A culture of fear built on a thousand little lies

by dogemperorMy story of how I walked away from Joel's Army--and joined the survivor community--started, quite ironically enough, with (of all things) Christian heavy metal...because, interestingly enough, it was my first major experience in how coercive groups operate by telling their members a thousand little lies to create a culture of fear.To make a long story short, when I was eleven both the Sunday school I attended (at an Assemblies of God megachurch which I would eventually discover some 24 years later was one of the fifteen most influential churches in the United States of what was then known as "Joel's Army" and which has since rebranded as "Elijah's Army" and the "New … [Read more...]

"Motherhood Movement" on Fox 9 this evening

by VyckieTonight at 9 p.m. central time, Fox 9 news in Minneapolis will air a quiverfull news story.  Investigative producer, Julie Anderson interviewed me while I was in The Cities last summer for the girls' surgeries.  She was asked to do the interview by an Indiana Fox 59 news reporter following the Carrie Chimielewski story.  After asking the initial questions which were provided by the Illinois station, Julie was intrigued enough to ask if we could continue the interview with her asking a few questions of her own.I've been in contact with Julie ever since, assisting in her investigation of the Quiverfull movement in the Minneapolis area.  I provided her a link to John Piper's pat … [Read more...]

When Jesus Weeps—The Parable of She

by hillary When Jesus Weeps—The Parable of She “Break her will,” they said and broken, She weeps silently. But sometimes She forgets how to weep at all . . . The Girl-Soul sighed deeply and rubbed her eyes. Such a long road, her way, filled with pebbles and holes and scary places. I need to stop soon, whispered heart. Shoulders burned with tension. The lumpy bag of rocks She carried banged against her legs; purple bruises crept up skin. But I can’t give up now; I’m almost there!Anticipating a grateful smile from the Giant and Grandfather, She pressed up the ancient path. Why they needed heavy rocks, She did not know, yet vowed to bring the best She could, and labored night and day, w … [Read more...]

We were put in the back of the church on hard chairs as a punishment for not conforming

by ErikaAttending a church for 3 months that was mostly made up of disgruntled ex-Amish and ex-Mennonites was 3 months too long. My parents were enamored with the "perfect family" persona that the church gave off.When we arrived at the church, we were surprised that the church was segregated by gender. Women on one side with their little girls and nursing babies. Men on the other with the young boys.We had always done things as a family and my parents weren't keen on having our family separated in the church. They insisted on having us sit as a family. Because the church regulars sat in the segregated style, there wasn't anywhere else for families to sit together except at the back … [Read more...]

Shutting Off My Brain ~ Part 3

by JourneyAnother problem, a major problem, but one that I felt so guilty for, was that my husband was seeing another woman, and that woman was the Bible. Mark was obsessed with the Bible. I remember feeling so guilty for hating the Bible because, you know, a good Christian shouldn’t hate the Bible, right? Here I was, at Bible College, and casting dirty looks at the Bible. I felt like it was no different from him taking a lover, or being an addict, because he would read it non-stop.He didn’t want to eat dinner together. He would come home from work and class and then go into our spare bedroom and study the Bible until late into the night. I would lay there at night and quietly cry … [Read more...]

Raising My Daughter to be a Keeper at Home: Maybe, maybe not!

by HopewellRecently in blog land there has been a good deal of discussion over whether daughters should be sent to college and prepared for careers or if they should be trained to be keepers at home and remain in their parents’ home until marriage. A lot of prayer and thought has gone into these posts.The Scriptural Authority for daughters remaining at home seems to be found here:3 "When a woman makes a vow to God and binds herself by a pledge as a young girl still living in her father's house, 4 and her father hears of her vow or pledge but says nothing to her, then she has to make good on all her vows and pledges. 5 But if her father holds her back when he hears of what she has done, … [Read more...]

Not Created to Be His Doormat But Rather For So Much More

by aussiemamaPart 1 | Part 2 | Part 3My life was empty and miserable and I had no idea why. I knew that I loved my husband, but I could not understand why he was not yet a great spiritual leader, seeing as I had tried so hard to be the woman everyone said I had to be in order for him to want to be a great spiritual leader. I was even told that I shouldn’t take any Bible courses if my husband hadn’t taken them because it was “wrong” to know more than my husband about any subject. That just didn’t jive well with me. There were certain things that I should and did know more than him.During this time of my second difficult pregnancy, with morning sickness until 30 weeks again, I was searc … [Read more...]

Christian Dominionism ~ Part 3: Bill Gothard and the Ties that Bind Extremist Politics to Christian Patriarchy

by kmPart 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 You will never meet a homeschooler in North America who hasn’t heard of Bill Gothard.  Gothard has become a rich man from peddling his homeschooling program—Advanced Training Institute of America (ATIA)—and his self help seminars—the Institute in Basic Life Principles, the Advanced Seminar, the Anger Resolution Seminar, the Children’s Institute, and the Total Health Seminar.  There is something very surreal about attending any Gothard event for the first time.  In return for the $60 price of admission, you get to watch videos of Gothard espousing his philosophies of Christian patriarchy and Bible-based child abuse, usually whilst producing a paint-by-n … [Read more...]

The next link in the chain towards Quiverfull

by KathrynI'm 27, and grew up in a military household as an only child. My mother was raised Church of Christ, and converted to Assemblies of God in her teens. My father was raised atheist, as near as I can tell, and converted to marry my mother. They married around 20, I guess, and I was born when Mother was 28. She said I was her miracle baby, that she had been diagnosed as infertile, unable to carry a baby to term. It had sent her into a near suicidal depression. I think the only reason she didn't try suicide was because suicide is a sin. According to her, that all went away when I was born.Because of the military moving us, I went to three different kindergartens. In first grade, I … [Read more...]

Everybody's dying to know!

by VyckieA friend and I were talking rather excitedly about my upcoming guest appearance on the Joy Behar Show.  We were chattering away when she suddenly asked me, "How are you going to respond if Joy asks you what you believe about religion now?"Well, to tell the truth, I was stumped.  I mean, I do have an answer to that question, but the minute my friend asked me about it, my brain froze up and I couldn't think of a thing to say. Oh no, I thought ~ what if I get totally stuck during the interview?  I'd better be prepared!  I'm sure I won't get a chance to to tell it all ~ but just for practice ~ and since I've been told that, "Everybody's dying to know!" ~ here's the summary that I … [Read more...]