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Bolshevik

how many exoduses were there?

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there's the fog @86-87

lcm dethroned @2000

okay that's two, were there others? Was there a big one in 82-83? or in the 70s?

Edited by Bolshevik

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I believe there was a mass exit in the 60's of folks who were with Wierwille from his church days.

I believe that the exodus in the late 80's was by far the most dramatic.

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About the possibility of an 82-83 exodus..

That was when we left but we left for personal reasons, but there were some folks leaving then...Not anything like what happened later but still.

There was a real push against gays in 82 so i would suspect a leaving of many of them once that started

Also at ROA 82 Mark and Avoid though it wasn't called that seemed to have been started.( I say this becasue it was when I started to see it happening to people... you were told they were devilish and to avoid them)

For a bit of clarity for anyone who wasn't around then or maybe it was where I was out west.. Prior to 82 there was a lot of homosexuality is not right teaching... but with it was an attitude that homosexuality could be healed...but and I do not remember what promopted it maybe because Martindale was gaining more power but all of a sudden if you were Gay you were evil and there was no way you could be healed.

Another thing that was going on was that starting in 81 maybe sooner back east but where I was out west in 81 the whole Devil Spirits are everywhere teaching was starting to come out... you know the teaching they are in paintings and artwork (It came out in one of the teaching tapes).... I found it offensive to my own intelligence but I imagine after we left that got touted even more. I can not believe Hubby and I were the only ones who questioned that teaching.

I think personally there was a trickling away going on by then... maybe not the departure of the other three exoduses, but then I am looking back on it.. with no personal knowledge of what happened after we left.

Edited by leafytwiglet

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I don't recall an exodus in '82-'83. Then again, I was in residence Corps and not exactly in touch with what was going on out in "the field". I do recall that LCM decided that it was Biblical to start naming names of those who were causing division and to avoid them. Like the "shun list" when you were in middle school. At that same time LCM stepped up his anti-homosexual rhetoric. Remember when he had an album released by Tom B^rke, "Mama's Don't Your Babies Grow Up to Be Homos"? A parody of a song by Willie Nelson and Waylon Jennings. That came out around that same time.

But even prior to that, the line was that homosexuality was the "next worst thing to be born of the Devil's Seed." Whatever that means. At least that's what I heard in my cirlces. LCM just took that to a higher level saying things to the Corps like, "We're going to find you out! Blah, blah blah".

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I believe there was a mass exit in the 60's of folks who were with Wierwille from his church days.

I believe that the exodus in the late 80's was by far the most dramatic.

I've never seen any evidence of a "MASS exit" in the 60s. The people who were around

victor paul wierwille from the 50s and 60s were not around in 1968. That doesn't mean there

was a "MASS exit". I think it means he had retention problems for both decades, and it

took the combination of the plagiarized works he plagiarized in the 50s, plus the

hijacking of the hippies in the end of the 60s (part of the Jesus People movement)

to change that. I think he was polishing his act until then, and he finally had an audience

of dupes/pigeons to try it on at that point. Before that, people drifted off here and there

all the time. It's as much a supposition as saying they all left at once, but there's no

evidence there was any incident that would CAUSE everyone to leave at once, and people

trickle out of groups all the time without a special reason. So, I think it's more likely

there was no "MASS exit", just a slow trickle of all the people until the late 60s.

(I invoke Ockham's Razor.)

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As I understand it, there were always people arriving and leaving.

In terms of MASS exits, the first one I'm aware of was shortly after victor paul wierwille's

death. That was when chris geer wrote his "Passing of the Patriarch" paper which accused

the twi leadership of killing vpw, and gave vague accusations of being "off the Word."

(It was written from cg's perspective that vpw was like unto the writers of the New Testament.)

http://www.greasespotcafe.com/main2/waydale/waydale-miscellaneous/passing-of-the-patriarch.html

Not long after this, there were several reasons different people exited.

Ralph D was one of the people who had been approached by women abused by twi top staffers,

and he was unable to get any satisfactory answer to it, or any answers other than

"Sssshh!" "You question us? You must be possessed!" and "You are now being thrown off

grounds. We're posting a guard until you leave."

He was one person at the top who questioned things after vpw died. Some questioned (like Ralph)

because uncomfortable truths were coming to light. Others questioned because they didn't think

l craig martindale had the brains to blow his own nose, let alone run what they thought was

God's Ministry. Others had their own reasons (some speculation has included they wanted to

have been in charge, so they went off to form their own ministries based on their preferred

parts of twi.)

Anyway, so sometime in 1985-1986, there was the first big exodus. It was so big that it was

noticed by external media. Those of you so inclined can do a little research (I did once),

and go to the Reader's Guide to Periodical Literature, and find the article in Christianity

Today called "Infighting trims branches at the Way International." It's about 1 page, and

was about this split. This in turn led to "the fog years", when even lcm admits he wandered

about as if in a fog.

In 1988/1989, lcm came out of his fog, and demanded an oath of loyalty to himself PERSONALLY.

(Not to "God", not to "God's Word", not even to "The Ministry", but to HIMSELF.)

One person who knew him phoned him personally to confirm this was what was meant.

"When I asked if this letter was a call to blindly follow him he said I had been doing this all along.

I then told him if that's what he thinks he could 'kiss my @$$'.

I think I was dropped from the rolls of the Way Corps that next morning."

That prompted the biggest mass exit in twi history. 80% of the rank-and-file were all gone,

including 80% of the leadership, and virtually the entire research department including

its head, Walter Cummins.

After that, twi began the process of hemorrhaging members, which lasted until around 1999,

when lcm was finally exposed in legal documents as a criminal and a pervert

(vpw was never caught legally during his lifetime, he was a criminal and a pervert

who was not caught.),

there was another exodus from twi. It couldn't be as big as the 1989 one, because so many

fewer people were still IN twi. Still, percentage-wise, they lost a sizeable chunk.

After that, twi went back to hemorrhaging members again, to the point that their current

membership numbers overall (including minors) must be about 3000 (if not less.)

So that's the major Exoduses. (Exodi? Exodia?)

A) 1985-1986, "infighting trims branches" as some top leaders leave or are kicked out

B) 1988-1989 lcm's "line in the sand", 80% leave as lcm demands blind loyalty to himself

C) 1998-1999 lcm's ousted by lawsuit and lawyers, followers are fed up and leave

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I believe there was a mass exit in the 60's of folks who were with Wierwille from his church days.

I believe that the exodus in the late 80's was by far the most dramatic.

oakspear.....yes, there was a "mass exodus" in 1961,1962.

When wierwille was pivoting on his decision to move away from Van Wert, there was a core of followers near Piqua, Ohio that wanted The Way, Inc. to headquarter their operation near them. From what I remember of this twi history, wierwille felt pressured by their demands, because of their loyalty. For wierwille to even deliberate over this.......there must have been a decent amount of support (25-30%..??).

With brother Harry's support to fix up the ole wierwille home, vpw made the decision to move his operation to the wierwille homestead in February 1962. Local support came from Mrs. W's sister, Dee F. and lots of others.......but the Piqua followers felt snubbed and faded away.

All things relative, this situation was fairly dramatic because wierwille retold this account to inresidence corps through the years.

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oakspear.....yes, there was a "mass exodus" in 1961,1962.

When wierwille was pivoting on his decision to move away from Van Wert, there was a core of followers near Piqua, Ohio that wanted The Way, Inc. to headquarter their operation near them. From what I remember of this twi history, wierwille felt pressured by their demands, because of their loyalty. For wierwille to even deliberate over this.......there must have been a decent amount of support (25-30%..??).

With brother Harry's support to fix up the ole wierwille home, vpw made the decision to move his operation to the wierwille homestead in February 1962. Local support came from Mrs. W's sister, Dee F. and lots of others.......but the Piqua followers felt snubbed and faded away.

All things relative, this situation was fairly dramatic because wierwille retold this account to inresidence corps through the years.

I remember this account. VP told us about all this during our in-rez 1971-73. In our Corps there was one daughter of a Piqua couple who no longer stood with VP, but she had latched onto the ministry herself, having heard the PFAL tapes growing up. Somehow she got convinced she should go in the Corps after she finished college and she did... she's still in TWI today.

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. . .

A) 1985-1986, "infighting trims branches" as some top leaders leave or are kicked out

B) 1988-1989 lcm's "line in the sand", 80% leave as lcm demands blind loyalty to himself

. . .

This I didn't know, a doublet. I remember those years, lot of stick and spurt talk. My folks (current innies) don't remember anything different about that time. They'll even brag about it.

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And don't forget, there were local examples of exodus, as well.

One such example took place in Cleveland in the fall of 1972. Cleveland had grown to become a rather large, active area. There were two large branches with a couple hundred followers combined. That did not include children. We were, for the most part, young, single people. In fact, the only children I recall were Christian Cloud Abraham, Linda Z.'s son and Jim and Jackie G.'s 2 young kids. There may have been a handful of others. We ran lots and lots of PFAL classes, sometimes 2 at a time.

But, when Bill McNnlty left, the whole thing came close to falling totally apart. Lots of people left. The 2 branch leaders who took over the reigns salvaged what was left and rebuilt it again, thus insuring their acceptance as "corps worthy" laborers.

I am inclined to think this scenario was played out in other areas of the country, as well.

Edited by waysider

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I remember this account. VP told us about all this during our in-rez 1971-73. In our Corps there was one daughter of a Piqua couple who no longer stood with VP, but she had latched onto the ministry herself, having heard the PFAL tapes growing up. Somehow she got convinced she should go in the Corps after she finished college and she did... she's still in TWI today.

penworks.....Mrs. Wierwille's book, Born Again to Serve gives a snippet of Piqua, Ohio just prior to their move from Van Wert to the wierwille homestead in 1961.

In November, Dr. Wierwille also taught an Advanced Class in Troy, Ohio. The New Year's Retreat on January 1 to 3, 1961 was again held at Mote Park Recreation Center, Piqua, Ohio, with David du Plessis as our guest. Having just returned from a meeting of Pentecostals in Geneva, Switzerland, Brother du Plessis could give accounts of the mighty moving of God's spirit worldwide.

With the Advanced Class taught in Troy, Ohio and New Year's Retreat again in Piqua, Ohio.....there definitely was growing support and loyalty in this area.

But clearly.......for wierwille, some 10-15 years laters, to share the "Piqua/Troy exodus" to several inresidence corps groups, must have been quite dramatic at the time.

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. . .

A) 1985-1986, "infighting trims branches" as some top leaders leave or are kicked out

B) 1988-1989 lcm's "line in the sand", 80% leave as lcm demands blind loyalty to himself

. . .

This I didn't know, a doublet. I remember those years, lot of stick and spurt talk. My folks (current innies) don't remember anything different about that time. They'll even brag about it.

Funny... I lived through all that and somehow I had lumped those two situations into one in my head. But he's right, there were two separate "exodus" events... one right after POP was read and one a few years later when several people who had stood by HQ after POP decided it was time to leave.

Some had stayed because they hoped twi would right itself, But Martindale's "line in the sand" letter showed them it wouldn't. And others had stayed because they hoped to see Martindale fall, and thought they might grab some glory and a following for themselves, but Martindale's letter made it clear that he was solidly back on his throne so they left.

That letter was the beginning of a long list of "purges" that followed through the 90's... the loyalty purge, the homo purge, the debt purge, the full-time corps purge... and each one of those brought about an 'exodus' of sorts... some people being pushed out, and others leaving in disgust.

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Then there was the Oakspear Family exodus: my oldest son left, I was kicked out and my ex-wife and older kids sort of stopped going and the rest of the kids were glad they weren't being made to go. :evilshades:

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Worth mentioning was the infamous "clergy meeting" in 86 or was it 87?...This meeting was the turning point for many...it was for me.

As I recall, the clergy in my area announced that they were going to "get to the bottom" of all the controversy that was going on...they headed off for the clergy meeting with fire in their eyes and an angry attitude...they returned like sissy boys that had been bit *h slapped

...but not all of them...there were a few brave souls who still thought for themselves and walked out of that meeting. Isn't that right Rumrunner?

After this meeting, entire limbs left at once...and a whole lot of abs money too.

Edited by GrouchoMarxJr

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Funny... I lived through all that and somehow I had lumped those two situations into one in my head. But he's right, there were two separate "exodus" events... one right after POP was read and one a few years later when several people who had stood by HQ after POP decided it was time to leave.

Geer read his "patriarch" paper to the inresidence corps in Mar/Apr of 1986......then, in August 1986 he read it before the corps present at Corps Week.

Some dissent arose immediately.................August 1986

Clergy Meeting with Geer, more exit............November 1986

Lynn and others travel country, more exits.....1987

More and more splinter groups pop up...........1988

Martindale writes letter, "line in sand"........Feb/Mar 1989

IMO......this is ONE exodus on a national scale than encompasses many factors and elements of dissent. Otherwise, one could easily make the argument that this exodus be categorized in multiple ways for multiple reasons.

Edited by skyrider

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Funny... I lived through all that and somehow I had lumped those two situations into one in my head.

Me too. I think it's because the '89 purge dwarfed them all...at least in my tenure. April '89 LCM sent out the "Who do you stand with" letter. Personally I think he planned the whole thing right after POP was read. LCM began coordinating the Corps in '86 when the paper was read. In 1989 when his letter was sent, that Corps was graduating. They had pretty much been under his thumb for the past 3 years. The only people that were left were those he knew he could trust. So when people either quit or were dismissed he could replace them with his own indoctrinated people. I dunno...just a thought. Maybe he wasn't really smart enough to think all that through.

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The Exodi (I like Exodi best) were, no doubt causes for concern. I'll bet LCM fumed when so many people left. I mean him kicking people out was one thing eh? But how DARE all those othe people leave?!!!! >>> or was Martindale so stunned that others flocked away - not understanding? <<< Eventually though, ike a lost little boy, I'll bet he fumed at all those "Traitors" I would have loved to have been a fly on the wall that day.

And I'm going to do some speculation - being a student of Human Nature and of people with some wealth and power in the secular world. That:

RR and even Donna might have been JUST as concerned about his ineptitude in shooing away their "cash cows" (get along little doggies) as they were about his sexual peccadillos. But yanno since he was all MOGgie and all, they had to be careful about how they did this. Why they might even wait till someone else SOUNDED THE TRUMPET and then go - well golly gee, we didn't know ALL of that --- well maybe we suspected som, but gosh,... golly............ >innocent winks<

So the Exodi were devastating financial impacts on TWI's ADMIN but it would have been the CONTINUAL slow bleeding of cash cows that irritated the most, and LCM's M&A policy was contributing to their own financial bloodletting. If your initials were RR of DM you might wonder how this could impact on your shopping trips?

If you were A SOLID BELIEVER that had always nodded yes - this bloodletting HAD to disturb you!

...just sayin'

So it comes as no surprise to me that RR is more of an Admin leader (financial guard dog) now than a MOG (WOG?) >snicker< ...I mean,... you GOT's to have your priorities!!!

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Me too. I think it's because the '89 purge dwarfed them all...at least in my tenure. April '89 LCM sent out the "Who do you stand with" letter. Personally I think he planned the whole thing right after POP was read. LCM began coordinating the Corps in '86 when the paper was read. In 1989 when his letter was sent, that Corps was graduating. They had pretty much been under his thumb for the past 3 years. The only people that were left were those he knew he could trust. So when people either quit or were dismissed he could replace them with his own indoctrinated people. I dunno...just a thought. Maybe he wasn't really smart enough to think all that through.

Oh... I don't know about that... seems like the 86-87 exodus was greater... I went in-rez in '87 and we spent the whole time VERY aware of the sudden decrease in income over losing a big chunch of the clergy and whoever they could get to leave with them.

Maybe Skyrider is right... for clarity's sake it would be better to group the whole time-frame of 1986-1989 as one big, mass exodus from start to finish.

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. . . I'll bet he fumed at all those "Traitors" I would have loved to have been a fly on the wall that day.

. . .

You should go pick his brain (a needle will do) . . . and report back.

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Geer read his "patriarch" paper to the inresidence corps in Mar/Apr of 1986......then, in August 1986 he read it before the corps present at Corps Week.

Some dissent arose immediately.................August 1986

Clergy Meeting with Geer, more exit............November 1986

Lynn and others travel country, more exits.....1987

More and more splinter groups pop up...........1988

Martindale writes letter, "line in sand"........Feb/Mar 1989

IMO......this is ONE exodus on a national scale than encompasses many factors and elements of dissent. Otherwise, one could easily make the argument that this exodus be categorized in multiple ways for multiple reasons.

Thanks for the timeline, Skyrider. I was in residence as a member of the 16th Corps at Camp Gunnison when Geer read The Passing of a Patriarch to the Corps on Corps night. That was just a few days before the end of the block, when I dropped out of the Corps because my Pop had a stroke and my Mom went into the hospital for surgery on the same day. I had to go home to Indiana to help take care of them. It was easy for me to get over to HQ and to schmooze with my 16th Corps buds who were quartered there, and other old friends, so I got a little glimpse of what was going on.

In The Passing of a Patriarch, Geer never breathed a word about the rampant adultery. I think he kept it as a card up his sleeve to blackmail the Trustees into giving him the things he wanted. I think that is the reason they were so obsequious to him.

I was stunned by the lack of effective leadership from the spring of '86 to the spring of '89. That was when I realized that Wierwille had NEVER trained anybody to lead. He had surrounded himself with flattering yes-men who couldn't find their own ways out of a paper bag, much less lead others.

In the spring of '87 the twig coordinators in our branch found out that Martindale had propositioned a girl who had gone into the Corps from our branch, and we began trying to get some kind of accountability. Shortly thereafter, our Area Coordinator came to town and excommunicated our entire branch. The "mark and avoid" language hadn't developed that far yet.

I don't think the events between '86 and '89 could properly be characterized as a "mass" exodus. Many, many people left or were kicked out as truth filtered out, or as people lost confidence in the Trustees. But I think most of these disassociations were relatively small and for local reasons. I think the Way Corps' response to Martindale's letter requiring personal fealty was the first thing that we might recognize as a mass exodus.

Love,

Steve

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...Personally I think he planned the whole thing right after POP was read... Maybe he wasn't really smart enough to think all that through.

I don't think he was planning anything after POP was read. I thing Geer had him on the ropes. All LCM could do was react, and he didn't do a very good job at that. LCM called them the "Fog Years" because that was his state of mind.

Love,

Steve

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In The Passing of a Patriarch, Geer never breathed a word about the rampant adultery. I think he kept it as a card up his sleeve to blackmail the Trustees into giving him the things he wanted

or maybe because he was up to his eyeballs in the same reprehensible behavior..

kinda like "honor" among abusive thugs or something like that..

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Actually, wasn't Geer one of the ones responsible (or THE ONE responsible) for John Shoen...'s getting booted for his paper on adultery?

George

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In The Passing of a Patriarch, Geer never breathed a word about the rampant adultery. I think he kept it as a card up his sleeve to blackmail the Trustees into giving him the things he wanted. I think that is the reason they were so obsequious to him.

If you dig around here a little bit and read women's accounts of their sexual abuse at the hands of VPW and put the timelines together I think that a logical conclusion is that Geer at least facilitated much of that while he was VPW's coach driver if not participated himself. Think about it - someone drugged some of the girls' drinks by their accounts while they were with VP.

Geer did all of this to ingratiate himself into VP's inner circle, which led to power. At that point this type of behavior was a doctrine among that circle. Everyone there practiced it or expected it and looked past it. There's no blackmail for behavior people don't consider wrong.

It is no wonder with that kind of rabid immorality functioning in those inner circles that the whole facade would come crumbling down at some point, and devolve into power-grabbing battles of ego.

What many started to wake up to at different points in time was the sickness that was at the very center. It has hidden itself from time to time and there are whitewashing lies over "a kinder, gentler Way International". And yet the sickness is still at the core, because the people in power are still there at the core.

There are many exoduses from The Way International, not just the mass exoduses recorded here. They are always preceded by the uncovering of the truth of how the inner circles of leadership function, as opposed to they two-faced hypocrisy they expose to the public.

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