Church spokesman Michael Otterson reminded Church members Friday that the Ordain Women movement is nothing more than a publicity stunt that distracts from the positive spirit of General Conference.
“Avoiding distraction from a sacred church gathering is also the operating principle in relation to Temple Square,” Otterson wrote. “Last year, the staged protest was extremely disruptive to that atmosphere. While we made an exception to policy and accommodated media cameras last October, protesters exploited that decision to hold a media event.”
Further, Otterson wrote, “posturing for news cameras in the shadow of the Salt Lake Temple is not what General Conference is about, and leaders and members were rightly offended by it.”
Otterson is referring to the protest at October General Conference against the Church by OW movement members intent on asking for the priesthood. Ninety percent of Mormon women — and 95 percent of active members — say women should not be eligible for the priesthood. The OW movement vows to repeat this protest for April Conference, despite being asked repeatedly to stand down by the Church.
Careful readers will note some deliberate language used by Otterson in a very polite but pointed letter. Notice the use of the words “staged protest” and “disruptive” and “exploited” and “posturing” and “rightly offended.”
The Church is making it clear to all members that the OW has nothing to do with a faithful petition by active members. Instead, the OW movement is being exposed for what it truly is: a publicity stunt led mostly by opponents of the Church.