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TOM - How is it possible for two members of the same family to be declared as descendants from two different tribes of Israel?
Example: Two brothers, born two years apart, both have the same parents etc. and received their Patriarchal blessings one year a part from the other...and both descend from different tribes?
I have only heard rumors and stories of this happening. So, maybe my answer is that this never happens.
I had one friend of mine say that they knew a family in which all three of their sons were from a different tribe. Not sure what to make of it. I'm hoping that there's an easy answer that I'm just not thinking of.
JOEL - Elder James E Faust said the following which should answer your question:
"Some might be disturbed because members of the same family have blessings declaring them to be of a different lineage. A few families are of a mixed lineage. We believe that the house of Israel today constitutes a large measure of the human family. Because the tribes have intermixed one with another, one child may be declared to be from the tribe of Ephraim, and another of the same family from Manasseh or one of the other tribes. The blessings of one tribe, therefore, may be dominant in one child, and the blessings of another tribe dominant in yet another child. So, children from the same parents could receive the blessings of different tribes. ("Priesthood Blessings," Ensign, Nov. 1995, 64.)
I once knew someone who had received a patriarchal blessing and in it learned that he was from the lineage of Dan. Years later he lost his copy of the blessing and it could not be found in the church records. So he went to his current patriarch and received a new blessing, without telling the patriarch his earlier pronounced lineage. The new Patriarch was inspired to pronounce the same lineage in the new blessing.