Most FLDS members live in Hildale, Utah and Colorado City, Arizona, about 350 miles southwest of Salt Lake City, with other communities in Canada, Texas and other areas of the North American west.
Polygamy is essentially decriminalized in Utah under a bill signed into law. SALT LAKE CITY — Polygamy has essentially been decriminalized under a bill signed into law by Utah’s governor. Utah was forced to abandon the practice of polygamy as a condition of statehood. Yet, it remains practiced today.
While official numbers do not exist, it is estimated that over 1 percent of Utah’s population is part of polygamist families.
The LDS Church publicly renounced the practice of polygamy in 1890, but it has never renounced polygamy as doctrine, as evidenced in LDS scriptures. It has always permitted and continues to permit men to be married in Mormon temples “for the eternities” to more than one wife .
In as much as this church of Christ has been reproached with the crime of fornication, and polygamy: we declare that we believe, that one man should have one wife; and one woman, but one husband , except in the case of death, when either is at liberty to marry again.
Polygamy is against the law in Mexico , too, but that country has always been more lenient toward it.
A new law that took effect in Utah this week has lowered the punishment for polygamy in some cases, making it an infraction similar to a traffic summons instead of a felony punishable by a prison term. But a polygamous marriage is still a felony if it was made by threats, fraud or force or involves abuse.
Polygamy is illegal all over the country, including in Arizona . It’s actually specifically mentioned in the Arizona Constitution which says, “ Polygamous or plural marriages, or polygamous co-habitation, are forever prohibited within this state.” This means it’s illegal to be married to more than one person.
By 1896, when Utah was granted statehood, the church had more than 250,000 members, most living in Utah . Today, according to official LDS statistics, Utah is home to more than 2 million Mormons , or about one-third of the total number of Mormons in the United States.
Utah’s laws governing polygamy can be traced back to its unique history. Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (commonly known as Mormons) once practiced polygamy as part of their religion, and fled to the Utah territory when they encountered persecution.
He is known for holding a world record as the head of the “world’s largest existing family” with 39 wives, 94 children , 14 daughters-in-law and 33 grandchildren, 180 family members in total and counting. The family is now living in Baktawng village Mizoram , India. Ziona was featured in Ripley’s Believe It or Not!
He/she cannot keep more than one spouse at the same time. While a person is married to another person , he/she cannot marry another person . If he/she does so, then the second marriage will be considered illegal. And the first spouse can file a case against the spouse committing polygamy under the Hindu Marriage Act.