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There's a sad thing happening right now in the Church. Every woman in the 7.5 million-member Relief Society of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints should feel welcome and included, the church’s top female officials said Thursday — but many don’t.
In fact, because of this lack of feeling "belonged" or "accepted," women are leaving the Church.
“Studies have shown that the number one reason people leave religion is that they feel judged or unwelcome. That is cited more often than doctrinal disagreement or lack of belief," said President Jean B. Bingham of the Relief Society of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
This was part of a message given in a keynote session titled "The Place of Belonging" at the 2021 Brighman Young University Women's conference.
In the religious sphere, Latter-day Saint women are “practicing perfection....Practice makes perfect with the Savior,” she said. “He makes all the difference.”
So what can we do? What can we do? First off, we should always look towards the example of the Savior and find our worth through him. In the book, God Comes To Women, authors Heather Farrell and Jen Mabray write:
In His time, Jesus broke through many cultural norms and came to women. He allowed women to embrace Him, touch Him, travel with Him, minister with Him, learn from Him, and be firsthand recipients of His compassion, love, kindness, respect, forgiveness, and doctrines. Thankfully and beautifully, Jesus’ actions are embedded in scripture as the word of God. Written and whispered inspirations, feelings, and experiences between God and women, from antiquity throughout modernity, teach us that His love and holy affection for us is a pattern that started in the beginning and has never ceased.
All women, no matter what corner of the earth we occupy, no matter our station in life, no matter our educational background, no matter the hour of our lives, are beloved and treasured by God. Elder James E. Talmage of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles taught, “The world’s greatest champion of woman and womanhood is Jesus the Christ.”
Our hearts long to be connected to our Divine Family. We want to cultivate special experiences with them. As women, I believe we are uniquely designed to wield and value connection and intimate relationships with each other and with God.
What are your thoughts on this? Let us know in the comments.