Karen wrote:That's cool you got to speak last. I was honestly starting to believe it was official church policy to end with a male speaker because I've never seen a woman end the meeting. That always bothered me. Maybe it's because I'm female and relate better to female speakers, but I think by and large women are better speakers and I'd like to end meetings on a high note.
Of course, my ward is particularly weird in that department. I have not been asked to speak in church and I don't think I will be because my husband is not active. My ward likes to have complete couples speak, with the wife first and the (dull) husband finishing.
I apologize to you male speakers who may be extremely uplifting and the perfect way to end Sacrament meeting. Please visit my ward! We need your kind!
Our ward rarely has couples speak on the same day, unless it's a senior couple about to leave on a mission. I like this practice for several reasons, particularly because my husband and I aren't both stressed out about preparing talks on the same weekend and there is someone to sit with the kids during the meeting.
Our ward also has unrelated people give the opening and closing prayers. It's usually a man and a woman, but not always.
My husband is an excellent speaker--he's very good at keeping the congregation's attention. Sometimes he says something a wee bit embarrassing, but he's never wildly inappropriate.
I know it's too late for InOregon's purposes, but I have a firm testimony of tithing, not just from the times I've paid, but from the few times I've gotten off track!
The difference in our financial stability and even our ability to handle our money during those few non-tithing-consistent times is remarkable.