Like “concentration camp” survivors: Strict punishment for the home schooled girls included hour-long running sessions, missed meals, memorization of Bible verses, and beatings with a wooden paddle.
Late last week police in Arizona arrested Johan Glenn Jorg and Kimery Lynn Jorg on suspicion of felony child abuse after their two adopted daughters were found to be severely malnourished and emaciated.
The married couple appeared Thursday night before a judge who set bond at $100,000 apiece. The judge also ordered that neither be allowed to have contact with their adopted children or any minors.
According to police, the 13-year-old and 11-year-old girls were home schooled, and subjected to strict punishment that included hour-long running sessions, memorization of Bible verses, and spankings with a wooden paddle. The couple also forced the girls to sleep in a backyard tent either nude or only in a diaper.
Police spokeswoman Amanda Jacinto said the oldest girl remained in a local hospital due to her emaciated condition, and that the five-foot-tall (1.52-meter) teen had weighed just 60 pounds (27 kg) upon admission.
According to the police statement, neither parent denied punishing the girls for lying and stealing; however, neither parent was able to describe to police actual instances of the girls stealing anything.
The couple acknowledged that Kimery Jorg doled out most of the punishment because she was home with the children and that Johann Jorg spanked the children with the wooden paddle and recently shaved the head of the 13-year-old, according to the statement.
The parents admitted the girls were often spanked several times a day. According to police, the couple thought their treatment was justified.
The Jorgs are the adoptive parents of four girls, ages 7, 8, 11 and 13 years old. While the 13- and 11-year-old children were extremely malnourished and emaciated, the Jorg’s two younger children were fine, and appeared “clearly favored” by the parents, according to the police statement.
The mother, Kimery Lynn Jorg, said the abuse was an attempt to “train” the girls to be “loving and nurturing.”
The abusive behavior is consistent with a corporal punishment style advocated by many Christian homeschoolers, and memorialized in the controversial book titled “To Train Up A Child.”
This perverse but popular guide to Christian discipline advocates beating children with a plumbing tool starting at age one. The book also advocates giving children cold water baths, putting children outside in cold weather, and forcing them to miss meals.
The book is linked to the deaths of numerous children from Christian homeschooling families across the country
“To Train Up a Child,” written by Michael Pearl, a Christian fundamentalist preacher from Tennessee, encourages parents to go to extreme measures when disciplining their children, following the antiquated and discredited Biblical notion “spare the rod, spoil the child.”