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“More than One Way to Mormon” – Lindsay Hansen Park

I’m excited to introduce Lindsay Hansen Park.  She has her own podcast, Year of Polygamy, and is the Executive Director of Sunstone, where she coined the phrase “More Than One Way to Mormon.”  She has done a lot of work in polygamy communities, and we will get acquainted with her in our first episode.

Lindsay:  My name is Lindsay Hansen Park, and I am the Executive Director of the Sunstone Education Foundation. I also have a really popular Mormon podcast called Year of Polygamy. I’m also [part of a new podcast.] It’s becoming really popular new podcast, Sunstone Mormon History podcast.

GT:  You’re an international TV star, too.   I don’t know how long it’s been, but you posted the thing where there was this Russian dialogue over a video of you talking about polygamy.

Lindsay:  Yeah, it’s a wild world I live in. Like, it’s every little Mormon girl’s dream is to grow up and be all over the news for polygamy. {Chuckling}  So I think I’m killing it in that regard. No, I mean, it’s weird. My life, it’s so weird. I always say, I don’t even know if I could get another job because my resume is so weird. Now [that] I’m doing Mormon stuff all the time, I’m not even normal. I can’t have a normal conversation with people. We’ll just be at a dinner party with never-Mormon people, and always we end up talking about polygamy. I’m like, “Sorry, I’m weird. I don’t know how we got here.”

GT:  The Year of Polygamy was supposed to last a year and how long has it been going on?

Lindsay:  Yes, everybody thinks this is really hilarious joke.  I was going do a year of polygamy. What people think, they’re like, “Does that mean you practice it for a year?” No, I was just going do–so I had the Feminist Mormon Housewives podcast, which is now defunct. We don’t do that anymore.

GT:  Oh, I didn’t know that.

Lindsay:  Yeah. I just thought for a year, I’m going to go down and study this topic and tell the history of polygamy, and it turned into what is it, five years now?

GT: Has it been five years?

Lindsay:  Several Years of Polygamy.

GT:  You don’t just do polygamy. I mean, certainly, that’s the major topic because I know you’ve talked a little bit about Mountain Meadows Massacre and some other stuff like that.

Lindsay:  Well, it’s my theory that Brighamite Mormonism [meaning that] anyone that came across with Brigham Young and all the break off groups that sort of come from, are completely shaped by polygamy. The doctrine, theology–I often say the LDS Church is still a polygamous church. Brigham Young asked everyone to be a polygamist if only in their hearts, and I think that people took that really seriously. So for me, I can see traces of polygamy just about anywhere. A lot of the things that the modern LDS Church have now, the practices, policies, doctrine, culture either grew out of polygamous culture, or a response to polygamous culture or a direct reaction to trying to distance yourself from it. So to me, polygamy is everywhere.  I can trace the roots. We talk a lot about the history but like Mountain Meadows Massacre and Mormon violence and all of that. All of it is rooted in ideas that are traced back to polygamy, in my opinion.

Have you listened to Year of Polygamy or attended Sunstone?  What are your thoughts?  Check out our conversation….

Lindsay Hansen Park is Exec Director of Sunstone and came up with the slogan, “More Than One Way to Mormon.”

We have several dozen episodes about polygamy.  Find out more about polygamy by clicking on this link: