S01.E05 - Colorado City, Respite in a Fundamentalist Polygamist Mormons Community / Bike touring
Riding, down from, Jaco Blake and our trip from the North stream we've, talked to Colorado. City on the border between Arizona and, Utah. And we, found here, nice a nice couple, hosting. Us through the warm shower, sherry. And Brian. Entering. In the town we saw a lot of huge, houses. With a very big fans. Ladies. We're. Wearing, long. Prairie, dresses and. Pastime. Hairstyles and sherry. And Brian told, us that we were in fundamental. Polygamist, Mormon, community. Sharing. And Brian are evangelical. Missionary, and they do an amazing walk. A charity, walk, many. With a food bank for her to help hear the community, being. Very curious, to learn, more about their. Work their charity. Work and the. Life of the Mormons community, we, decided, to go further and to make a little film about it, and to share with you. You. Brian. Has just accepted to answer to some questions. So. Could you give us a general explanation, about who. Are the Mormons, and what, kind of Mormons, live here in this community okay so, back in the 1830s Joseph. Smith started. His. Own religion. He, called it the Church of Jesus Christ of, latter-day saints it. Picked up the nickname the, Mormons because of the Book of Mormon which he claimed to have received on gold, plates, that. He received from an angel of the Lord and. One. Of the earliest practices. Of the Mormon faith was, polygamy, Joseph. Smith taught. That God was once a man who became a God and that you and I can progress to becoming, God's ourselves but, part of that process was. Entering into the practice. Of polygamy because, he taught that God was a polygamist, and in order to progress to godhood you had to have at least three plural. Wives. Joseph. Smith himself had, about, 40 wives, Brigham. Young his successor, who brought the, Mormons, from Illinois, out set to settle the West. Brigham. Young he had probably about 53, wives in. 1890. The Mormon Church, banned the practice of polygamy with, the signing of the manifesto. But. There were people who. Believed that polygamy was, one of the tenants of the faith that you couldn't just dispose, of because. We were told it was the only way that we could progress to godhood, and that, made it in disposable. So they broke away from the mainstream Mormon. Church and started, the fundamentalist. Mormon. Movement. And my family, broke, away from the mainstream Mormon Church when, that happened my family history goes back to the days of Joseph Smith in, the Mormon faith. So. Polygamy, has been in my family all the way down to me my. Father had four, wives and 31. Children, and I, was his 28th, child. And. I. Grew, up in this community, of, polygamists.
Until. I became, a teenager when, I joined the military to, get, away and. In. The process of that became. A born-again Christian, and then, a Baptist, minister, and. Now my wife and I live here in the community as. Evangelical. Christian missionaries, and. We operate a food bank where, we're trying to help feed the, people in need here in this community. We. Answered a lot more questions in the first one their bank. Brief for your video. So. One, details regarding the. Proportion of women. And men if it's at least two three, women for one men it means that at some point there is a lake of women or too. Many men so what's happened for those boys yes that's, one of the difficult things about polygamy, polygamy creates. An unsustainable. Society. Throughout. The world the birth rate is 40. 49. % male and, 51%. Female, so. There's only a 1% difference. You. Know it's being able to say the birth rate is 50/50. Now. If, a man has to have 3 wives, that. Means he has two extra, wives. Well, that means two young men have. To go without a wife in. Order, for things to balance out so. Goodness. You mean that's. Just, to begin with, the. The the elite leaders, in the community, aren't content, with just three wives there are many who have many. Many more, wives than that Winston. Blackmore, who runs. A polygamous. Group up in Canada, he's, got 25, wives. Well, that means 24 young men had. To be driven from the community, in. Order for him to have that many wives and how does it happen what's, what's. Happening for those boys, well, these boys are told. That they're not worthy, they're, sent away to repent. They. They're, told they have no value to God no value to the community no value to their families, they're. Sent away into an outside world that. They've been told. Is. Full. Of demons and, spirits, just waiting to destroy them, as soon as they're outside, of the priesthood protection. Of their, religion. And. Many. Of them because, they, have such low self-esteem, and. Low. Self-worth turn. To alcohol and drugs as, a way of numbing out and, I'm not, feeling. Or experiencing. The pain of what they've been through and so. There's a high rate of alcoholism. Drug, abuse and. Suicide, among. These boys who are driven from the community, for. The women. They. Might be married off at a young, age 15. 16 17 years old because they try and marry them off before they turn 18 because, once they're 18 they're emancipated. They they they're, no longer under their parents authority. They. Don't have to do what their parents say, and, so they because, these are arranged, marriages, they. Usually try and get. A girl. Married off before, she turns 18 so, a 15, 16 17 year old girl might get married to a man who's 85. Old. Enough to be her grandfather and, he might already have a dozen, wives. And. This. Becomes a very lonely, existence, there's, a lot of. Competition. With, the women for, resources, in the family. For. Their children, and there's. Often. Favoritism. Shown by, the men you, know if if. They have a favorite wife that. Wife's children, might, get more resources, than the, rest of the children and. Resources. Can become a, way. Of. Disciplining. A wife you, know she's not being. Submissive. Enough. But, it's a very difficult, life, for. Many of these women and. A lonely life, if. You can imagine trying to share your, husband, with, 13. Other women, you know, when. Do you have time. Alone. To yourself, with your husband rarely, so. It. Can be a very lonely existence. The. These, large family, is what they end up doing is they end up creating. A. System. That's also. Impoverished. It's. Very hard to support such, a large family my father had 31 children, of. His, four. Wives three, of them worked along. With my father and and. One of his wives stayed, home and with the help of the older children she. Took care of all 31, of us and. So can, you imagine just, for a moment how stressful, her, day was taking care of 31 kids and, managing, a house that big and then, even. Though we, had four people, four. Adults who were earning an income it, was still very difficult for, us, as. I grew up to make ends meet I only, had one pair of brand-new shoes my.
Entire Childhood. And. It was my first day of school and. 45. Years later I can still see those shoes in my head they. Were very special to me because I've never had brand-new shoes before this, is the type of poverty, that we're dealing with here here. In the community, we have, 75. Percent, unemployment. Rate and. A 90 percent poverty, rate and so. The food bank the food distribution that we do here is is vital, in helping them. Climb out of this, impoverished, state. That they find themselves in, part, of the problem. Is how remote of an area that we're in it's really hard to find jobs out here so, we're, trying to help. Promote, local. Businesses. Which. When, those local businesses begin. To grow they. Create local, jobs which. Lowers. The unemployment. Rate and also lowers the poverty, rate so, we're trying to help businesses, be successful here we're trying to help meet people people's, basic needs we're, trying to help people become, homeowners, because. Home ownership is one. Of the steps in in prosperity. And. So, we're helping people repair, their credit and, and get, it into homes and things like that these, are some of the social helps programs, besides, the. Food distribution that, we. To help with, the poverty here so you come back into, your hometown, as. Evangelical. Missionary. What. Does it mean, is. It a. Matter to, convert, people, from one religion to another, well. I'm. A. Christian. Minister, and, my. Purpose here is to one, day have, a, evangelical. Christian, Church that's planted here that teaches from. The Bible and, helps people to understand, that the. Oppression, they grew up with in. In, the fundamentalist, Mormon movement. That. Wasn't. God. Who oppressed. Them or God who abused, them. That. Was a man. Using. The name of God to. Religiously. Manipulate, and control them, and exercise, control. Over, their lives. Their. Prophet was, clearly addicted, to power. Addicted. To. Sexual. Conquest, with how many wives he had he had 87 wives. And, he was he. Was. Addicted to the. Money the greed. What. I want people to learn is that it's it's okay to have a relationship, with God and it's. Safe to have a relationship, with God and there's, protections. That God gives us in the gospel, that protect. Us from evil. Tyrannical, men like. The Prophet they had. Served for so long. You. Know Jesus said if the son of man sets you free then you're free indeed, well, they. Don't know what freedom looks like, yet and there's. A lot of change happening here, in this community, because. Their, prophet is now imprisoned, for. Raping. A 12. Year old and a 13 year old girl that, he had married. Spiritually. And. So. He's serving two life sentences in, a prison in Texas, well, that's. Left the community. Essentially. Leaderless, and and. So things are fragmenting. Things are starting to fall apart but as things are falling apart, change. Is coming and that's one of the reasons why we're really glad that we're here at, this point in time is we can help the community recover. Economically. Spiritually. Socially. There's, a there's a lot of mental. And emotional. Illnesses. Or, needs. Here in the community. The. Same emotional, and mental disorders. That you'll find in sex, trafficking, you're. Gonna find here in this community so, there's a great need for counseling. Services and things, like that to help the community, here recover and that's why we're here if in the process, of that. People. Come. To faith in Jesus. And decide, that they want to be a Christian, that's. Awesome, we'll have church services here, for them and that our. Main goal here, is to not try and cram religion, down anybody's, throat we, don't want to bring anything to anybody that they don't want be part, of or anything like that, we, want to make that, available to them if that's something they want in their lives.
But. Our, main goal here is, to simply, come here and show. Them the, love of God, through, us by. Meeting their needs and helping, them rebuild the community, mm-hmm and material, help like food bank is absolutely. Open to everybody. Yes. It, doesn't matter what you think what. You feel what, you believe had we don't even care if you like us or not if you, come to us and you say you're hungry we're gonna feed you and, if I've run out of food in my warehouse well, then I'll bring you back to my house for. Dinner because, there's no reason for anyone in this community, to go hungry and that's. One of the things we've had some difficulty. In. Explaining, to the community, they think that we're doing this for some, other other reason, but no or. That we're, discriminating. We're. Not feeding certain, groups of people you. Have to come, to my church to get my food and, stuff, like no we're. Not like that, and. We. Are, the. Food that we get comes from government, so we can't discriminate. We. Have to to, treat. Everybody the same. Otherwise. We, would we would be in violation of the law and, so. We. Get our food from the government, but, the building, that we use to. Distribute, the food is out of the ten thousand square foot warehouse that, we have there's. A mortgage that has to be paid on that there's electric, the electricity. And the the water and, the sewage, utilities. The. Maintenance. And upkeep it, costs us about three thousand, dollars a month to do this, we. We, do get some support from local churches, we. Do get some support from individuals but. We don't get any support, from, the government other than the food they sent to us so. We, do have financial. Need for for. Donors people, who would like to help us in making, this available. To the community and then so. Far you, know a lot of the the money to, do this comes out of my pocket we're, out of the father-in-law's, pocket. To, help make. This happen and bring. The food to the people, here and, our personal, finances, are really starting to suffer from the, burden that's been put, on us in doing this so, we could really use some financial, help if you people would. Like to contribute to what we're doing they, can simply go to. Short. Creek Family, Services, dot org and, there's a button, there that they can make. A donation to, or, they, can go. To Short. Creek fellowshipped, org, and they. Can go, to the contacts section there send me an email and, we can help them get connected on how they can help us with what we're doing here if they're so interested we put the, links in the description of the video. But. Welcome to our food bank we have our clipping here in color in a city twice a month the pit comes up from Phoenix Arizona and. We feed the community here so I'll take you through on whatever you think looks like people. Walk in the door when they arise and they, meet, at our reception table and we give them a little snack today. We have over 1 bars and boiling water and. They take a number and. Then, they have a seat here and. When. Their number is close and just come up for moonshine, eggs and, won't. Join. Us. So. When you come in we have shopping carts and we have a host or hostess that, meets with you with the shopping cart, Diana. So. This is some more of our volunteers, and. This. Is some of the products we have and, this is ground, turkey. When. We have beverages, on this table. Balls. And fruit. The. Strawberries. We have tomatoes so. We have the small little Tomatoes. Tomatoes. And today we also have some organic greens, but we do and. Then we have lots of bread that we give out. This. Kind of bread is the most, popular, that people like here the. Organic, wheat breads would usually go first out the out, the door and the white breads are the last thing that leaves. And. Then, once your car to school. And. As you can see they have larger vehicles, for you. And. Then we see you again. So, here we finish this little.
Movie, We've. Been very troubled, by what we found here. Young. Boys brought. Far away from the families and asked, to never, come back and, with, so many families, moments. Family very poor and a lot of with. A lot of children. And, a lot of ladies pregnant. We, hope this, video was, interesting, for, you, of, course the topic is very large and we try to stay concise. As. Much as possible, but. If you want to know. More, about it you can follow the links below this video in the description also. There. Is this book. Brian. Is writer so. This is his book and, if. You are interested, you can. Look. Below this video in this description also for, more details and you will find the link to I, think it's on Amazon, you can buy it a digital version or a paper one yes, I started to read it it's very very interesting. See. You in the next video bye, bye.