The Priesthood and women, in Relief Society anyway


So, this blows out of the water anything I was saying about women and the priesthood. It’s from this month’s Visiting Teaching message:

On March 17, 1842, the Prophet Joseph Smith organized the sisters “under the priesthood after the pattern of the priesthood.” 2

To be organized “under the priesthood” gave sisters authority and direction. Eliza R. Snow, second Relief Society general president, taught that Relief Society “cannot exist without the Priesthood, from the fact that it derives all its authority and influence from that source.” 3 Elder Dallin H. Oaks of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles explained, “The authority to be exercised by the officers and teachers of the Relief Society … was the authority that would flow to them through their organizational connection with The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and through their individual setting apart under the hands of the priesthood leaders by whom they were called.” 4

To be organized “after the pattern of the priesthood” gave sisters sacred responsibilities. Julie B. Beck, Relief Society general president, explained: “We operate in the manner of the priesthood—which means that we seek, receive, and act on revelation; make decisions in councils; and concern ourselves with caring for individuals one by one. Ours is the priesthood purpose to prepare ourselves for the blessings of eternal life by making and keeping covenants. Therefore, like our brethren who hold the priesthood, ours is a work of salvation, service, and becoming a holy people.” 5

(This was from Barbara Thompson, second counselor in the Relief Society general presidency.)

Link to it here.

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