “She was never any good at finding eggs anyway.”

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Girl Scouts Sans Troop

Girl Scouts Sans Troop

I was never a girl scout but I wanted my daughter to be one.  American Mormon boys enroll in church-sponsored Boy Scouts troops. However, the LDS church does not sponsor Girl Scout troops. To be fair to my children and give them equal opportunities, I wanted to find a way for my daughter to access the Girl Scout experience outside of church.

When I went to the Utah Girl Scouts website and tried to sign up, I received a notice saying that because of the high demand for Girl Scouts in my local area, my daughter would not be able to join a troop.  All troops were full. The Girl Scouts website recommended that I volunteer as a Girl Scout leader, find another adult who is not related to me to be my partner, and recruit at least four other girls my daughter’s age in order to establish a brand new troop.

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No estás sola (You are not alone)

No estás sola (You are not alone)

By Anya Tinajero Vega

Co-founder of Mormonas Feministas. Convert of 19 years. Inquisitor, eternal student and daughter and granddaughter of exceptional women. To question is to live. (English translation included below the Spanish text.)

Por Anya Tinajero Vega

Co-fundadora del Grupo Mormonas Feministas. Conversa a los 19 años. Preguntona, eterna estudiante e hija y nieta de mujeres excepcionales. Cuestionar es vivir.

164646_10101358201580119_8038971004578141439_n“No estás sola hermana”, fue lo que me dijo Joanna Brooks cuando terminé de contarle mi experiencia mientras mi rostro estaba lleno de lágrimas. Hoy, desde México les digo a mis hermanas y hermanos de Ordain Women que no están (estamos) solas ni solos. Caminar con ustedes el sábado a la reunión del Sacerdocio hizo que mi corazón reviviera y creciera una fe inmensa en que las cosas pueden cambiar. No estén tristes, el que nos hayan negado la entrada no debe significar que debemos bajar los brazos y olvidar lo que creemos es justo.

Debo confesarles que me tomó mucho tiempo y romper muchos miedos el decidir ir a caminar junto a ustedes. Tenía mucho miedo y eso es raro en mí. Estoy acostumbrada a marchar en manifestaciones, escuchar críticas hacia mí y mis causas, enfrentar a mis detractores, pero nunca en mi Iglesia. Por eso no me gusta leer y escuchar que lo que hicimos el sábado fue una “manifestación”. Siempre fuimos respetuosas, reverentes y amorosas con todos. Nunca gritamos, no teníamos carteles en contra de la Iglesia, no fuimos groseras, no fuimos irreverentes. Abrazamos con infinita tristeza a la hermana que nos negó la entrada a la reunión de Sacerdocio. Estoy muy orgullosa de todas ustedes y de los hermanos que con mucho amor caminaron y esperaron en la línea con nosotras.

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Young Women Lesson: Personal Revelation

sunrise

Morning Prayer by Subhadip Mukherjee

Introduce the doctrine

Invite the young women to list some important decisions they will need to make in the next few years. Write the list on the board.

What is personal revelation? How can personal revelation help with the important decisions we must make?

Learn together

D&C 8:2–3;

2 Yea, behold, I will atell you in your mind and in your bheart, by the cHoly Ghost, which shall come upon you and which shall dwell in your heart.

3 Now, behold, this is the spirit of revelation; behold, this is the spirit by which Moses abrought the children of Israel through the Red Sea on dry ground.

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Rejected Offerings

Rejected Offerings

I didn’t ask the woman at the door of the tabernacle if I could come to the priesthood session. Elder Oaks had already answered my question, although he had not directed his answer to me. I strained to hear him talking to the men about me, a female member of Christ’s church who wanted to serve God as a priesthood holder. I listened through a cell phone as I waited outside in the rain, where I had been waiting in a line labeled “Standby” for nearly two hours.

It wasn’t a real standby line, even though it was labeled as such. Where I stood, behind hundreds of women hoping against hope to be admitted to the priesthood session, I saw men who entered the line behind me redirected to the real, unlabeled standby line.  A man with a Temple Square name badge was saying, “This is not the priesthood standby line, I’ll tell you that.”

There wasn’t much point to asking the woman at the end of the fake standby line if she would let me in to the priesthood session after she had already refused hundreds of other women. Instead, I asked her about Church PR. I wanted to know why the church PR department had ignored our many written requests for meetings with general authorities but responded to our request for tickets to the priesthood session with an open letter, addressed to me and three other women, with our names across the top, that was published in the Deseret News before I even received it. I wanted to know why that open letter made false claims that Ordain Women had said things that none of us had ever said.

I guess what I really wanted to know was why the church had rejected my offering. I asked to speak with my church leaders. I asked that my questions be taken to God by His prophets. I asked for the opportunity to serve my God and my church in expanded ways.  With the exception of this one woman, who had patiently received us at the end of that line, most of what I received was cutthroat PR tactics that treated me as an enemy.

I suppose that Elder Oaks answered my questions, explaining that a woman is just an “appendage“ to the priesthood. But he wasn’t speaking to me. He was speaking to other men at a session I wasn’t allowed to attend.

Serving as a missionary

Serving as a missionary

It wasn’t the first time the leaders of our church had talked about me and my female peers at the priesthood session. When I was 21 years-old, I was two months into my mission when President Hinckley, the very person who had signed my mission call and sent me to the far-away land where I was serving, gave a talk about sister missionaries during the priesthood session of General Conference. The first thing one of the male missionaries said to me after returning from the priesthood session was, “Boy, President Hinckley sure doesn’t like sister missionaries!” When I read it, I learned that the offering that I was making right then, serving my God and my church as a missionary, had been rejected by the prophet, who would have preferred that women like me stay home. Acknowledging that an all-male session was an odd place to talk about sister missionaries, Hinckley added,

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