The Exponent Retreat is a highlight of my year. This weekend we had 98 participants convene in NH and still had a wait list. I admit I was nervous that the numbers would detract from the cohesiveness. But it did not. In fact I felt such a unity this weekend. Here are some of my favorite moments:
A discussion on Feminist Ethics with Javert & Jean Valjean as metaphors for justice and care ethics, and Mother Eve as the proactive model. Nicely done, Caroline.
Pandora’s beauty pageant story. Go Miss Congeniality!
Diane’s choir singing “Hope is a Thing with Feathers” that made me cry. And “Where Can I Turn for Peace” that made snot pour out of my nose. Sometime you need to cry til you’re hideous.
Winning the snack bet with Denise that less than 6 people would take a Pepsi from the cooler. Coke rocks.
Spiritual Autobiographies by Emily, Sarah, and Julie. Soul enlarging and life changing. And funny.
A thorough discussion of Ordain Women where there was much disagreement but nobody said “I think we’re all trying to say the same thing” in that irritating RS way. Because we’re not saying the same thing. It’s not just ok to take different approaches, it’s vital. Mormon feminists are not a monolith. Suzette made me question my assumptions. Thank you.
And now I want to toot my own horn and say that I am particularly proud of the song I rewrote for the talent show. I’ve thought a lot about how often we are patronized as women and how lame the excuses are for such treatment. Seriously. Sometimes I think women are put on pedestals just so dudes can try to look up our skirts. So here is my own slice of condescension to the tune of “Come Ye Children of the Lord.”(here’s a slideshow I put together to an audio of our rehearsal)
Come ye husbands of the ward,
You are precious to the Lord.
Being manly gives you worth
Even though you can't give birth.
Changing flat tires! Mowing lawns!
Your true strength is in your brawn!
Hearken unto your wife's voice;
Adam followed Eve's wise choice.
Oh how special are the men.
Never doubt your worth again.
Teaching boys to make a fire,
Looking modest in Sunday attire.
For your skills you are revered!
Only men can grow a beard!
Guard your virtue with your life;
For that is cherished by your wife.
When on Kolob women preside,
Men will be right by our side.
Never fear you're second rate;
We need your sperm to procreate.
You are vital to the plan!
Father Son and Brother Man!
Something tells me it is true
You are in Gods image too.
I hope that puts a smile on your face. Next time someone tells you we don't know about Heavenly Mother because she's just too special, feel free to share my ditty with them. But you don't have to twerk during the sperm part. That's just for the Retreat.