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  1. 3 points
    Same pattern.........always. Rivals wait for opportunistic time Head Minister passes away or retires When not promoted to big chair....plots strategy Abides time to "break away" and be in charge Find chinks in their armor/doctrine Isolate his splinter group from "wrong doctrine" Be sure that support ($$$) is firmly in place Behold.......another offshoot grows in the midst Nothing new under the sun...... Heck.....wierwille's "thriving ministry" only lasted 12 years (1970-1982) Then, he retired......and the infighting started.
  2. 3 points
    As many of you know, I stepped back from active management of GSC a few years back. I left the management in capable hands. I had a nervous meltdown. Disagreement turned into verbal battles. I always wanted this place to be a safe haven for those that left or was in the process of leaving or was thinking of leaving. This would be a place of solace. Lately, for some, attacking seems to be the color of the day. Why the need to attack? Why the need to call people names. My attitude has been if you are getting in vicious place, step away from the keyboard! The internet is rampant with vicious bravery behind a wall of anonymity I only have one word to those guilty of this, Stop! At least on this site. And as an aside, the hosting company has been double billing me, we are trying to work this out. If the site is not accessible in the next few days, don't worry.
  3. 3 points
    Or, for something completely different along these lines, there's a very compelling argument for doing away with bible study altogether in a "shocking" book called The End of Biblical Studies (gasp!) by Hector Avalos, PhD. Prometheus Books. 2007. Just sayin … there is an alternative viewpoint for those interested in questioning the value of continuing to hammer away at biblical texts in hopes of recreating "the original." Even if we did reach that goal, what would we have? A text that still contains contradictions (four different viewpoints in the 4 gospels), violence against "unbelievers," in the Hebrew Bible, condemnation of homosexuals, subjugation of women, etc. Just sayin … let's take a look at bibliolatry and get honest about that. Perhaps this is a topic for the Doctrinal thread. Sigh …
  4. 3 points
    I do have something to say on this topic. In 1995, as part of an elaborate ruse to terminate communication between me and someone in another state who, unbeknownst to me at the time, was being abused by clergy, myself and my husband were asked to excuse ourselves from fellowship to put ourselves under the care of Bob Darnell, but then escalated to "not being welcome at the Way" by Ohio Limb Coordinator Dave Patterson under the most dubious of circumstances. We were totally blindsided, having not done anything unseemly at all. We would get information here and there as to what was going on, with each new doctrinal atrocity being taught absolutely flooring us. We even sat in our car for six nights on that road that Bob Wierwille lived on to listen to the ROA 95 teachings on AM radio, stunned. We lived in St. Mary's, and when someone from HQ would encounter us in public, they would run away on the other side of the street or another aisle in the store, with the exception of a very few people who obviously were not totally buying into Martindale's shiite. Finally in Spring of 1996 word got to us that Martindale was talking crap about someone at Corps Night and that John Shroyer had enough and got up and walked out. Well, John was ordained and recognized as Corps but he never was in residence, and I had always admired him because he was to me always the epitome of a real pastor. A down to earth guy who took care of people, didn't preen and fawn, didn't flaunt and vaunt himself. He had been made to give up his great house in St Mary's that he had for years and sent to Florida, where really good close friends of mine raved about how well he cared for people. I was so glad that someone finally had the balls to stand up to the maniacal narcissist. I phoned John and he told me that Mike Magel, of Premiere Labels and Word in Business reknown, and Frank Connerty, of Prison Outreach had also been on Martindale's smack talking list, and gave me their numbers. It was great because Frank was right there in St. Mary's. Well, as you know, those three guys started a splinter group, the topic of this thread. The group is the Christian Family Fellowship Ministry. But I was there from the very start, and I can tell you at the beginning it did not follow the track that John Lynn, and Vince Finnegan, and Dan Moran, and a lot of these other clowns took. For starters, it wasn't John's idea. He and had Maryann moved back to Ohio. At what point, I don't know- I don't know if they had already been called back when he walked out of the service, because I know that in August of 1996 Bob Moynihan sent out a monthly newsletter in Florida calling John a "Unfaithful Servant" because Gail Winegarner visited us in St. Mary's with his son Fritz and showed it to us. (Gail called Bless Patrol "The Gestapo.") John was working for a water softener company, selling water softener units. To my knowledge, he had always had a job for most of his life, even though he was ordained clergy. Getting back on topic, it was Mike Magel's idea to start a ministry. Premiere Label was the label company he had sold (if memory serves) that he talked about at Word in Business in 1993. When the non-compete was fulfilled, he started another label company, Star Label. He told John that if John wanted to start a ministry, Mike would back him. John said let's just do a fellowship. So, a handful of us started meeting in the lunchroom Star Label every Sunday. We wanted it, there was no hard sell or coaxing. People were hurting because they were getting kicked out and abused left and right. There was a book titled "The Subtle Power of Spiritual Abuse: Recognizing and Escaping Spiritual Manipulation and False Spiritual Authority Within the Church" by Jeff Van Vonderen that John recommended. It really summed up what The Way used to recruit, retain, and abuse followers, and the template is applicable to many types of abusive relationships. Before you knew it, the lunch room was not big enough, a place had to be rented, and people from other states were constantly contacting John. Yes, they made the decision to incorporate, but they also made it flexible, so that if they needed to add or change, they would do it. I was an eyewitness for the first few years, and they definitely kept it real. Of course, my regular involvement predated before all the lurid details of VPW's sexual predation coming out; Kevin and Sarah Guigou first started coming around in late 1997. I was regularly active up until I divorced and left Ohio in February of 1999, when I went to New Jersey and then onto South Africa. After that, I would make it back whenever I was in the states for large scale events or visiting Ohio, getting down to the fellowship center that was built and dedicated in 1998, a modestly sized building. My last visit was in 2006, after a five year absence, and having not seen John for four years since he had visited New Jersey. He passed away a few weeks later. Judging from the website, there seems to be more of an element of rigidity to the group now than there was when he was alive; I remember on the day of the dedication in 1998, him talking about that what was important was how a person lived, and treated other people, and so what if someone believed in the trinity. He said it was okay to believe in the trinity. He used to also make a point of saying it didn't matter if people didn't tithe, that it wasn't a requirement. In 1998 he published a booklet titled "Compassion." something I used to gift people, something no one has ever complained about receiving, regardless of their religion. He also once suggested people read the book "In His Steps" Really, what John posited people do was so opposite of what had been indoctrinated by the Way, and a lot of the splinters. I can honestly say that with him, it was never about the money. PS/Addendum: Hey, Michael Fort, if you ever come here to lurk, I just want you to know that every time I've ever heard Bob Dylan sing "Like A Rolling Stone" for the past 24 years, I thought of you, because I knew your day was going to come. And Oh, By the way, fornicate you.
  5. 2 points
    Genesis 4:20-22 (NASB) 0 Adah gave birth to Jabal; he was the father of those who dwell in tents and have livestock. 21 His brother’s name was Jubal; he was the father of all those who play the lyre and pipe. 22 As for Zillah, she also gave birth to Tubal-cain, the forger of all implements of bronze and iron; and the sister of Tubal-cain was Naamah. ====================================================== -Jabal was "the father of those who dwell in tents and have livestock." -Jubal was "the father of all those who play the lyre and pipe." Let's be sensible. Was this TRYING to say "all nomadic herders everywhere are the direct descendants of Jabal"? Was this TRYING to say "all musicians everywhere are the direct descendants of Jubal?" If so, what about nomadic herders who play the pipe? We know THEY existed (and probably exist to this day.) This was saying that these men were the forerunners of those people, the pioneers of those people who did those things. ====================================================== There's this tap-dance that was introduced to make Jesus' comments supposedly claim that Adam was "the serpent." The alleged reasoning went thusly: "Speaking to the apostate Jews of His day, Jesus said, “Ye serpents…" "Ye are of your father the devil" and that there must have been some sort of genetic basis for saying he was their father. So, the "father" part had to be literally a genetic bloodline and could not be figurative nor symbolic, while the "serpent" part had to be figurative and symbolic and could not be literal. ============================ In both the early chapters of Genesis and elsewhere in the Bible, "father" often is symbolic and not referring to a genetic sire. But this writer seems to have missed that- and without "father" being REQUIRED to be genetic, his entire basis for bringing in the Gospels falls down because it does not support his case (if anything, it undermined his case.) This is not difficult to see, with a plain reading of the text. There is no need for an esoteric or a "mystery" version of the text.
  6. 2 points
    Hello all, This is my first comment after finding these forums a few weeks ago. I was born in 1982 into a family that was part of TWI; my parents were part of a twig group in the Houston area. From what I understand, my family and a big chunk of people in the Houston area broke off and started a splinter group sometime in the mid to late eighties. My mom and stepdad kept most of that info from us, but I remember them warning my sister and I not to answer any questions regarding PFAL materiel if someone came knocking at the door. The day I turned 18 I left and never went back to a fellowship. This caused a great stress between my mother, stepfather, and I and I went nearly a decade without talking to them. Between then and now I have put in work to try to build a relationship with them, but it is a very small slice of my life that I can share with them or that they can share with me without treading into religious waters. Despite that, I felt like I have been on the right track with them showing up for weekly dinners and starting to get to know them a little bit again. That is, until my sister died last month. It was a horrible accident and she was far too young in her mid 30's. I took on the bulk of the funeral planning, as hospitality and events is my profession. It was really difficult to plan because it forced me to negotiate with them about how much their religion would be involved in the service. We decided on a non-secular event hall, which was easy because they would have had an issue going anywhere with any other kind of religion involved. The tough part is that they wanted their reverend to speak for an hour of the 2 hour service. I fought tooth and nail to get it down to 15 minutes, which they agreed to. He spoke for 40 minutes. It was so difficult sitting through his angry sermon, where he was talking about drinking blood, speaking in tounges, and then pitching people taking PFAL classes. WTF. I left so angry. For the first time I started examining how TWI and their offshoot really effected me and the people I love in my life. I grew up feeling extremely emotionally and physically isolated from the outside world, and I am just now (in my late thirties) figuring out how to come to terms with that. I am married and have a good job, but that has taken serious work. I have a hard time really opening up and connecting with people although I yearn for it and work for it daily. My dad was excommunicated after he and my mother divorced (she cheated on him with their TWI marriage counselor). This probably had to do with my dad being gay :P. He hid his sexuality from my sister and I because he knew it meant we wouldn't get to see him. He never missed a child support check even though he was broke and despite constant pressure from my mom/stepdad and TWI pressuring him to cut ties. Once he finally came out, my mom and stepdad really freaked out because they are convinced he has devil spirits. For just under two decades they have had a cool relationship with each other, only talking when it had something to do with my sister or I. During the funeral they were cordial during the planning process, but cool during the funeral. Anyone former TWI or current offshoot would ignore my dad and his partner of 25 years. People who he has known for decades just pretended he wasn't there. After I spoke my heart at the funeral speaking about my sister and her life, I started getting the same treatment. It turns out I offended people by talking about her dad and his partner in the eulogy. That made me feel angry and sad. It also made me feel proud for speaking my mind to a group that didn't want to hear from me. Anyway, I am sorry for the word soup and I hope that I haven't gone way off topic here. I am just looking for information now. I am researching the people who I know are in their group now. I want to figure out what offshoot they are a part of and where all this PFAL money is going, considering it isn't supported by TWI anymore. My parents hold classes and travel regularly to hold and attend retreats. I am dying to know how big the splinter is that they are a part of. I want to learn more and face this. Does anyone know of any major offshoots that have a strong presence in the Houston area? Am I allowed to list names in this group to see if any of you know any of these people? Thank you all. It has been fascinating learning about your experiences.
  7. 2 points
    I entered Nursing School in 1990, and began working as a GN in 1992. I went on to get certified in Wound care/Ostomy (WONC), Nephrology (CNN) and Psychiatric Nursing Pharmacology. I was also an OR RN. Best educational and career decision I ever made!
  8. 2 points
    I was in the Ministry from 75 onward, knew you as the Trunk coordinator, I know that when his sister and brother in law Elaine and Troy Watkins left the ministry around 86 John and she were not talking and that yes, he shiite talked a lot of people and was all hard arse. It was a very hurtful thing to Elaine that her brother treated her that way. Once he walked out on Corps night, he approached his sister and apologized and made up with her, and they were reunited, and she and Troy started attending the CFFM services. I'm not an attendee of theirs, as I said I was there when it started, but it started getting that rah-rah herd mentality and I didn't really get into it. I did see an epiphany in John though, you could see remorse in him for drinking the Kool-Aid. And unlike Lynn, and Finnegan, (who as far back as 2000 was spouting that he could counsel people on how to rid themselves of the spiritual causes of being overweight and PTSD, etc), or Dan Moran, (who I was dragged to his house and it was like being in a 1974 time warp where he collects money and that's how he makes a living), with John starting the ministry wasn't his idea and it wasn't about the money. Like I said, he had a real job. I don't know, he probably had a Rolodex of people to apologize to, really. I'm not rationalizing what he did, it was wrong. I did spend enough casual time with him in real conversations with him though when he was brutally honest about F ups that he regretted to know that he realized that he had bought the farm and had a lot of soul searching to do.
  9. 2 points
    LOL, waysider! Looks like you did! Here’s a modern day example of “language manipulation” for ya! Each year The Washington Post publishes a contest in which readers are asked to supply alternate meanings for various words. Here are some past winners: 1. Coffee (n.), a person who is coughed upon. 2. Flabbergasted (adj.), appalled over how much weight you have gained. 3. Lymph (v.), to walk with a lisp. 4. Gargoyle (n.), an olive-flavored mouthwash. 5. Flatulence (n.), the emergency vehicle that picks you up after you are run over by a steamroller. 6. Balderdash (n.) a rapidly receding hairline. 7. Testicle (n.) a humorous question on an exam. 8. Pokemon (n.), a Jamaican proctologist.
  10. 2 points
    Y'know, on that general topic of what-said-versus-what-real, Penworks put the final stamp on something I'd realized about the earlier years in the Way's growth, the period right before and after 1970... In her book she described her own experiences as an early participant and then Corps member and the very real struggles that she encountered, and in so doing refers to the similar experience of the others around her, many of whom were developing somewhat mythical reputations about what they were doing, they're "believing" and the "results" they got "operating the principles" of the "class".....stories about "classes coming together" and great things happening when they would go out on assignments proliferated when in reality if you were around during those periods what you really heard about was how valuable something was for them - what they'd learned, the great personal healing they'd experienced, how powerful it all was to "see God Working" in their own lives, etc......which may or may not have been fully true and would be perfectly fine as far as that goes but it very clearly got blown up into much larger stories of outreach and growth .....later as these same people rose up through the ranks they continued to be held up as models of success even to the point of using it as a lever to denigrate and step over others they likely considered competition to their own ascendancy and most importantly their elevated reputations. I would say that as the years rolled on it became apparent that most of these earlier "heavies" never exhibited the "signs, miracles and wonders" in what they did nor in how they worked with others - rather they merely got better at workin' the system, the language, the logic of it all. I met and got to know Penworks throughout that period and always found her to be honest, supportive, and very caring in the most human of ways. Her own sense of self awareness and her own struggles allowed her to take the high road so to speak and to NOT take advantage of others in order to get what she wanted or felt she deserved. This was and is an admirable trait but one lacking in many of her peer group at that time, as we saw unfold over the years. She wasn't alone, there were others but there soon came to be a core group of up and coming "leaders" who were grabbing the horns of the corporation and riding it out. Which aren't all that many years - from the period of PFAL 2.0, (their was an earlier homegrown version that was scrapped for being extremely sub standard) the final professionally filmed version that was in the can as of 1967 till VPW's death there's only 17years of time - and that's the time frame when he finally had enough of his ducks in a row that he felt he could promote PFAL on an international level, doing things like going West to reach the "Jesus Movement" of the '60's. Etc etc. My own experience prior to PFAL coming out to Cali was one where I'd seen quite a bit of real change and "the power of God" through faith in Jesus Christ and the teaching of the Bible, in it's simplest forms. PFAL teaching put pieces together for me but not in an altogether new way, in some ways it simply put structure and a way to understand what was actually happening. In other ways it didn't create a whole new horizon or "produce results" where there were none........ So I was used to hearing stories and of great things happening, I was living some of them myself so it was not merely an academic exercise..........so it seemed a little thin hearing about all these great wonderful things from the first and second Way Corps but never - actually - seeing - exactly - what they were talking about, other than a lot of what you'd call "personal growth". And Stuff. Lot's of "oh God taught me" this and that and loads of "I feel so humbled by what I am learning" kind of stuff buuuuuuuut unfortunately it the Way Corps did not become a "program" designed for spiritual awareness, in action. Kinda ironic. The pattern I see looking back is that for many people there was a period of early growth in and around PFAL and if that took form into a more ritualized set of practices through their Way fellowship, the Way Corps or other programmed participation, the risk increased for it to become fosselized and lifeless. Busy, noisy, chaotic, even beautiful and good sometimes but more man made, mechanical effort than "pneumatikos" engerized and moving through faith. It's a fine line and one that some others might not see but to me, it's there and is where I see the broad swathe of humanity and effort that the Way had for those years. It's exactly the environment that produced an LCM, El Presidente, a man focused on methodology and linear thinking who literally could not see the forest for the tree. My point - is NOT that NOTHING was real and it was all BS, but rather that there was a LOT of BS being shoveled ABOUT those early "heavies" some of whom didn't buy into the marketing and others who unfortunately did, for whatever reasons. This is why I'm so ambivalent about trying to "convince anyone" of anything - I believe those "signs, miracles and wonders" DO and DID occur, and they are to be retold and sharing as those involved are guided and God wishes. They're testimonies to His great Presence and Will. It is happening all around us and all the time. Many ask "why not now" or "why is this or that allowed to happen?" and while there's reasons for and causes, in the end I am not the Creator nor Giver of Laws and in many respects - I just don't know. But I'll continue to tell the story I know and love, as long as theres' one to tell. PEACE!
  11. 1 point
    Thank you for the kind words.
  12. 1 point
    Yeah, I'm going there. WTF, I had to listen to how evil it was for twenty years, and then pretty much continued to believe it was unnatural for over another decade plus. I was never antagonistic towards gay men, I undersheparded (oh jeez, TWI lingo) several, just lesbians got on my nerves because a lot of them had such chips on their shoulders. Around the same time I was reading Dr. Bart Ehrman's books and learning that a LOT more of the NT was obfuscated/mistranslated/added to than what TWI taught, making me question so much of what I had accepted as truth which NEVER came true (like the promise in Peter that the chaste conversation of the faithful believing wife winning over the apatheia husband; yeah, right, it doesn't work when he's a bona fide sociopath) I was also learning about Chimerism. I had returned to college and was majoring in Biology for Pre-Med, wanting to be a Physician's Assistant. For those of you who don't know, Chimerism is what happens is when in the uterus, a woman has two fetuses that are developing. At the embryonic stage, one of them will die, and be absorbed by the other. It might be the same sex, it might be the opposite sex. When this happens, the one absorbed has it's own DNA and coding for traits and even the mapping, etc. During the process of gestation, as the remaining fetus grows, it has two distinct sets of DNA, and different organs in the body will have different DNA. This may include reproductive organs. It however also affects paired organs, like eyes. That's why you get a person, or animals with two different colors of eyes- like David Bowie, or a cat. I am totally serious. When I first learned about Chimerism, the first thought that came to my mind was that maybe it is the reason why someone is born with the sexual organs of a man, but is attracted to men instead of women. Some part of his body that produces hormones has the DNA from a female twin, and he is a Chimera. I was discussing it with someone, and he was telling me that a woman he dated had a brother who was found to have a fully formed twin in one of his testicles. (there are other sorts of developmental aberrations that form that are like undeveloped twins called terratomas, you can do an internet search to learn about them.) There was a child custody case where a woman who had given birth to several children was given a DNA test regarding to paternity in conjunction with a support order, and the DNA did not match, so protective services actually removed the children she had proof of giving birth to from her home. It was not until research was done and discovery yielded information about a similar case involving Chimerism that different tissue from her body was tested and matched that her children were returned to her. In addition to being a possible explanation for homosexual attraction, Chimerism could also be an explanation for gender identity that differs from the gender assignment given at birth, and the desire for gender reassignment surgery. Of course I speak strictly from a scientific point of view, for those who are of a scientific mind, it certainly is interesting and makes a compelling argument for nature over nurture. Anyone who believes in the Bible will find it tedious no doubt . Though I will add that David Charles Craley has written a book that shares his latest take on what the meaning of Romans chapter one is regarding homosexuality, and it diverges from his first book "The Hope of Glory (In Search of The Light)" I am attaching a research paper; it's not particularly light reading but it's not ponderous. it's an e-pdf so I think it's a link only save. Dual-gender_macrochimeric_tissue_discordance_is_predicted_to_be_a__significant_cause_of_human_homose(1).pdf
  13. 1 point
    The reviewer thought Charlene was a guy? and I never heard her say she now rejected Christianity, Such stupidity, Dr. Jeff Stone(if that is your real name)
  14. 1 point
    DWBH If anyone can tell a story iy is you.Love hearing of days gone by.Thanks you were in Michigan,you cared and it showed.
  15. 1 point
    Charlie Qui!!€n has his own 501c3 in Illinois. “Faithful In Christ Ministries”. 2-300 followers. He hasn’t been with CFF for 4-5 years. Fell out with them over whether a Christian can talk or pray to Jesus and other differences. He was po’d because he wasn’t installed as the new President after John $hroyer passed away and Wayne C!app resigned after serving as President for 3-4 years? John $hroyer’s daughter in law became president then. Char!ie wasn’t going to follow a woman or anyone else that didn’t hold on to vpee’s doctrine. He’s only after the $$$.
  16. 1 point
    DWBH..........ironic, indeed! THOSE who were the most complicit to this evil and secrets........are STILL the most dedicated to this pseudo-Christian con. Splinter Cults like these........lord over people who claim to "research the bible" but can't find common sense staring them in the face. Ugh.
  17. 1 point
    Penworks..... thanks for that small correction. Charlie must have moved into more behind-the-scenes, administrative work.....because I don't recall him at hq after 1981. I remember those security guys like Doug MacM, John L., Brooks M., and David R......but not Charlie. Anyhoo.... But then.......after nearly 40 years, it's challenging to remember those security guys and bus drivers and body guards and valets and enablers. When the Ambassador One pilot, John Ra-ce, split out........wierwille was ticked off. How dare he quit and go start a new life somewhere else. Same deal with some of those bodyguards.....specifically Jim Cr!m. Now THAT one.....I saw up close and remember quite vividly......
  18. 1 point
    He asked if "the devil" literally appeared as a carnivorous, limbless reptile in The Garden.
  19. 1 point
    Hi, this is Charlene Edge who wrote Undertow. Yes, it is true that I included some information on this topic in my book. For a first-hand account from one of VPW's "girls," I always refer people to Kristen Skedgell's memoir, Losing The Way. Also, other women spoke out in another book, by Karl Kahler, called The Cult that Snapped: A Journey Inside The Way International.
  20. 1 point
    Now, hold on there. If not for Señor Wences, how would we know everything is alright?
  21. 1 point
    DWBH, excellent post!! I remember years ago, all the Bulls--t, we had to go through to see a doctor, while in Way World. I hated that "Third-Aid," nonsense!! Inside of seeing a doctor, people would pray for you. I think praying for others, is wonderful, but sometimes you need to see a doctor, and take medication.
  22. 1 point
    My opening remarks are going to be fairly brief (for me), and address the general framework and mindset differences. For any of a number of reasons, the Book of Genesis was written to be clear and easy-to-be-understood by the people at the time it was penned. If the "creation account" and "the fall" of Genesis 1-3 were written for modern sensibilities, it would have been written (for the same number of reasons) with some highly technical details, it would have been far more exhaustive in detail, and would have proceeded in a far more linear fashion. One common mistake, IMHO, in reading Genesis is in refusing to approach it like it was "meant" to be read, that is, with a literary mindset that matches the text and not 21st century books. (The differences between early 20th century books and now can be dramatic- so the idea that, further back, there's GREATER differences, should not be particularly odd. One additional problem, which this writer didn't make, is when people assume that we invented figures of speech or extended figures of speech. We have no difficulty understanding them when they're used in modern settings, but when it comes to old settings, some people seem to think they didn't exist. Example 1: Christopher Lee sang "The Bloody Verdict of Verden." It dramatizes an incident from Charlemagne's life, where thousands of Saxons were killed at Charlemagne's order. Lee plays Charlemagne in the song. "I shed the Blood of the Saxon men! I shed it at Verden! I shed the Blood of the Saxon men! I shed the Blood of four thousand Saxon men!" Nobody takes him to mean that Charlemagne himself stood there at Verden and slew all 4000 personally. Example 2: We have no difficulty imagining the use of animals to METAPHORICALLY describe people now. "The old sidewinder", "that pig", "you cow", and so on. When we do so, we're comparing some attribute of the person (real or imagined) to the animal's attributes (real or imagined). We have no problem with an extended metaphor comparing one to the other, and understand we're not speaking, say, of a literal fox, or a literal wolf, or whatever. Anyway, I haven't connected any of this to the topic yet, but I plan to, if anyone cares. Peace and love.
  23. 1 point
    A) Thanks in advance for the notice that the site MIGHT go down temporarily. It's good to know in advance. B) I'm glad you're here, and I hope you're feeling better. I can only speak for me, but I'll do my personal best not to be combative or disagreeable. It's your show, and it's fair that you set the standards.
  24. 1 point
    As to homosexuals: there are several "gay friendly" churches in this city, including the principal church of the city. In my volunteer work as a Street Pastor, I have visited (= called by) a well-known gay pub and struck up many conversations with young males. You would not believe the treatment that has been meted out to them by different churches: beatings, cold baths, exorcisms, endless Bible studies, and finally banning. Some of these men know a lot of Bible verses; they've tried hard not to be homosexual but - but they just fancy men. Some even say, "I know it's wrong." This sort of treatment of these men by their churches is shameful and so lacking in compassion that I'm badly embarrassed. My response now is: "I'm glad you've found someone to love." And I've told some, "Did you know God loves you? Really loves you?" For some, it's clear that this is one message they've never heard from their churches.
  25. 1 point
    So is the author saying Satan/Lucifer/Dragon/serpent is really Adam and not a fallen angel?
  26. 1 point
    Without any reference to any specific post OR poster, I'll just belabor the obvious and point out that the GSC exists to tell the other side of the story, and in doing so, help survivors pick themselves up and get on with their lives, and help them get closure. Not all of us disagree on what that requires, but I think some compassion and kindness for survivors isn't a bad idea. (This has been a public service announcement from the Department of Redundancy Department.)
  27. 1 point
    I wasn't sure about my post so I'm glad it was removed. Thank you.
  28. 1 point
    Jennifer Love Hewitt. Selah.
  29. 1 point
    Many of you will be aware of the history that got LCM ejected from TWI, and you may know the names of some of his victims who started lawsuits. I met with J@nu@ry B@rn3s. She told me how LCM had been with her. She told me the whole sordid details of what he did, where; how her marriage broke down and - oh, just so much. I had no idea (how could I have done?) - I was "gobsmacked" with what she said, still am really, filled with revulsion; and it's over ten years since we talked. What she did tell me, though, was that she attended CFFM fellowships and the leaders at CFFM knew some of what had happened (to whom, how, when) and that they spent a lot of time with victims, walking in the grounds, or in other places at CFFM, quietly talking over the abuse (including sexual) of the survivors. Walking, talking, soothing, praying, listening. CFFM certainly wasn't in denial at that time and didn't avoid the topic or tell people to move on. It's not necessary to shout about it from the rooftops at every meeting, so if it wasn't mentioned on one occasion that's no surprise.
  30. 1 point
    ,Hello and welcome, pleroo. First, allow me to offer condolences on the loss of your sister. Kudos for the way you handled the funeral arrangements. As for who has a presence in the Houston area, I'm not knowledgeable of that area at all. I'm fairly certain there are people here who are, though. I can't tell you where the money goes. If they operate anything like TWI did, you can be sure it doesn't go to feed the hungry or clothe the poor. The general rule on names is that it's best, for legal reasons, to semi-redact peoples names in a way that people here will understand who it is but it won't bring up results with an internet search. For example: John Smith becomes something like J*%n Sm!tH. Upper echelon people like VP Wierwille and the like are pretty much fair game, though. Of course, if your reason for stating a name is innocuous, such as looking for an old friend, then that doesn't apply. Someone will probably be around shortly to get you a complimentary cup of coffee and a piece of pie.
  31. 1 point
    Hi Kathy, thanks for the research paper doc. It's an interesting read and well written, will have to digest it. I do think this is a topic that fits into "Open" better than Doctrinal. I've always felt that it's a topic that isn't served well if restricted to religious inquiry although that's part of the discussion, certainly GS. Religious opinion pretty much mangles the topic into a gnarly mass of denial - anything that doesn't seem to fit into the equation is just ignored, denied or considered an attack on the religious position. Many of the world's social issues end up like a pile of dirty laundry with one clean towel on top - they just focus on the clean towel and ignore the dirty ones and pretend there's a pile of clean towels and the dirty ones will be handled in the sweet-by-and-by. Which goes to the basics of life and determining what life is and how best to proceed through it and into the future. One thing striking about Jesus and what He is recorded to have taught is that He addressed two extreme views of life - eternity, God, judgment, righteousness on the one hand and abundant life, a heavenly Father, forgiveness and grace on the other.....one is everything and everyone, the other is personal and individual. "The Word became flesh" indeed - a God who creates universes cares about His creation's individual parts. Jesus taught around and to the basic idea of a male/female partnership, "marriage", and that relationship is used in the New Testament to illustrate the unity of the much larger body of Christ and it's "members in particular"....again, the larger reality being understood in an individual perspective. He also taught that "in the resurrection they neither marry, nor are given in marriage, but are as the angels of God in heaven.".....so reality changes in God's plan as Jesus taught it. Or does it? Hard to say, but we have some pointers. I was born heterosexual, I didn't choose it. I don't choose to stay heterosexual in preferences and I don't think I could, or want to, choose to change that. It's just the way I was born and it appears to the natural way the majority of humans are born - some are born male and they're sexual attraction is towards females, serving procreation. "Be fruitful and multiply". But if I didn't choose, why do I have to say someone else did....? Maybe they did, maybe they do, maybe the biology and physical components produce the conditions that allow for it. That personal awareness makes me think that someone could be born homosexual and then have a natural preference for their own sex. That doesn't serve procreation and if I assumed that all sexual preference was primarily designed to serve procreation it would be a major failure. I don't know that though. Procreation is clearly the intention of our species, it's our future so to speak but breaking it down, that doesn't mean that every single human ever born must and should have more children, be a father or mother. If I say that's the ideal state, is it the only permissible state? What's the purpose of God's creation particularly when there may not be any genders of any kind "in the resurrection", as Jesus taught? These are just thoughts, questions. Jesus taught to forgive, to help, to pray and to have faith towards God, as both their Creator and their Father. Can everyone do that? Can anyone accept His act of grace and be "born again" - and if so what is the effect on their human sexuality? When I see people acting out "gay" lifestyles in seemingly outrageous and shocking ways, that's behavior. What does it represent? Every gay person doesn't wear pink tights and dance around the streets in chains. I have no desire to see or participate. But it's behavior, not sexuality - behavior that one chooses to reflect or manifest their sexuality in a way they....choose. Anyhoo....PEACE!!!
  32. 1 point
    It's special TWI language (as sought by the topic of this thread) meaning, "unzip your pants and screw every female in sight." From the English, "loosen up" your moral values. From the Greek, "luo," to act like an out-of-control dog.
  33. 1 point
    Regarding the Queen of The Way Bookstore- I am so, so, so, so, so, so, evil------------
  34. 1 point
    spam? That's an interesting one. I had made a modesty lengthy post that vanished. Let's just say for now I forgot to enter the post, though I am awfuly sure I did. No, I became involved in TWI in 1975, entered the 8th corps, and my sexual assault happened in 1979. I just fully recalled it in the fall of 2017, though I began to remember it as a "minor event" around the time Kristen Skedgell published he book and when, for a couple years, I was by far the most prolific poster on her blog, "Thriving Reality"' A bit later Kristen moved beyond talking about her Way time publicly, but I came across a wonderful non-Way non-cult person who took her place as my best survivor friend,.In the last year and a half I have acquired plenty of recovery resources so I'm not appealing to anyone to take their place. In fact, my recovery resources are intentionally non-Way, because I see little compassion for the hurting among those who promote and/or teach the "love of God" the same "way" as was done in The Way. That includes the "splinter" groups; do any acknowledge Wierwille's misdeeds without passing them off as irrelevant to them?
  35. 1 point
    I just found this in my email spam folder. If you were talking about me I am no longer involved with CFFM and have not been to their fellowship center since 2006 as I stated. However if you're currently being sexually abused I would definitely encourage you to report it to the police if it's appropriate.
  36. 1 point
    If there's a moderator who can move it, then I have no objection. In retrospect doctrine did not even blip on my mental radar because being agnostic/borderline atheist, science is the basis for my thinking so I don't take doctrine into consideration unless I am comparing doctrinal views within a particular religion; i.e., Satmar Judaism vs Chabad Judaism, etc. Like you though, I don't believe that devil spirits are the cause of the aforementioned maladies and don't believe in their existence either, but believe them to be a fabrication that are a convenient machination used for the purpose of manipulating and controlling people through fear. Hey! We can be a tag team!
  37. 1 point
    As I've said before, it took me over 15 years to come to this site and then join and post, and I only pop in sporadically and then post in spurts. The same goes for the R&R Facebook group: I had asked to join two years ago and had made candid remarks in one of the original posts and left it. The good thing to come of it was that Lewellyn Hallett friended me on FB. Prompted by remarks I read here yesterday, and remembering what a total smarmy gratuitous kiss up Michael Fort is, I decided to take a peek today. Sure enough, a Way-style sanitizing has been done of all the comments there. Comments have been disabled retroactively for two plus years, deleted except for those that reinforce the desired narrative, and as stated here, everyone just echoes the rhetoric of TWI from the past 52 plus years. Skimming through the intact remarks, I thought that it's a shame it's a closed group. A link could be posted at a poison control emergency site when inducing vomiting is appropriate, because reading those remarks would certainly do the trick. The only detraction is that bulimics would find it accessible. How willfully and deliberately F-ing stupid can people be? I left the group today. I don't care that they have 896 members now and maybe someone I really liked and cared about might be among them, I'm not going to go through the members list. "Oh I used to be disgusted, and now I try to be amused..." Elvis Costello The Angels Want To Wear My Red Shoes
  38. 1 point
    It all makes sense now.
  39. 1 point
    I have a lo shanta remark- In 1983, my local twig coordinator wrote out a birthday card for me from him and his wife Patty, and this is what it said- Love you now, love you later, love you like a lo shonta potato. LOLOLOL! I found out later that summer at the Rock that he had been blowing weed on the sly.
  40. 1 point
    From the story linked in my previous comment: However much they might dislike Scientology, its jargon is their native tongue. Some even say it’s a relief to talk without code-switching, or worrying that they’re talking gibberish. There’s a reason why the language is so central to the belief system, and so hard to shake. According to psychiatrist and thought-reform expert Robert Jay Lifton, new lexicons are common in cults — and often essential. He calls the practice “loading the language,” and includes it as one of eight core features of high-demand groups. When the group breaks to smoke, I ask Shelton for a second opinion. Forget the question of emotional repression for a second. If there are words for these feelings already, why not use them? “It makes us feel special and unique,” he jokes. “If we used regular English words, then anyone could do this!” But he agrees with Lifton’s idea of cult idioms as thought-terminating cliches. “It gets people thinking in the cult leader’s system,” he says. “It literally makes it harder to think outside the box.” Dr. Matthews agrees, pointing out that many high-demand groups have jargon around emotional repression. Some fundamentalist Christian cults use the phrase “keep sweet,” she says, meaning “stop whining, stop complaining.” She adds, “Jargon like that rewires the brain.”
  41. 1 point
    That's the con that "organized" religion continues to play. We fell for it. Among the billions who have done so through the years.
  42. 1 point
    Yeah, Skyrider.... splinters are oftentimes worse than the original disease from which they metastasized! Look at “Rev” Charlie Quillen’s “Faithful In Christ Ministries” out of Chicago, IL & hooked in tight with CFFM, SOWERS, Wrenn, Reahard and all the other pathetic wierwilleites running around the fringiest fringes of the Alt-Right Aryan “Christian” Dominionist groups flooding the evangelical fundamentalist persecuted hordes of the faithful! They provide shelter and cover for each other, doing their best to sweep away all the blood tracks dripping back to Wierwille, The Way, and and all the spiritual and sexual abuse that they participated in and/or enabled! Quillen (along with MacMullan) was the wannabe Heinrich Himmler of the wierwille/martindale reich....Head Of The Gestapo and SS. We’ve had tons of stories here at the GSC through the years, involving the creepy stares and eerie presence of the “bless patrol chief’s” security for the MOGs of TWI. Standing guard at the door of the motor coach as the abused victims marched in and out under the watchful stare of “Rev” Quillen and “Rev” Geer, game OF Thrones 1970s cornfield cult style! LOL! Well, now “Rev” Charlie has a pretty decent sized Wierwille-cult in IL now and has all sorts of “related pages” and “ministries” he sponsors, like “The Solution Radio Show: Jesus Christ Is God’s Solution” which is advertised all over Charlie’s pages. Greg Backes runs the joint and hooks up with old TWIt broadcast refugees like Mike Verdicchio, the voice of Sprits In The Althlete, who also does some jeeezus show on some radio station out west somewhere. CFFM, and SOWERS are heavily promoted as is Sparrow Cartoons, a “Christian” cartoon publishing company owned and operated by none other then one of Charlie’s most loyal Blesstapo Patrol henchman, and Heinrich Himmler to convicted rapist and cult leader, and fellow corpse bruddah, Victor Barnard! Frontczak has 476 likes and followers on his page now! Taking care of each other is now their job, instead of taking care of the wierwille family. Well......same thing really, since the only wierwille’s still living are all active in CFFM, SOWERS, or John Hagee Ministries......and these ex-wayfer cults are all intermarried with each other! So, I agree, Skyrider. The splinters are worse in the sense that they have brewed and distilled wierwillean doctrinal and psychosocial perversion down into a slick, state-of-the-art megachurch con, as good and as far removed from what’s left of TWIt in New Knoxville and Gunnison. Makes it easier to “forgive” your old pals and overlook their current associations and alliances with cult-buddies and grifters from their glory daze in TWIt, boozin’ and sexin’ it up in the name of jeeezus and da holy spurt! Worse than hypocrites......cowardly, shameful enablers. Worse indeed, Skyrider. Worse indeed.
  43. 1 point
    Without going into too much detail, Satan is the Biblical enemy. And what does he represent? Evil? Lies? Sure. But what else? Questions. What was Eve's first mistake? Questions. Considering a view other than the one dictated to her. Curiosity is the enemy of religion. Resistance is the enemy of nationalism. Defiance is the enemy of the slaveholder. To be clear: I do not worship Satan. He is as imaginary as the God who put the tree of knowledge in the same garden as the man and woman whose consumption of its fruit would lead to eons of unnecessary suffering. Satan is religion's way of telling the skeptical theirs are not questions but unholy influences. I worship neither your imaginary friend nor your imaginary enemy.
  44. 1 point
    This thread is rapidly becoming one of my favorite! Wonderfully heartfelt, HONEST, and well-articulated firsthand experience, personal courage, and transparency for all to respect and enjoy. Thank you all. Keep it going!
  45. 1 point
    I'm going to add a few cents of my own. Leah, you said earlier (at least I think it was you) that you were agnostic, except when you are angry. Then you're atheist. I'm going to suggest to you that you are neither. I speak as an atheist. If you are angry at God, then you believe in Him. And that's okay. You have questions. You are not satisfied with the answers you have received. You are entitled to those emotions. But atheism is not an angry position. It's letting go of anger. You can only be angry at God if you believe in Him. I am not angry at God. I am disappointed in certain people (not all) who claim to speak in his name. People who hate and concoct a God who magically hates the same people they do. You know the type. (That was funny). I guess what I am saying is, don;t lose faith out of anger. There are plenty of reasons to be atheist. Anger is not one of them. If you decide, out of calm reflection, that you do not believe in God, and you have questions about what to do next, talk to me. I've been through it. But if you are angry with Him, then atheism is not going to help you. Plenty of people here will be happy to help out, and you have people in real life. Best wishes. And by the way, I have no bad memories of your dad. The worst I've heard of him comes from credible witnesses. And I was not impressed with his performance at the 1989 Rock. But I was still grateful, many times, for when he tried to teach positive messages from the Bible. Helped me through some pretty tough times. Not trying to defend him, but wanted you to know that along with all you've heard from GSC, our collective impression of him is just a bit more nuanced than that.
  46. 1 point
    Leah - welcome (again). You are brave to announce yourself here. Nobody holds anything against you or your siblings; you've all always been strictly off limits. In some respects you are "nobody special" here - we all escaped with greater or lesser damage. In other respects, you are "very special," because you really have been in the heart of the madness, and thus probably have much more to overcome. I hope there are some good times that you can recall with your Mom and Dad - though I don't doubt that there were hard times too. I recall your dad used to love to display your flute-playing ability at concerts and events. Do you and your children see either of your parents? Penworks can help you a lot, and can point you to a lot of material that might be balm to your soul (and your husband's). The book "The Subtle Power of Spiritual Abuse" was like lifting the lid of TWI for me - I was in residence early 90s right after the "fog years," when things were tightening up - and I think things got worse after that. I thought the authors might have been TWI-escapees, but there isn't any connection at all. Learn to like yourself. To love yourself. Welcome to becoming YOU!
  47. 1 point
    A message that has been said more than once and will likely be necessary again sometime. For the record, I have a belief system, but I don't need to label it... other than Deist. I still tell people IRL that I'm Christian, but I'm not really dogmatic in that regard. I do, however, zealously cleave to knowledge and understanding I have gained, especially as a result of experience (i.e. school of VERY hard knocks in some instances) and an attitude and desire for lifelong learning. I mention this now because a new member mentioned sometimes believing she's atheist and at other times agnostic. As far as I'm concerned, that's perfectly fine. Also, some people may wonder about why us old-timers still frequent GSC. Well, unless we were born in a twi family, we were drawn to twi in large part because it gave us a sense of belonging... for whatever reason. Well, setting aside how much I think I know about anything, I enjoy drawing insights into group behaviors (aka psychoanalyzing the groups). And that has opened doors for me other than regarding twi. That's basically how and why I started getting published in local newspaper editorial pages more than 25 years ago. Not that my insights are always "the" right ones, but that they have at least some legitimacy. Anyway, I got sidetracked (tangents, eh?). My main point in the previous paragraph is that I feel a strong sense of belonging to and with people at GSC. To Leah, I would say now that I think there's probably a great deal that you have going on that you don't struggle with. But I'm glad you are able to recognize the opportunity and need for working on or dealing with those things about which you do struggle now. I can only imagine the intensity of the psychic damage from having grown up in the situation you did. Many of us know how intense your father is or at least was. In addition to what I said last night, I want to emphasize the deep admiration I have for YOU and the course you have been choosing and are now on. I hope you're able to make music out of the rocks in the creek over which the water of your life is now passing. And can dance (now or eventually) to that music.
  48. 1 point
    Hi Volchic! Welcome to the Spot! And, thank for sharing some of your story. I agree with you, that “working out” some of the confusing and cognitively dissonant experiences in your years with TWIt is important. The old adage, “If we do not learn from history, we are doomed to repeat it.”, aptly applies here. I think as time goes by, and you take your time here to gather info, make new acquaintances, and, most importantly, continue to dialogue with the other members here about your experiences, thoughts, emotions, and psychosocial interactions during your time in TWIt, in order to effectively sort through “the good, the bad, and the ugly” of your TWIt year, will be an important beginning in your full understanding of what TWIt was, and how it affected you. Doing so will relieve any anxiety, embarrassment, guilt, or shame, which may accompany your self-reflection and your journey of self-identity. At the very least, I think GSC will provide a great launching point for your objective inquiry into the whys and whats of your involvement with a destructive, fundamentalist “Christian” cult. The very first step is overcoming that twinge of discomfort that often hits when confronting the denial which usually comes with the realization that the words, “The Way” and “a religious cult” are synonymous. I’m sure you will find the compassionate support and understanding so freely offered here among those of us who have made and are making the same journey you are. I bid you Godspeed in your exciting, self-determined new journey!
  49. 1 point
    Nice post, I knew Joann, she was WOW in Lynchburg, VA..
  50. 1 point
    I also heard Maggie and Henry were shacking up, but the real kicker is they got M&A'd because they didn't "believe" hard enough for red drapes. Laughter is a tranquilizer with no side effects.

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