Tag: Polygamy

Religious Freedom vs. Human Rights

The ‘Church’ of Scientology, among other things known for tearing relationships apart, is delighted that two of its members in the UK have finally been able to marry in one of the cult’s ‘chapels.’

We also highlight a couple of other cases in which human rights and religious freedom interact.

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

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.

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

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.

Polygamous sect on charm offensive

High profile prosecutions of fundamentalist Mormons who engaged in child marriages have shone an unwelcome spotlight on polygamous believers.

But the members of one polygamous sect — that does not allow underage followers to marry — say they are tired of living in secret and want to demonstrate plural marriage as a normal, loving lifestyle.

Appeals court upholds conviction in baby’s ‘exorcism’ death

In today’s Religion News Briefs: An appeals court has upheld the capital murder conviction of a woman whose baby was killed during an alleged ‘exorcism.’

The Salt Lake Tribune introduces two new reporters for its Polygamy Blog.

A U.S. publisher is researching the possibility to publish a tell-all book on the notoriously litigious Scientology cult in Canada — despite that country’s antiquated, free-speech curtailing libel laws.

Plus: a baker in Oregon claims his religious convictions prevent him from baking a wedding cake for a lesbian couple.

Texas authorities move to seize FLDS cult ranch

FLDS Temple The State of Texas on Wednesday took steps to seize the Yearning For Zion ranch where underage girls were involved in marriages to adult followers of the Fundamentalist Church of Latter-Day Saints (FLDS).

Last year the cult’s leader, Warren Jeffs, was sentenced to life plus 20 years in prison for sexually assaulting two underage followers he took as brides in what the FLDS considers “spiritual marriages.”

Under Texas law, law enforcement can try to seize property that was used to commit or facilitate certain criminal conduct.

Court rules Utah keeps control of religious cult’s property trust

United Effort Plan A communal land trust once run by jailed U.S. polygamist cult leader Warren Jeffs should not be turned back to leaders of his breakaway Mormon sect because they were too late filing a legal challenge against Utah’s takeover of the assets, a federal appeals court ruled on Monday.

We provide background to the case, as well as an overview of other controversies surrounding the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

Court upholds cult leader’s sexual misconduct conviction

Wayne Bent Michael TravesserToday: The New Mexico Supreme Court on Monday reinstated the convictions of religious cult leader Wayne Bent for sexual misconduct with teenage followers.

Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff has been ordered to appear in court to discuss how the state will pay millions in past-due fees to the accountant in charge of the property trust the state took over from the FLDS cult.

And Word of Faith Fellowship — an abusive church in North Carolina — is accused of confining and beating a man because he is gay.

Finally: Would you donate money to a millionaire preacher who claims God will make you rich?