Sister Wives are full of questions these days.
Will Meri Brown soon leave Kody?
Will Christine soon start dating?
When will Kody begin his search for a fourth wife, now that Christine is officially out of the romantic picture?
But let’s put aside these marital issues for a bit.
Let’s instead focus on a more specific issue as it relates to Kody, Meri, Janelle, Robyn and, yes, even Christine… who may have announced last month that she left Kody, but who remains a regular on Sister Wives Season 16.
Amid all the personal drama between Kody and his spouses of late, some fans are now wondering:
What religion, exactly, do the Browns practice?
Despite this being an issue central to their unusual relationship, it’s not a topic addressed all that often on air.
Considering how miserable the sister wives actually seem these days, why would they stick around?
Why did they enter into a plural marriage in the first place?
Kody and his better halves belong to the Apostolic United Brethren (AUB) — which is a sect of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (FLDS).
Specifically, this is Mormon religion that permits followers to practice polygamy.
It’s worth noting, however, that polygamy was outlawed in Utah at the time the Browns fled four years ago for Flagstaff, Arizona.
It has since been decriminalized in the state — although Kody, Meri, Robyn and Janelle have shown no desire to move back to their native state.
Kody, meanwhile, was legally married to Meri, but he divorced her back in 2010 so he could marry Robyn and officially adopt her three kids from a previous relationship.
All of Brown’s other marriages are merely “spiritual” in nature.
As for the Apostolic United Brethren practiced by this family?
This is considered “the more liberal branch of the Fundamentalist movement,” according to religious scholar J. Gordon Melton, an author who wrote the Encyclopedic Handbook of Cults in America.
The religion allows members to have sex for reasons aside from procreation.
In the past, Kody has referenced his supposed “divine calling” to practice polygamy, while he and his sister wives have raised their 18 children as part of their religious sect.
That said, on a March 2020 episode of Sister Wives, Kody acknowledged that none of his kids were on track to enter into a plural marriage.
“I think the majority of them are oriented towards Christianity,” he explained at the time.
“I wanted to advocate faith for my children, but I’ve really set it in their place to make their choices about God and religion.”
The Browns rarely delve into the specific of their faith.
But Meri said on a very recent installment of the TLC series that she hasn’t walked away from Kody because she does think there’s a higher cause in play here.
“I have a confirmation from God that this is where I am meant to be,” Meri told viewers who often question why she’s stays with a man who treats her terribly.
“This is a very conscious choice that I’m making.”