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What's new: 'Women and the Priesthood' by Sheri Dew

WOMEN AND THE PRIESTHOOD: What One Mormon Woman Believes,” by Sheri Dew, Deseret Book, $21.99, 215 pages (nf)

With a straightforward, thoughtful and thorough approach, Sheri Dew explores the sensitive subjects of women, their role as mothers and their relationship and access to priesthood power, in her recent book “Women and the Priesthood: What One Mormon Woman Believes.”

“Endowed, covenant-keeping women have direct access to priesthood power for their lives,” writes Dew, who is the CEO of Deseret Book.

In eight chapters and fewer than 200 pages, she looks at not only the priesthood, including terminology, the differences in the keys, authority and power and how women have access to that power, but also at perceptions and the nature of God and Jesus Christ, the divine errand of women, what God’s expectations are of his daughters, motherhood and the history of women in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Dew uses the scriptures and teachings from LDS Church leaders — past and present — and she also shares her experiences from when she has served in various callings, including as a counselor in the Relief Society general presidency, and as a single woman striving to live the gospel.

“I’ve had far too many witnesses that the gospel is true and that they keys, power and authority of the Savior’s kingdom have been restored to let organizational issues discourage me,” Dew writes.

She isn’t afraid to point out things that simply don’t have answers right now and points to having a testimony and faith in the gospel. She also admits that she is continually studying and learning. Dew also points out patterns and ways readers, be they men or women, can deepen their personal study of the priesthood.

It may be tempting to jump to the middle chapters where she delves into the different aspects of the priesthood, but each chapter builds on truths and doctrines in the ones before as her refreshing approach accomplishes creating a framework to discuss and understand these emotionally sensitive issues.

“What do Mormon women get?” she writes. “Potentially, we get everything.”

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