The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is making the front page every day, it seems. A couple of weeks ago, readers will remember, the Brethren had two big announcements: One, that they would support a gay rights ordinance banning discrimination in employment and housing; and two, that they would soon be naming a gay apostle to the Quorum of the Twelve.
The Church is in the news once again, this time with two major announcements with significant implications for female members. A few days ago, the Church’s Brigham Young University let it be known that it was scuttling the popular Women’s Research Institute. Then, just yesterday, in a hurriedly called press conference, Church spokeswoman Sister Labia McConkie, reading from a prepared statement, announced that the university would be phasing out its female students, the first step in the Church’s divine plan to phase out females altogether.
Sister McConkie refused to take questions from the assembled media, but City Weekly was able to contact her by telephone at her home in Lehi, where she shares a modest two-bedroom house with her aged mother and her beloved Airedale, Alma.
City Weekly: This latest announcement was a big surprise. Were you, yourself, surprised?
Sister McConkie: This has been in the works for a long time. First the Brethren, about 50 years ago, confiscated all the vials of holy oil from the Relief Society, which meant they had to leave the healing and assorted blessings to the members of the priesthood, which, by the way, Mormon women hold by virtue of their temple endowment, but that’s another story.
CW: But don’t you have to be highly qualified, like being a 12-year-old boy, for example, to become a member of the priesthood?
Sister McConkie: I could get excommunicated for saying this, but you won’t tell anybody, will you? Anyway, everyone from the prophet Joseph Smith himself to Brigham Young to Heber C. Kimball and a host of others wrote about women receiving the Melchizedek priesthood through their endowments; women beginning with Emma Smith herself, and other Mormon women like Zina Card Young, Maria Turnbow, Caroline Cottam, Thirza Cahoon, and my personal favorite, Mehitable Duty, who was given the priesthood in 1845 by Patriarch John Smith. I won’t even go into the second anointing stuff. My lips are sealed.
CW: It makes a lot of sense to phase women out of BYU, but why have the Brethren decided to phase women out of the Church?
Sister McConkie: You don’t know too much about Church history, do you, bub? For a long time now, at least ever since Correlation, the Brethren have been cracking down on the Relief Society and feminists who fought for the Equal Rights Amendment and what the late Prophet Gordon Hinckley called “outspoken” women, especially sisters who want to pray to their Mother in Heaven.
CW: I still don’t get it. Mormon women seem like a pretty docile bunch, honoring the priesthood and all that.
Sister McConkie: You don’t know the half of it. Back in the good old days of polygamy, it was divide-and-conquer, setting all the wives against each other and stirring up competition and jealousy. It’s tougher these days with one female to keep control over. Like Brother Boyd Packer says, the husband needs to feel dominant. He told the young sisters that if they took his priesthood from him, they would reduce his manhood.” In other words, the priesthood is spiritual Viagra.
CW: But don’t you still need some method of bringing spirits down from pre-existence to inhabit a mortal body to fulfill the plan of salvation? If you phase females out of the Church, how are going to multiply and replenish?
Sister McConkie: Who needs sex? Our scientists at the Y have developed a way to weed out the male gametes carrying the X chromosome, so we will be left with a seething stew of gametes with just the Y chromosome (named after the Y, as in B“Y”U), which, as you know, will join with the female haploid gametes to produce only male XY zygotes, which will develop into male-type human critters.
CW: But you still need XX females to provide the requisite female gamete, don’t you?
Sister McConkie: Details! Details! Our scientists are working on it.
CW: How about you, Sister McConkie? Are you OK with being phased out?
Sister McConkie: I was never phased in, and neither were my sisters in spirit, so what’s the difference?