These articles cover the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (FLDS) — a sect of the Mormon Church.

This is our archive of news items tagged FLDS.

 memo You'll find articles about that subject in each of the items listed, even if the term does not necessarily occur within the headlines or descriptive text.

Islam in UK, USA; FLDS chickens; Marty Rathbun

Islam in the UK

UK Survey Muslims

  • Sky News commissioned an opinion poll by Survation into what Muslims and non-Muslims think about a range of issues including radicalisation, security concerns, political uncertainty, a rise in hate crimes and growing prejudice.
  • 71% of Muslims in the UK say that the values of British society are compatible with those of Islam; 52% of non-Muslims disagree
  • 65% of Muslims say they are doing enough to integrate; 18% of non-Muslims agree
  • 28% of Muslims and 13% of non-Muslims have sympathy with young Muslims who leave the UK to join fighters in Syria
  • 33% of Muslims feel under more suspicion in the last few years; 44% of non-Muslims feel suspicious of Muslims; proportion rises to 33% and 30% respectively among 18-34 year-olds in both groups
  • 39% of Muslims say the actions of the police and MI5 are contributing to the radicalisation of young Muslims; 16% of non-Muslims agree

And then there’s this: More Than Half Of Americans Have Unfavorable View Of Islam, Poll Finds, Huffington Post, April 10, 2015:

Younger Americans are the most likely to have positive views on Islam, be interested in learning about the religion and have Muslim friends.

The findings, detailed in a HuffPost/YouGov poll on Americans’ views of Muslims released Friday as part of HuffPost Religion’s week-long Muslim Life in America series, show a nation of fractured opinions and experiences when it comes to Islam, with stark differences among age groups and political affiliations.

Former FLDS Follower Has Standoff With Cult Members

Having won sole, full custody, former FLDS cult member Sabrina Tetzner tried to retrieve her four children from the FLDS community of Colorado City, Arizona, last Friday.

But a crowd of the cult followers swarmed her van and tried to delay the reunion. The standoff lasted for hours until law enforcement arrived and intervened.

The Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (FLDS), a fundamentalist sect of the Mormon Church, believes that children belong to the church.

When people leave or are excommunicated, their children are reassigned to other families. Wives are similarly redistributed among members in good standing.

VICE Meets the Former Senior Executive of the Church of Scientology

Mark C. “Marty” Rathbun is a former senior executive of the Church of Scientology, who last held the post of Inspector General of the Religious Technology Center (RTC), the organization that is responsible for the protection and enforcement of all Dianetics and Scientology copyrights and trademarks,” Wikipedia says. “Rathbun left the Church of Scientology in 2004 and became an independent Scientologist, but now considers himself non-religious.”

Rathbun is a key subject of Alex Gibney’s devastating documentary Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief, which was released March 29 through HBO Documentary Films.

VICE discuss his past in the Church of Scientology, auditing, and the harassment techniques ‘allegedly’ used by the church.

What the world’s religious landscape will look like in 2050

2015-04-10_10-43-21

Christianity will remain the world’s top religion despite the growth of Islam and atheism increases in the West. Click on the map to find out what the status of the world’s faiths will be 35 years from now

Is the FLDS cult expanding its presence in South Dakota?

Less than a year after the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (FLDS) lost its Yearning For Zion ranch to the State of Texas, there are sign that the church, one of many polygamous cults and sects of the Mormon Church,1 is expanding its presence in South Dakota.

Seth Jeffs, a brother of imprisoned cult leader Warren Jeffs,2 is seeking a permit from the state’s Department of Environment and Natural Resources to triple the amount of water the compound may draw by well from local aquifer.
FLDS cult compound in Pringle, South Dakota
The Pringle, South Dakota FLDS compound, established in 2006, is thought to currently house between 100 and 300 followers.

An estimated 6,000 more live in the sister communities of Hildale, Utah, and Colorado City, Ariz., and some 1,000 more in other enclaves in Colorado and British Columbia, Canada.

A few years ago the group was still estimated to have around 10,000 followers.

But in Utah, the cult’s followers are coming under increasing legal pressure.

In 2005 Utah courts seized control of the FLDS’ property trust amid allegations by state attorneys that Warren Jeffs and fellow cult leaders had mismanaged its assets.

The United Effort Plan trust holds most of the property in the twin towns. Ever since the state took control of the trust, Warren Jeffs has forbidden his followers from paying their property taxes — to-date depriving the trust of more than $4 million.

Meanwhile, the trust if bleeding money, mostly in attorney fees.

Hence state officials have recently started to threaten to evict those who do not pay their property taxes.

Imprisoned cult leader still exerts control

Though there is a growing number of people who are no longer loyal to the imprisoned FLDS leader, thousands are still under Jeff’s control.

Observers think he may be planning to order many of them to move to the Pringle, South Dakota compound.

New Temple?
The Rapid City Journal speculates that an excavated area on the cult’s Pringle compound may indicate a feature temple site.

The paper notes that the area is roughly the same size as the temple site at the state-seized FLDS compound near Eldorado, Texas. More about that temple.

At its peak, the group’s El Dorado, Texas ranch housed 700 people. William Hansen, chief of the Water Rights Branch of the National Park Service, says that if the group’s request for more water is approved, the compound would have enough water to serve 4,372 residents.

The National Park Service is one of several organizations and individuals who oppose the additional water permit, but reportedly analysts with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources have recommended the request to be approved.

Locals fear ‘another Waco’

As was the case in 2006, when FLDS members filed into the then new compound in El Dorado, Texas, neighbors of the Pringle compound also fear a ‘Waco-like scenario.’

While it probably may not come to that, locals are familiar with the fact that Jeffs is serving a life sentence for marrying multiple underage brides as young as 12.

“As locals, we know what is going on in there and we don’t want to see it expand,” one neighboring landowner wrote in opposing the water rights expansion. “We value our 12 year old girls in South Dakota. Help us!”

Research resources on the FLDS
Aerial view of the South Dakota FLDS compound
Read the Rapid City Journal series of articles on the FLDS compound

Notes:

  1. Theologically, the Mormon Church (LDS) is a cult of Christianity. Groups and movements of Fundamentalist Mormons are, theologically, cults of Mormonism. It should be noted that, for the most part, the doctrines and practices of Mormon Fundamentalists are closer to those of the original Mormon Church than are the doctrines and practices of today’s Mormon Church. Note, too, that most of these fundamentalist Mormon groups do not engage in the cult-like practices that the FLDS is known for — practices that mark the FLDS as a cult in the sociological sense of the term as well. Be aware of the difference between theological and sociological definitions of the term ‘cult.’ See also: Fundamentalist Mormons to Mormon Church: We are Mormons, too
  2. In 2006, Seth Jeffs was convicted of harboring Warren Jeffs, who was then on the run from law enforcement.

Jonestown cult massacre remains found; more religion news

Jonestown Peoples Temple cult Ashes of nine victims of the 1978 Jonestown murder & suicide massacre have been found among unclaimed containers in a Delaware funeral home.

The forced sale of an Australian doomsday cult’s compound fell through as the property did not attract any bids.

The accountant in charge of the FLDS cult’s property trust is in hot water over allegations that he patronized a prostitute.

Also, cult expert Rosanne Henry. [Read more...]

Is ‘Breaking the Faith’ real or fake? The FLDS cult under scrutiny

Breaking the Faith The TLC series ‘Breaking the Faith’ purports to show life inside and outside the destructive, polygamous FLDS cult. But are the stories real?

In December TCL features a second series that focuses on the FLDS, featuring a woman who helps people escape the cult.

Also: Former FLDS plural wife Rebecca Musser wore red when she testified against cult leader Warren Jeffs. Here’s why. [Read more...]

Scientologists almost ready to ‘build a new world'; Actors in cults

Religion News Blog L. Ron Hubbard foresaw a day when followers of his fantasy religion would create a new world. The cult is almost ready to take on that challenge.

Propeties belonging to imprisoned cult leader Tony Alamo will be sold in order to pay two of his former victims. And like Alamo, cult leader Warren Jeffs still controls his followers from behind bars.

Also: The Child-Friendly Faith Project is holding a conference on child abuse occurring in faith communities and cultural groups.

Plus: Michelle Pfeiffer talks about her involvement in a cult. [Read more...]