True and Living Church of Jesus Christ of Saints of the Last Days
The True and Living Church of Jesus Christ of Saints of the Last Days (TLC) is a breakaway sect of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church). It is headquartered in Manti, Utah, United States, where as of 2004 it maintained a membership of 300 to 500 adherents. The church maintains the Red Brick Store and a meetinghouse in downtown Manti.
The church was organized on May 3, 1994, in response to a perceived apostasy in the LDS Church. The TLC belief in an LDS Church apostasy includes the idea that Brigham Young (and subsequent presidents of the LDS Church) scattered—rather than gathered—the LDS Church membership; discontinued the practice of plural marriage; changed ordinances and temple-related doctrines and principles; and has increasingly moved toward a more "watered-down" approach to church doctrine.
The TLC began as a study group and Priesthood Council in the early 1990s, where people from both the LDS Church and Mormon fundamentalist churches met together to discuss doctrine. During this period, the leader of the study group, James Dee Harmston (born November 6, 1940; graduated from Weber High School in 1959), served a mission to Nauvoo. Prior to his retirement and founding of the TLC, James Harmston worked as a real estate developer and lobbyist for the Reagan Administration.
Gary Barns wrote a manuscript called "Further Light & Knowledge"  dealing with research into the true order of prayer. In 1990, Ogden Kraut's publishing house Pioneer Press published it. Authorship is not 100% certain because undated manuscript believed to be written by Harmston with the same title has been circulated in various Mormon fundamentalist discussion groups. In 1994, Harmston claimed to have a revelation in which the ancient Biblical Patriarchs Enoch, Noah, Abraham and Moses laid their hands on his head and conferred upon him the keys of the Melchizedek priesthood. Following this event, he organized the church and collected his revelations in the Manti Revelation Book. He formally organized a hierarchy consisting of himself as President of the High Priesthood, a Presiding Patriarch, a First Presidency and a Quorum of Twelve Apostles.
One investigative article in the early 1990s wrote of the TLC's beginnings that:
"Prior to the Fall of 1992, some members of the LDS Church in Manti and surrounding areas occasionally met together in study groups and informal gatherings to discuss their interpretations of the gospel. Some of these individuals already had Mormon Fundamentalist leanings.... Harmston, as well as other men and women, began to teach what they knew of the 'original, pure' doctrines of Joseph Smith in their study groups as well as to interested individuals. This teaching began as informal discussions, evolving into a two-day, organized seminar referred to as the Models. "Frustrated with the 'dilution' of the 'pure' doctrines taught by Joseph Smith, Harmston and his wife, Elaine, say they sought a closer relationship with God and answers to their questions about the modern-day practices of the LDS Church. They decided to seek those answers at home, in a prayer circle, using the 'true order of prayer,' as taught in LDS temples" (Johns, p. 32).
Jim and Elaine Harmston "donned their Mormon temple robes at home and created a makeshift altar from a pillow and piano bench topped by a white bed sheet. They knelt to utilize the 'true order of prayer,' a ritual said to facilitate otherworldly communication.... They say God gave them the same answer He gave Smith (in the grove when asking what church to join) only this time He said the current church was among the 'wrong' churches and they should start their own".
TLC doctrines and teachings 
Early in the church organization, Harmston taught a number of semi-private seminars known as "the Models," where he taught about the necessity of following early Mormon doctrines. Besides the doctrines of plural marriage and the Law of Consecration, they also teach a doctrine considered false by the LDS Church and some fundamentalist groups, known as "Multiple Mortal Probations", which is a form of reincarnation, though limited to the scope of gender and species; men return to mortality as men and women as women, with humans always returning as humans.
The TLC also teaches a doctrine, familiar to early Mormonism, known as "the gathering," which is referred to in numerous places in Latter Day Saint scripture. The idea is that all the "elect" of Israel should gather primarily in Manti, but anywhere with the Sanpete Valley Sanpete County, Utah to be a member of the TLC.
While proselytizing was heavily pursued during the infancy of TLC, all missionary work ceased by March 2000. It was at this time the TLC experienced shifting changes and a reorganization of its First Presidency and Quorum of Twelve Apostles. This was in part due to a revelation and promise by James Harmston that Christ would appear on March 25, 2000 and perform the ordinance of deliverance and begin the terrestrial order or Millennium. This promise was given conditional upon the faithfulness of the members, but was perceived by some in the TLC as a failure on Harmston's part to give accurate prophecy. This precipitated the subsequent apostasy of several members of the First Presidency and Quorum of Twelve Apostles (Randy Maudsley, Jeff Hanks, Kent Braddy, Bart Malstrom and John Harper all either left or were excommunicated). The Quorum of the Twelve in the TLC has since been reorganized, along with a new First Presidency. One of its better proselytizing tools, its website, shut down completely a short time later after revelation was given declaring the day of the Gentile (which involved preaching to those not of the Kingdom of Israel) had ended. Though an offline CD-ROM version of the TLC website has continued to be mailed out to investigators, the TLC has chosen not to publish this website online.
The affirmation regarding the day of the Gentile was based on revelations, particularly in the Doctrine and Covenants, that the gospel of Jesus Christ would first go to the Gentiles and then to the Jews, or House of Israel. This policy has effectively discontinued the TLC's policy of open missionary work or attempts at conversion until further notice. Those seriously seeking knowledge or membership have been directed at times to attend meetings or research further doctrine and other information from the time period of the early Latter Day Saint movement. While the TLC has claimed many early LDS Church doctrines as its own, it has been noted that the TLC itself has changed some of its doctrinal interpretation since its formation. The TLC's response is that, while only its perception of original doctrines have changed, the actual foundational material the LDS Church originally built on remains the same.
While the TLC has decided to remain offline in regards to their public missionary work, discussion forums do exist with former members, and cached archives of TLC website material is available on the internet.
Harmston claimed he was ordained by Moses and is the reincarnation of Joseph Smith, Harmston predicted that a period of violent, apocalyptic turmoil would start before 2004. In preparation, he started the survivalist community, where some 300 armed, food-storing polygamist followers planned to ride it out. Several former members of the sect sued Harmston, alleging that he duped them for $250,000, and the church has been excommunicated by Mormon authorities in Salt Lake City for undue preoccupation with Armageddon. 
An early setback for the church occurred in 1998 when two disaffected members accused Harmston of racketeering and fraud when they failed to see Jesus. In 2002, a court granted $300,000 to the two former members. While this suit was overturned, an appeals court in 2005 granted the two former members the right to a new trial. As of 2010, according to some sources, the settlement has since been reduced to $60,000 due to financial hardships experienced by the TLC.
Media coverage 
The TLC was heavily profiled in a 1999 A&E Network documentary called Inside Polygamy (AAE #17685); various other documentaries and interviews have been conducted with TLC, its leadership and its membership over the years.
A twenty-minute audio documentary titled "Saints of the Last Days" was aired on National Public Radio's program This American Life in April 1996 concerning the breakup of the study group before the TLC was formally organized as a church.
A book giving the accounts of two of James Harmston's wives (Pauline and Rachel Strong) was published in 2006.
Numerous other anti-polygamy books have published "exposés" of the TLC.
Some ex-members (including one former member of the First Presidency) have maintained blogs on social networking sites. An ex-member of the TLC and identifying him/herself only as "JMO" started a blog in 2010 wherein various accusations of false doctrine and prophecy were alleged.
In 2007, a documentary critical of Mormon fundamentalist groups in general called "Lifting the Veil of Polygamy" also aired interviews with a former TLC member.
Terminology and relationship within the Latter Day Saint movement 
The term "Mormon fundamentalist" appears to have been coined in the 1940s by LDS Church Apostle Mark E. Petersen. While Mormon fundamentalists, including members of TLC, call themselves Mormon, the LDS Church considers the designation to apply only to its members and not to members of other sects of the Latter Day Saint movement. The LDS Church therefore claims that there is no such thing as a "Mormon fundamentalist", nor that there are any "Mormon sects". The LDS Church suggests that the correct term to describe these splinter groups is "polygamist sects". The LDS Church has repeatedly emphasized that it is not affiliated with Mormon fundamentalists. If members of the LDS Church are found to be engaging in polygamy, they are excommunicated.
The TLC may also be distinguished from historical Mormon fundamentalism which traces priesthood lineage either through the 1886 Revelation (John W. Woolley line) or those who believe Benjamin F. Johnson's claims (the LeBaron family line). Though the TLC does teach that John Taylor actually did have a meeting with Joseph Smith, Jr. and Jesus Christ (the 1886 revelation is included in the TLC edition of the Doctrine and Covenants), it has not been made clear how it doctrinally understands the existence of a resurrected Joseph Smith, since James Harmston is believed to be the same person embodied today.
The TLC is a re-restorationist movement, in that it holds that the original keys passed down from Smith went into apostasy at some point, and a second restoration of priesthood keys was believed to be necessary.
Some doctrinal distinctions also exist between Mormon fundamentalism and TLC teachings. For example, while the TLC does offer the original endowment Joseph Smith restored, it is understood that a "living endowment"—or administration of keys not all at the same time, but possibly during separate sessions—is necessary for the living, while endowments for the dead are performed in the same manner the LDS Church and others do for the endowment. It is also claimed that temple ordinances exist beyond what Joseph Smith restored up to 1844 when he was martyred.
The TLC has reinterpreted the Word of Wisdom in line with a raw foods interpretation, along with some gleanings of the "Eat Right 4 Your Type" books by Dr. Peter D'Adamo. One source also states that sugar, honey and meat are forbidden.
James Harmston is said by former members to have given up leather boots, belts and other items of clothing which have animal products in them. This behavior would tend to indicate that James Harmston himself is living a vegan diet himself, whether or not the rest of the membership is living as he does is the subject of speculation by some former members.  The President of the "temporal church" Dan Simmons switched to using a natural sweetener called xylitol in 2005, but again the actual practice amongst the rest of the church is not clear.
The TLC at one point had an endowment house in Fairview, Utah, but this was lost when the property owner (also a member of the church's First Presidency) left the TLC. The TLC has since continued to offer temple ordinances  for the living and the dead without the Fairview endowment house, as per the FAQ section of their website which says:
- Yes. The Lord has commanded us to offer the ordinances of the Endowment to worthy members of the TLC. We have established an Endowment House for the purposes of administering the Endowment. In so doing, the Lord has given us the authority and commanded that we restore much of the Endowment to its original form, with priority being given to the covenants, tokens, signs, penalties and key-words. The changes made to the Endowment by the LDS Church has rendered it unacceptable to Him.
This is consistent as part of the threefold mission of the church (namely redeem the dead). So that when the TLC no longer had their endowment house, a place for keys to be administered would have to be used to fulfill the threefold mission of the gospel, i.e. perfect the saints, proclaim the gospel and redeem the dead. Otherwise they would be breaking the commandments of the Lord per their own admission. Historically, a doctrinal distinction in Mormonism has existed in that ordinances for living people could be performed in endowment houses whereas ordinances for the dead required a temple.
Historical precedent can be seen in that the baptismal font in the Assembly Hall used to perform both baptisms for the living as well as on behalf of the dead (see the old TLC website as well as the A&E documentary Inside Polygamy where pictures of the baptismal font and the "compass and square" symbnls (which look like an L and V) seen on the temple veil in LDS temples as well as Patriarch James Allred (1784–1876) grave stone in Spring City, Utah). An article on the TLC website entitled "James Allred Gravestone-Temple Symbnlogy-A True Endowment" by John W. Pratt contains a photograph of the gravestone.
See also 
- Factional breakdown: Mormon fundamentalist sects
- Mormon fundamentalism
- List of Mormon fundamentalist churches
- List of Mormon fundamentalist leaders
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