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Church ends saturday evening sessions for general conference


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2 minutes ago, bluebell said:

I'm talking about something different.  For the stake RS (at least in the 5 different states and multiple wards in each state that I've been a member of) this is typically a 4 hour to all day event.  There is usually one keynote speaker that is often not actually from the stake, and then the stake leaders will speak as well.  There are other activities (sometimes something service oriented and/or breakout sessions in different rooms in the stake center) and then almost always a lunch served at some point during the day.

Sounds like a local version of the BYU Women’s Conference. I’ve heard of such events. Not sure they’re standard throughout the Church, though. 

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1 minute ago, Scott Lloyd said:

Sounds like a local version of the BYU Women’s Conference. I’ve heard of such events. Not sure they’re standard throughout the Church, though. 

Like I said, I've never been a member of a stake that didn't have them.  Not even on my mission.  But I'm sure you are right in that internationally they might not be a thing.

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7 minutes ago, smac97 said:

An excerpt from the U.S. News about this story (article by the AP) :

This seems a bit garbled, does it not?  The first paragraph references "{a} session that used to be reserved for men only ... has been permanently scrapped," but the second then states that the "Saturday evening session {} alternate{s} each six months between being for only men and only women."  

Both sessions are being discontinued.  

I wonder if this is a bit of journalistic pot-stirring gone awry.  The third paragraph references the infamous-and-anonymous "some" to make a point about "gender inequality in the faith."  I wonder who these "some women" are, and if they likewise objected to the Women's Session as being a problematic "women-only session."

Thanks,

-Smac

Yeah, it definitely seems like pot stirring. My guess is the AP picked it up from the Salt Lake Tribune, which is prone to such things. And the garbled nature of the report probably stems from the Tribune’s pot stirring slant. 

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3 minutes ago, Bernard Gui said:

Never miss an opportunity to insert a dig, right?

Yep.  Here's another (same article, -different title) :

Quote

Mormons scrap conference session once reserved for men only

The Associated Press

June 7, 2021, 12:43 PM

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — A session that used to be reserved for men only at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ twice-annual signature conference has been permanently scrapped, the faith announced Monday.

The decision came three years after the church changed the Saturday evening session to alternate each six months between being for only men and only for women — and nearly eight years after the faith began broadcasting the male-only session.

Some women in the faith objected to the male-only session, contending it was an illustration of a gender inequality in the faith.

Only men are allowed to be considered priesthood holders in the faith’s lay clergy, a distinction that allows them to lead congregations and hold the highest leadership positions in the Utah-based faith that counts 16.5 million members worldwide.

I guess "Mormons scrap conference session once reserved for women only" wouldn't get enough clicks.

Thanks,

-Smac

 

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Posted (edited)
11 minutes ago, bluebell said:

Like I said, I've never been a member of a stake that didn't have them.  Not even on my mission.  But I'm sure you are right in that internationally they might not be a thing.

I’ve not heard of one even locally in quite a while. I think it’s like a lot of things in that the idea spreads organically by word-of-mouth, then tends to fade over time. 

Edited by Scott Lloyd
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Excellent news, now there are no more excuses for NOT spending more time with the family and the community. Now they need to eliminate the endless meetings held before/after the Sunday block (administrative meetings, firesides, etc.), and, of course, implement 5th-Sunday-Home-Church...

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53 minutes ago, Scott Lloyd said:

I’ve not heard of one even locally in quite a while. I think it’s like a lot of things in that the idea spreads organically by word-of-mouth, then tends to fade over time. 

Very weird. I've been to one every year since I started RS as an 18 year old.  In Wyoming, Utah, Idaho, Montana, North Dakota, and California.  We even had one last year in our stake over zoom.

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3 minutes ago, bluebell said:

Very weird. I've been to one every year since I started RS as an 18 year old.  In Wyoming, Utah, Idaho, Montana, North Dakota, and California.  We even had one last year in our stake over zoom.

Is that the same as Women's Conference? here it's an all day do, speakers, workshops, lunch, dinner-depending on how long it is

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1 hour ago, bluebell said:

Thoughts?  

With access so prevalent now, I think the Saturday evening session was slowly evolving into a de facto fifth general session anyway.

I know plenty of couples who would watch it at home together regardless of which session it happened to be.

And since the contents are going to be distributed world/church wide anyway, I don't really see the need for the church to maintain what essentially amounts to gender based early access privileges to 20% of General Conference.

So while I so lament the passing of the traditions associated with those additional conference sessions - especially since my son is not yet a Deacon and will miss out on them completely - I think the change is probably for the best.

 

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1 hour ago, smac97 said:

Yep.  Here's another (same article, -different title) :

I guess "Mormons scrap conference session once reserved for women only" wouldn't get enough clicks.

Thanks,

-Smac

 

And another:

Quote

Mormons scrapping men-only conference sessions

And another:

Quote

Latter-day Saints scrap conference session once reserved for men only

Thanks,

-Smac

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13 minutes ago, Duncan said:

Is that the same as Women's Conference? here it's an all day do, speakers, workshops, lunch, dinner-depending on how long it is

Could be.  I've only ever heard it referred to as the stake RS meeting.

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8 minutes ago, juliann said:

The men had pretty much taken over women's session anyway. 

Was that a change from how it used to be when it was held in September?  I remember the first presidency always speaking at those but now I'm wondering if they used to do them differently before I came of age.

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3 minutes ago, juliann said:

The men had pretty much taken over women's session anyway.

You sound as of the members of the First Presidency are interlopers.

I did a quick skim of the last several years of Women's Session Talks:

Quote

 

October 2020 Session: 3 talks by women

  • By Union of Feeling We Obtain Power with God - Sharon Eubank
  • Keep the Change - Becky Craven
  • The Healing Power of Jesus Christ - Cristina B. Franco
  • Sisters in Zion - Henry B. Eyring
  • Be of Good Cheer - Dallin H. Oaks
  • Embrace the Future with Faith - Russell M. Nelson

October 2019 Session: 3 talks by women

  • Thru Cloud and Sunshine, Lord, Abide with Me! - Reyna I. Aburto
  • Honoring His Name - Lisa L. Harkness
  • Beloved Daughters - Bonnie H. Cordon
  • Covenant Women in Partnership with God - Henry B. Eyring
  • Two Great Commandments - Dallin H. Oaks
  • Spiritual Treasures - Russell M. Nelson

October 2018 Session: 3 talks by women

  • For Him - Joy D. Jones
  • Divine Discontent - Michelle D. Craig
  • The Joy of Unselfish Service - Cristina B. Franco
  • Women and Gospel Learning in the Home - Henry B. Eyring
  • Parents and Children - Dallin H. Oaks
  • Sisters’ Participation in the Gathering of Israel - Russell M. Nelson

April 2017 Session: 3 talks by women

  • Trust in the Lord and Lean Not - Bonnie H. Cordon
  • The Beauty of Holiness - Carol F. McConkie
  • Certain Women - Linda K. Burton
  • “My Peace I Leave with You” - Henry B. Eyring

October 2016 Session: 3 talks by women

  • I Will Bring the Light of the Gospel into My Home - Jean B. Bingham
  • The Master Healer - Carole M. Stephens
  • Rise Up in Strength, Sisters in Zion - Bonnie L. Oscarson
  • Fourth Floor, Last Door - Dieter F. Uchtdorf

April 2016 Session: 3 talks by women

  • He Asks Us to Be His Hands - Cheryl A. Esplin
  • What Shall We Do? - Neill F. Marriott
  • “I Was a Stranger” - Linda K. Burton
  • Trust in That Spirit Which Leadeth to Do Good - Henry B. Eyring

October 2015: 3 talks by women

  • Discovering the Divinity Within - Rosemary M. Wixom
  • Worthy of Our Promised Blessings - Linda S. Reeves
  • Here to Serve a Righteous Cause - Carol F. McConkie
  • A Summer with Great-Aunt Rose - Dieter F. Uchtdorf

April 2015 Session: 3 talks by women

  • Filling Our Homes with Light and Truth - Cheryl A. Esplin
  • The Family Is of God - Carole M. Stephens
  • Defenders of the Family Proclamation - Bonnie L. Oscarson
  • The Comforter - Henry B. Eyring

October 2014 Session: 3 talks by women

  • Prepared in a Manner That Never Had Been Known - Linda K. Burton
  • Covenant Daughters of God - Jean A. Stevens
  • Sharing Your Light - Neill F. Marriott
  • Living the Gospel Joyful - Dieter F. Uchtdorf

April 2014 Session: 3 talks by women

  • Keeping Covenants Protects Us, Prepares Us, and Empowers Us - Rosemary M. Wixom
  • Sisterhood: Oh, How We Need Each Other - Bonnie L. Oscarson
  • Wanted: Hands and Hearts to Hasten the Work - Linda K. Burton
  • Daughters in the Covenant - Henry B. Eyring

October 2013 Session: 3 talks by women

  • The Power, Joy, and Love of Covenant Keeping - Linda K. Burton
  • We Have Great Reason to Rejoice - Carole M. Stephens
  • Claim the Blessings of Your Covenants - Linda S. Reeves
  • We Never Walk Alone - Thomas S. Monson

April 2013 Session: 3 talks by women

  • Your Holy Places - Ann M. Dibb
  • When You Save a Girl, You Save Generations - Mary N. Cook
  • Be Not Moved! - Elaine S. Dalton
  • Your Wonderful Journey Home - Dieter F. Uchtdorf

October 2012 Session: 3 talks by women

  • Is Faith in the Atonement of Jesus Christ Written in Our Hearts? - Linda K. Burton
  • Wide Awake to Our Duties - Carole M. Stephens
  • The Lord Has Not Forgotten You - Linda S. Reeves
  • The Caregiver - Henry B. Eyring

April 2012 Session: 3 talks by women

  • Arise and Shine Forth - Ann M. Dibb
  • Seek Learning: You Have a Work to Do - Mary N. Cook
  • Now Is the Time to Arise and Shine! - Elaine S. Dalton
  • Believe, Obey, and Endure - Thomas S. Monson

October 2011 Session: 3 talks by women

  • What I Hope My Granddaughters (and Grandsons) Will Understand about Relief Society - Julie B. Beck
  • Charity Never Faileth - Silvia H. Allred
  • Cleave unto the Covenants - Barbara Thompson
  • Forget Me Not - Dieter F. Uchtdorf

April 2011 Session: 3 talks by women

  • I Believe in Being Honest and True - Ann M. Dibb
  • “Remember This: Kindness Begins with Me” - Mary N. Cook
  • Guardians of Virtue - Elaine S. Dalton
  • A Living Testimony - Henry B. Eyring

October 2010 Session: 3 talks by women

  • Daughters in My Kingdom: The History and Work of Relief Society - Julie B. Beck
  • Steadfast and Immovable - Silvia H. Allred
  • And of Some Have Compassion, Making a Difference - Barbara Thompson
  • Charity Never Faileth - Thomas S. Monson

April 2010 Session: 3 talks by women

  • Be of a Good Courage - Ann M. Dibb
  • Never, Never, Never Give Up! - Mary N. Cook
  • Remember Who You Are! - Elaine S. Dalton
  • Your Happily Ever After - Dieter F. Uchtdorf

 

The recent change has been to have all three members of the First Presidency address the women of the Church.  I struggle to see how that is a negative or inappropriate thing, particularly where it has not diminished the number of women speakers during the Women's Sessions.

3 minutes ago, juliann said:

I will be very surprised, but very pleased, if they add more women to the general sessions.

Same here.

Of course, women leaders are already fairly over-represented in the general sessions.

Thanks,

-Smac

 

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Just now, jkwilliams said:

I think anyone would have a hard time seeing an overrepresentation of women in conference. 

I understand what Spencer is saying, and that he is using a specific measurement (the total number of GAs compared to the number of female GAs that speak) to determine that women speakers are overrepresented in GC, but I think it's important to recognize that that measurement is not the only valid or reasonable option that can be used when discussing representation.

 

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47 minutes ago, juliann said:

The men had pretty much taken over women's session anyway. I will be very surprised, but very pleased, if they add more women to the general sessions.

I knew the day would come when you and I would agree on something 😁. I never liked that the last speaker at the women's conference was always a man. I felt this way years and years ago. Just doesn't makes sense. 

   Personally, I think the change will bring something better hopefully. Who knows, by the time we get to October conference, there could be even more changes.

 

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8 minutes ago, jkwilliams said:

I understood that, as well, but the idea of "overrepresentation" suggests that women are outsiders. At least it does to me.

I agree.

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3 minutes ago, bluebell said:
Quote

Not if you consider the number of female members, which I think make up around 52% of church membership.

Again: "Women leaders are already fairly over-represented in the general sessions."

The number of female members of the Church does not alter the over-representation of women leaders in General Conference.

As I said in April:

Quote

I just can't get on board with this "representation" stuff.  With slicing and dicing the speakers as being representatives of the listeners, when they are functioning as representatives of Jesus Christ.  The talks are, broadly speaking, addressed to the entirety of the Church.

The Twelve Apostles of Jesus Christ were all adult males.  All men from a particular socioeconomic strata.  All Jewish.  I don't think we should discount their callings because they didn't "represent" in terms of race, gender, ethnicity, culture, etc.

You responded: "No one is saying otherwise."  Well, it sure seems that way.  For example, the disparaging remark earlier in this thread seems to reduce the value of General Conference speakers to their gender.  To be a grievance about "representation," even though the number of women speaking in the Women's Session hasn't changed. 

I would have thought that the First Presidency participating in the Women's Session would be reasonably construed as an their holding the women of the Church in high regard.  Instead, the First Presidency speaking to the women of the Church is trespassing.  Interloping.  "Tak{ing} over {the} women's session."  Why?  Because of gender.  That's it.  They are interloping because they are male.

There will never be proportional representation of the demographics of the Church amongst the leaders of the Church.  There will be some approximation of it as a natural (and revelatory) expression of the international growth of the Church.  But in the end I think it's unhealthy and unproductive, even counter-productive, to denigrate the value of prophetic counsel based on whether the individual fits some sort of preferred "representation" profile.

Thanks,

-Smac

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1 minute ago, smac97 said:

Again: "Women leaders are already fairly over-represented in the general sessions."

The number of female members of the Church does not alter the over-representation of women leaders in General Conference.

As I said in April:

You responded: "No one is saying otherwise."  Well, it sure seems that way.  For example, the disparaging remark earlier in this thread seems to reduce the value of General Conference speakers to their gender.  To be a grievance about "representation," even though the number of women speaking in the Women's Session hasn't changed. 

I would have thought that the First Presidency participating in the Women's Session would be reasonably construed as an their holding the women of the Church in high regard.  Instead, the First Presidency speaking to the women of the Church is trespassing.  Interloping.  "Tak{ing} over {the} women's session."  Why?  Because of gender.  That's it.  They are interloping because they are male.

There will never be proportional representation of the demographics of the Church amongst the leaders of the Church.  There will be some approximation of it as a natural (and revelatory) expression of the international growth of the Church.  But in the end I think it's unhealthy and unproductive, even counter-productive, to denigrate the value of prophetic counsel based on whether the individual fits some sort of preferred "representation" profile.

 

They are males in a woman's conference. That isn't a difficult concept for many.....   I will forgo pointing out the absurdity of complaining that women make it about "gender" when you are relying on"gender" to maintain the status quo.  (It is sex, BTW.) 

And it is rather sly to insist nothing changed merely because women were allowed half of the speaking slots in a women's session...with less time allotted to them than the males. They lost speaking time but because the number stayed the same nothing has changed. Right. 

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