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HILLDALE — Rumors are flying about a new edict that sources say was issued from prison by polygamist leader Warren Jeffs. Jeff's has apparently instructed his thousands of followers that a select group of 15 men will father all future children in the group.
Although KSL's sources are usually quite reliable, in this case they acknowledge the reports are hard to verify.
Late last year, thousands of Jeffs' followers here were told to accept a bizarre decree: No sex would be allowed - even with people you're married to. Now they're being asked to accept the resumption of sex, but only by a select few.
It seems to be all work and no play for Jeff's followers. Last year he banned most toys and recreational equipment. Church leaders blockaded basketball courts with huge bales of cardboard. At another court, they blocked it with fences and took down the basketball hoops.
"They did that because Warren doesn't want people playing ball any more, of any kind," said former FLDS member Isaac Wyler, who left Jeffs' church years ago.
Whyler still lives in Jeffs' home base, the border twin towns of Hildale, Utah and Colorado City, Arizona. Wyler said Jeffs is removing all fun and joy from the town. He's also heard rumors that sex is allowed only for a certain chosen group.
They said there had been fifteen men delegated or designated by the God to sire the new special children, I guess.
"They said there had been 15 men delegated or designated by the God to sire the new special children, I guess," Wyler said.
Investigator Sam Brower, who wrote a best-selling book called "Prophet's Prey," said relatives of faithful members also told him about the fifteen men edict.
"These men are now breeding stock, essentially. And it's their assignment to breed with the women in town," Brower said.
According to these 2nd- and 3rd-hand reports, the other men in the group will be just caretakers, earning a living for their wives, and for children fathered by others.
"The sex act itself is going to be a priesthood ordinance which is witnessed and carried out by these 15 men," Brower said.
"Just the way Warren works, it wouldn't surprise me if he was going to call the husband to be a witness, just because he's always testing people with these loyalty tests," Wyler said.
According to Brower's sources, FLDS members were told that if they had any reservations about the new edict, they should leave the meeting and await further discussion. At least 200 got up and left.
"I've still got brothers and sisters that are caught up in this thing. And they're buying this stuff. I can't imagine how, but they are," Wyler said.
As is usually the case, KSL has been unable to reach anyone who's willing to speak for the FLDS church or to confirm that these new rules exist.