Jim Oler (front) walks towards the Cranbrook Law Courts building in February. Oler, who is associated with a fundamentalist Mormon sect, is currently on trial for polygamy charges. (Trevor Crawley/Cranbrook Townsman)

Bountiful trial testimony continues on day 3

Record keeping key to mainstream Mormon faith says church history expert

The trial for two men charged with polygamy continued last Thursday with testimony from a Texas Ranger and an expert in the mainstream Mormon church in Cranbrook Supreme Court.

Winston Blackmore and James Oler are charged with practicing polygamy in Bountiful.

Bountiful is a religious Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (FLDS) community south of Creston — by allegedly marrying multiple wives over roughly a span of 20 years.

Nick Hanna, with the Texas Rangers, was a law enforcement member who was part of a raid on the Yearning For Zion Ranch in Eldorado, Texas, in April 2008. That action led to the seizure of FLDS marriage records that Peter Wilson, a special prosecutor for the trial, has entered into evidence.

Hanna delivered his testimony on Wednesday, while Dr. Richard Bennett, an expert in archives and records management and mainstream Latter Day Saints church history, spoke about the importance of accurate record keeping to the LDS faith on Thursday.

Bennett, a member of the mainstream LDS church and a professor at Brigham Young University in Utah, outlined the early history of the faith led by Joseph Smith and the origins of religious documents such as the the Old and New Testament, Book of Mormon, the Doctrine and Covenants, and the Pearl of Great Price.

Under direct examination, Bennett also broke down the various positions of authority in the LDS church and how priesthood authority is bestowed through religious ordinances.

Bennett also referenced scripture from the New Testament that what is sealed on earth is sealed in Heaven, which is why record-keeping is so important to the Mormon faith.

“There would not be an LDS church without record-keeping,” Bennett said. “There would be no ordinances without record-keeping.”

Documentation includes membership records, financial records, temple records and church history records, all of which are carefully maintained by local chapels and church archives in Utah, U.S.A.

Just Posted

Right before Christmas, Surrey woman with two kids loses everything in fire

Bentley, her husband, and her two boys who have health issues are now left homeless

California competition gives Tamanawis an edge in high school hoops

The senior boys team played four games and watched UCLA in action last month

VIDEO: Volunteers, donations needed as ‘Whalley Santa Cause’ returns to Surrey’s 135A Street

Volunteers will descend on the Surrey ‘Strip’ to give hampers to homeless on Christmas Day, but help is needed

Surrey RCMP report ‘Tank-ful’ ending to stolen pit bull puppy case

Tank was reported stolen in late September, when he was 8 weeks old

White Rock’s Memorial Park receives archaelogical permit

Step comes three months after project shut down by SFN cease and desist order

Border officers rally at B.C.’s Peace Arch

CBSA employees tire of ‘lack of respect’

Debt-to-household-income ratio rises in third quarter

Total household credit market debt grew to $2.11 trillion in the third quarter

B.C. Mountie told to resign after texting teenage sex assault victim

RCMP documents say Const. Brian Eden sent sexually inappropriate photos to 17-year-old girl

Family doctors should learn to treat addiction, not shun patients: scientist

B.C. Centre on Substance Use’s Dr. Evan Wood said efforts underway to change addiction medicine image

Update: Small fire near Maple Ridge tent city

Occurred outside camp Wednesday night

Four dog deaths investigated in Cranbrook

One vet suggests a parallel to these deaths and similar ones in 2016

Full Cupboard Holiday Program: Raising food, funds and awareness.

Envision Financial and Langley Advance support area food banks this season

Meningococcal disease outbreak declared in Okanagan

Five cases in last six months among 15- to 19-year-olds, including one in Vernon

Military life gives way to chance as author

Retired Chilliwack officer pens book about life in Afghanistan

Most Read