QUOTE: “The First Presidency and Council of the Twelve have determined that there is no scriptural prohibition against sisters offering prayers in sacrament meetings. It was therefore decided that it is permissible for sisters to offer prayers in any meetings they attend, including sacrament meetings, Sunday School meetings, and stake conferences. Relief Society visiting teachers may offer prayers in homes that they enter in fulfilling visiting teaching assignments.” -President Spencer W. Kimball, September 29, 1978, as printed in the November 1978 Ensign. [source]
FACT: Jean A. Stevens became the first woman to offer a prayer during a session of General Conference when she gave the benediction at the Saturday morning session on 6 April 2013. [source]
COMMENTARY: Anyone who claims there is no discrimination against women in the LDS church needs to ask herself two questions: 1) why was this statement from President Kimball even needed? and 2) why did it take over 30 years for the top leadership to realize that it applied to general conference as well? It seems to me that gender-based discrimination runs so deeply in the Mormon church that many of its members can’t even see it. But what do I know? I’m just another apostate.