As most readers probably know by now, the Church announced officially yesterday that the meeting formerly known as Women's Meeting will now be known as Women's Session, the first session of our semi-annual general conference. This is particularly notable following "Fourthgate," or the kerfluffle following our last general conference in which it was debated whether or not the women's meeting was an official session of conference.
I commented on the development in the Salt Lake Tribune here: "This rhetorical change is much more than just a word choice. It signals an appetite at the very highest levels of church leadership to fold women's voices into the official structure more completely. It also indicates our leadership's willingness to adapt and expand practices where we can, which is a lesson we can adopt even more fully at our local levels. I am absolutely thrilled by this change."
Here is the Deseret News' report.
I particularly appreciate the willingness of President Uchtdorf and all involved decision makers to move ahead with this decision so quickliy after the public, online discussion. It would have been easy for decision-makers to dig in their heels, to insist they not bow to external pressure. Instead, I feel the move only confirms the feeling that our leadership is aware of conversations, their aware of the small, fixable and grating things that can make a woman unintentionally feel slighted, and they are willing to tix those things. This affirmation is way more than a word change. This is an affirmation that we matter.
And because I'm always looking to the next thing, if anyone's listening, how about speakers from the general Young Women and Relief Society and Primary boards, ala the Seventies in the general sessions? The interview we just published at the Mormon Women Project with Janet Nelson of the Young Women general board has been getting considerable attention since members are craving to know more about the women who represent us.