Monday, March 28, 2011

Who Would Have Thunk It?

I just read the news that Warren Jeffs was just ousted as president of the FLDS church.  William E. Jessop was apparently formally tapped by Jeffs years ago as the real heir to the leadership mantle, and now he, Jessop (not former church spokes-thug, Willie Jessop), has assumed control of the church by asserting his (rightful?) standing today at the office of Salt Lake's Division of Corporations.  Who would have thunk it?  I'm a bit confused because it was just weeks ago that Wendell Nielsen was the president ???????????

You can read Jennifer Dobner's amazing article below (in your face, Burnt Hensnacker !!!).  I don't think I completely understand this, other than that Jeffs is in jail awaiting trial on a handful of charges related to sex with minors.  I have always insisted that we shouldn't indict someone unless we have proof that he or she really did the alleged crime.  I guess it remains to be seen if the girls in question were molested in any way.  To date, Utah and Arizona have been unable to pin anything on Jeffs.  Maybe we'll get more information at the Texas trial, but that is still months away.  Heaven help anyone who has to be tried by Barbaric Warthog (she has eaten several innocent people for breakfast).

It seems to me that Judge Dee Benson is heaven-bent on giving the UEP trust back to its rightful owners.  Perhaps with someone other than Jeffs at the helm, the transition can proceed efficiently.  Maybe the A.G.s can put away the swords.  Maybe the hater-nasties will have lost the primary target of their venom.

I guess the big question Enquiring minds want to know is, "Will the new president un-excommunicate all the faithful church-members and leaders whom Jeffs recently disciplined?

My prayer is that the wonderful people who are faithful members of the FLDS community will -

1.  Get their state-confiscated property back.
2.  Get a clarification of the truth and facts so they will not be misled by anyone.
3.  Be as united as ever.
4.  Continue to be faithful to the restored Gospel.
5.  Warmly embrace their Fundamentalist Mormon brothers and sisters everywhere (who love them!).

Oh, yeah, and I pray for the Jeffs family - that they will be blessed and comforted during this horribly trying time.

APNewsBreak: Church elder moves to replace Jeffs

By JENNIFER DOBNER  2011 The Associated Press

March 28, 2011, 6:21PM

SALT LAKE CITY  Jailed polygamous sect leader Warren Jeffs may no longer have control of his southern Utah-based church after a senior leader on Monday moved to replace him.
William E. Jessop filed papers with the Utah Department of Commerce to take over as president of the corporation that is the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.
Jessop, who served as bishop of the twin FLDS border towns of Hildale, Utah, and Colorado City, Ariz., said Monday his rise to the presidency is not an attempt to take over the church, but rather the fulfillment of an earlier directive from Jeffs.
"It is an attempt to preserve ... the church," Jessop, 41, said in an interview with The Associated Press.
An attempt to reach Jeffs at the Texas jail where is being held was unsuccessful Monday, and a telephone call to his criminal attorney was not immediately returned. A message left for Rod Parker, a Salt Lake City attorney who represents the church in civil matters, also wasn't returned.
Jeffs, 55, was convicted in Utah in 2007 on two felony counts of rape as an accomplice and was ordered to serve life sentences, but the convictions were later overturned.
Earlier that year, while jailed and awaiting trial, Jeffs tried to cede authority of the church both as president and spiritual leader to Jessop in a series of recorded telephone calls to followers and to Jessop, himself.
"I know of your ordination, that you are the key holder, and I have sent a note with my signature so that there is no question," Jeffs told Jessop in a Jan. 24, 2007, telephone call from a Utah jail.
The tapes and a DVD of the conversation were released by the court as part of Jeffs' trial.
Jessop did not respond to the offer at the time, and Jeffs publicly remained spiritual head and president of the church. Other church members speculated the calls from Jeffs were merely a test of their faith.
Four days later, Jeffs attempted suicide by trying to hang himself in the jail.
Then in December 2007, after his Utah conviction, Jeffs resigned as president of the church corporation, believing he could no longer run its day-to-day business from behind bars. But he remained the group's spiritual leader.
Jeffs was later moved to a jail in Texas, where he is awaiting trial on bigamy and aggravated sexual assault charges. Last month, he retook control of the church following the abrupt resignation of his replacement, who was forced out of the church.
Jessop said he is only stepping forward now because he believes he can help provide the church with the leadership it needs while Jeffs is incarcerated.
"We take things at Heavenly Father's pace," said Jessop, who has been living on a church ranch in Pringle, S.D., since 2004.
Jeffs would not have to formally resign as the church's president for Jessop to be installed, Commerce Department spokeswoman Jennifer Bolton said Monday. However, it remained unclear whether Jeffs would immediately lose all power in the church or share it with Jessop, at least for now.
Jessop's assertion of leadership is largely unprecedented, and it wasn't immediately clear whether the move would fracture or unite the 10,000-strong church with members in Arizona, British Columbia, Colorado, South Dakota, Texas and Utah.
Asked if he is now considered the church's prophet and spiritual leader, Jessop said that will be up to individual church members. In the past, the church president has also been considered its prophet.
Meanwhile, a trial for Jeffs is set for later this year in Texas, where prosecutors allege he had sex with two girls, one under age 14 and one under age 17. A court has entered not guilty pleas on Jeffs' behalf.
Canadian authorities also are investigating allegations that in 2005 Jeffs married two 12-year-old sect girls who were brought from a church enclave in British Columbia to the U.S. It's not clear whether those girls are the same victims whose relationships with Jeffs are the basis for the Texas charges.
Jeffs assumed the role as FLDS prophet and president in September 2002 following the death of his father, Rulon Jeffs, who suffered a series of strokes.
His rise to power has been questioned by former church members who say there was no succession plan in place when the elder Jeffs died because he had preached that the second coming of Jesus Christ was imminent, and therefore no one would need to lead the church in the future.


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