...wherefore, they shall come to the knowledge of their Redeemer and the very points of his doctrine, that they may know how to come unto him and be saved. (1 Nephi 15:14)
Anthony Richmond has started a blog and reached out to me for my thoughts. I found his first post heartfelt, enlightening and important. It's worth a read:
Brokenness of Man & Plural Marriage
That is a very important post. Thanks for linking it and bringing it more into view Adrian.
[FYI I repeat my comments here, as Anthony's blog post has been given a wide audience by Adrian, and there are many who do not agree that Anthony is accurate in what he portrays.]I don't believe Anthony's story. This is why.I met Doug Mendenhall (through Denver Snuffer, it so happens) in 2012. Over the years my family and Doug became good friends and had frequent interaction and discussions with him. (We have also known the woman Anthony refers to as 'Kitten,' nearly as long, and have the same close friendship with her. Out of respect for her privacy, I will not name her.)For those who are unaware, Doug passed away in December 2020. Denver Snuffer and his wife traveled to Mt Pleasant where Denver spoke at Doug's funeral. The recording is available on the internet if you would like to listen to what Denver said. You may also have noticed Denver made a short post on his blog, remembering his friend Doug Mendenhall.Now to the important part.Through countless hours of attending “jedi” workshops that Doug hosted, and many more hours in private conversation with Doug, I have NEVER heard him advocate the practice of plural marriage, or anything like unto it. In my experience—over the course of 8 years of close association—Doug's private conversation has always been completely consistent with his public teaching. In other words, what is publicly available in the contents of the 6 books Doug published, as well as Doug's voluminous blog “Conquering Spiritual Evil,” is what he speaks in private conversation. As a person I know Doug to be compassionate, trustworthy, careful and exact, honest, honorable, friendly, kind, and extremely generous to those in need. Above all else, Doug loves his Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ. Doug spoke truth even when he knew some would choose to take offense, because the Savior is Doug's master. He chose not to enslave himself to polishing his own image or worrying about what others might think when Christ asked him to do, or say, anything. Choosing to follow Christ only, and not men's opinions, will bring on persecution, and Doug was well acquainted with that. I can think of a couple other examples whose names are had for both good and evil in this world.I, and my family, have found that Doug's teachings are consistent with scripture and all that has been revealed through the Lord's servant Denver Snuffer. Over these eight years, by giving heed to the Lord's word through these two men, each of us have become better people. More loving and forgiving. Less judgmental and accusatory. More willing to sacrifice for Our Lord Jesus Christ. Better able to identify our own shortcomings and sins. Quicker to repent. More diligent and faithful. Ever more aware of how far we still have to go in this process.We're not done yet by a long shot. But this is the fruit that I have experienced by giving heed to the Savior's words coming through Denver Snuffer and Doug Mendenhall.I personally know dozens of people who would write what I have written regarding their own long-term friendships with Doug and Kitten. I am aware that there are plenty of others whom I do not know personally, who would say the same thing about their own experiences with Doug.Insinuating that someone has been teaching, encouraging others to practice—and possibly practicing themselves—some form of polygamy/adultery is a very serious charge. If you are wrong about that, or lying, the consequences to you could be serious. Be careful.This is my witness.Now you get to choose.
Hello Rebecca. I actually agree with most of what you said about Doug. The subject is not about Doug though. It is about the hurt and pain that the subject of plural marriage can cause to people. I am not offended that you do not believe what I said. I can in honesty hold my hand on the Book of Mormon with my right arm to the square and testify that what I have written happened from my vantage point.I went back to my Jedi notes after reading your post here to make sure I am not speaking untruths. In my notes I read “Christ has 7 wives – it shows on our hands which one we come from”. “To be called Rabbi – minimum of 3 wives”.The doctrine was taught openly. I never said he encouraged others to practice it. That is your assumption. Nor did I insinuate that he possibly practiced it. That is also your assumption. Remember one of his favorite catch phrases he used in Jedi’s “don’t assume, it makes an ass out of you and me.” I always got a kick out of that one.As my wife and I talked about this tonight, she reminded me when his daughter told my wife and I in a home in SLC that we would be asked to practice the law. It was not probed or asked for. But it was spoken very matter of fact.To clarify, Doug did not teach that I was called to practice plurality. His daughter did more than twice to me personally and then to both my wife and I. Kitten did also to me personally. These experiences were paramount in my downward spiral seeking understanding on this topic. This is soothsaying. The main point is to do exactly the opposite of what I did, and not hearken to soothsayers. I take full responsibility for listening to man.With all of this said, I hold no malice. I hold no accusatory spirit here. I actually love them. Doug Is a good man and I love him. Kitten is a good woman. We are all here doing the best we can. And I am so glad that your experience with Doug has been so positive.
Rebecca,I don't mind you defending Doug and his integrity because of your personal experience---but I DO take umbrage with you attaching Denver Snuffer's name in order to give a sort of "credence" to your defense of Doug. No man is perfect and all men err. Doug is no exception---whether intended or not. To put trust in what he taught by making a connection to him with Denver Snuffer is going too far. Denver being a person's friend, and speaking at a man's funeral in NO way means Denver condoned or advocates for what Doug teaches nor does it prove that Doug has not been the source of leading many people astray or onto strange paths with his ideas, or that Denver doesn't think Doug has done so. Denver can love and be kind to an imperfect man and accept an invitation to speak at his funeral, without it being some sort of "witness" to any of us that Doug was on target with his teachings or ideas.Each of us must learn to discern truth from error and we must learn to look beyond trusting someone because they are friends with this or that person. Too many people have put trust in Doug (or others) due to a supposed depth of "relationship" had with Denver---then trust the teachings of the person because Denver never comes out and directly discredits the person or exposes what they are doing as false. Denver expect US to use our own ability to discern false ideas without him having to "call out" people and humiliate them publicly. Denver doesn't operate that way. He gives mercy and allows individuals like Doug (and all of us) accountability for our own decisions, actions, and eternal progression without directly calling us out as to where we are wrong or off track. But it doesn't mean he agrees with a person or thinks they aren't causing some real opposition or challenge to others. He lets God correct us. But please don't confuse that kindness, or unwillingness to act as our "judge," with being some sort of "validation" that everything with Doug was on target or good---or to discredit what Anthony shared. Anthony, I appreciated the manner in which you clarified your points with Rebecca. I have my own experiences with the individuals you mentioned that don't have to do with your specific topic of polygamy (though I did hear Denise teach the 3 wives of Christ thing) ---but the things I was exposed to caused me to definitely sever any pursuit of that circle of influence within the first year of my interaction with all of them. I honestly tested the waters and found them to be FULL of false spirits. It is very very dangerous territory and many false ideas were taught and still believed by some.
Have we as a people read the words of RE Ezekiel 5:8-11 and seriously pondered them?How does one know if their minds are darkened?How do we know if we are neglecting our duties God has asked of us?Are we depending on our preferred prophets for truth and only trusting in their expositions?Are we diligently and patiently inquiring of the Lord and choosing to wait upon Him?Are we taking a long enough walk with those whom we disagree with?Are we extending charity and kindness to those same people in our public as well as private conversations?Do we know each others hearts well enough?There are many more questions we can ask ourselves.
Wow, thank you for these questions. And the scriptures you have quoted. The words of the Lord in Ezekiel there are blasters, and worth some serious contemplation on my end. I mourn because I can see my lack in every question posed. Thank you for this self evaluation.
How can we discern when a true message has been sent by God?How often do we refrain from drawing conclusions if that message seems contradictory to our current understanding?How often are we pleading with the Lord to reveal His truth and not trust in the arm of flesh?Are we as a people really receiving all of God's messengers when they come among us?Are we offending God when we reject any truth coming from Him?
To Rebecca and others who may think this to not be truth. I will stand here as a witness to speak that what my husband Anthony has said is true. I was there and present for most of it. Because of these teachings my life has been a living Hell on more than one occasion, including right now because of this doctrine. Let's be clear right now that Anthony was struggling with this doctrine even before Doug taught it in his Jedi's. Anthony began taking the Jedi's and it all went downhill way fast after that. I was present when my husband came home from these Jedi classes and shared what he was learning. I remember the night he came home and told me that he had learned about bonded mates. He proceeded to tell me he didn't feel that we were bonded mates, which made our marriage null and void in his eyes. My world began to really fall apart after that and would continue for the next seven years. I watched as it ripped my marriage and family apart. No one can understand the pain and anguish this doctrine expels until it hits you personally. Doug placed so much faith and truth on his daughter's experiences, almost putting her on a pedestal was wrong of him to do. Doug placing so much faith in these other woman was wrong too. Where was Doug’s wife in all of this? I can attest that Denise Mendenhall told me and my husband that we would be asked to live the law of polygamy. Again, I tried to convince my husband it was wrong. God was merciful to me and granted me many moments of comfort and miracles. I can give testimony that this doctrine is a damning doctrine. God himself gave me a witness that I could never deny. There was a day that I could not continue. I told God I was sitting in this chair and was going too fast and pray and read my scriptures until I received some peace and have this burden taken off of me. I sat in that chair for more than ten hours. I didn't move. I cried and prayed harder than I ever had. Finally, God took it all from me. I felt his peace and love encompass me. He gave me two promises in that moment. The first was that I would never be asked to practice plural marriage or anything like unto it as it is not a true doctrine. He also promised me a man that would love me and only me. It was truly a miracle that lasted for a few days that buoyed me up and gave me strength to continue. Men who believe this doctrine of plurality of wives are committing adultery as their belief in their hearts makes them guilty of that crime. Doug has caused much harm to many families for the doctrine he has taught. If anyone should hold malice or want to point the accusing finger it should be me. The hurt and pain my children and I have had to endure because of such filth is not something I would wish on anyone. But I have fully forgiven Doug and his daughter and Kitten for their part in this trial. Much has been gained. I do believe it could have been learned differently, but it is what it is and there is no changing it. I am just grateful God has given me the strength to endure the hurt and pain that was caused because of it. I am grateful God has given me love beyond measure for my husband. I pray people open their eyes to the truthfulness I speak and attest to. As God is my witness I swear that the above story of Anthony and I are true. I hope that maybe by sharing such a story and exposing my families heartache that maybe someone will be spared the same fate I have had to endure. If you are in the middle of this trial, I beg you to stop, think about your wife or husband. Think of your children. This doctrine is a false teaching and will only damn people if they continue in it. We as a people need to shed this from our beliefs so that God can use us to build the Zion we all seek. I have much more I could share but feel this is enough. I pray for all of you that may be struggling with any trial similar to what I have had to endure. May God shine his light of truth over you as he has done for Anthony and I.
Anthony's and Amanda's report on this topic to me is spot on. Doug's and his "sighted gals" teachings on polygamy, "bonded mates", multiple mortal probations, etc. in my opinion, has caused great harm to many. The Richmond's report is important and courageous because of the ongoing vehemence from Doug's apologists--such as Rebecca--who appear to continue to "defend the indefensible" despite the widespread human wreckage that has ensued. Doug often made it a point to drop Denver's name as the source for many of his teachings. Denver would go out-of-his-way to state that no one should speak for him or reference him in that way. Denver even threw Doug under-the-bus when Doug and his "sighted gals" got involved in an ugly accusatory jihad involving a Southern Utah fellowship several years back. I seem to recollect that a Rebecca was foremost in condemning anyone who could possibly question Doug...even back then.
Thank you Anon. That Jihad or witch hunt on an innocent family in southern Utah you mentioned has had lasting affects and left severe trauma. It made them homeless and chased from state to state by Dougs loyal followers who had propped up their idol as a demi God. I have followed their journey and I was told by friends who tried to protect the family, that threats by Dougs followers were also made to them for trying to help take care of them. It was shared throughout the movement and many jumped onboard to condemn this family without even knowing the situation or their hearts. This is the ugly side to those incorrect spirits.
Worth a listen for another view on this whole discussion:https://denversnuffer.com/2021/04/141-forgiving-others-continued/
Condemning the ungodly and unholy teaching/practice of polygamy has absolutely nothing to do with forgiving anyone. It has only to do with following and honoring God. Very basic reading comprehension and even a small desire to know the truth would show you Anthony forgave Doug long ago. His post had nothing to do with accusing anyone. It was only to condemn a wicked teaching (doesn’t matter who teaches it) which is obviously still prevalent even among us who claim to desire a good thing.
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