Comments about ‘New book 'a recipe' on how to be an LDS woman’

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Published: Saturday, Aug. 20 2011 12:00 a.m. MDT

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A voice of Reason
Salt Lake City, UT

I'm not a woman, but this is certainly very exciting. This book will surely be an invaluable resource for women in the church.

With their stating that it isn't a manual, but more 'stories to uplift and help', I imagine that some may feel inclined to brush this off as a 'mere' addition. However I believe that first, any good addition to a good work cannot be discounted; second, I believe this book is absolutely needed. I believe this as otherwise it wouldn't be published.

I believe this book will help members of the church to better themselves and help each other. Women are absolutely essential to the work and this book stands only to prove the need we have of them.


We see so many attempts to diminish the role, even the need that everyone plays in doing good work. Mothers roles, Fathers roles, siblings, church callings, and any other 'assignment' is often viewed as a burden when it is really a place where we are all needed. People are called because they are needed for the work, to help others. This book will help uplift women and help them to understand that they are loved and needed.

Farmington, UT

Voice of Reason: As usual, great comments that I concur with.

Bountiful, Utah

The first authorized account of women in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, titled "Daughters in my Kingdom: The History and Work of Relief Society," is more than just a written history. It is "a recipe book for how to be a Latter-day Saint woman," said Sister Julie B. Beck, Relief Society general president.

Another way for women in the church to feel guilt -- cause most of them won't live up to the expectations in this book. I can hardly wait to get my copy.

Jeanie b.
Orem, UT

It is possible that after reading this book some of your misconceptions about what it means to be an LDS woman will be laid to rest.

From the article:
She (Sister Beck) added that the history "addresses some of the insecurities and myths" many LDS women have felt about themselves and their religion."

The definition of Latter-day Saint woman is likely broader than you believe.

Open Mind
Taylorsville, UT

Kami, I'm so sorry you feel that the expectations of women are too high in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. But Heavenly Father expects the best of you and me and every one of his children. He knows we're far from perfect and all he asks is that we try. He'll always love you for who you are but like every good parent he wants you to be the best you and nobody else. I'm excited for this book, I think it will inspire women and motivate them to keep pushing through adversity.

Salt Lake City, UT

As an lds woman and returned missionary, I am looking forward to the book, and agree with what sister beck said its purspose will be, but I have to empathize and agree with kami on that terrible line choosen: "a recipe on how to be an lds women". This is terrible PR and rather demeaning. First off: to cleverly use the word recipe, which is a word that would never be used for a book given to priesthood holders. For the same reason we changed "homemaking night" to "enrichment night" there could have been a much better word chosen than recipe, that could relate to all women. Secondly: I don't want to be taught how to be an lds woman. I am an lds woman, and I feel like a rather happy, good one. So now there's a "recipe" I must follow? To clarify one last time, I am looking forward to the book, ad don't think its real purpose is to give us a "recipe" on how we must live, but with a line like that, expect more posters like kami. I concur it is a turn off and rather unappealing and out of touch.

Vincentown, NJ

Ouch, gives the impression of "cookie cutter" production of a single recipe we must follow - and I know that isn't true. They may have to rethink this. How about a smorgasbord of creativity and love?

Salt Lake City, UT

I agree without reading the book that many could misunderstand the "recipe" reference.
However with that said, highlighting the wonderful role women play in the church and their wonderful contributions to the church, their Divine role in eternity and the positives they bring to life can be a wonderful blessing.
My wife is my partner and best friend. Her contributions to our marriage make me better and I help her in this wonderful partnership. I'm not perfect and neither is she. But we are better together than apart.
I look forward to reading this book with my companion so we can use it's valuable insights to make our lives together better.
The cost to give this resource to every woman is staggering. The Lord loves the sisters very much (priceless) and this is only a small token to every woman about their worth to all of us.

A voice of Reason
Salt Lake City, UT


I don't mean to offend you, but your statement can only be founded on flawed logic and I'll ask you to reconsider your views. Your statement is based on the idea that rules create unnecessary and harmful guilt.

1- not all guilt is bad. Should a murderer feel guilty? I would hate living in a world where all crime was guilt free. I can assure you, things would be far worse. This book is obviously not addressing murder, etc. But the concept is still the same, guilt isn't automatically bad. It's how people use guilt, which is my second point.

2- We are not a Kantian ethic based religion (like the catholic church and others) where things are absolute 'sinner' or 'perfect'. There is certainly black and white in what is right and wrong. But the key is our approach; it is similar to virtue ethics, where we climb a latter. We can fall down, but no words, whether guilt or praise, are designed to keep you at the bottom. The entire work of this church is not designed to keep people down on the latter but to bring people up, eventually back to our heavenly father.

Osawatomie, KS

What is the point of distributing this to just the women? If changes are going to happen, and education, in the Church--this needs to go to the men as well as the women!!!!!!!!!!!

Oh--and I don't need a "recipe" thank you....the Lord has taught me how and whom to be!

A voice of Reason
Salt Lake City, UT


I wondered about the same 'cookie cutter' bit as well at first glance to the headline, but after reading the article I can assure you that it is not the case.

"The 208-page book is not a comprehensive history of the church, nor is it an LDS manual. It is intended as a personal and family resource to support women and strengthen them in their responsibilities"

It isn't a manual that says "in this situation, do this... in that one, do that"

It is a collection of real examples of good women in the church. Everyone interprets things differently and people will reflect differently on their own experiences. The Church does not teach cookie-cutter conformity on how we should act in this life. Our moral system maybe have a definite right and wrong but that doesn't mean we have no individuality. We believe in free agency which is not a belief of conformity. Study the War in Heaven and you should understand that. I may agree with someone completely on morality, but I still make different choices in life. Not all Mormons agree on everything, just share the work. Hopefully that helps.

And Maryquilter, thanks!

Tomball, Tx

According to the quote from Sis. Beck. It is a "recipe book" not a single recipe. I know I have many different recipes on how to make chocolate chip cookies for instance. I suggest we all wait and read this new book with an open mind before we judge the content. I am looking forward to it.

lehi, ut

Wow, another great book is coming to help me to be a better wife, better mother, better daughter, better woman, why should I complain about it? The better I can be, the happier I am :).

Salt Lake City, UT

@A voice of reason: as reasonable as you often are, to tell kami to reconsider her views is a bit much. Go ahead and say what you will about guilt and religion--sure, but you don't know where this woman is coming from. For all you know, she's likely a better standing member than yourself, who, like most women in the church, holds onto unnecessary guilt because of not looking right, or not being the best mother EVER, or not being the most perfect visiting teacher. Not all guilt is right, and guilt is not from God. Often, satan uses guilt on the most righteous members, making them feel poorly about themselves, instead of feeling Gods love. You've got this all wrong chastising her the way you are. She is a lovely daughter of god who is sick of feeling the pressures to be perfect because of members like yourself who don't give her a break. And this has nothing to do with the contents of the said book. This has to do with what many are agreeing on: "a recipe on how to be" is just not the most appealing to women who already try so hard.

lehi, ut

Where is this guilty or the church expecting to much from the women in the church coming from?
It's expected every Sons and Daughters of Our Heavenly Father to try to keep the commandments, not just the women.
Why this book would make some women feel guilty? If I read something that I'm not doing it, but I feel that is a good advice, I will do it then, but I won't feel guilty for not doing that before, unless I already know that I'm failing in something that I know that I'm supposed to do, it doesn't have anything to do with the church telling me that I'm guilty, but my own feelings knowing that. If I can read a book that can helps me to be the best I can be, why should I feel any pressure about it? It's helping me to be the best I can, this is a great blessing, I don't want to go down, I want to keep going up.

Jeanie b.
Orem, UT

My mother's generation felt tremendous guilt if they were not what THEY believed to be the "perfect LDS woman" - striving for the impossible. (Remember Mother's Days? Whew!) In my generation it was "you can't say anything that would harm my precious self-esteem" - so essentially "give me no guidelines or correction".

Some of my favorite books are on early Utah history, not through the eyes of the LDS church, but rather through the eyes of historians and recorded eye-witnesses. Being LDS, it has been fascinating to me to see just how people lived, what kinds of decisions they made and why. In reading history it has helped me see patterns in life in general and separate out what is cultural LDS expectations and what is enduring doctrine.

To understand the history of LDS women will be rather eye opening. I appreciated how the article stated that it will help clarify and give direction to LDS women who live now.

No guilt needed. Possibly a poor choice in the word "recipe", but no need to get our dander up either.

Millsap fan
Taylorsville, UT

I think many women will be suprsised with this book and I think we've taken Sister Dibbs words a little too literally. I think a book like this with different experiences of LDS throughout the world and history is simply motivational, not degrading. Every woman is different, every woman unique. My wife isn't an expreriened cook and that isn't going to keep her from entering the Celestial Kingdom. I guess being a guy I don't understand the expectations tht may sometimes be falsely placed on women but I know that Christ understands what you go through and will judge you compassionately, more so than men I believe. So just relax and enjoy the book. :)

A voice of Reason
Salt Lake City, UT

jill17, My intention was not to chastise her in anyway, as I stated that I meant 'no offense'. I only mean that the logic that 'guilt is automatically bad' is flawed. I realize that 'flawed' can seem negative, but I don't mean anything rude at all. Perhaps I should have worded it in a friendlier manner, but I didn't mean anything negative.

But anyway, trust me when I say that I absolutely do not believe I am in higher standing in anyway. I usually believe myself to play the least important role possible. Only recently after reading an article about an alcoholic member of the church (on the DN, from a staff-member who is the grandson of the man in the article, if that helps at all), only after reading this did I realize the importance of knowing that everyone is truly 'needed' for the work. I think that article drives the point well and I believe that this book relates to this.

With that in mind, my only intention is to support a line of logic where the book helping in this regard, to help women know their loved and needed, etc.

Sorry it came off wrong.

Sarah B

I think the guilt that comes from women in the church is self generated. It is especially bad in Utah. I've had friends who stressed over the silliest things, like ironing their 5 year olds t-shirts, for fear their neighbors would judge and condemn them. If you live outside of Utah, you'll find for the most part the guilt isn't there. Sisters just love and cherish each other for who they are. Probably b/c they are the minority elsewhere and don't take each other for granted.

Bakersfield, CA

I just strive to be a follower of Jesus Christ and that takes care of everything.
Then you'll love your husband, children and family with pure love and don't need a latter-day distinction:
From Christ's life forward all who He calls are called to His standard. When we fail, we go to Him for support and restoration.

Then no one here would be commenting off of other comments, they'd be focusing on His light and example. I did the perfect church woman thing for 35 years and it was a grind. When I finally realized that Jesus said, "It is finished" because He did all the work, then I could 'rest in His love and finished work'. What a joy the believer's life became then!

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