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Lost Boy: A Look Inside Polygamist Mormon “Royalty”

May 22, 2009

An interview with author Brent Jeffs, at NPR. Mr. Jeffs grew up in a fundamentalist Mormon household, the grandson of his church’s prophet. Jeffs’ tragic story includes sexual abuse, drug addiction, abandonment and suicide and his critique of the particular brand of Mormonism he experienced is devastating. An introduction:

[Jeffs] grew up in the inner circles of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints; his grandfather was a prophet of the FLDS, which teaches that polygamy is a religious practice that guarantees salvation. Jeffs’ uncle Warren Jeffs became president of the sect in 2002.

A very insightful look into the Fundamentalist Latter Day Saints (FLDS), a more conservative offshoot of the mainstream LDS, from a young man whose family was FLDS leadership. Among the revelations:

I’d estimate that maybe one in five FLDS families has lost a child early in life, frequently from accidents that better supervision could have prevented. And that number doesn’t include deaths related to the genetic disorder that runs in our church-which handicaps and often kills children very early in life but which many members refuse to see as a result of marriages among closely related families.

Another book detailing the extreme factions within the FLDS is Jon Krakauer’s excellent, “Under the Banner of Heaven“.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. May 23, 2009 4:49 am

    Wales:

    Thank you for this post. It was very interesting. I grew up in the greater LeBaron family of polygamists, and am always interested in reading about my cousins in the other groups.

    A few of us have started a blog which is designed to criticize those aspects of Mormon culture which are harmful and counterproductive. If you would be interested in contributing, please feel free to contact me.

    Keep up the great work.

    Herb

  2. May 23, 2009 8:23 am

    Herb,

    I would certainly be interested in reading about your experience with polygamy and with the church in general. But I’m not sure I’m qualified to contribute. I’m not a Mormon and my knowledge on the topic is limited. Thanks for taking the time to read my post, though.

    Wales

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