For the first time in memory, a woman has led a prayer at the major conference of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Salt Lake City.
Jean A. Stevens offered the closing prayer for more than 100,000 Mormons gathered Saturday for the church’s general conference. Millions of others watched via satellite.
“Women have been praying in church and speaking at conferences for years,” church spokesman Eric Hawkins told the Los Angeles Times. “But this is the first time in memory that we have had a sister lead a prayer.”
A feminist group launched the Let Women Pray campaign in January asking for the right to offer opening and closing prayers at the conference, which has been held for 183 years. The group earlier had urged women to wear pants instead of dresses to church to highlight gender issues within the Mormon Church..