Do Mormons believe that it is okay to have more than one wife?
No. The LDS Church (commonly called the "Mormon} Church) believes, as per its 12th Article of Faith, in honouring and sustaining the Law. The Church outlawed the practise of polygamy amongst its adherents more than 120 years ago, in 1890. Any person found practising it today is excommunicated from the Church.
There are various break-away churches that do practice polygamy, and have been on the US news quite a bit in the recent past. They are not part of the LDS Church. Many people make the mistake of categorizing these various practices and churches as one religion. However, such beliefs and churches are, in fact, entirely their own distinct religions.
However, the LDS Church does believe that marriages solemnized in its temples can be for 'time' on earth and for all eternity, rather than just ending at the death of either spouse (as in the typical "til death do you part" ceremony), in a process referred to as "sealing." A man sealed to a wife who has died may be sealed to another wife, which, if Mormon understanding is correct, can result in him having more than one wife in the next life.
Some of those who disagreed with the Church ending the practice left the Church to form their own groups. These groups are NOT affiliated with the Church in any way and are NOT considered "Mormons". The polygamist groups and the Church do not want to be affiliated with each other, and operate entirely as their own distinct entities.
Some of the major polygamist groups include the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (the FLDS), the True and Living Church (TLC), the Latter Day Church of Christ (the Kingston Clan), the Blakemore Group, the Apostolic United Brethren (AUB), The Centennial Park Group, the Davis Co-operative Society, and The Church of the Lamb of God (the LeBaron Group). There are also many independent polygamist families that do not associate with any of these organized polygamist groups.
So, it is no wonder that the whole issue can become quite confusing.
For more information on the Church's doctrines about polygamy or about the Church itself, see the "Related Links" below.
No. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (the "Mormon" church) banned the practice of polygamy or plural marriage over 120 years ago in 1890. Anyone found participating in that practice is excommunicated from the Church.
Those whom you hear of practicing polygamy (such as those featured on the news or on TV series such as 'Big Love' and 'Sister Wives') are not members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, but belong to offshoot groups which have broken off from the Church long ago.
Check out the video under "Related Links" below to hear a statement from the past president of the Mormon Church regarding polygamists.
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