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truth a la carte

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  1. Poor Ophelia, it seems she must deal with both Hamlet's madness and Othello's jealousy (I believe you meant your wife would be like Desdemona, though truly she has an awful fate; your wife would probably resist the comparison)
  2. Your poor friend. I see this as terrible and painful. I don’t believe the story is false. However, I believe the pain involved has led to a partial understanding. Such an awful situation for her. First, Church policy is very clear that children cannot be baptized without the permission of both parents. I suspect the child’s father has not given consent for the child’s baptism. Second, the subject of adoption was clearly discussed with the bishop in a manner that was extremely painful to your friend. I’ll list three possible variations of how adoption may have been brought up**: 1) After a long and discouraging discussion about why the child couldn’t be baptized without the consent of both mother and father, the bishop may have said that there is no way around the issue at the current time; the only way to avoid it would have been to place the child for adoption years ago with an active LDS couple. 2) The bishop may be horribly awkward, and said something like, “This is one of the reasons why adoption is often recommended.” 3) The bishop may be horribly prideful, and seen this is an opportunity to chastise your friend about raising a child on her own. The bishop’s telling of the situation view would, I’m sure, be some variation of #1. Your friend understandably viewed the discussion as #3. I’m inclined to think the answer is closer to #2 . And #2 isn’t any better than #3 from the point of view of your poor friend. I’m so sorry. ** Please forgive the blatant supposition here.
  3. I don't believe it would be more awkward than our monthly PEC meeting was (our ward started involving the RS president with that meeting a few years ago) -- I was the only woman there with the bishopric, EQ pres, YM pres, and Ward Mission Leader. However, the situation with callings is tricky. Bishoprics discuss so many things during their meetings, and RS presidents have too much going on to be "on call" for whenever callings are discussed (couldn't resist the wordplay). On the other hand, the only time I really disagreed with my wonderful bishop was when I told him of inspiration that would have required that the YW presidency be released. He declined to do it. Two months later the YW presidency was effectively incapacitated due to a combination of personal illnesses and deaths in their families. They were released shortly thereafter. Callings are difficult. Involving women is difficult. Whatever the solution is, it's probably difficult.
  4. That seems like a local issue. Interesting that you feel this way. Summer church building temperature has been a problem for women in most wards I've lived in, though I recognize it as anecdotal evidence. Anecdotally, how do men and women feel about the temperature in your ward building? I'm not sure that "women's voices" haven't been heard/addressed on this point. It might be helpful to test your opinion here, and ask several women if they think their voices have been heard/addressed on this point. (Alternatively, a man could theoretically test it out experimentally by wearing tighty-whities in addition to garments for a while. And also a back brace -- over the garment and under the shirt, of course.) So even after the Church makes a change to purportedly accommodate "women," it is still to be faulted and criticized? We're now reduced to griping about an issue that has been addressed? Really? Hah.
  5. Yes, you are right that this is a problem that has no simple solution. Yes, the RS president should be far more involved with callings. When I was serving as RS pres, I typically found that my strongest inspiration was limited to RS/YW, which may be a good place to start.
  6. And, for balance, a good example too: When Ministering was announced, our ward completely tore apart the old lists and started fresh for both EQ and RS, and based the new approach on the ideas of our then RS President.
  7. I agree that anonymous stories can be inaccurate. So, rather than debate the accuracy or inaccuracy of someone's very painful situation, how about some more broadly known (and far less painful) situations? If women's voices were heard… - Would church buildings in the U.S. be so cold in the summer? Women freeze while men wear their jackets. Perhaps men's priesthood responsibilities do not require a summer jacket - Would men’s garments function like men’s underwear, and women’s garments function like… men’s underwear? Women in the church often wear two sets of underwear, and the set from Beehive Clothing isn’t the set that does the job of underwear. - Would the change to the temple ceremony have occurred only this year? Women have been concerned for a long time about the way things were presented. (This last one is a great example of a leader listening to women about something big, but also an example of previous leaders NOT listening.)
  8. Not yet able to edit my posts yet. The following is a better list of Reiss's main points: 1) Women do not lead this church. 2) On the grand scale of the church, women’s voices are advisory 3) Both 1) and 2) can lead to men not listening to women 4) Items 1), 2), and 3) can lead to negative impacts for women
  9. Well, this is the thread that did it. Time to finally comment. First, I have really enjoyed being a lurker these past many months and reading your thoughtful comments here. Thank you all. Second, I also believe Jana Reiss went too far in her article (e.g., “groomed,” “[men] rarely attend meetings with women or girls,” “women do not lead men in this church – ever”). However… Her main points are solid. 1) Women do not lead this church. 2) On the grand scale of the church, women’s voices are advisory 3) Both 1) and 2) can lead to negative impacts for women Each of these points could have its own thread. I agree with many who have commented previously, that different men take advice from women very differently. On the whole, I believe most men try. And, on the whole, I believe most women have suffered at least a few negative impacts. Which is why this is such an interesting thread.
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