05-16-2008, 12:22 AM #1
Book by Benjamin Bistline / FLDS Background
I could not tell if this had been posted. If so I am sorry for the dup.
This book was written by a boy, Benjamin Bistline, who moved to Hildale when he was 10 and it is said on the back of the book that conditions were similar to that in a third world country.
If you want some kind of background info on the FLDS, this book is posted free online at
05-16-2008, 11:55 PM #2Former Member
- Join Date
- Dec 2003
"Until a lawsuit against the UEP in 1987 (*I believe that would be under the leadership of Rulon Jeffs) their group was never known as the FLDS.
Bistline states "For lawsuit purposes, these men who had assumed power and control of the organization came up with the name "Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints" (FLDS) claimingthey were an organized church and had been since 1830 when Joseph Smith organized the Mormon Chuch. They did this in order to legally hide behind a church entity. In the lawsuit was the first time the name FLDS was ever used. In the 1940s they did identify themselves as Fundamentalist Mormons, but never claimed to be a church, only a Priesthood group called together to keep plural marriage alive."
It appears that's about when Rulon finally got rid of the council and started everyone referring to the leader as the "prophet" although the Barlows and Jessops had been trying to do that since the 60's. During Rulon's leadership is when they changed the UEP, from its beginnings as "a religious and charitable trust" into "everything donated to the UEP belongs to the prophet." I'd say the former accountant Jeffs had planned this out before making his move and taking over.
Bistline stated that the earlier members established the UEP "for the security and protection of the members, both from the outside influence as well as unjust management within the Group itself. That sure backfired!! Their own not only mismanaged the trust but depleted it and used it as a blackmail threat held over the members heads.
"For these reasons the organization must be founded under the laws of the land and be subject to these laws at all time." They've certainly ignored that! It certainly appears that even though earlier leaders had contempt for the law of the land, under Rulon and Warren Jeffs that contempt and disregard became even worse. The manipulations before that by the Jessops and Barlows (and others) is a fascinating insight into the history.
05-17-2008, 12:12 AM #3Former Member
- Join Date
- Dec 2003
From what Bistline is saying, Leroy Johnson decided to "force the people in line rather than allowing them their free agency to choose their course of religious sentiments and to force any member out of the society if he believed that person was out of harmony with him in any degree." So much for the benevolent "Uncle Leroy" some of the former flds members speak of.
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