Every time that a new session of General Conference occurs, I cringe. I don’t think that is the normal reaction for someone who is about to hear from the head of their denomination. I cringe because I worry what the higher-ups will say that God has told them with regards to things like gay rights and equality between the sexes. I shouldn’t cringe. I should know that the Church will continue to progress in the only way it knows how: staunch conservatism.
The Spring Session didn’t fail to disappoint those who were would like the Church to encourage a pro-men, anti-women-and-gays stance. This year, the President of the Church, Thomas S. Monson decided that he should be telling the men that they needed to settle down and take a wife. He said that canceling a sealing (marriage) is the saddest thing he is responsible for. He is of the opinion that those who don’t want to save their marriage are somehow doing something wrong by not attempting to do anything possible to stay with their spouse. I would think that it might be sadder to know that the divorces might not have happened if there wasn’t such a rush from the time a couple gets together for them to get to the altar. Most LDS couples that I know will know someone a few weeks, date for a few more, get engaged, and within 4-5 months of their first meeting, they will be sealed for eternity. Though it is possible for people to fall in love and get married that quickly, I would think that the Church might want to encourage couples to wait longer before taking on a commitment that they expect for them to keep for the rest of the time.
Boyd K. Packer, who can always be guaranteed to bring the homophobia to the table, compared gay relationships to murder. He stated that God’s “standard of morality commands that the sacred powers to beget life be protected and employed only between man and woman, husband and wife.” (I think that the “sacred powers “right there not only refer to marriage, but to sex.) “To misuse this power is exceeded in seriousness only by the shedding of innocent blood and denying the Holy Ghost,” he continued. He also said that members should resist temptation of any kind. Apparently, he didn’t resist the temptation to judge those who commit these misuses of power. Packer believed that happiness comes from the home, where men are the head of the house and women are the heart.
Though the head dudes in charge liked to say things about equality between the sexes, Apostle Quentin L. Cook pointed out that the primary job of a woman is raise and nurture the children. It’s so nice to find out that because someone has a uterus that they are expected to be an incubator/housekeeper/nanny. If men and women are equal in a relationship, then why not encourage men to cook, clean, take care of the kids, quit their jobs, etc.? Why not encourage actual equality? Maybe there’s some kind of fear that women who are actually treated as equals might expect it elsewhere—work, school, church. Maybe they’re afraid that women will lead the Church if they aren’t reminded constantly that the men get to hold the Priesthood.
Cook also reassured women who want to work outside the home that they aren’t doing anything wrong, which begs the question of, “Why should they have felt they were doing anything wrong in the first place?” Why has the Church consistently acted like women are supposed to be at home, while men can work?
I really wish that if the Church were serious about this equality stuff, they would can the whole idea that men are the bestest and most special people in the world and deserve all the power that comes with being a Priesthood holder. I wish that if they really believed that the souls of those who are LGBT aren’t damned for eternity that they would drop the whole idea that that population can’t be with the person that they are in love with and that the person must stay in a relationship with someone that they are not in love with or attracted to just to please God. I really don’t think that God would hate a person because that person is of a different sexual orientation than what is considered acceptable or normal by some religion. And I really wish that people didn’t get reminded that they are somehow failing if they aren’t married and babied by the time that they’re in their twenties. People should get married if, and only if, they have found someone that they can truly commit to.