Tuesday, February 2, 2010

The Mormon Matriarchy

With the very large number of children being reared in the church by their mothers without a father in the home, the large number of single women and the large number of men who are either unable or unwilling to preside in their home as priesthood holders, I'm going out on a limb here and suggesting the following observations reflect actual reality for us as a people:

1) Many women are already performing functions traditionally thought to be performed by holders of the priesthood, i.e. presiding in the home, and that we outnumber men in the church and are more likely to live alone at some time in our life due to our greater lifespans.

2) Many women are actually performing blessings and the like in their homes and for their loved ones, and most are not sharing that information with others as it is considered sacred, and, yes, sometimes, sacreligous, and both the language and perception may be different as women who find themselves in this situation do not exercise the priesthood power as a result of their ordination but rather as a right of their endowment,

3) and, that the church is actually at the level of it's most fundamental building block, the family, is an unabashedly matriarchial institution in actual fact regardless of whether there is a presiding priesthood holder present and accounted for.

Wikipedia's definitions of both Patriarchy and Matriarchy are useful here. As I cobbled together the numbers in the past when thinking about this issue, my unscientific feel for the numbers was that households in the church spiritually "led" by a woman would be at least 40% and may even exceed 50%. That would make for interesting research.


  1. Wow, #2. Do women really do that? I know historically it was actually acceptable and encouraged for women to perform Priesthood blessings (particularly for other women), but the church has largely made it sacreligous.

  2. I can only speak from personal experience, anecdotes and what I've gleaned online, the answer is yes, women do, when they must.