As I write this, today is August 16, 2015. It is both staggering and humbling to realize that it has already been 10 years since one of the biggest achievements of my life occurred. But indeed, on August 16, 2005, the seemingly impossible had been overcome.
Ever since the Catholic institution first hijacked, overtook, and fraudulently dominated the faith of the original Christian martyrs in the 5th Century AD, and even after the Reformation a millenium later in which Protestants intended – but failed – to correct false doctrines invented by the Catholic institution, the very notion of connecting the two words of “Christian” and “polygamy” together would have sounded inconceivable.
Against that backdrop of extensive history, I knew – with eyes fully wide open – that it would be an uphill battle to be “Continuing the Reformation” when starting the modern Christian Polygamy movement on July 4, 1994.
Eleven years later, when I was asked to give an interview for the Christian Broadcasting Network’s show, The 700 Club, I anticipated that it would be a great challenge. After all, this was the decades-running show of renowned Christian leader, Pat Robertson. His show reaches 100s of 1,000s – if not millions – of fellow Christians around the world.
Mind you, I was both unwavering and fully confident in the absolutism of this new movement and our “sola scriptura” commitment to the 100% facts that, not only does the Bible never prohibit polygamy, but it also never labelled polygamy as any form of sin in any way either.
With compassion toward Robertson’s own political expediency, I realized going in to the interview to not have an expectation that the show would be positioned (yet) to rightly admit these 100% facts openly. My objective was a lovingkind hope that my leadership would gently lead them toward making a paradigm shift in the right direction toward these undeniable truths.
The paradigm shift that resulted ended up being vastly deeper and more profound than even I had expected!
The Christian polygamy interview was conducted with CBN’s producer, Kim Bonney. Conducting herself as both a true professional as well as a sincerely kindhearted Christian woman, Kim Bonney found herself rather surprised that the arguments I made actually made sense.
Her bosses had assigned her project to be about disproving same sex marriage advocates who “deny that polygamy – and beyond – will be coming next.” As such, the segment had to additionally focus on the “and beyond” part: polyamory and group marriage. While I was “not happy” about the “and beyond” aspect having to be included, it was only in this context that CBN had assigned her this project at all. So it was what it was. As a colloquialism says, “You dance with who brung ya.”
After fulfilling her obligation to her bosses’ requirements that way, though, Kim Bonney finished the segment by turning to my portion and interview. In both the polygamy article that Kim Bonney wrote, and in the segue that their show’s TV reporter, Steve Brody, said out loud to introduce this last portion, the following was directly stated on The 700 Club.
“Polygamy has a range of defenders, including evangelical Christians.
Mark Henkel is founder of the Christian polygamy organization, TruthBearer.org.”
Before all the world of fellow Christians, our then-only-11-year-old movement of “Christian polygamy” was rightly identified as “evangelical Christians.” No caveat, no disclaimer, nothing was added to imply or to even hint that we were anything but sincere Christians.
BAM! The two words, “Christian” and “polygamy,” were no longer a supposed “contradiction in terms.”
History had been made on August 16, 2005, as the 700 Club airs its First Report on Christian Polygamy Movement.
This history-changing moment is what catapulted me to the national stage as the overall National Polygamy Advocate ™ for all forms of unrelated consenting adult polygamy (UCAP) – in addition to Christian Polygamy. This empowered me with the ability to do what no other pro-polygamist could do.
For the first time in history, someone could stand on the national stage and not be dismissed by the stereotypes. Anti-polygamists could not dismiss me because I am provably not Mormon, Muslim, liberal, or lascivious. Not only that, but my biblical and limited government arguments not only refute such opponents but can actually persuade them too.
Moreover, this happened in 2005. At that time, there were no TV shows about polygamy – not even fiction. The only times when the manufactured-news media reported about polygamy was when it sensationally involved real criminals and/or cults.
But this one moment changed history! And it paved the way for the subsequent advances toward polygamy rights that we have seen over the decade that has since followed. Indeed, this is the pivot in history that made the overall National Polygamy Rights Movement for all forms of unrelated consenting adults to even be possible!
So, I confess, I am deeply humbled. I feel profoundly blessed to have been part of something so significant. Moreover, it is so challenging to believe that it has indeed already been ten years since this history-changing pivot. WOW!
It is my hope that in 10 years from now, UCAPs (unrelated consenting adult polygamists) will be finally fully free.
Our fight for freedom continues…