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Showing content with the highest reputation since 06/21/2009 in Posts

  1. 7 points
    <takes a seat and pulls out a menu> Hello All- There's quite a bit to unpack from 30 years. Bare with my rambling thoughts as they all get down. A third-generation "legacy", I only knew TWI as truth absolute. A child of the 80's, I remember growing up and having The Way being the only way. I took each class in the entire class series the exact week I was eligible, and repeated every chance I could. I only knew LCM as the fount-head of all things godly, and worshipped with (at) him through the birth of the new class. I soldiered on through his fall and stood behind my identity as a chosen part of the faithful remnant throughout the early 2000's. I pursued a degree and lead fellowships, certain I held forth what I knew to be the epicenter of the spiritual world. Once I got close to graduation, the promise of getting a job became VERY real. In a market the began to shrivel, I went from interview to interview, each time putting in hours of deliberate, thoughtful prayer and reflection, certain that the God I knew dwelt in my fellowships and that I was told would never let any wrong befall would come through in the clutch. Each time, nothing. Each time, disappointment. Each time, words came from those more seasoned as "Renew Your Mind", "It's not the spiritually best for YOU!", "God's got something bigger for YOU!". This was the first time I needed to prove God had my back. Long story short, I cobbled together enough to get by, but nothing close to the Eph 3:20 I was told time and time again. I got married, to an amazing and supportive spouse, who left her church to join up. She realized if she wanted tot be with me, she had to drink the Koolaid, and drink she did. She practically did a keg stand with that Hawaiian punch. Together, we weathered many situations that were far from the rosy scenes painted on STS tapes (or CDs or VHSs). Real life was hard as hell, and the God of the lectern and the magazine was not as quick to come through. There was always an explanation, mind you, but should not have to be this hard. "Maybe we're not studying enough. Maybe and hour daily is just a start.". "Are we giving enough? We're at 20%, but could we do more to prove our commitment to God and not our paycheck". We ABSed our meager earnings, lived in apartments, drove our terrible, leaky, beaten cars, and gladly taught others on how much God loved us and would provide. Any positive event in life was championed as proof of TWI's system. It began to seem like a lens that made all the bad not their fault and any positive thing their cause. Perspective. Fast forward to a fourth generation being born. Numerous requests from insiders to go on Staff and change from within. By this time, my life had changed. The grind of finally getting (and keeping) a real job meant hard work. I began to feel like everything in the ministry was a motion. Same old collaterals. The articles in the magazine were SOOOO predictable, as were the overly scripted services. Title, personal anecdote, verses, three main points, conclusion, blanket "Let's continue to..." statement... repeat. I felt as if I wasn't learning anything. To challenge myself and scratch my own spiritual and intellectual itch, I started my own studies and digging. ANy time I would bring these up, I was chastised for going solo and delving into what was already researched. I should re-search what is already available. By this time, I could hear an introduction and immediately know which verses would come up. One STS, I wrote on my wife's notes five verses. Sure as dang, each one was ticked in the course of that scripted speech teaching. I stopped taking notes. I stopped putting time into my teachings at fellowships. I started coasting. I could see others going through the same motions. I used to talk about all of the interesting connections and parallels the moment a great teaching was done. Now I saw how quickly others began talking about their week, their boring lives, their.... anything but the bible. Truth was, it was the collaterals being taught again and again and again. LCM was disavowed, never to be mentioned. All that was safe was the collaterals. So that's were everything went, and still are. Last flash is to the moment I realized how crumby the long-term TWI plan is for those out in the field. Find a menial job, work hard and don't rock the boat. Try to witness but we only need seats for the class- if it's just a connection, move it along. SELL SELL!!!! Find an apartment, move every few years, drive a 5 year+ model car (and keep that cardboard so you don't mess up the driveway). Long-term planning? You don't need that. God's got you. I woke up one day to realize my parents have no retirement and no equity of ANY kind. I didn't want that. I began looking at houses and tried every way to get one without getting a loan. Couldn't do it, so I tried to ask permission. Another post needs to explain this hot mess, but needless to say it was not on the menu. I forged ahead to the disapproval of many. Kid number two arrives- I stop going to STS. Our last trip, I don't even open my bible. I hear and scrutinize the entire presentation better than I had every encapsulated with my notes. (Oh the notes, but I digress...). On our way home, my wife says "What an electrifying teaching!". I let the air clear for about 5 seconds and say "Was it?". Her face was as white as the audience at any given STS. We then discuss very openly our current role in the ministry and where we saw our spiritual lives. Needless to say, it was the beginning of the end. We limped along for a few more years, mainly because of the sweet people that genuinely did care about others and the large family/friend connections. This is certainly a fact that cannot be overlooked, but we were killed with kindness and not won by spiritual truth. We eventually decide to skip fellowship for any convenient reason, attend other church services on Sunday mornings, and try on many religions/denominations. It came to a road that lead to us moving and telling our new coordinators we were out. I felt it necessary to go out on my terms, not middle-fingers a-blazing, but with a truthful talk. We left about two years ago. There were some rough times, including much anger that has not fully gone away. I still struggle with what could have been or should have been, a fact that I can't completely let go of, but am getting closer. I burned my syllabi and collaterals, but still have their haunting memory (and .pdfs! that's a fun post as well!) in my mind. Religion is no longer something I value, and, current spiritual beliefs aside, I was able to emerge with clear and cogent truths I hold to, truthfulness and integrity being paramount. I have spiritually sherpa'd a few others out of TWI, and gotten immense satisfaction for helping them think and process, not just bad-mouthing their religion. It's rewarding to truly help people, not blanket their needs in retemories or promises of a brighter day that never comes. It's rewarding to see them break the chain of mediocrity and a quiet life of apartments and ABSing to pay for staff cars (another post). I loved helping them and reassuring them the devil will not take them should they decide to take off the name tag. My bourbon is getting low, as is my battery. Time to refill both. I have lots to say, and not sure how much/when to do it. I have many damning things, but not sure how it could help me or others. I don;t want to go back to the post-exit anger and rage that consumed my evenings (too late for that today! Oh well...), but I think a healthy processing and sharing for those who discover this site (like I did) will help clearer thoughts and heads prevail. I know TWI is not the epicenter of the spiritual world. I know TWI is pyramid of those working the ladder upward. I know TWI is a shell built on a few books and lock-step loyalty. I know that 30 years is far too much CollateralDamage.
  2. 7 points
    Ok, here goes. I grew up mostly at HQ - not in the frying pan; in the fire. The standards for children there were ridiculous. Basically, be perfect. Listen, remember, obey. Be a good example. Don’t be a stumbling block. Dress appropriately. Speak respectfully. Don’t be angry. Don’t be sad, be thankful. I watched some kids, especially as teenagers, become angry and rebellious. Others, like me, became as compliant and people-pleasing as a person could possibly be. I was complimented often on my “meekness.” In childhood, this meant a rather controlled atmosphere. As a teenager, it was absolutely suffocating. I’m now well into middle age, and I find that I have very little sense of self. The mental work I’m doing now is mostly about separating my “cult self” from my “authentic self” (as Steven Hassan labels it in Combatting Cult Mind Control) - I also think of it as new man vs. old man with the new man being false behaviors smothering my real personality. I’ve always thought I had pretty good self esteem. I realize now I feel fine about my cult self - being disciplined, keeping things clean, being a high achiever, serving others to the detriment of self. I have a deep self-loathing for that hidden authentic self that isn’t “perfect” - is spontaneous, joyful, sexual, angry, free, artistic, childlike, grieving. It’s taken months of counseling, thinking, reading, and agonizing just to realize this. Still working on how to let it out. Another part of growing up that still affects me is hyper-vigilance about “danger.” The idea that the devil was out to get us; and if you are “out of alignment and harmony” you’ll be outside of God’ protection; and we were taught that people we knew had DIED because they didn’t follow their schedules or didn’t follow their leadership’s advice; this adds up to a brain trained to be alert to the smallest inconsistencies in the environment (PTSD). Then put in the strong imagery of Athletes of the Spirit. My friends and I were obsessed with it. We learned the seed of the serpent dance and would argue over who got to be her and which devil spirits we got to be. That imagery was so strong for our young minds. Taking the advanced class made it even more vivid and more urgent. Then, if you were at HQ in the 90s, you remember lunch time. LCM would talk for hours every week sometimes, lecturing about the things God was “showing him” or about how we all needed to be so vigilant or about people - telling their personal lives and struggles to everyone and talking about how the “adversary” had gotten into their lives and how devil spirits were infiltrating their minds. Is it any wonder I was terrified to drink? To try drugs? That has seemed like a good thing to me for a long time, but I now realize I was so constrained by fear that the mere idea of losing control sends me into a near panic. It wasn’t good. And along with all that came the underlying belief that if I wasn’t all those “good” things - a strong disciple, believing positively, behaving according to the Word, doing what my spiritual overseers told me to do, blah blah blah - I wouldn’t be loved. Discipline of children was so strongly emphasized (and LCM criticized parents so heavily) that as a child, I subconsciously picked up that I wasn’t good enough and wasn’t lovable if I wasn’t right in line. Now, as a parent, I really do think at least my mother loved me unconditionally, and she told me that when I left the way. I have a lot of family left in the way. I stay anonymous because of it. Still afraid of losing their love over my “disobedience.” I guess posting here is one way for me to push back and not allow myself to be silenced, even if I’m not fully out there. Baby steps. In a lot of ways I was lucky. I went to college instead of going Wow or Way Disciple right away. I of course wanted to go in the corps - because how else were you really somebody? - but was lucky enough to get through college and realize I didn’t want to do that. I spent my 20s wading through all the doctrines I tried so hard to keep believing in, but I just couldn’t get them to make sense with real life. I rejected them. And didn’t realize the mess all this has made of my psyche. I was a true believer. I did the things you were supposed to do. I toed the line. I put my heart and soul into it. And all I got was this broken spirit.
  3. 7 points
    I knew this woman, but not well. Like most of us, she was idealistic, kind, and good intentioned. So why did she stay so long? IMO, time spent in the cult is relative to a person's needs. What strikes me is how a person misses or denies or misinterprets warning signs. I suppose part of it has to do with survival. Like her, I did that for years, too, especially the misinterpreting or rationalizing of warning signs. Psychologists tell us it's because there's a need in a person to cling to the status quo ... a variety of reasons are clear, i.e. fear of loss of community, loss of certainty, loss of feeling secure about "knowing the truth." I think we all can relate. It's a need so great that admitting what we're doing or believing or giving our loyalty to is bad, or a fraud, or a con, is just too much. We'd crack. Don't we all remember when we "woke up" and how hard that was to admit we had been duped or abused or stolen from? For some of us we nearly did crack up. Some I know have spent time in mental health hospitals, or are in serious therapy, or on heavy medication, or have lost themselves to alcohol or drugs. Or suicide. Breaking up is hard to do. Some people had a casual involvement in TWI. Others were encased in it like in an airtight plastic bag. Breaking free is HARD. I think it's a miracle any of us are here and able to compose a complete sentence. Maybe I should speak for myself, but truly, for those of us who were sold out for so long and gave so much, creating another life post-TWI has been VERY hard work and if it weren't for many good people (many are here on GSC), healing love, education, and time, I can't imagine what would have become of me... So If you ever read this, Melanie, STAY STRONG and breathe deep. It's possible to heal a little every day with love, education, and time. And I ditto what Skyrider said, that Offshoot groups formed by former WAY leaders are not a good option because in general they repeat the patterns from TWI. Besides, bottom line is that the Bible is always open to interpretation by man. The notion of "the accuracy of The Word" is just that, just a notion. No one has it. It can't be had. But that doesn't mean you cannot find valuable things in the Bible. Just question what people tell you it "means." Cheers, Penworks a.k.a. Charlene Lamy (Bishop) Edge I can be reached at http://charleneedge.com/Contact
  4. 7 points
    After reading so many historical timelines of the way international here on GSC, and being an eyewitness to many of the changes implemented during/after the Allen lawsuit, it all comes down to one perpetual whitewash. The way international is a whited sepulcher. It all makes perfect sense to me now, especially when I consider the past that the way international does not want revealed in any capacity - unless of course its the approved version they teach the in-res corps through Ms Wierwille's incomplete biography of vpw, etc. But let's not forget the approved versions of the many nostalgic character traits vpw supposedly demonstrated as the man of god for our day and time. I was 32nd way corps, graduated in 2003. From 1996 - 2003 I spent my time immersed in all things the way international. Lived with my fellowship coordinators, moved with them, as they became candidate corps, went way disciple as they did - only in a different state. Was an assistant fellowship coordinator the remaining six months after my first way disciple year. Started my candidate year as a fellowship coordinator then went way disciple my apprentice year and was assigned to HQ. Spent two years in residence only to be assigned as assistant department coordinator at hq upon graduation from the corps. Became department coordinator within two years. Within a year as department coordinator was asked to be on the presidunce cabinet. Two years later I made my exit in 2008. Starting in 96 I was blown away by martindale's teachings, classes, etc. In my youthful zeal I choose blinders that suited my comfort level. Martindale was the man of God in my mind. I was told by my fellowship coordinators (who had been dropped from the way corps and been around damn near 30 years and were going corps a second time) of some of the history, fog years, the importance of the present truth, why the past was so bad - the adversary uses it, the importance of staying lock step with hq/Martindale, etc. During that time I witnessed the debt policy implemented, the no gift policy, learned of the no pregnancy BS, kept a tight schedule that my fellowship coordinator approved and oversaw. I was the perfect cult leader in training. I was so gung ho that when craig had us dial in on the phone hookup and admitted to a one time consensual affair with Mrs. All3n that I knew it must be the devil trying to take out my MOGFODAT. But during this time of supposed one time consensual affairs.......my exposure to dissension within the ranks from my branch/limb coordinators at the time began in full. But I was still lock step sold out to twi and craiggers.....aaaaaaannnnnd then I was assigned to hq for my second tenure as way disciple and my apprentice year. During this time I began adjusting my blinders to allow more light to shine. - 1999 - A couple months after I arrived at hq craig was asked to leave. My cabinet guy informed us that a major impediment had been removed. - Shortly after craig's departure dissenting top leadership (S@iler, Pannasmello, et al.) were rounded up, told to move into founders hall for monitoring and then either quit or were fired if they didn't get in line with Rosie the riveter. - Afterwards, hq staff were informed via their pres. cabinet that the board of dummies had invited two cult experts to hq and instructed hq staff to answer any questions honestly while going about our wayfer lives as normal. - During this same time frame so many changes were ushered into staff's and way corps' routines. Examples follow (but are not limited to): the pregnancy policy abolished, staff moved from need basis pay scale to salary based on an hourly basis (aka start of 46 hour hour cap with ot approved by presidents cabinet up to 52 hours and more hours than 52 approved by BOD,) Coerced volunteer time was now separate by cabinet area and coerced with department coordinators signing up those that didn't volunteer), staff personal schedules were no longer required to be turned in for approval, two by two travel was no longer mandated but encouraged, bod were forced to implement a harassment policy into the staff hand book as a system of redress for hq as well as staffers, STS attendance was now supposedly voluntary but checklists were still gathered by department every Monday morning, the noon meal was no longer mandatory, etc. - All of this gave the impression that rosalie was our great deliverer. Us plebe staffers had no idea that behind rosalie were lawyers hired by TWI to diffuse lawsuit ammo and whitewash the cult yet again from craigs lunacy. Whitewashed it so far and thorough that teaching responsibilities were decentralized from the president of TWI to many chosen folks. That way there was no charismatic leader to point the finger at. Wax on, wax off. - It was during this time that I was transferred out of my department and onto a large project to repair the main electrical loop that had fried from neglect. I found myself a fly on the wall to so many long time staffers and way corps that kept telling the same stories about craig and vpw. Abuse, adultery, large scale involvement of way corps to procure and hide that vpw and craig were serial sexual predators who preyed on any woman they found vulnerable. Personal misuse of ABS by board of trustees/directors over the years. Heck, this was such a big deal that even rosalie had to pay TWI to have grounds cut her grass at foxhaven lest she be found guilty of private inurement which would risk TWI losing its 501c3 status. The list could continue. Needless to say that my blinders were just about off at this point. - It was during this time that rosalie announced that twi had settled the lawsuit with the Allens. This announcement was during lunch in the OSC so all staff were present. Most people were in a daze filled with relief that the adversary no longer could seek to destroy TWI through this lawsuit. There were handfuls of people that simply sat there with a blank stare and I was one of them. I sat there and thought WTF does rosie mean she settled a RICO case (and other charges) that had been levelled against TWI? Settled, that's a payoff to keep it out of court, right? Guess my critical thinking skills were developing in their infancy at this juncture. Ok, after leaving HQ to go in-residence at camp gunnison this is where I started to learn some very startling truths. It was during this time I learned that rosie had two known lesbians living in her basement at foxhaven. Frankly, I coulda cared less about it except twi was so extremely anti-homosexual. I also took time to peruse through old corps night tapes of LCM. Rosalie hadnt had the chance to purge the study hall library at gunnison late 2001. So I heard first hand so many tapes where he defamed standing way corps, et al., went on cursing tirades against the IRS, etc, and was just a complete hateful a$$. Definately not words a true minister would impart. She purged it all before I graduated. Next I dove into university of life. I devoured tape after tape, but it was VPs Roman teachings that I was enthralled with. I was told by one of my corps brothers at the time to read Just and The Justifier by Charles H. Welsch - a student of E.W. Bullinger. I was shocked that the content of the Roman teachings were straight outta Welsch's work, yet no credit was given. VPW took all the credit for the teachings....period! Naturally, this started to open my eyes to the issues TWI should have with vpw's years of plagiarism. They should have but don't care at all. Upon my graduation into the way corps I was starting to become keenly aware of the many problems twi had in front of them to survive as a church/ministry. I was still under the impression that rosalie was the deliverer and was slowly changing things from the inside for the betterment of God's standing belivers in the household of the way. Pfffft. My assignments at hq as assistant DC, DC, and prez cabinet opened my eyes fully to the sad truth. The truth that if the Allen lawsuit never happened nothing would have ever changed. in TWI But change happened anyway so that must be good and rosalie still TWI protector, right? Wrong Wrong Wrong! During a cabinet meeting one Thursday afternoon rosalie went on a rant because a certain clergy member at TWI had skipped the STS to attend their kids softball game. She plainly stated that she hated all the changes that had been forced on TWI over the years as a result of the Allen lawsuit. She said if she could, she would take a baseball bat to the dude who had skipped the STS. If she could she would undo all the changes forced on TWI by their lawyers. IT was during this time that I fully started to realize the simple truth. The way international had been hide vpw's evils for years. But because of craig martindale's evils being brought into a court of law they have had to white wash every aspect of TWI into the bland, boring crap it is today. Most disgustingly, they blatantly hide vps plagiarism, the fact that he was a sexual predator and adulterer. They hide that he was a drunk. he was mean, short tempered, kept body guards. They especially hide the way east and west and the hostile takeover vpw did to Heefner and Doop. My God, where would the list stop if I were to continue? They way is a preservation society that has elevated victor paul wierwille above Christ and knowingly covered sin after sin of it's founder and successor(s). Most importantly rosalie rivenbark has hid her own sins as someone who not only knew that craig was a sexual predator but also helped him conceal his crimes until she risked too much exposure. The way international truly is extremely deceptive in how they have handled God's Word. I'm thankful I witnessed what I did and can put it out in plain sight, So much more could be said, so much more had been said. Here's part of my two cents. - -
  5. 7 points
    Don't know if you will remember me....I was on about 13 years ago, then not until now. I started out as chinson ... then married Stevelw! .... and kinda dropped off the map. Update: kids are all grown, still very happily married to Stevelw! , got a masters in Clinical Mental Health Counseling and am now writing my dissertation for a doctorate in Counseling Psychology. Working as a mental health therapist and loving life! Wanted to get back to "the spot" cuz so much of my life was made better by the loving people on this site and the support, friendship, and occasional kick in the butt... So...Hello Again (music from the Jazz Singer with Neil Diamond swells)
  6. 7 points
    I thank all concerned parties for helping me cope with this kind of situation. I will not take it to heart any longer. I am rubber and they are glue... :) I know my heart and my capacity to love and I won't let my joy and peace be eclipsed by their immature and vindictive nature. I wish no evil will and in time they may sense my patience and compassion. Yes, I sometimes (maybe often) speak openly against the Bible but I do it with a desire to know the truth and not just believe it because someone else says so. I have no fear in putting God to the test... I am tired of the divisive nature of many of the scriptures (three religions killing each other for many centuries) and these people just prove my point about the dangers of how the orthodoxy has radicalized their minds. I am moving on and I will, take it as a compliment. THANKS! Yes, I'm making lemon-aid, extra sweet and the cherry pits I will plant in my backyard and try and grow a tree. Much Love DWW
  7. 6 points
    So, I’ve lurked here for a long time, and now with my heart pounding, have created an account and am saying hello. I’ve been out of TWI for over 10 years; it took me almost 10 before that to work my way out. I grew up in twi, birth to twenties. Now I’m working my way through diagnoses of PTSD, anxiety, and depression, all after I thought I’d dealt with the big stuff. I hope you all are faring better, but I’m guessing maybe not if you’re here. A book that is really helping me understand all this is “Combatting Cult Mind Control” by Steven Hassan. If you’re looking for a sometimes distressing but very revealing read, it’s excellent and totally relevant. Happy to be here and hope to “meet” some of you soon. :-)
  8. 6 points
    DWBH, what can I say? Thank you SO much for the love and your comments. I can’t quite find the words to tell you all how much I appreciate being welcome here. To answer a couple comments - I have 4 therapists and am on a battery of meds. I’ve been doing this latest round of hard work with said therapists for a year and a half. I think what has discouraged me is how deep the injuries go into my subconscious mind. But I am and will continue working. Being ME here is a big step I’ve wanted to take for years. Thanks again for the comfort <3
  9. 6 points
    Hey, all. It’s been awhile since I’ve stepped into the diner. I’m outing myself today because it’s too painful to keep my silence anymore, and I’m struggling right now. My name is Leah - I’m LCM’s oldest child. I don’t know what to do next...I feel like I need to speak, but I don’t know what to say. I’m just so tired of hurting. Penworthy, it’s lovely to “see” you here. I so appreciate your compassion...
  10. 6 points
    I was involved with the Way International Ministry for over 20 years. PFAL class grad 1974, Advanced Class 1979, WOW Vet 1994-1995. I raised my family in the word, according to leadership. Three of my four children are Advanced Class grads. My oldest daughter went WOW after High School graduation, 1991-1992. When she came back home to Ohio, she married a wonderful man who was also raised in the word and involved with The Way International. When the "dang hit the Fan" - Martindale and the leadership doing their "mark and avoid" trip - my family was kicked out for standing up to leadership (NO disagreements allowed or condoned). However, my firstborn and her husband stayed in. So we joined the ranks, like so many other God-Loving families, of being split apart. We had many years of little contact. She moved around the country, and they became ever more active in the new regime headed by Rivenbark and crew. I started constant prayer when she informed me that her husband, herself, and my two grandchildren were committed to becoming Way Corps - #37. I have occasionally read the experiences of former Way Corps leadership who have left, on these forums. To mention I was "troubled" by the course their lives were headed is an understatement. They spent one year in-residence and became graduated Way corps leadership in the Post-Martindale Way international. Once again they moved across the country to serve in various leadership capacities. With the horror stories of experiences endured while living at Headquarters, I was disturbed (heart and soul) when my beautiful daughter told me that her family was moving back to Ohio and living as staff Way Corps at Headquarters. NO-NO-NO-PLEASE GOD NO!!! They were (WERE) on staff for a few years...and this is why I wanted to share the GOOD NEWS OF GOD'S DELIVERANCE--- My daughter and son-in-law have moved away from New Knoxville and they resigned their Way Corps status!!!!! HALLELUJAH!!! i have been praying for them to wake up and it took being on the inside at the Way International Headquarters to finally open their eyes to the corrupt rot that infests that Ministry. They bought a house and have secular jobs now. I just had a long conversation with my daughter and am thankful to know it was a fully-aware and committed joint decision to cut ties to the Way International and "lay low" in order to adjust to the real world. She didn't go into details, but my heart leaped within me for joy when she told me, "Mom, I quit drinking their kool-aid!" Our God Almighty is SO AWESOME!!! And His deliverance is available - in His timing. She's finally free!! Her husband and children are free!! I am so thankful that I learned the truth of God's Word via the classes and teaching of the Way, but after I left I experienced how large our heavenly Father is - He is not constricted in a box or by the dogma of The Way International. Now her family has that freedom to live a truly abundant life together. My prayers have been answered. God bless for allowing me to share the fullness of my heart right now. Above all, I know you all know what this feels like.
  11. 6 points
    Insanity is often quoted as......"Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results." ..........but with cult-splinter insanity, I find myself wondering if they are doing the same thing over and over again desiring the SAME results. With nearly 20 years of internet exposure..... Waydale and Greasespot Café.......surely IF these corps leaders had an ounce of integrity and empathy for others, they'd see the errors of their ways, no? What do ALL of the cult offshoots have in common? A self-appointed leader claims to have "the Word" and teach "it" to others. He offers up dissention and disagreements with martindale or rivenbark........and gives wierwille adulation. Without objective reflection and further seminary training or study, he tweaks the wierwille-teachings only slightly. Same pyramid structure is implemented..........same centralization, same lording over others, same rules on giving money. Now that you've met the *new boss, same as the old boss*..........how can you possibly expect DIFFERENT RESULTS? After exiting The Way International Cult.........how many got entrapped into another splinter group for another decade or more? Insanity right? And, within these various splinters......how many more twisted perversions were promoted and propagated by the spiritual elite (cough, cough) among us? The Geer group plunged into the posthumous indoctrinations of geer's idol, wierwille. CES/STFI grafted in new age, self-help quackery like Momentus and personal prophesies and nose spiders. Egads! And, CFF took you back to the nostalgia "good old days of twi" when that young blood was coursing thru your veins. Oh, the memories....... Here a splinter, there a splinter.............everywhere there is ANOTHER splinter. Whether the R&R group will get rooted is still questionable.......but Rico's upstart - Oikeos is another baby cult that is flailing its arms and legs. Nourished on the milk of "Wierwille's Word" this infant will grow up in the image of wierwille...........same result, same outcome as its mother-cult. IMO.........these splinters have NOTHING to do with serving and ministering to others, but rather are SELF-SERVING OVERLORDS. These corps cleave to the cult model, because they have no real-life job experience in the real world. At best, they would be hard to find middle management jobs, sales jobs or seek self-employment. There are near-zero employers out there who are willing to hire a 56-66 year old man who has been fossilized into an obscure "Christian" group for 35 or 40 years. Two years ago, I documented a timeline of my experiences during the Martindale Era.....Insanity on Steroids.......and it was crazy then. But now, seeing these corps who stayed ANOTHER 17 YEARS of Rivenbark's Reign of Error.........and now, wanting to claim the mantle of *Leadership* is laugh-out-loud appalling. What a bunch of weasels. Until they clean and sanctify themselves from all of wierwille cult, top to bottom, thoroughly and throughly............they are a blight on the body of Christ. They disappoint and diminish and destroy by seeking opportunities for filthy lucre's sake. Beware of their pernicious ways as they twist and pervert words to indulge and profit in this seduction. They seek those who've had their minds grooved with cult indoctrination and servitude, rather than do the hard work of reaching others. Beware of cults. Beware of groupthink. "In individuals, insanity is rare; but in groups, parties, nations and epochs, it is the rule. " Friedrich Nietzsche
  12. 6 points
    Yes, I remember it well. It was at the end of my first year in the Way Corps. I'm in that film wearing a sweat suit, running down Wierwille Road with other members of the Corps. My to-be father-in-law at that time is the preacher on stage near the end who says, "May your tribe increase." He had no idea what he was really endorsing ... what a pity so many of us spent our youth as pawns spreading VPW's propaganda.
  13. 6 points
    How presumptuous of "them." "Our days are too precious to squander on the negatives." "Thank God, Paul did not spend time engaging in word battles about concerns that were decades old." First of all, they have NO idea how I (we) have spent our days (years) since exiting twi. Some here, left around 1987......others of us in the 1990s, and some left around 2008. Ten years, twenty years, thirty years..........they have NO clue as to what we've done to rebuild our lives, help our families, ministered to others, and helped our communities. THEY LIVE IN A BOX..... a box that wierwille built. They think that "living the Word" is regurgitating stolen pfal material at every meeting and doing those deadpan manifestations. They have accepted wierwille's deceptive lies........WITHOUT a thorough, critical examination of them from a-z. And yet, they scoff at those of us who do. Of course, they balk at our time spent here at GSC........ we've called them out for their hypocrisy, arrogance and manner of life. Some of them have spent 45-50 years in a cult ....... and refuse to come clean. So, they hide. They hide by mocking our "word battles." They hide by staying in the shadows. They hide by silence. So now....... they attempt to re-build (cough, cough) ANOTHER cult in the image of the mother cult. Same structure, same centralization, same teachings, same manifestations, etc...... only this time it will be genuine. LOL. What's that Einstein meaning of insanity? Doing the SAME THING over and over expecting different results. Moneyhands, Forts, Horneys......... ALL ex-corpse coordinators who were in charge of the clone factories, ie the corps "training." Sheesh. What a damn, pathetic ploy it was..... and they played right into it. If they had an ounce of critical thinking, then they'd realize that we are speaking the truth here at GSC. They have wasted DECADES trying to mimic the wizard behind the curtain......and smirk at those of us who've engaged in real, honest discussions to undo the burdens and set the captives free. How presumptuous of them to define how I spend my time. Heck, after this post......I will spend the rest of my day doing other things!! They know not of what they speak. And notice, that only that certain "designators" of THEIR group will respond to your questions. What a pathetic, defensive response to your questions. They will not engage, because it amplifies THEIR decades of cult-servitude that does not, and did not, honor God. That's why they put up a shield of defense. Maybe they'll figure it out some day.......or maybe they won't.
  14. 6 points
    Was idly thinking this evening about the internet, perhaps triggered by the disclosures about Facebook. Had the internet been around when many posters here became enmeshed with TWI - they would have checked it out first. Had the net been widely available when I got enmeshed - again, I'd've checked it out first. Today's potential victims, likely mostly young people, have great opportunity to check TWI out first. Maybe they went along to a couple of fellowships with their mates, but decided to check out the organization before they got more involved. Well, well! When I was (in my ignorance) planning to crawl back to TWI, I googled them and the first site up was - GreaseSpot Cafe! And so it still may be, for random people googling TWI, depending on how they phrase their enquiry. BUT, at least with Google, there's lots of other potential or similar sites listed, both after the main site and at the bottom of the first page. TWI's own boring, very static, site appears high in the list - closely followed by a few anti-TWI sites. We who have been here for a long time know how much GSC has helped us, and most of us remain so that we can help others too. What we can't know is how many people have encountered GSC, had a quick look, and zoomed off the other way. They've never been "helped" by having to de-tox here, because they never got "toxed" in the first place. Good for them, I say!
  15. 6 points
    Wanna hear something funny? I graduated from the 4th corpse in August,1976. My first "assignment" as a corpse grad was "State WOW Coordinator, MI". There were 20 WOW families sent to 10 different cities in MI, plus a slew of College WOWS at all the big college campuses in the state. Each team of WOWs was led by an Interim sickth corpse person or couple. That year of 1976-77, there was a two-family WOW team with a 6th corpse Coordinator, and there was an entire Way Home of College WOWs in Ann Arbor, coordinated by a 6th corpse couple. Between them they ran 9 classes, with 5 of them being large video classes. Many of those new grads went WOW, but they left 5 solid twigs behind in Ann Arbor, and 2 in Ypsilanti when they left. I highly doubt that what TWIt is sending out now will produce more than 5 grads, if that many. The world has changed. TWIt is so out of touch with reality, and so abjectly tone deaf to the human condition, because they have not changed at all, other than for the worse. Back in 1976, the toxic tentacles of Way-Nash had not reached the twigs and branches with its poison yet. That didn't really happen until 1979-80. So, the genuine experience of authentic Christian revival was seen in many places. Right now, in 2017, TWIt is so spiritually, culturally, and intellectually DEAD, and so completely dysfunctional socially and politically and economically, that all it has to offer is complete and total impotence in every beneficial form of human endeavor. A fitting tribute and legacy to that dead, drunk, sociopathic, paranoid narcissistic, serial rapist and sexual batterer, Nazi, racist, misogynistic, fraud of a subhuman being in his waterlogged crypt beneath the fountain. WD? Yup! Way Death..............peace.
  16. 6 points
    Hi All! Well....I actually finished forcing myself to listen to those lying, sanctimonious, self-deluded fools. I could only take it in 8-10 minute segments, once a day. I felt as if I was watching the defendants at the Nurenberg trials lying their sleazy butts off. Where were they 30 fucking years ago?? These self-serving phonies were the Goehrings, the Eichmanns, the Goebbels, the Speers, the Himmlers of dictor paul's Aryan Nazi cult. I remember some letter writings back in 1986 and1987. I remember these same little Nazi asskissers congratulating themselves over and over for coming to the aid of da forehead throughout the 1990's buying every absurdity he made them believe and thereby carrying out the grand atrocities he devised in his pathologically disturbed mind and corrupt soul. NO ONE HELD A GUN TO ANY OF YOUR HEADS YOU CHICKENSHIT SELF-SERVING PIMPS AND WHORES. I remember old Boob himself so strung out on self-pity and anti-depressants that all the little crybaby could do was sit in meetings with his head on the table crying the crocodile tears of a zombie-wayfer. Horney sounds like a tape of da dancing president. There must not remain a single coherent, non way-brained braincell left in that clanging cranium. And Funnyboy Fort. Get em laughing on the way to the Gulags or push em into the gas chambers, l'il standup wannabe, Mikey the trustee's kid. I won't even get started on their perky, cutesy, smarmy, little slut wives. What a ship of fools. The combined courage of the cowardly lion and a combined IQ of 70. They ALL KNEW the truth about dictor paul, Rosie, da forehead and Donna, coward, ding dong, townsends, cummins, geer, finnegan, lynn, wrenn, et al, as well as their own filth over these many decades now. I was there you jerks. I KNOW! YOU KNOW THAT I KNOW. BUT, MOST IMPORTANTLY, THE LORD JESUS CHRIST KNOWS. And he will surely say to all of you hypocrites and spiritual cadavers, "I never knew you!". And, certainly, and obviously, you have never known Him! Selah!
  17. 6 points
    Like I said on the other thread that referred to this letter, the delusion continues. For one thing, the "accuracy of The Word," is a mirage. If you don't believe that, try looking at any number of different versions of the Bible and see the differences. It's pretty obvious to anyone who reads carefully. To me, this letter is evidence that the signers are so enmeshed in the ideology that VPW dreamed up, I doubt they will ever change. But I am proof people can extricate themselves and really change, so I can't predict what will happen with these folks, despite the decades they've invested. I can tell you that in about 1998 or 1999, I contacted Do+tie Mo*nihan, who was at the time the Limb leader of Florida with her husband, Bob. I had found their phone number in the telephone book (ah the pre-internet days, at least for me). I was divorced, attending college, and working full time. I had been out of TWI for more than 10 years. The reason I called was to ask how her experience in graduate school for mental health counseling had helped her help people in TWI. I was considering going into that field. I also wanted to find out how she could justify continuing with TWI knowing of its extreme problems. At the time LCM was still president. She met with me, but she had asked if she could bring another 3rd Corps grad, a TWI-ordained woman with her, someone I had known over the years, too. Understand, I had not seen either of these women since 1987 at HQ just before I escaped. I said sure, bring her. We met in a café in Winter Park, FL. During a friendly, but surreal conversation, at least for me, I asked Do+tie why she had stayed with TWI. She said she wanted stand with her ordained husband. She also said she was a simple believer. Let the research be done by others, she would believe it,. like Uncle Harry used to say. It was then I told her flat out that TWI had never been a research ministry. I had been on the research team, which she knew because she was at HQ when I resigned from the team. I told her that "The Word" was whatever Wierwille said The Word was. Period. She looked shocked. She turned to her friend and they exchanged a glace I knew too well. I'm sharing this because it is not news to at least one of the signers of this document (Do*tie) that The Word was of Wierwille's making, yet she and the others persist in their delusional beliefs about Wierwille and the Bible. Those two things combine to make a strong tonic. In my view, this letter is proof of mind control if there ever was proof. Any ideology that tells you that your feelings do not matter, only The Word matters (which VP said all the time) is abusive. No one deserves to be abused. No one. People who were abused and continue to rationalize it, continue to name it something else, continue to dismiss it, will only continue to perpetuate it. What I recommend is that we keep sharing our stories here. You'd be surprised who might be reading them. There is another way of life, a better way, than offered by The Way International. We need to share our stories with our children and grandchildren. I can't tell you how many second generation Wayfers (or who they are) have contacted me about my story in Undertow, thanking me for shedding light on TWI, telling me it has helped heal them. If TWI was so great, then why do they need healing? Why do we need healing? Isn't it a pity that it's all come to this? That VPW's legacy is pain, confusion, and destruction? My hope is that the generation my daughter is a part of will someday see these GSC posts and learn from them, look through this window into their parents' pasts and understand the seriousness of mind control and its collateral damage. Sadly, they are a part of it in some form or other, some more than others, but many are still in denial just like their parents. Spread the word about helpful resources. I'm hoping to be part of a healing solution, which I think involves serious education. In my view, one of the best books for understanding all this is Bounded Choice by Janja Lalich. To those interested, you can check out Lalich's book and others at your local public library. In 1987, libraries were the immediate source of my healing. Then came people I could trust who did not have any stake in my life other than to encourage things that served my best interest, not their ego. Cheers, Charlene Lamy (former married name: Bishop) Edge former marked and avoided 2nd Corps Grad
  18. 6 points
    Thanks for posting this, Rocky. It made me laugh in amazement ... then sigh with disbelief ... the delusions continue ... really, the delusions began with VPW.
  19. 6 points
    What a total load of bullocks. How much more inventive can TWI be, in belittling people? Most everyone you meet has a debt - a mortgage - that they are working to pay off. It's cheaper than renting, often. (Even though my mortgage is quite a lot of money, it would be nearly twice as much to rent a similar place - and I couldn't rent anywhere remotely habitable for what I pay in mortgage... a grotty bedsit, maybe?) (Actually, I couldn't even afford to rent a place!!) Debt has risks, true, but there are risks in not having debts. Much better to help people think about their money in a proper manner, learn to budget properly, and work out the best way to borrow if there is really no other way. My church hosts a Christians Against Poverty debt centre to help people in debt. Helps them manage finances, gives them a compassionate hand up when they're crushed by debt, sets up debt plans and even bankruptcy (so as to give a fresh start). Isn't that a better way to encourage people with debt - rather than beat them over the head with Bible verses? And the gentle compassionate approach - guess what! - leads some people to choose to become very thankful Christians.
  20. 6 points
    In regards to the recent trend of "is twi worth our efforts anymore"...my opinion is that if twi is faltering and shrinking for "various" reasons...it's not the time to let up on them...now is the time to put the boots to them and finish them off...after that, we can go after the splinter groups like nazi war criminals... This entire Wierwillian philosophy of "power of the mind" should probably be labeled as witchcraft...his disciples continue on like mold growing in a dark damp place. I am repulsed by what they do to people. They rape the mind and ravage the soul. ...Because of what they have done...I will continue to do the Mexican hat dance on their faces.... Any thoughts?
  21. 6 points
    I first posted at Trancechat and then Waydale...and now GreaseSpot...whether it's still relevant or not to post about twi depends on your personal perspective. As long as people make bad decisions there will be organizations like twi. It seems that some folks are masochistic enough to continue with their various splinter groups and re-invented cult nonsense...the nefarious nature of this beast is control and abuse...and it seems that there will always be people who enjoy this particular form of self mutilation. Me?...I still post about twi and their gawd awful "tadpole cults" that have spawned in various places...because they stole 13 years of my life and I'm not done speaking my mind about them...probably never will be either. They lie in God's name and steal the innocence of unsuspecting youths. They take your money and bleed your soul. They are parasites that suck people dry and discard them...they are lowlifes of the worst kind. old news?...no more than the third reich is old news. I see that the Germans are putting a near 90 year old man (who's dying) on trial for war crimes that happened nearly 70 years ago...As a wise man told me recently... the bottom line is about revenge...is this any different?
  22. 6 points
    Thinking about this stuff for a few days now...Sowers?.... Let me see if I got this straight...The grandson of the grand pubah (who just happens to have the same name) starts a "thing" that closely resembles the waycorps training, even borrowing their main objectives...word for word. From all accounts, their doctrine is aligned closely to what Vic taught... ...and now this guy shows up proclaiming himself a sowers grad...and wanting to be pals with everyone. As far as I'm concerned, he can kiss my foot. plain and simple...if you follow the doctrines of victor small wierwille, you are a loser...been there done that. What these people believe is flat out wrong and destructive to people. As far as it goes, they can spread their poison elsewhere. I have no toleration for these sons of britches...none at all.
  23. 5 points
    Hi Leah..........welcome to the Café. For those of you who grew up at hq and had parents in leadership positions, I can only imagine the hardships, scrutiny, challenges and fear that were embedded into your psyche at such a young age. As you distinguished astutely in an earlier post.....it sounds like you are well on your way to separating your "cult self" from your "authentic self." And further, you have now established proper boundary lines with your family and loved ones by openly and publically stating what is acceptable, and not acceptable, to you. Good for you! Keep claiming what is rightfully YOURS.......an "authentic self." Individual sovereignty........to think, explore, believe, live, challenge, and commit to the passions that burn within your soul. My wife and I exited twi nearly 21 years ago after, what I would term, six turbulent years as leadership in Oklahoma. Suffice it to say that I spent time with your parents, grandparents, uncles, aunts, and some of your first cousins. Look how their lives have changed in the past 20-something years! Commitments changed. Perspectives altered. None of what they were, or weren't, committed to should hold sway to YOUR goals, passions or self-esteem. You have every right and reason to pursue this journey of self-exploration. And, from the sounds of things.....you've read some good books and, for years, have read threads here at GSC. Good for you. Go at the pace that fits your schedule. Most all of us have a past of *burdens, hurts and fears* that we are working thru or have overcome........hell, I went thru 10-days of deprogramming to fight my way back to my fiancé and then, dealt with years of being estranged from my parents/family. So, yeah......I can relate to the challenges one faces of self-authenticity and autonomy. Live on the sunrise side of the mountain......and greet the days that are before you. You are a brave woman and I commend you for it.
  24. 5 points
    Welcome, Leah. About time!! You will get a lot of support here.
  25. 5 points
    yeah Rocky - I agree. I think of Twinky as looking at a bigger picture – “in the Christian world” as she put it; from meeting her at the Texas BBQ and going on things she shares in her posts, I really believe she is a woman with a mission AND with a compassionate heart for service; some of the stuff she shares about her street pastoring sounds like it could be in a new chapter in the book of Acts. I’m not qualified to speak about gift ministries or know much about them – but as far as I’m concerned she’s got something special up her sleeve – I believe she definitely has a calling...of course she brings a lot of good "things" here also - let's not forget that. folks like Skyrider and Don’t Worry often focus on all things way-world; they’ve got that warrior ethos – never leave anyone behind…they pack some serious heat - - as well as some serious therapy. They are the big guns that expose and obliterate the hypocrisy of “those lying, thieving weasels” (as Don’t Worry calls them); then there’s the healing side of their ministries (there – I said it… and I’ll say it again through an amp that goes up to 11 ) – then there’s the healing side of their compassionate ministries reaching out to those who were hurt by “those lying, thieving weasels”. I hope I haven’t embarrassed you all in some way – just thought I pass along some praise and encouragement. like Skyrider was saying the extent of the consequences is relative to one’s life and experiences…this stuff may not matter much in the Christian world at large - but it matters to me - since part of my life was in way-world. ...every once and awhile I get to feeling down about how I devoted 12 years of my life to a cult and however much mental baggage I’ve been dragging around since then. There’s the shame…embarrassment… the… stigma that some folks associate with cults…sometimes I don’t mind that…maybe that keeps me on my toes…maybe it’s something I’ve got in the habit of doing from technical work – where I double, triple and quadruple check some things cuz I know I’m not perfect – me or someone else is going to screw up or a part will fail – so be prepared. I often look at it as a challenge to do my best critical thinking if we happen to get in a doctrinal or philosophical discussion..i know I’m rambling here – but trust me I’ll bring it back to this thread in a minute or two. I’ve always tried to live my life like an open book – I have nothing to hide – I’ve really tried to live a good Christian life while in TWI and afterwards too! On occasion I have even shared with co-workers of my experiences in a cult as some tough lessons on the importance of a Christ-centered faith and giving heed to one’s authentic-self…the machinations of TWI went so counter to anything that had to do with your authentic-self… some of that crap from the mouths of those lying thieving weasels was really just blowing smoke up my a$$ - to make me think I was destined for greatness. I used to think I’d better go in the corps cuz God has some big plans for me…maybe I’ve got a gift ministry…I tried to picture myself as being the perfect PFAL believer spreading blessings and good fortune wherever I went…alright…about to reconnect to this topic in 3..2…1… If I would have stayed in TWI I believe I would have been groomed to follow – on a small scale – wierwille’s power grabbing style: I think I was a restless and unfulfilled leader - going through the motions of handling my TWI assignment – oh the drudgery...trying to act enthusiastic about moving “the word” – I’m wondering if that’s the equivalent of a woman faking orgasm.…and I was a searching opportunist – taking the same classes again and again, going to advances, special events, joining programs…looking for direction and opportunity to advance spiritually – whatever the hell that means…I was even like my Plagiarizing “mentor “ – making PFAL my own, writing songs about it; looking for other verses to prove some point wierwille had made…and listening to the ensnaring supplanter - I learned to choose TWI’s “household” over family, friends and whatever I was taught in the Roman Catholic Church…in ignorance I endorsed that usurping authoritarian…and revered the consummate cult leader – I volunteered to be isolated, immersed, indoctrinated so I could teach and recruit others. Reflecting on my life since I left TWI: I have such a sense of fulfilment from just trying to be a good husband, dad and competent technician. That may be underrated in some folks’ book but that’s my “ministry” and I’m damn proud of it! I also get a sense of fulfillment and some peace of mind from Grease Spot. To me it’s a far cry from getting the halfway-house-treatment by well-meaning Christians who try to take me on as their next project – that has happened several times over the years in different places where I’ve worked. I can figure out a lot of $hit myself, thank you very much – but there’s nothing like the cyber-camaraderie of folks who have survived a cult. Sorry for the long post, major detour and cuss words but I sure do feel better. Sweet dreams all – nighty night.
  26. 5 points
    Another wonderful post Skyrider....encouraging both critical thought and self-reflection. Your willingness to reveal your deepest personal “lens” view of experiences you witnessed or endured, without worrying about covering for your own naïveté at the time, due primarily to the vibrant idealism of youth at the time many of us got involved, is most admirable imho. I appreciate your honest insight and your reflection of TWIt “history” as you experienced it then, and as you understand it now, some 40 years later. I am far less “kind” to dictor paul than you are. From my own interpersonal interactions with dp, I don’t think he had near the cleverness you give him credit for, Sky. He was a spoiled little brat, sexually abused baby of an Aryan family of 8. His intellect was a C- at best throughout his academic career, when he wasn’t failing. He mastered one thing. Plagiarism. Vic was a charlatan from the beginning. But, he was just a small-time crappie in a huge pond of Elmer Gantrys in the 1940s who were looking to make a comfortable living and stay outta WWII. Plus, Adolph Ernst...his daddy...was a Nazi supporter in the German-American Bund founded by Lindbergh and Fritz Kuhn in 1936. Young dictor grew up in that racist, fascist environment, and they even spoke German in their home, before they learned English! So, dp’s “call to ministry” was nothing more than a fortunate turn of events which got him through a cheap Evangelical and Reformed seminary, and ordained as a clergyman in that denomination with his own church, St. Jacob’s in Payne, OH, as Skyrider has recorded. That began a bumbling, stumbling, rumbling, bull-in-a-China-shop romp through the Bible Belt Fundamentalist Jesus culture of the post-war Midwest. Quite a conservative area of the USA at that time. His entire Chimes Hour Youth Caravan “founding” of TWIt was just the beginning of his hustle. He saw what worked with kids, had a nice, steamy affair with Rosalind Rinker, and had his first child, a son, Donald Ernst. Then he got a promotion to a bigger, more important, better tithing E&R church in Van Wert, St. Peter’s. Got him out of Payne before his shenanigans could be uncovered, settled him into a comfortable, economically stable community with a built-in guaranteed flock to fleece. He was simply playing the denominational pastor game and really just wanted to be as big as his heroes, Oral Roberts and Billy Graham. At the AC at HQ in the sumner of 1972, dp said: “I’m not an Evangelist like Billy Graham, or Oral Roberts! I’m a teacher! I tried to reach out to them in the 50s to work together for the Lord. You know, when they pack ‘em into their tents and stadiums, get ‘em born again and then what?? Send them to ME! I’ll teach them the greatness of the accuracy of Gawd’s rightly divided word!” He said that right after he finished playing a tape of Oral Roberts’ preaching his famous 4th Man Sermon. Dic was just a greedy young ne’re-do-well from a hick German farm town in the middle of nowhere Ohio, who got outta the hard work of taking over daddy’s farm, or starting a business of his own like his brothers, by choosing the easy, well-respected con of Midwest clergyman, knocking up his HS sweetheart, and grabbing and groping his way through one small group of suckers after another. When he was lucky enough to stumble across folks like Peter J. Wade, David Anderson, John Somerville, Ken Klug, Walter Cummins, Jim Doop, Steve Heefner, and Donnie Fugit, it was THEIR gifts, abilities and enthusiasm that made dic’s class a hit, not dic’s personal presence. Often, his personal presence just caused trouble for everyone! He was a jerk in the opinion of many. Until those same men had the Bible ministry they loved stolen from them and brought under the iron fist of Herr Victor the First. The progress of dic’s new possession really took off when he got rid of his competition. He started the corpse in 1969 with Ken Klug in it, John Lynn, Pat Browning, Johnny Townsend, and couple of others. The famous Zero corpse. Started again in 1970 with the first corpse of 9, including 1 guy at ECU. Again, not really planned or thought through beyond the free-spirited idealism of young hippies who really believed ole Dic was teaching the word like it hadn’t been known since the 1st Century and there were miracles, signs, and wonders everywhere! Dic wanted a core group as disciplined and tough as the Marine Corps after the Zero corpse pooped out to get married and take care of other personal priorities. That’s why he loved ECU so much. John and Tim Somerville started the “work” at ECU. John volunteered for Vietnam Nam to prove the revelation and power manifestations to himself, and was truly a hero and esteemed warrior among his fellow Marines. Dic said if John could do all that for the Marines, why can’t I get people to do that for God and His word??! Why can’t God have a Marine Corps?? Hence, the concept of the way corpse was born. Again, no cleverly calculated, sinister, MLM plot. Just the continued outworking of one man’s pathology now gathering steam through a serendipitous cult of personality that was building around a completely incompetent, dumbass, perverted drunk. Imho, Dic had a lot less to do with building his cult than the first 5 corpses and the WOW program. It was those groups that most adored dictor, enjoyed the thrill and joy of genuine Christian revival when they first took that class thing, were free enough to just pick up and go wherever the man-o-gawd told them too. It was not dictor or the stupid class that got me into TWIt. It was my closest and most beloved friends. It was the power of miracles, signs, and wonders and no authoritarian control. As the money began pouring in, Harry and Vic figured they better invest it. Best investment?? REAL ESTATE! Emporia, Rome City, Gunnison, Limb homes in OH, IN, MI, NC, KS, CA, NY, all bought by TWIt in the early 70s. The Colleges, campuses, camps, limb homes, etc., were all money-laundering schemes that Dic and Harry stumbled into, which were then “perfected” by Howard and Don, and all the new early corpse grads flooding HQ and all the new “Root Locales” with millions of laundered abundant sharing dollars. The only names on ALL the deeds to those properties were those of TWIt trustees.....Harry Wierwille, Ermal Owens, dictor paul, Howard, Don, and da Forehead. That was it until the Allen lawsuit was settled. Whose names are on the remaining deeds?? Ohio? Gunnison? That’s when the real systemization of dic’s evil began imo. Dic himself was too dumb to do anything but drink and molest women while reading anyone else’s Bible teachings a couple of times a week in some quaint little midwestern hamlet in Ohio. He was a slick con. He knew the game. He was always on the prowl. He was clever, not intelligent. He was deceitful, and ambitious, not honest or humble. He was mentally ill....untreated, uncontrolled mental illness dysfunctionally working itself out since his teens. He was a charmer and manipulator, not by will, but by nature. No redeeming social value, spiritually empty, and intellectually vapid. So, though dictor paul was lucky enough to attract some very talented people into his sex/personality cult, I don’t give him credit for diabolically planning, thinking through, or conceiving what he eventually destroyed. Sadly, he used a lot of wonderful, smart, talented, authentically loving, idealistic young people, who loved Jesus and just wanted to do the right thing to pay for and fulfill his own hubris and lusts. A pimp and a whore and a bully. What a ministry!
  27. 5 points
    Hey, Moynihan............... If wierwille had lived longer........maybe we would have seen him led away in handcuffs (like Harvey Weinstein).
  28. 5 points
    Regarding cognitive dissonance - while in the process of extricating myself from TWI in 1988, I experienced a strange process going on in my mind. I was starting to think original thoughts - thoughts that were contrary to my TWI programmed thoughts. Sometimes I would hear Craig yelling against my thoughts, yelling things I had heard at mealtimes in residence. So I did the thing with the line down the middle of the page. Left side - my thought, right side - TWI rebuttal. Back and forth, back and forth. Like having two brains. As time went by, my own thoughts predominated and the yelling rebuttals receded. Many years later, my brain belongs to me. And TWI is a distant far off strange thing I was in....... the farther back in time it gets, the stranger it seems.
  29. 5 points
    Started in London in response to fears of locals in Brixton about knife crime. Has since widely expanded, both in remit and location. There are around 300 groups in Britain, some in Trinidad, some in Australia - in fact, in 7 countries including 3 teams in the USA (Chico, California; Bangor and Portland, Maine). In my city, we get heaps of people rushing up to hug us and to thank us for looking out for them. Homeless people know we don't judge, but offer kind words, a hot drink, and blankets etc in cold weather. Sometimes, homeless people tell us about someone (not usually a homeless person) whom they've noticed huddled in a doorway or alley, that they are concerned about. Parents are thankful we get their very drunk kids home safely. Security staff throw drunks out but then call us to ensure the drunks are warm and safe. Our universities have gained a good reputation as being in a safe city. The homosexual community welcomes us and some of them love to talk - they often have had horrendous times in churches. And EVERYONE knows we are volunteers - and volunteer CHRISTIANS. Our actions are a much better way of witnessing than door knocking!!!
  30. 5 points
    For those who had only a brush of involvement with twi, it is understandable that they didn't see behind the mask. On the field, away from twi's headquarters........there were many, MANY good twig coordinators in the mid-to-late 70s. During this time, it was common for faithful followers to hobnob from one twig to another across town. It may be really difficult, now, to realize that the way ministry exuded strong Christian tenets of love, giving and support at the local level. At each twig fellowship.......two or three songs were sung at those fellowships each night that came from Christian denominations: What a friend we have in Jesus Tis so sweet to trust in Jesus My Jesus, I love thee In the garden My Jesus of Blue Galilee I love to tell the story Great is Thy Faithfulness etc. For those who ask, "How could you join a cult?"..........it wasn't like that in the early 70s on the field. There was no monitoring, no mandating which fellowship to attend. If someone across town was teaching hot bible......that's where the action was. At times, some one would not show up for a month.....but was welcomed with loving arms when he/she returned. Nobody joins a cult willingly (wittingly). In every thing that I've learned or experienced, I would say that wierwille pulled his mask off more openly around 1977.....definitely, by 1978. The confrontations became more widespread and intense. A mandate swept thru to replace The Blue Song Book with the brown song book [.....was this because twi was pressured on using copyrighted songs without permission?....]. Some of the high-profile leaders were starting to stand up and challenge wierwille's authoritarian style and doctrine......while others exited, like Peter Wa-de in 1975. In December 1977.......wierwille begins writing his corps letters and laments that corps are exiting. Letters to the way corps Thirty letters........evidence that wierwille was using another tool to shame and guilt the corps. The problem persisted AND ESCALATED........because wierwille did not change course. Corps kept exiting, because they were being manipulated and exploited. Wierwille knew the tactics of incremental steps. Sure........it took YEARS before it became manifestly clear to the general public. And, then......most notably, Christopher C. Geer took to the podium in 1986 to label craig, don, and howard as "the problem" for everyone being off the word. Good Golly.....Miss Molly! What a load of steaming bullschit. What is so freaking crazy is that there are STILL corps today who believe that wierwille was this benevolent, prophesying man of God. And, here at GreaseSpot........the wierwille-defenders refuse to connect the dots. Go back thru the threads......and you'll see that NONE of the staunch wierwille-defenders ever changed his opinion. And, I say "his"......because, as far as I know, every one of them were men. With overwhelming evidence of wierwille's sexual predation........they dismiss it compared to "the greatness of pfal that he taught." We see it on present threads. You can see it on threads 15 years ago. Go back thru the threads.......and read it for yourselves. Wierwille-defenders protect their idol, wierwille. Seems to me...............wierwille-defenders STILL want the mask back on.
  31. 5 points
    When I graduated from the corpse (4th), my assignment was VP of the Way of MI and State WOW Coordinator. I had 20 WOW families in 10 different cities, each pair coordinated by Interim 6th corpse. There were only 6 interim corpse college WOWS, who coordinated College WOW wayhomes at MSU, Uof MI, and Ferris State College, and University of Detroit. Of those 20 WOW families, 2 were in Detroit city, and there were 2 families in the Detroit suburbs of Livonia, Warren, Dearborn, and an interim family corpse couple with a group of 3 twigs in the City. I lived just north of the city in Berkeley, MI. I had an interim corpse WOW meeting for all the interim corpse WOWS once a month in my apt in Berkley. They were fabulous, and we all became very close friends. Word got out, and then all the rest of the corpses in the state wanted to come too. So, after a buncha hoohey from Ken Brown, turd corpse LC, it was opened to any corpse who wanted to attend. At the second one of those monthly meetings, we decided we'd do a weekly SNS for the Detroit Area. We started on Anniversary Sunday, 1976, with about 80 people, including all the WOWS & corpse. At the December meeting, we had over 350, and never looked back! When I first got involved with TWIt, in Long Island and Rye, NY in 1970, when we used to pass the horns at fellowships (not called "Twigs yet!), both Steve Heefner (LC) and Steve Perez each used to say before passing the horn, "If you are in serious need of $, take out whatever will help you get through tonight and tomorrow." We had petty cash for ministry expenses, and ALL the ABS was kept in the local branches and areas until all the bills were paid, our meager "salaries" fluctuated with the ABS, which many times meant that our total weekly salary was $10-20. However, whenever there was an emergent need among the fellowships, ABS was used to pay Dr./Hospital bills, buy food or clothing for homeless folks who came to fellowship, pay for refreshments and food at classes and Sunday night meetings every week, etc. Sometimes we even gave people the $45 "donation" so they could take the class and repay when they got back on their feet. Those decisions were made at the Branch and Area levels. At the end of the month, whatever was left over, we sent to the Limb in Rye. Those amounts rose dramatically from month to month, and the same was done by Heefner for the whole Limb every month. How much we sent was determined by how much came in, and since we emptied the bank accounts every month, that was a lot of moolah, and everybody was happy, except dictor. When he saw the amount of $ coming in from just NY, he wanted it all for himself. So, with the help of none other than Christopher Geer, dictor and coward Allen, fired Heefner and the limb staff he brought with him from CA, during the Advanced Class in Rye in March of 1972. Boob and Doody MoneyHands came in with Gary Frederick to take over the limb, close all branch and area bank accounts in the state other than the Limb, and change over to blue forms and the way tree structure. Perez quit, and all the rest of us fulltimers (2 of us, Ed Goebel and myself) quit and got jobs. The Way of Long Island was broken into just the Nassau and Suffolk branches, Brooklyn/Queens became a separate area, and the Bronx branch was run by a guy named Steffen Emerick. I ran the Bklyn/Queens area, and refused to take any salary. I ran it the way I was taught by Heefner and Perez, and it boomed. I NEVER told Moynihan what I was doing. I just gathered the blue forms and cash from the branches and deposited them all directly into the one Limb account. Since the area was booming, I never got any complaints. So, getting back to MI, when we started the weekly Sunday Area meetings, I had all this abundant sharing to send to the limb, checks and cash. I kept a couple of hundred dollars cash in my apt. and used it as the needs arose among the corpse and their WOWS. For example, the interim family corpse couple had 2 young daughters living in the heart of Detroit the summer after the Cobo riots. Well, mommy got pregnant again, which meant they could not re-enter the corpse. So, to help them out, I paid their medical bills from the delivery and their rent for 3 months, from that ABS stash I kept. Sometimes, WOWS couldn't pay their rent or buy decent food, so i'd pay it from my stash. I even paid for a WOW apprentice corpse to have an abortion when her corpse leader got her pregnant, so she could go into the corpse as planned. To me, THIS was the PUREST and most Christ-like use of ABS for ANYTHING!! I still feel that way. Well.....Bo Reahard was the Trunk guy and the Midwest region guy too. So, he came for a visit in March, and I had him teach at the Detroit SNS. When we got back to my apt, he watched me prepare The ABS to send to the limb. I took out my $200 cash, and zipped up the remaining cash, checks, and coins into a bank pouch with the blue form to take to the limb. Bo wanted to know what the cash was for, and I told him. He asked me if Ken Brown knew about this. I said "No, why? I didn't think i needed to tell him." Well he calls Ken Brown and then rips me a new one for "stealing the ABS"! I called his bullshit, bullshit, and he said he was gonna tell dictor when he got back to HQ. I said, "Good! Tell him to call me and tell me I'm stealing his ABS!" Well, I get a phone call 2 days later from dictor himself! He's got Bo in his office "so he can hear this too". Then he says: "Son, you're right and Bo is full-of-shit like you told him! THAT IS the best use of our ABS and you just go right ahead and keep on doing the right thing, OK?? OK BO??". Then, in harmony comes 2 "yessirs"!! LOL! Then he puts Bo on the phone! Bo says, "You were right. I'm sorry for falsely accusing you. When I hang up, I'm calling Ken Brown to tell him the same thing." I said "thanks Bo, I love ya!" Throughout my entire time in TWIt, at every level of the verkackte Way tree I served in, I did exactly the same thing! And NO ONE, not even Coward or Ding Dong ever said another word to me. There are people still living because of that, who would have been dead, maimed, or arrested. I never used any of those monies for any personal needs or purchases for anybody. I distributed to each as there was need. AND, IT WORKED! i watched dictor and da Forehead take baskets and baskets of ABS from various large meetings and stuff it all in brown shopping bags and take it onto the coach never to be seen again. I watched them splurge on themselves and their corpse girls.....gifts, booze, drugs, bribes, and "contributions to their lockboxes"! I confronted da Forehead several times, and accomplished NOTHING. That one time on the phone with dictor and Bo was the ONLY time I ever talked about it with dictor. So, what Skyrider was doing was absolutely "right-on" as far as dictor and Howard were concerned. Even though it could never have been done under da forehead's reign here in the USA, Skyrider being in Canada and having a pair.....did the right thing. If only there were more who had the guts to do the right thing, which, as usual, meant going against HQ and the board of terrorists, perhaps fewer people would have endured life-altering hurts and pains. We'll never know. Thanks for reading!.........peace.
  32. 5 points
    Here's an idea: we each drop out of this topic and go read a book.
  33. 5 points
    I never served at any of the top levels of the Way, but I did graduate from the corpse. I did hold some leadership positions. When I finally left twi, I told God I didn't want to lead again because I was that torn up about having misled people either into the lies or deeper into the lies and slavery of twi. I spent several years after I left reevaluating ALL of my beliefs. I think anyone who leaves needs time to decompress and reevaluate. I wouldn't even read KJV because of the ruts in my brain that led to twi beliefs. I'm still in process.
  34. 5 points
    Good morning. Thought I'd share a bit from my recent website post, "Good People I Met At The Way" "Greetings, subscribers and other readers who stumble across this website. By now, you have probably noticed I have a book in the making. It’s my very personal story of seventeen years in The Way International, a biblical research, teaching, and fellowship ministry that became one of the largest fundamentalist cults in America in its heyday of the 80s. I met many good people at The Way and you’ll meet some of them in my book soon. ... I’ve written many posts about cults and fundamentalism. Today, I just want to make some points clear for those of you who have never come in contact with any Way people before. ... Most Way folks had good intentions about helping people, many desired to serve God in every way, and others sought a godly cause to live for. However, I now consider even the most sincere of Way followers (then and now) as misguided, deceived, and in some cases … gulp … brainwashed. Myself included. Thankfully, with help from many folks, I’ve learned to sort the good from the bad over the years, and am still doing it. My book, Undertow, tells a lot of my story. But the sorting and learning will never be over, even after Undertow is published, which will be soon after the elections next week. In my book, Undertow, you will meet many good people I knew at The Way. Some who have left are still my friends. Some share stories and information at GreaseSpot Café, an online community founded by Michael Duffy that has helped many people recover. * Read the entire text of the post here: The Good People I Met At The Way I think all of us here at GSC owe Michael Duffy a debt of gratitude for his steadfast courage in making this site available so people can access stories and information about The Way that is not available anywhere else. In a democracy, people deserve to have facts from as many sides of an issue, cults included, as they can find before making any decisions about how to proceed in their lives. Cheers to Michael and all of you grease spotters for taking a stand against the propaganda of The Way and mustering the courage to speak out! You inspire me!
  35. 5 points
    R n R...Ream' em 'n Rape' em? I mean, come on...the people on that list are suddenly awakened to all the evil of the past 40+ years? Give me a break. Try Repent 'n Restitution, for starters, sweet cheeks.
  36. 5 points
    Ladies and gentlemen, I'd like to report that I'm still alive and well . . . even after leaving TWI. It's been a while, but I went and got myself into debt (a mortgage) and I've started going to college. To top it all off, I sporadically attend various churches in search of a church home, BUT (this is gonna freak everyone out for sure) I don't tithe. And, you know what? Once I got over the whole idea that I was "no longer under the protection of the household" I've been able to live my life and realize that it's infinitely better without TWI. In fact, as I write this, I know for certain that I've had more than "2 drinks".
  37. 5 points
    I don't agree with a single word if this. Such a wild claim requires a big burden of proof. His theological claims are unsubstantiated, his Greek was lousy at best, and his Biblical studies were fraudulent or a century out dated, although none of that is surprising since his credentials were artificial and he didn't allow review of his work and he didn't cite his sources. He was a phony though and through.
  38. 5 points
    Greetings, ImLikeSoConfused! I would have responded to this thread sooner, but I had a heart attack on February 9th which landed me at the hospital DOA. The docs resuscitated me and I've spent the intervening time in physical and occupational therapy, without access to the internet until last Friday. One of the things I've gained from the experience is a partial appreciation of how many people really do love me, including many of my fellow posters here at GSC. There is a difference between preaching and teaching. Preaching draws the auditor's attention to something. Teaching purports to explain the nuts and bolts of how a thing works. Wierwille preached many truths that were straight out of the Bible. Otherwise, no one would have paid any attention to anything he was saying. But in his teaching, Wierwille often directly contradicted the very truth he was preaching at the time. Many people who took to heart the things Wierwille preached got the results that God's Word promises. You yourself know all too well what can happen to the people who take to heart the things Wierwille taught... delusion... being played. One of Wierwille's greatest sins was to attribute the credit for the good things happening in peoples' lives to himself and his classes rather than to God through the Lord Jesus Christ. The flip side of that same coin was to attribute peoples' failures to their lack of believing rather than to the flaws of his teaching. This is the main reason I don't recommend Wierwille's writings to anyone else. It's just too much work... confusing work at that... separating the truth from the error in PFAL, etc. If you think one of your friends or acquaintances could benefit from a truth of God's Word, then simply speak to them the truth that you know. You don't have to explain the whole Bible to them. You couldn't if you wanted to. Nobody can explain the whole Bible, and ANYONE who tells you otherwise is trying to pull a con. No legitimate scholar would make such a claim. Love, Steve
  39. 5 points
    If there were no GS then there would be one less resource for people to recover from the negative impact of the Way International. One of my relatives has a rare disease, OT - tremors. There are only a handful of people diagnosed with this disease across the world. She had great deliverance over the course of the last couple years when these folks got together and shared their stories, they even had a retreat. Hearing similar stories helped her to adjust to her disease, feel not alone, and since the two meetings she talks about them a great deal. Just seeing another human adjust to the condition and live a 'normal' life helped her so much. Like her, we who have experienced TWI also have a rare disease. I will be the first to admit I am damaged from it. The experiences there have affected aspects of my entire life into today. There aren't many people in public that can relate to me regarding this experience. it affects a lot in my life. I could ignore, that, suppress that, or admit it and heal and adjust. But admit it or not, my 'normal' life is a lot like my relative trying to adjust. To me the real heroes of The Way International experience are not the ones in lofty places, with condescending attitudes, being installed with pomp and ceremony into the highest offices of the organization that is growing less relevant every year. Not those who bury their heads in the sand, "thinking no evil" like the 3 monkey statue shows. Not those who use others to advance themselves. Not the enablers. No, the real heroes of The Way International are found on these pages. Those who tell the truth. Those who expose the lies, the control, the manipulation. Those who share real life drama about escape and adjustment. Those who say what everyone is thinking in the audience but are afraid to express to anyone - yes the STS sucks. Like every Way production. Boring, read teachings, whitewashed messages, all lies. The truth is what happens behind closed doors, where they are meeting out of fear. If you want to see a real hero from the Way experience, go look in the mirror. It's you. You survived. You told the truth. You, my friends on Greasespot, are the true heroes, not the moral midget being installed as President or any of his Pharisee buddies. Or any of the various hucksters selling versions of lies for their own profit. You are the true heroes. Even if you're damaged like me.
  40. 5 points
    The Pregnancy Policy What kind of board of directors legislates pregnancy policy to their employees? Forget diving into all the details......what gives them the right to insert when a couple should or shouldn't get pregnant and have children? Craig, Don and Howard all signed off on this? Doesn't this policy obliterate all kinds of issues about a woman's right over her body and conception? What about legalities? Is this even legal? [And please......don't start a legal-issues argument on this thread. Thanks.] Did this kind of thinking and policy connect all the way back to victor paul wierwille? Yep. It. Was. A. Cult. The Pet Policy On this one, the first sentence, the foundational directive..........Effective March 25, 1998, larger pets ("serious pets") such as cats, dogs, horses, reptiles and some birds will not be allowed by full-time Staff. Of course, when my wife and I read this, "Who has horses or reptiles or birds?".........but I digress.... The bigger issue, the MAIN POINT is......What gives the trustees the right to give these orders that affect our lives? Did every financial issue connect back to the needs-basis doctrine of wierwille......or what was it? NOW, it was personal. We had a dog, a rescue dog....a poodle mix. Our older son had turned 12 years old and summer was near. My wife was deeply involved in this and knew, with that deep-instinct of a mother's love, that our son needed the companionship of a young dog. Not a puppy with all its early needs, but a one-year old rescue dog from the shelter. A very dear and long-standing family corps woman, Jean G!les T0mko (mother of Paul G!les...corps grad) was like "the grandmother" that our boys never had encouraged it as well. [Note: My deprogramming episode was STILL rippling out its effects.....our two boys never really had that son/grandparent relationship.] Jean and her husband (a wonderful military veteran) through the years offered to babysit our boys several overnight weekends (Sat/Sun).....it blessed them immensely and my wife and I felt is was deeply healthy for the boys. Anyways......nine months prior to this "pet policy" my wife, son and Jean had gone to the rescue shelter and brought this dog home. Jean insisted on buying several dog items, because her heart was invested into our growing boys. She was, again, "Grandma" to our sons. When this policy went into effect, we had to get rid of this dog. My little twelve-year old son's heart was crushed and he sobbed for days while we looked to find a new home for his "little companion." Jean, too, was deeply saddened by this whole ordeal. The rippling effects of this pet policy on my family brought a deep, profound sadness to my heart.....opening the passageway to the haunting memories of my captivity, and my mom and dad. My son who had this growing desire to be a veterinarian.......floundered in this emotional turbulence of losing his little dog, Sandi. **Fast forward to leaving this cult........ into the years ahead, and now 19 years later: Our son graduated from college summa cum laude Received the chancellor award in medical school Selected as one of eighteen in nation for one year, intern yr, at sloan kettering (manhattan) Received intern of year award of those 18 Today.....a brain/spinal oncologist in top-tier cancer hospital So, readers......please indulge me as I pause..................to give a one-finger salute to the cult puppeteers, past and present.
  41. 5 points
    very true. little known video of Craig's Homiletics Teacher
  42. 5 points
    Nope. Not an effort to be PC on my part. Anyone who knows me in real life knows I don't give a rat's azz about being PC.(Nor did I reference any connection to genetics.) Through the years I have had many friends and coworkers that are either homosexual or transgender. I can assure you they did not all live the same "lifestyle". Ask yourself the question, "What is the heterosexual lifestyle?" There is no answer. Some live a sports centered lifestyle. Some live a music centered lifestyle. Some live a technology centered lifestyle and on and on and on. If someone is heterosexual, it simply means that their sexual attraction is directed at the opposite sex. If they are homosexual, their sexual attraction is directed toward the same sex. People aren't cured of their attraction. They just learn how to repress and deny it. (Think celibacy.) Don't even throw the old devil possession schtick in the mix. We'll be here forever with that one.
  43. 5 points
    Defining Moments in Time: I grew up on a wheat farm six miles from a small, rural town. Our farm house was small and my three brothers and I slept in the basement with concrete floors.......and the winters were bitterly cold. But life was good. My kindergarten class was in a country schoolhouse four miles northeast and grades k-8 numbered around 32 students. Yes, a country school house......and I chuckle to myself, "How old ARE you?" And, no......I didn't walk to school, barefoot. (haha) I still have a framed picture of those 32 students, with my three older brothers, from that little country schoolhouse. The next year my parents made the decision that we would start going to the public school in town, because the school bus drove right by our house each morning and studies, along with team sports, would help expand our growth. Besides the wheat farming, we had corn and alfalfa to irrigate. I was nine years old when my dad thought I was ready to drive the tractor in the field, alone. The fact of the matter was largely due to size not age; when one foot could reach the clutch and the other foot the brake, I was "ready." But hey, I didn't mind.....it made me feel needed and raised my status with my older brothers. The irrigation of the corn and alfalfa took on whole different aspects to manage. For a number of years, we had some cattle and hundreds of sheep. I learned a lot about sheep that embedded deep impressions when, years later, I delved into the scriptures. Life on the farm was a load of challenges and plenty of hard work, but it opened up whole chapters of fond memories of wholesome living. Along with school activities and team sports (football, basketball, golf and track), we were involved in 4-H and I snagged several blue/purple ribbons for my black angus heifers. As farm kids go, we had our share of B-B guns and birdshot to ward off pesky sparrows and vermin attempting to nestle into many of the outbuildings. The first weekend of November each year marked the opening season for pheasant hunting......and, for years, we had relatives who came from out-of-state to join us. Later in life, my dad and one brother spent ten years of time, effort and investment raising 1,000 pheasant and 1,000 quail chicks, each year, [and 80 acres to habitat preservation] and turned them loose in the county....all on his own dime, anonymously. Growing up, we lived 22 miles from the largest lake in the state......so there was water skiing and fishing to be had. Of course, farm work was definitely six days a week, so this wasn't like weekend after weekend. There was work to be done......and my dad started his day, every day, at 4:30am. He did not look favorably on us boys if we were still in bed after 6am......"sleeping in" [anything after 6am] was cause for a stern look. Thinking back on those memories, I recall that phrase....."Tough times make for tough men." I suppose there is some truth to it. With all our diligence and hard work, more prosperity followed......and years later, when all three brothers were off to college and beyond, I traded in my 350 Honda motorcycle for a new 900 Kawasaki [4 carburetors, 112mph in 1/4 mile]. Fast times.....and lots of high school dating. My senior year, our football team was #1 in the state in class C division football. An undefeated season. I played starting halfback on offense and defense. Life was good and fun and memorable. In the spring, I decided to go out for track....even though I'd been on the traveling golf squad my junior year. My track coach was thrilled, my golf coach shrugged. Amongst several events.....100 low-hurdles, 220 yd dash, long jump.....I found a place in the mile relay [each of the 4 guys runs a lap, 440 yards]. We broke the school record three times.....and came in 2nd in the state finals [a school record that held for 28 years]. The following year, I headed off to college......to major in business administration. I really enjoyed the marketing classes my second year, but also had this growing interest for spiritual/biblical truths.......and then, months later, a guy with a nametag who told me he was a "wow-ambassador." Two months later I took pfal.......and repeated pfal class twice more. After the spring semester ended, I dropped out of college........to go WOW. In many way, my recruitment was similar to Charlene's account in Undertow.......change the names, locations, dates......but the recruitment tactics and deceptive marketing of pfal/twi was the same. I was led to believe in "biblical research" and that by God's grace, I could walk circumspectly with that Christ-within spirit. So much of twi's ploy has a basis of truth.......but the "bait and switch" is hidden from view. Systematic and subtle indoctrination. I, too, could write a book......but it would have much of the same content, same guilt/shame/fear cult tactics, warnings from family/friends, conscious and subconscious red-flag warnings, and escaping from deceptive cult. One of the things that I've always contemplated is.......leaving twi is like jumping off a moving train. You know, at some point, that you don't want to go to that destination [an idolatrous end]. You want off.....but you also have a wife and kids in tow. Yeah, I'm ready......are you? Uh oh, the wife is not sure......now what? You can't voice your plans to jump, because others on the train will tell their supervisors....and confrontation will mount from all sides. All those inter-personal relationships.....your "friends" and co-workers, your wife's, your children (activities/friends/school)........when do you jump? Where is there a "soft landing?" Who will be hurt? How will life change? Maybe, I'll write a book entitled, "Just Jump"
  44. 5 points
    I've consulted with the mods (no I haven't). Well, with all the mods who check in regularly (which means me and pretty much no one else). The ban stays. No politics.
  45. 5 points
    My point is that the ripples of The Way's extremism are far reaching--through generations, not just those that got involved back in the 60's, 70's and 80's. How terrible to feel as though the community that shaped you would want you to be dead.
  46. 5 points
    IMO, that's too pat an answer. I think it's all of the above possible reasons you gave, Patriot. Different people have different reasons. A few of them might have even bought into the "we're the faithful remnant" crap that RFR has peddled. Since you referred to the low pay a couple times, I assume you're talking about people at HQ. (As for the person sitting in someone's living room studying the Bible and singing songs, I still run into people who are "out" but in a splinter group who don't [or won't] believe bad things about twi or VPW because they don't want to "think evil.") I left HQ staff in early spring of 1986. I resigned, and I was never so happy to leave a place in my life. I hated the mandatory meetings, Rosalie's micromanaging, the rampant hypocrisy, etc. I never regretted getting out of there. In contrast, a couple years later, when I had severed my ties with twi completely, I had a long talk with someone who was still "in," a friend who was a member of the president's cabinet and had held very high positions. He was fully aware at how flocked up things were and what Rosalie was like. But he, who was younger than I was and better educated and better equipped to change careers, said, "If I left, how would I support my wife and child?" I was astounded. It was the fear in the heart of that man! Re: the low pay: If you're debt-free and living in that neck of the woods, you don't need much money to live comfortably. My rent in NK was very reasonable for a nice apartment, and my utilities were next to nothing. Lunch in the OSC was mandatory (gag, gag), so I only had to buy food for 2 meals a day. For people approaching retirement age, as the older staffers must be, if they've stuck it out this long they probably think it's an okay gig. But they'd better not get sick, or they'll become someone else's "burden," and off they'll be sent with no retirement fund, no social security check, nada. For those who have the type of personality that allows them to tolerate mandatory meetings and syrupy-sweet smiles from a "president" whose grins hide daggers, and all the other BS, twi is just the place. God bless 'em. All those things gave me a headache and a heartache.
  47. 5 points
    I was talking to Rumrunner one night and mentioned to him that we could easily start our own splinter group and start raking in the bucks...we both laughed and we both knew that it was true...any former member,( especially with corps experience) could put together a package and market it...start a website, put together some tapes and get your tax exempt, corporate splinter group on the road and moving... Call it..."The love of Christ truth ministries international"...sounds good...hmmmm, maybe a theological degree from some mail order outfit would help... ...of course we were joking over a few beers... ...makes me wonder about these guys who actually did it...and how they sleep at night.
  48. 5 points
  49. 5 points
    and whoever anonymous member marked down the last post.. lets look at a few facts and reality here.. the numbnuts down south failed to "get a life".. perhaps one or more did..but what happened? Now their little camping "adventure" is cloaked in darkness.. why? It wouldn't survive the light of day.. feel free to disagree all you want..
  50. 5 points
    Wow I'm heavily struck, here, with how unpredictable can be the human condition and the oft strong desire to be right, to be sure to get the last word in, to be sure to one-up another. Not exactly the vision Pawtucket had, I'm sure, when he said something like "lets tell the other side of the story and maybe have some fun doing it". If someone pi$ses me off and I just can't stand it, I fail to see the good in not standing it so publically; I guess I'll never understand that and I'm glad I don't get it. Caleb, in his youthful "I was just kidding" approach and tone after his original approach of "I'll show up on your stoop"..........I think that those of us that have children that are older than 22 might understand that silliness quicker and yes, he did deserve to have explained to him the better way to frame things here. But my question, then, is whether or not like bahavior isn't happening amongst those that were comfy to tell him straighten up and fly right. The bully on the playground that barges into the new playground, making comments that he later states were "just kidding" then gets to sit back and watch as those he is presumed to have bullied go at each other. I think we too often have no idea of another's intentions, and of course we lack eye contact and body language and general knowledge of someone that is merely known to us on a computer screen. Then I've known of two or more people getting together on the phone or an IM and prod each other against another. "you post this and I'll follow with this" and so it goes. For what? To show someone how tough we are, how much more we know than them, we're big, they're small and by God we are going to make sure they remember it? Sad and our new friend Caleb, bless his heart and pass the peas, sees only the bickering and spitting and why the hell wouldn't he feel comfortable to come back with more of his own goodies. I don't know the man called Caleb but I do understand young people that age and I do understand having connections to people of note and just those two combined make for a powerful mix of "pffffttttt" Is that his intent? I'm not sure I care, but as is the original idea of the forum, too, he has the right to express it and yes, the responsibility to accept the consequences of a strong group of people. I looked at his posts through the lens of a mama and more fun, the mama of a 20 something kid that is forever making statements that she might have to swallow whole in a short time, sometimes all the time. She'll get it and so will Caleb, I pray. I know I did when as I matured and understood and got off my '10 foot tall and bulletproof' ladder. But to go at each other in such a public manner...........nah. Sad. Caleb, say what you need to say, just do heed alot of the posters sage wisdom of caution, whatever that is for you.

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