Baptist Taliban: Part 3

by Cindy FosterTHE CHURCH WE WEREThe Preacher and his wife graduated from Baptist Bible College in Springfield, Missouri. At the time he attended there, the college was quite conservative. There were strict rules about dress, dating, curfews, entertainment, music and much more.The Preacher actually grew up in Springfield and was a member of a church that was not nearly as rigid in its standards as the college was, so in the beginning of his ministry as pastor, he did not have the extreme beliefs that he eventually embraced later in his ministry.It was several years after the church had started and was established with its own building that the more relaxed climate began … [Read more...]

Millipede: Part 8

by MillipedeThe next couple of years were what I would call the "golden years" of Patriarchy. By this I mean that we were living the Patriarchal dream, with the husband "leading" and providing and the wife keeping the home and being submissive. It was the apex of our journey; we were finally living the lifestyle.As i wrote earlier it was during this time that I experienced the joys of having the time to pursue varied interests. My husband drove overland the first year or so and then the latter part, he had a regional route. This meant that he was gone for weeks at a time when he was going across country. Later, with a regional route, he was home every weekend. In retrospect, I think … [Read more...]

Baptist Taliban Part 1 – Introduction

by Cindy FosterEditors note: Please welcome Baptist Taliban to our Spiritual Abuse Survivor Blogs Network! She will be writing a new series for us.REASONSIn order to add some context to the articles I have written on this blog I want to designate a page to summarize our story from beginning to end.It is my hope, as it has always been, to expose not only the wrongs that The Preacher was guilty of, but to own the actual wrongs we committed as opposed to what The Preacher has stated publicly using skilled innuendo and out-right public accusations.Since it is obvious that sides have been chosen between our family and The Preacher’s, the resulting division and e … [Read more...]

Rebuilding

by Bruce GerencserNine years have passed since I preached my last sermon, since my wife was called the “pastor’s wife.” Almost four years have passed since my wife and I determined to stop attending church. We are now among the “unchurched”, casualties of a life spent in Evangelical Christianity. Worse yet, at least according to our critics, we are now enemies of Christ and his church.You see, we not only left the Church, we left Jesus. Regardless of how some Christians parse our lives through their peculiar theological system, we are indeed two people who once were devoted, committed followers of Jesus, who are now described as an atheist husband and his agnostic wife. … [Read more...]

Who Was That Masked Man? Part 6

by CaluluWhen we last left the Smiths they had reconciled and were determined to make everyone be best friends forever again. Nothing doing.Things ratchet up a few new levels of tension. 9/11 happens. I'm sitting in front of the television having coffee and folding clothes when CNN shows the coverage of the first tower getting hit and I'm still watching when the second plane hits the other one of the twin towers of the World Trade Center. By the time the plane hits the Pentagon and there are rumors on television of another plane being spotted on the way to Capital Hill where my husband works I was pretty wrung up. My phone kept ringing off the hook from friends and relatives wanting … [Read more...]

Millipede: Part 6

by MillipedeI hated the the underlying spirit which had crept into our marriage; it was a peevish, disapproving air that my husband had taken on. In our "heathen" days my husband had a happy go lucky air. This was endearing and made up for the fact that he could be irresponsible.Under Christian patriarchy this changed. Not only was he now "head of the household", but he was responsible for making sure that we lived a "Godly life". This permeated every bit of our life as we didn't want to be "Sunday Only" Christians; God was not someone that we turned our back on for the other six days of the week.This affected how I dressed, what we ate, what entertainment we watched or listened … [Read more...]

Who Was That Masked Man? Part 5

by CaluluSo when we left off Tina was still believing that Tom was coming home. We were having nothing to do with the Smiths and Tom doesn't come home.What he does do is go to my husband and ask him to talk to me about working a few mornings a week at his office to transfer all his paper documents into digital on his new computer system. I don't want to do it but it's a little slow that spring in my job so I grit my teeth, bite my tongue and start going into his office for four hours every morning. I know this is a mistake but hey, there's not much going on to prevent me and Tom isn't going to be there at the same time as me, win-win. I'm such a sap. Plus I'd quit working at the … [Read more...]

Millipede: Part 5

by Millipede Peevish men, wives who watched every word and worse they really embraced the submission beliefs. The wives would gripe very rarely about their husbands and the work and if they did they were sure to say that they weren't in disagreement with the system, ,merely letting off a little steam.The women were just as much true believers. This isn't as I first thought/hoped in that Patriarchy can be a humane system for women. Instead I realized that there will always be those who for varying reasons, become ardent followers of movements which harm them. There are women who will accept or even come to love degradation if it comes approval and "love". Look at people in … [Read more...]

Millipede: Part 4

by MillipedeAlthough the "dress code" was the most glaring example of our changing mindset.There were other changes which were just as bad if not worse in the long run.My husband started to implement "order in the home". Although not as extreme as the other men, he considered himself the head of the household. Sure, I could argue, but if he stuck to his guns on something, I was expected to follow. I could be stubborn, but there were plenty of things that I gave way. Dressing in skirts out in public wasn't the only one. Staying at home, I let him control the finances. Sure, I could give advice, nag and so on, but in the end, he decided all things. A lot of things happened that in … [Read more...]

Who Was That Masked Man? Part 3

by CaluluWhen we last left everyone Tom was in and out of his home with Tina. Tina was determined to wait out his infidelity and we were trying to rally around Tina since she was disabled and alone. Things are about to get beyond strange, with the ripples affecting a number of families at church.During this super awkward time frame Hubby and I start getting regular visits from Alice, Sam and their six kids. The visits go like this. We get a call or they just show up at dinner time and announce that they have no food at the house and no money.The visits created stress because obviously we couldn't be around or have over the Smiths at the same time. So it felt like the worlds … [Read more...]