I’ve been thinking lately about the asymmetries in the ways girls and boys are treated in the way things are currently structured within Mormonism, and here’s a subtle but (i think) important one: Active teen Mormon boys get more public approval of religious rites of passage than active teen Mormon girls do. Consider:
When a boy turns twelve, he gets presented before his congregation for being ordained as a deacon, and gets the affirmation of having everybody there affirm his worthiness.* When a girl turns twelve, she gets…well, bubkes. If she’s got a reasonably progressive bishop, she gets called up in front of the congregation and congratulated, but no affirmative vote by the congregation.
Age fourteen, same thing. Age sixteen, repeat it. And at age eighteen or nineteen, yet again. Every time, the boy gets positive affirmation, while the girl gets something rather less.
I’m not sure how this could be fixed, but i don’t think this is something rooted in doctrine so much as a “that’s the way we do stuff” sort of thing. I don’t know that the solution would be to have a sustaining vote for the girls at various ages (i mean, i don’t know what would be voted on, to begin with), but there’s got to be something. Thoughts?
* Yeah, i know, it’s possible that somebody in the congregation objects—but that’s rare enough that we can ignore it for the purpose of discussion, i think.
Faith Hill: Where Are You, Christmas?
4 years ago