This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2016, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
If the LDS Church isn't ready to admit females into the all-male priesthood, Ordain Women wants to let the faith's top authorities know that women are ready to:
• Be official witnesses at baptisms, a role reserved for males.
• Sit with young Mormon women during their private worthiness interviews with local male leaders.
• Serve as witnesses at marriages and "sealings" in Mormon temples, again a duty assigned to males.
• Hold their babies while male priesthood holders perform naming blessings.
These are all part of OW's newly unveiled "Ready to Witness" campaign, which aims to widen the roles women can play in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
The group, of course, still seeks outright female ordination, but argues these steps would require not a theological shift but mere policy changes.
In Wednesday's launch of this new push taken from a Book of Mormon verse calling on believers to "stand as a witness of God at all times and in all things, and in all places" OW's website notes that "women were chosen to serve as the first witnesses of the resurrected Christ" and asks why "these policies are in place to keep women from serving as witnesses to these moments in our church."
OW urges supporters to complete online forms or send postcards (either making their own or buying one for 50 cents from the group) to share their desires for these "witnessing" changes. The submissions then will be counted, gathered and taken to the LDS Church Administration Building in downtown Salt Lake City during April's General Conference weekend.
For its part, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has written in a published essay that only "men are ordained to priesthood offices, while both women and men are invited to experience the power and blessings of the priesthood in their lives."
The piece also noted that "men and women continue to officiate in sacred ordinances in temples."