sunday spotlight: amy
Sunday Spotlight is a series where we profile individuals in the Young Mormon Feminists community to hear their stories and get to know them a little better through Q&A or their personal narratives. This week we talked with Amy.
Hi, I’m Amy. I’ve been blessed with 29 beautiful, crazy, intense years Earthside. Like many of the YMF crowd, I was raised in a loving home where Mormonism was intertwined through every part of my being. My mother was a convert to the Church and my father from pioneer ancestry. My childhood was mostly peaceful and comforting. We had an incredible ward family and a great youth support system. I was incredibly lucky to be raised among individuals who lived their lives and their faith with love and valor.
When I went away to university, I had no idea the transformation that would take place in my mind and in my heart. I had always wanted an education “just in case,” but quickly found myself absolutely in love with new ideas and ways of seeing the world. One of the most defining moments of my life happened in an acting class. Our instructor put on “Angels in America.” As I witnessed the first same-sex couple of my life on screen, I walked out the door. As I sat in the hall, feeling overwhelmed, embarrassed, and overall righteously indignant, the instructor, a man I felt so much respect, affinity, and connection to, came out and talked with me. What transpired was a life-altering conversation. He talked to me about my faith, about homosexuality, about loving human relationships.
He asked, “What do you believe about gay people?”
I responded, “My church believes it’s sinful.”
Professor: “I didn’t ask what your church believes, I asked what YOU believe.”
I was silent. I had no idea. I had never considered that I might have a thought or belief that was contrary to what I was taught on Sundays.
Professor: “I ask because, well, I’m gay.”
I was shocked. I had such incredible respect for this man. I had often felt what I attributed to be the Spirit while in his course and in his presence. I was absolutely dumbfounded. How could someone so “sinful” be so incredible? How could he possibly be considered less-than, simply because of who he loved?
I credit this day as the beginning of my feminist awakening. It was the first day that I learned to search within my heart, to ask important and soul-searching questions, to know what Amy—not her faith community, not her parents, not anyone else, but Amy—what did she think/feel/know/believe?
From that moment on, I’ve always felt a tugging in my heart, an endless struggle of the soul, between what sits right in my heart and what I am taught should be there. The majority of my life has been shaped by my faith in Mormonism, from my temple wedding to my choice to put my aspirations of a music career behind me to become a stay-at-home mother. But I have learned to hear and listen to that inner voice that tells me what is right, even if it seems to be unorthodox or undesired in the Mormon community.
I am deeply bound to Mormonism through birth and through what I feel to be a personal calling to be among the Saints. I also feel bound to listen to that inner voice, the one that tells me there is more in store for the women of the Church and that tells me the work and advocacy I participate in is right with my God. I know that my advocacy for the ordination of women to the priesthood, my support of marriage equality, and my continuing questioning of doctrine and history often makes me unpopular, and even at times undesired, within the Mormon community. To be honest, sometimes I miss “fitting in” and almost wish I could just put all my questions, concerns, and heartstrings on the backburner or “on the shelf,” but I am forever grateful for the journey through which my faith and my feminism have taken me.
3 Responses to “sunday spotlight: amy”
Really great! Thanks for sharing.
Hello, Suzzanne. I know the scriptures very well borfee I joined the church and based on that knowledge and understanding I had with the scriptures and the feelings I had as the missionaries taught me is a very different experience I ever had the reason why I joined. I should be the one to say that to you. If you read the scriptures then I say that you don’t really understand them. You just read and look on a very small picture of it but not the biggest picture. If you are really studying you have to know the history, the background of every chapters and verses that you have read. Not all that was written should be taken literally and it requires the Spirit of God to understand the symbolic and deepest part of the scriptures. That is one thing you lack for you rely on your own knowledge and think that you are very very experienced with the word of God and that you are very confident that you can answer every question with the little knowledge you have about God. You just can’t sister. You just can’t. I am only 28 years old and yet I know a lot about Him and still do not boast in my own strength and knowledge because I know that what I knew is just a fragment of the whole truth that God possess and that I will never knew it unless God will impart that knowledge to me. There are so many things that I still don’t know. The missionaries did not just tell me everything they have to say about mormonism and about God. We study together and I am just humble enough to listen to them and exchange ideas with them with a deepest RESPECT because they deserve it. RESPECT is that what you lack that is why God withheld His Spirit from you so you do not understand the deepest things of God’s kingdom and His mysteries. Yet still, I respect you due to the fact that you are a daughter of God and deserves respect. I became a missionary at the age 23 and have taught a lot of ministers among all different sects. I am also glad to note here that most of them responded with respect to my teachings since I have used a pure and respectful languages. The word of Christ is true, Do thou unto others what you want others do unto you Do thou not unto others what you don’t want others do unto you. They even told us that their experience with us is very different from any other religions who visited them and that is the first time they entertained other religions in their house for a long time. Now, regarding the thing you said about Jesus Christ saying It is finished borfee He died on the cross. You are totally misunderstanding that pure statement from Christ or your preacher might have interpreted it so differently. If by what you mean He says it is finished is that all His works done is all that we needed and nothing more, then I ask why after His resurrection He charged His apostles to teach all nations baptizing them in the name of the Father and of The Son and of The Holy Ghost . And why He did appear to apostle John and gave him revelations concerning the last days if you are saying that Jesus Christ meant is that all His works is finished. That is not reasonable. When Jesus Christ said it is finished, He is referring to His atoning sacrifice that He has to perform in mortality to save those who will believe and follow him and have faith on His name. It means that He had successfully finished the works that the Father would have Him do in the flesh to save all mankind from sin and that is His atonement. It started from His agony in gethsemane that continued to His death in Golgotha and had ended through His resurrection. He just invoked the words borfee He died on the cross because He had so much faith already that God would raise Him from the grave and thus finishing His atoning sacrifice by overcoming sin and death in the flesh. But that doesn’t mean that all His works are finished for the end is not yet but nigh at hand. There are still a lot of works to do. As long as God lives and He lives forever, there will be no end to His works and even His words. The end page of the Bible is not the end of His words. HE will still continue to call prophets and impart of His words to them to teach to His children for as long as there are worlds like this without number that is being inhabited by His spirit children all throughout our universe. Contemplate that Suzzanne. You have to know more than what is being preached unto you by your false preachers. You must be questioning your own preachers by now. They are the real false preachers not us. To say that God is not doing anything by now because everything is finished and just watching us perish in our sins in this day is a big no no and a big blasphemy. God couldn’t just sit in His throne and watch the destructions and wickeness in this world. He is exhausting every infinite efforts He could do to save all those who will believe on His name and follow Him in this last days. God loves all His children beyond all description. He weeps because of the iniquities of mankind and just could not sit without doing anything about it. I would suggest that you be humble Suzzanne and invite those missionaries again in your house and discuss about the simplier things about life. I promise you will have a great experience if you do. Do not limit God of His works by your beliefs. Don’t believe your preachers but believe in God who will speak to your heart. And in addition regarding to those New Revelations that you condemn by citing a scripture that we preach any other gospel, than what has been received, I am telling you that we preached the very same gospel that Christ preached during His mortal days. We never changed anything from that and if there are new revelations I am telling you that there are also new revelations received by the apostles by that time after galatians and the apostles preached it because it came from God. Now I say the reason why we have new revelations is that God continue to speak to us through His chosen living prophets this day. We are so much blessed that we know that. In other words We have the living Present Omnipotent God while you are living with your God in the past. We are in the present state sister and that God you believe in the Bible still breathes today and alive! He speaks and moves and do His works for the salvation of His children. The work of our God has no end, What about your god? -1Was this answer helpful?
[…] Amy lives in Calgary, Alberta and enjoys sewing, reading, and deep theological discussions. She holds a Masters degree in musical performance from Brigham Young University and is the mother of two children. […]