This past weekend, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints held its biannual General Conference in Salt Lake City. In five sessions, held Saturday and Sunday, Latter-day Saints around the world heard sermons, instructions and announcements from their top leaders. Of the dozens to take the pulpit, just three were women: President Emily Belle Freeman, head of the global Young Women organization; her first counselor, Tamara Runia; and Amy Wright, first counselor in the children’s Primary general presidency.
This underrepresentation of female speakers isn’t new — or surprising — in the patriarchal faith, where top leadership is almost entirely male. Some longtime conference listeners, however, did point to a shift in the nature of the sermons given by Freeman, Runia and Wright — as well as other recent female speakers.
On this week’s show, Kimberly Applewhite Teitter discusses all that and more. Teitter is a licensed clinical psychologist in the Salt Lake City area and assistant director of the Debra Bonner Unity Gospel Choir. She was recently featured in the Deseret Book publications “Every Needful Thing: Essays of the Mind and Heart” and “No Division Among You: Creating Unity in a Diverse Church.”
Listen to the podcast: