In August, Mormon Matters hosted an important and fascinating discussion about messages Mormon women hear about their divine roles as mothers. What messages do Mormon men hear? Are they equally challenged to consider fatherhood their most important role, or do priesthood duties and responsibilities take first priority? Have messages about men’s roles evolved over the past several decades? In what ways does Mormonism support the institutions of power and attitudes about gender difference and roles of patriarchal societies? Why isn’t there as robust a discussion within Mormonism geared toward teasing apart cultural constructs from gospel truths as we see in many other Christian traditions that are opening clergy roles for women? Are Mormon men still urged to be “patriarchs” in their homes, and to “preside” over their families? Is there any way to be a patriarch and still have a marriage based on true equality? Can patriarchy ever be “benevolent”?
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