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blueglass

the women's quorum - can you find a way?

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19 minutes ago, clarkgoble said:

However they were insufficient to keep up with just the buildings they were trying to maintain. How big something is doesn't matter if your necessary expenditures are larger.

At least the RS had a credit score back then.  Today, there are no assets to speak of managed by the RS, or direct revenue generation activities to allow for the greater opportunity to influence.  I can go to my father and ask to borrow $100k, and he very well may entertain my request with a detailed plan of how it will be used and the benefits derived from the investment same for women as for men.  However, it is something else entirely to show up with a detailed cash flow statement divided by gender with  rapid growth activities for females, and rapid decline for male contributions over a 5-year forecast and say that with a net present value of $2.5B annually, she (Bingham) as general RS president absolutely must have more influence over how these funds are spent.  We can't demand anything from a presiding quorum comprised of all men, but we hope for changes to representation - if anything grounded in a hope that by adding women to the apostolic Junia cohort,  the general intelligence performance scores will skyrocket.  

Edited by blueglass

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Just now, blueglass said:

At least the RS had a credit score back then.

I don't think there were credit scores then. That was really before the ubiquity of 20th century finance. That's ultimately McDannell's point. The Relief Society simply couldn't function in the modern world. It was oriented around a fairly primitive isolated agrarian model. For the Relief Society to have functioned as you outline it would have had to do a lot more teaching women about finance and so forth - something they weren't willing to do for various reasons.

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Today, there are no assets to speak of managed by the RS, or revenue generation activities to allow for the greater opportunity to influence. 

Finances are centralized for sure, although again I think there are good practical reasons for that. What would the contemporary Relief Society's revenue stream be? I think there's a case for putting the Relief Society more into the service area of the Presiding Bishopric, but the 19th century model just never coming back due to its problem with the contemporary world. I'm honestly surprised when people want it back.

As I said, I'd certainly favor a larger role for the Relief Society board including more meeting with the Presiding Bishopric and the Apostles. I personally expect some of that. But making the Relief Society independent doesn't really make a lot of sense that I can see. I think what's needed are more women's voices in important counsels not independence.

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33 minutes ago, blueglass said:

An 11 year old deacon and a 13 year old teacher can now become president of a quorum of young men and become 2 of the 4 in a ward which hold priesthood keys.  Do we have an equivalent responsibility for the presidents of the beehives and MIA maids  classes? 

These are priesthood keys, of course there is not an equivalent with the young women.  Are you suggesting that women should be given the priesthood (something I am open to if it is revealed)?   But until then, why should there be an equivalent if they don't hold the priesthood?   Not even the Young Men's president holds these keys - should they be complaining of inequality too?  We should all just serve where we are called and not be too worried about not holding "equivalent" priesthood keys and holding equivalent responsibilities.  Running a ship requires many different roles, they are not all equal, but they are all critical.

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16 minutes ago, pogi said:

These are priesthood keys, of course there is not an equivalent with the young women.  Are you suggesting that women should be given the priesthood (something I am open to if it is revealed)?   But until then, why should there be an equivalent if they don't hold the priesthood?   Not even the Young Men's president holds these keys - should they be complaining of inequality too?  We should all just serve where we are called and not be too worried about not holding "equivalent" priesthood keys and holding equivalent responsibilities.  Running a ship requires many different roles, they are not all equal, but they are all critical.

I think Elder Oaks' recent talk is relevant here. I don't think it gets the attention it deserves. His argument is any permission to do anything in the Church whether it be man or woman is due to priesthood keys. So I think the distinction you're trying to make doesn't hold up if Oaks' views are correct. I tend to agree with those who see Oaks comments as doctrinally new although it's not clear whether they'll hold up over time. (I suspect they will due to his role in the Church as well as his place in the First Presidency and potentially as Prophet)

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25 minutes ago, clarkgoble said:

I think Elder Oaks' recent talk is relevant here. I don't think it gets the attention it deserves. His argument is any permission to do anything in the Church whether it be man or woman is due to priesthood keys. So I think the distinction you're trying to make doesn't hold up if Oaks' views are correct. I tend to agree with those who see Oaks comments as doctrinally new although it's not clear whether they'll hold up over time. (I suspect they will due to his role in the Church as well as his place in the First Presidency and potentially as Prophet)

I don't think what he said is doctrinaly new, and I do think the distinction holds up.  

Here is the part you seem to be referring to:

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“Priesthood keys are the authority God has given to priesthood [holders] to direct, control, and govern the use of His priesthood on earth.”

“Priesthood keys are the authority God has given to priesthood [holders] to direct, control, and govern the use of His priesthood on earth.”4 Every act or ordinance performed in the Church is done under the direct or indirect authorization of one holding the keys for that function. As Elder M. Russell Ballard has explained, “Those who have priesthood keys … literally make it possible for all who serve faithfully under their direction to exercise priesthood authority and have access to priesthood power.”5

There is a very clear distinction that he makes.  Only priesthood holders hold the keys of the priesthood, which is the authority to "direct, control, and govern the use of His priesthood on earth".

All others who perform any role, perform them "under their direction" - speaking of the key holders.  

This is not new doctrine, and there is no equivalency in young women.   

The part that some might be interpreting as new doctrine is that those who serve "under" priesthood key holders, actually exercise priesthood authority and have access to priesthood power (I still don't think that is new doctrine though).  Either way, there is still a distinction between those who hold keys and those who serve under them, as there always has been. 

Edited by pogi

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1 hour ago, blueglass said:

An 11 year old deacon and a 13 year old teacher can now become president of a quorum of young men and become 2 of the 4 in a ward which hold priesthood keys.  Do we have an equivalent responsibility for the presidents of the beehives and MIA maids  classes?   If we called the young men quorums: 11 - 13, the "Ants", the 13-15y/o the "Silver coders", and the 15 - 17 y/o the "Asteroids" how would this fly when trying to portray equality in how we perceive young men and young women?  

I believe the YW do have equivalent responsibility to the YM.  The RS president does not hold keys, for example, but her responsibility is no less than that of the EQ president.  The keys are not what are necessary for equal responsibility.  In fact, up until a few months ago,  her responsibility was much greater than that of the EQ president, despite him having keys and her not.  Now they are pretty equal.

I don't see how a change in the names of the priesthood quorums would make much difference in terms of equality either.  

More so, I believe that our perceptions of equality between young women and men are actually hurt by the idea that in order for YW to be seen as equal, we need to find ways for them to function more like the YM do.  Part of the problem with gender equality in the church, from my perspective, is the idea (which largely comes from the secular feminist movement of earlier decades) that where men are, and what men have, is the ultimate goal and that women can only be seen as equal to men as they move closer and closer to that end.  

 

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1 hour ago, pogi said:

There is a very clear distinction that he makes.  Only priesthood holders hold the keys of the priesthood, which is the authority to "direct, control, and govern the use of His priesthood on earth".

All others who perform any role, perform them "under their direction" - speaking of the key holders.  

This is not new doctrine, and there is no equivalency in young women.   

I think you're missing the point I was raising. When deacons, priests or teachers do something, they're doing it because the key holder (the Bishop) permits it. So their authority, including the authority of the Deacon's president, is really due to the Bishop's authority. Likewise when in young womens anyone does anything it's exactly the same thing. What this does is make a distinction between office, keys and ecclesiastical priesthood. The deacons have priesthood in our language but they don't have keys in the sense of being able to grant permissions.

In this view then keys in the sense of being able to grant permissions are held by Bishops, Stake Presidents, and General Authorities. Others who might be said to have priesthood don't have it in that sense. In that use, there's really no difference between what happens among the young women or the young men.

Now this idea of keys in one hand is not novel. In an other sense the thrust he gives it where a Relief Society President is functioning in priesthood the same as say a Deacons quorum President is pretty new. It also raises the issue of the formation of the Relief Society and the infamous statement about turning keys over. What's most novel about what Oaks says is that he makes this distinction between priesthood and keys that most don't make. Although he leaves some issues tantilizingly unanalyzed.

Again I'm not making any claims that Oaks view will hold up, although it does make one wonder what changes he can make based upon the implications.

Edited by clarkgoble

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2 hours ago, blueglass said:

Does anyone have an organizational chart for how this works?  It would make sense that RS general presidency reports directly to the PEC.  That's how I understood things until I heard this interview.  Now I'm not sure.  

Here's a couple charts. One made by Elaine Cannon and another made by me a while ago.

Both show the Relief Society (Auxiliary Organization) as under the direction of the Q12 (PEC). I assume it hasn't changed much since these charts were made.

562025323_organizationchart.jpg.d1d17fbc68665e97cb029211716194e0.jpg

 

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Well, at church today our ward had what I believe was its first Linger Longer, at least for as long as I've been in it. People were gathering in the cultural hall, food was getting set out, and people were starting to look ravenous. While this was going on and nobody was wanting to eat without a prayer being said the bishop walks in and I said to him, "So, are we going to start with a prayer?" He said, "Uh... no, I don't think we need a prayer. You know, like how we don't start priesthood with one now." I then thought, "Maybe I'll go over to the table and start nibbling and that'll get others to finally do the same." So I went over to the table and the ward relief society president happened to be there and I told her, "Bishop says we don't need to start with a prayer." She looked at me and goes, "Oh, no. We are GOING to have a prayer." She then went over to the bishop and a moment later the ward was being called to order to have a prayer over the food first.

I don't know exactly how things will go with the Relief Society under President Nelson, but I wouldn't be surprised one bit if the Relief Society gets more autonomy while he is the prophet. And could he direct them to start giving blessings again? Maybe. Men need the priesthood conferred on them to achieve exaltation; women do not. This is clear in the temple. Women not having the priesthood conferred upon them in the way men do does not mean they are less valued in God's eyes. However, I often thought, "Well, they seem to be dependent on men for priesthood blessings." Again, I don't know exactly what may or may not happen, but I could see a change coming in this regard.

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