Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Spencer W. Kimball on Women

For some time now I've been wanting to do a more thorough study on women and on our Heavenly Mother. President Spencer W. Kimball is always a good place to start! Here is an excerpt from his talk "The True Way of Life and Salvation" from April 1978.

I want to express my appreciation for the wonderful women of the Church. We love the women of our Church. We love them as deeply as our own wives, our mothers, our grandmothers, our sisters, and our friends. Someday, when the whole story of this and previous dispensations is told, it will be filled with courageous stories of our women, of their wisdom and their devotion, their courage, for one senses that perhaps, just as women were the first at the sepulchre of the Lord Jesus Christ after his resurrection, our righteous women have so often been instinctively sensitive to things of eternal consequence. We recognize, as one man has wisely said, that while we speak of the impact of one’s mother’s tongue with a lasting effect upon us, it is our mother’s love which touches us everlastingly and so deeply.

We worry, therefore, conversely over these trends which would reduce the mother’s love in our world. God has placed women at the very headwaters of the human stream. So much of what our men and our institutions seek to do downstream in the lives of erring individuals is done to compensate for early failures. Likewise, so much of life’s later rejoicing is a reflection of a woman’s work well done at the headwaters of the home.

It was Goethe who said, “The Eternal Feminine draws us on.” (Johann W. von Goethe, Faust.)

“A good woman,” as the scriptures tell us, “is the glory of the man.” (1 Cor. 11:7.)

The scriptures remind us that “Women have claim on their husbands for their maintenance, until their husbands are taken.” (D&C 83:2.) Women also have a claim on their husbands for respect, fidelity, and thoughtfulness for in that subtle, sweet relationship that should obtain between men and women, there is partnership with the priesthood.

We delight and marvel in the appropriate development and expressions of our sisters’ many talents. Surely the Church’s educational effort in behalf of its women is a sermon in itself.

Perhaps more than any other people of like size, we are deeply committed to the development of the skills and talents of our sisters, for we believe our educational program is not simply education for this world, but involves an education for all eternity.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has sponsored the advancement of women from its very outset. It was the Prophet Joseph Smith who set forth the ideals for womanhood. He advocated liberally for women in the purest sense of the word, and he gave them liberty to fully express themselves as mothers, as nurses to the sick, as proponents of high community ideals, and as protectors of good morals.

What more can any woman want for herself? What more could any man want for his wife? What more could any man want than to match that standard in his own conduct?

The Prophet Joseph gave us the Relief Society organization to advance these high purposes for Latter-day Saint women. That society today is a worldwide movement holding membership in national and world organizations for the advancement of women.

Finally, when we sing that doctrinal hymn and anthem of affection, “O My Father,” we get a sense of the ultimate in maternal modesty, of the restrained, queenly elegance of our Heavenly Mother, and knowing how profoundly our mortal mothers have shaped us here, do we suppose her influence on us as individuals to be less if we live so as to return there?

Perhaps many today would scoff at the question, "What more can any woman want for herself?" But the more I see the way society is going, the more I see that the greatest good I can do in the world is to love on an individual level and foster community among those around me. That is why we need more gwomen to be free from work; to be able to rely on their husbands for their support so that they can be present, not only in their children's lives but as a force for community good.

And I can practice law on the side, too =)

No comments:

Post a Comment