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Australian cult: Anyone recognize this?
Posted by: Fran ()
Date: July 15, 2006 03:52PM

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rrmoderator
You are here as an apologist, which is obvious from your posts.

I don't know what an apologist is, so I don't know if I am here as one or not. I was just browsing your site and I came across this thread which talks about the group that I am in. I thought that I could answer some of the questions people have.

As I have said before, I am not trying to get people to agree with the Jesus Christians. We only have 25 members world-wide, so it's not like many people want to join us anyway. All I hope to achieve is to provide clear and accurate information. If people want to disagree with us, that is fine, but it would be nice if they did it based on the facts and not on sensationalism.

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rrmoderator
You are referring to the Jason Scott case, which ended ten years ago... Attempting to attack me personally won't change...

Thank you for clarifying that issue. As I mentioned, it was only something I "heard". I don't think I presented it as fact.

As far as attacking, I think it would be safe to say that 99.9% of the attacking is directed at us and not at you, Rick. I only brought up the issue of Jason, because people were making a big deal about people being with us, yet we have never held anyone against their will. I had thought that you forcefully removed someone against their will. Since you have clarified it, I can give you the benefit of the doubt and assume that it was just more sensational allegations made by the media. I guess you must know how it feels when exaggerations and lies are told about you in the press.

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rrmoderator
...won't change the fact that many people view your group as a "cult"

I know that many people view our group as a "cult". And many of those people will not change their minds regardless of the facts. Again, it is not my intent to stop people from calling us a cult... only to provide accurate facts so that they are informed and not basing their attacks on hearsay.

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rrmoderator
...and consider your leader (a former member of the notorious Children of God) a controlling a manipulative man.

That they consider Dave a controlling and manipulative man, again, is up to them. I don't expect everyone to like him or agree with him.

However, as I mentioned in one of my first posts (not sure if you took time to read it or not)... you guys keep making a big deal of the fact that he was a member of the Children of God. As you very well must know, he was only a member for 3 months, and he left the Children of God as soon as he heard that they were teaching flirty fishing, on the grounds that it was sexually immoral. Dave has been faithfully married for forty years or so. So why do you keep making a big deal about him being in the COG for three months?? What if I was a Hare Krishna member for a couple of weeks in my past, would you hold that against me the rest of my life? Seriously!!

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rrmoderator
Have you given up one of your kidneys per Dave's teachings yet?

I have donated one of my kidneys, but I did not do it as 'per Dave's teachings' as you want so badly to believe. What is so strange about Christians wanting to donate a kidney to someone who needs one? Have you ever donated blood? Did you do it because you were pressured by someone else? Of course not! Donating a kidney is a serious decision that needs to be thought through well. I wouldn't donate blood on the basis of what someone else said, let alone a kidney!

Well, I'll leave it there for now. Love, Fran.

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Australian cult: Anyone recognize this?
Posted by: rrmoderator ()
Date: July 15, 2006 08:13PM

Fran:

If you have gone so far as to follow Dave's idea that members of his group donate kidneys, as many have, you certainly are a deeply commited follower.

Dave's background in Children of God demonstrates the fringe nature of his religious involvement and that he started out in a very bad group.

Dave's authority and position as the leader of "Jesus Christians" is not that different from Moses David Berg's role in Children of God.

People follow Dave and do what he says, like giving up a kidney. It may not be "flirty fishing," but it does demonstrate the devotion and submission of members to Dave.

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I guess you must know how it feels when exaggerations and lies are told about you in the press.

No. Actually the press reported the story accurately about a mother trying to rescue her son. It was the cults and their apologists who have attempted to spread "exaggerations and lies."

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Australian cult: Anyone recognize this?
Posted by: Fran ()
Date: July 17, 2006 01:50PM

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rrmoderator
Fran:
If you have gone so far as to follow Dave's idea that members of his group donate kidneys, as many have, you certainly are a deeply commited follower.

Rick, why do you persist in wanting Dave to look like a totalitarian and the rest of us as brainwashed puppets who will do anything Dave says? Many of us stand up to Dave and challenge him whenever we feel that he is stepping out of line, and he is accountable to us all under the grievance system which does not exempt anyone from criticism and correction.

Donating kidneys is not Dave's idea. It has been around for quite some time in the medical establishment. Members of the Jesus Christians are not the first to donate kidneys to strangers either.

As I asked before, what is so wierd about Christians wanting to donate a kidney to someone to save their life? It has absolutely nothing to do with what Dave thinks, but all to do with what we each think is a good way of showing love to others. But, you don't want to hear that. You want to believe we are all puppets who will do anything Dave says.

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rrmoderator
Dave's background in Children of God demonstrates the fringe nature of his religious involvement and that he started out in a very bad group.

No, Dave did not 'start' in a very bad group. Dave grew up in the Nazarene church (a holiness church). He also worked for the Bible Society for many years. But, as I continue to point out, even though he was in the Children of God for three months, that is what you guys focus on, and it is the foundation of all your accusations against us. But I find it quite childish that you would resort to that.

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rrmoderator
Dave's authority and position as the leader of "Jesus Christians" is not that different from Moses David Berg's role in Children of God.

It is very different indeed. As far as I know the Children of God pretty much were devoted to David Berg. They called him "Dad". They still claim to talk to him from the world of the dead. When he told them to do something immoral they all went along with it, convinced that if "Dad" said it, it must be okay.

The Jesus Christians opearate completely different. We have no titles for any of our leaders. We continually teach that all humans are fallible and that the only one we can completely trust is Jesus (and his teachings). If someone teaches us something contrary to the teachings of Jesus we will reject it, regardless of who it is.

So, if you have an example of where Dave has told us something contrary to the teachings of Jesus and we have followed it, then point it out. If not, then please stop claiming that we are brainwashed pawns of Dave, and start treating us like human beings.

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rrmoderator
People follow Dave and do what he says, like giving up a kidney.

No, people don't just do what Dave says, as I have stated several times.

I gave up my kidney because I believed that it was a way of showing love to someone in need. I also donate blood for the same reason. And I do God knows how many other things for the same reason.

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rromoderator
It may not be "flirty fishing," but it does demonstrate the devotion and submission of members to Dave
.

You are very right that it is not flirty fishing, and in fact cannot even be compared to it. Flirty fishing is immoral, donating a kidney is not. Period.

Giving a kidney doesn't demonstrate devotion or submission to Dave, it demonstrates love to people in need of kidneys. Ask all the many non-Jesus Christians why they donated kidneys.

It's ironic how people often accuse us of things they are guilty of themselves. It's like they project their own weaknesses onto others.

You talk of blind devotion to leaders. How many Americans are blindly devoted to their president? Would you go to war (or at least support it from the sidelines) if your leader (ie. president) told you to? Hmmm.

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Australian cult: Anyone recognize this?
Posted by: rrmoderator ()
Date: July 18, 2006 09:33PM

Fran:

Can you name three things Dave has done or said as the leader of "Jesus Christians" that you consider wrong?

How is Dave accountable to the group members?

Is there a democratically elected board or some type of oversight he submits to?

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Donating kidneys is not Dave's idea. It has been around for quite some time in the medical establishment. Members of the Jesus Christians are not the first to donate kidneys to strangers either.

The point of mentioning the group members donating kidneys to strangers is not the issue of kidney donation. It is the fact that many "Jesus Christians" have done this not as a spontaneous act, but rather as a group practice originally proposed or initiated by Dave.

The kidney donations demonstrate the degree of compliance and submission within the group.

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he was in the Children of God for three months, that is what you guys focus on, and it is the foundation of all your accusations against us.

The complaints and concerns about "Jesus Christians" is not simply about Dave's historical ties to "Children of God," as the news articles about the group reflect.

See [www.culteducation.com]

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Australian cult: Anyone recognize this?
Posted by: muppet ()
Date: July 21, 2006 11:42AM

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When I spoke of being present with the 19 year old, I was talking about the case when we went to the police station in the U.K. and his mother was arrested for assaulting him and later for biting one of the police officers




Fran I have checked the details of this case and you are sensationalising events and telling outright lies. The mother in question was arrested but it did not involve an assault of any kind either. No police officer was bitten.

It appears that the woman was arrested after allegations were made by you or your group members.

Dave's fascination with 'Moses David' is well known as is the fact that Dave kept and treasures a letter he received from David Berg years ago. I think it is clear that your leader modelled his group on the children of god and modelled. His leadership style is also modelled on that of Berg. Everyone knows about his objection to the sexual practises of the CoG but his alternative (celibacy) is equally manipulative. Members of your group are disuaded from having children. How many have had operations to prevent procreation?

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Australian cult: Anyone recognize this?
Posted by: Fran ()
Date: August 03, 2006 02:30PM

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Fran
When I spoke of being present with the 19 year old, I was talking about the case when we went to the police station in the U.K. and his mother was arrested for assaulting him and later for biting one of the police officers

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muppet
Fran I have checked the details of this case and you are sensationalising events and telling outright lies.

The only sensationalism in this thread has come from you. I have not told outright lies. I was an eye witness to what happened that night, so I am basing my statements on facts. Furthermore, the rest of my information comes from the woman in question herself, as she later stayed with us in our flat in Australia and told us the story herself. You are most likely basing your facts on newspaper cut outs, hence your distorted version of reality.


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Muppet
The mother in question was arrested but it did not involve an assault of any kind either.

If she was not arrested for assault, then what for, muppet? I was there when she physically grabbed Kyri and tried to stop him from leaving the police station. The police gave her three warnings and ordered her to let go of Kyri. When she refused she was handcuffed and taken into the police station.

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muppet
No police officer was bitten.

This is the hardest part for me to verify, because I am only going on what the woman herself told us later. She said that after they had put her in the cell she was very emotional and agitated. She said they were about to release her that night, but when they opened the cell she started abusing the police officers and tried to bite one of them (yes, perhaps she didn't actually bite him). Because of that, she was put back in the cell and only released the following morning.

As I said, I only know that particular detail because the woman told us herself about it. Maybe she was lying, or maybe the 'source' of your information is inaccurate.

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muppet
It appears that the woman was arrested after allegations were made by you or your group members.

I guess this makes it clear that you are not going on any facts, but just conjuring up your own version of the story based on how things "appear" to you.

No allegations were ever made by us against the woman. Quite the opposite is true. Although she knew her son was with us, she reported him missing to the police and told them that we had taken him against his will and brainwashed him. Kyri went to a police station to report that he was not in fact missing, but he was told to go to a specific station. Upon arriving at the station, his mother, cousin, and friends were waiting for him and immediately started their campaign of hate and fear. The first words that Kyri's mother ever said to me after I said hello were "you are Satan incarnate".

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muppet
Dave's fascination with 'Moses David' is well known as is the fact that Dave kept and treasures a letter he received from David Berg years ago.

Well known by who? You seem to be a thousand times more facinated with the Children of God than Dave McKay does. I hardly hear Dave even mentioning the COG or Berg, and when he does it is usually a criticism of them. As far as this treasured letter you mention, I am inclined to believe it is either a figment of your imagination or at the very least not as significant as you want us to believe. In fact, I don't know that I can trust anything you say, seeing as you continually base statements on hearsay whilst denying the facts.

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muppet
I think it is clear that your leader modelled his group on the children of god and modelled. His leadership style is also modelled on that of Berg.

Yes, you think many things. But most of what you think, as clearly seen in this thread, is untrue. Our group bares little resemblence to the way the COG operate. And Dave McKay's style of leadership is very different from Berg's as I have stated before.

The thing is, it is very important to you to compare us to the Children of God, because then you can imply that the same immorality and degeneration of the COG exists in the Jesus Christians. You want to damn us in any way you can, and since you have a hard time damning our teachings, you resort to comparing us to the COG on the basis that Dave spent three months as an associate member 30 years ago!

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muppet
Everyone knows about his objection to the sexual practises of the CoG but his alternative (celibacy) is equally manipulative.

I find this statement very comical. For one thing, as you must know, celibacy is encouraged in the Bible by both Jesus and Paul. Secondly we do not forbid marriage (in fact, I am married myself).
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muppet
Members of your group are disuaded from having children.

Just as we do not forbid marriage, neither do we forbid children. However, having children bring a lot of new challenges and responsibilities. It is up to each matrimony to decide whether they want to take on those challenges and responsibilities. Due to the nature of our lifestyle, most of us are not ready to have children yet. Is that so bad?

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muppet
How many have had operations to prevent procreation?

And how many times do you use a condom when having sex? Such questions are personal matters and not appropriate for public forums.

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rrmoderator
Can you name three things Dave has done or said as the leader of "Jesus Christians" that you consider wrong?

I asked you to clearly show an example the group following Dave on something that contradicted the teachings of Jesus. You have produced not such evidence. Instead, you deflect the question by putting it back to me.

I can name more than three things I have disagreed with Dave on. But since my disagreements were with Dave, I talked with Dave about them. Why should I air my disagreements publicly? Are you going to resolve them for me? I don't think so.

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rrmoderator
How is Dave accountable to the group members?

The same way we are all accountable. If anyone has a disagreement, they can talk with him privately about it. If he doesn't accept it, they bring in two or three witnesses to discuss it. if he doesn't listen to them, we call in the whole community. And if he won't listen to the whole group, he will be asked to leave. This is based on Matthew 18:15-18

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rrmoderator
Is there a democratically elected board or some type of oversight he submits to?

It seems I have to continually remind you that we are only 25 members world wide. We are all the "elected board", if you like.

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rrmoderator
The kidney donations demonstrate the degree of compliance and submission within the group.

No, they demonstrate Christians who are willing to donate organs to save other people's lives.

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rrmoderator
The complaints and concerns about "Jesus Christians" is not simply about Dave's historical ties to "Children of God," as the news articles about the group reflect.

Since the basis of the earlier sensationalist hate campaigns against us were based on our correlation with the Children of God, it doesn't say much for the articles. Every subsequent article was based on the previous one, so that they are all based mostly on exaggerations and outright lies. And I doubt, by the way you guys are carrying on, that that is going to change.

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Australian cult: Anyone recognize this?
Posted by: kath ()
Date: August 04, 2006 04:32PM

Fran, you ask to be questioned as to anything your group does that is unbiblical. Surely having a sterilisation is unbiblical?

Many would say so. After all, no sterilisation for women could have been done in biblical times, could it?

Surely, donating a kidney- nowhere in the bible does someone donate a kidney!

Many religious groups do not believe in organ donation even after their deaths.

You will find ways of saying that all these operations are biblical, to me that shows the nature of the bible and of human nature.

I am not a Christian so I won't argue as to whether your groups' interpretation of the bible is correct or not from a theological standpoint.

All I will say is that these operations are very invasive to have done to your body without any medical need, and must carry a significant amount of risk. It does seem that a lot of what is asked of you in your group, most people would balk at.

Love
Kath

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Australian cult: Anyone recognize this?
Posted by: TD ()
Date: August 05, 2006 03:36AM

You must be very forgiving to let a woman who called you the devil stay at yur apartment with you. Did she join your group ?

Just a thought. You mention that you do not have time to have children? Life is short and you should never be too busy for family life.

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Australian cult: Anyone recognize this?
Posted by: Fran ()
Date: August 28, 2006 05:02PM

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kath
Fran, you ask to be questioned as to anything your group does that is unbiblical.

The whole basis for attacking us is that Dave (the founder of our community) was in a controversial group for three months 30 years ago. Since people want to paint us as unthinking robots, I asked for specific examples of Dave getting us to do something that went against the teachings of Jesus. So far no examples have been given.

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kath
Surely having a sterilisation is unbiblical? Many would say so. After all, no sterilisation for women could have been done in biblical times, could it?

Your reasoning seems to be that if the technology was not available three thousand years ago then it is unbiblical. I am not sure how you derive at that conclusion. Added to that is the fact that nobody has ever been asked to be sterilised in our group. So I am not sure how that point relates.

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kath
Surely, donating a kidney- nowhere in the bible does someone donate a kidney!

No. Neither do they use cars, phones or computers. Nor can I find any clear examples of people brushing their teeth, using toilet paper or ironing their clothes. Again, how does that mean that these things are unbiblical?

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kath
Many religious groups do not believe in organ donation even after their deaths.

And many other religious groups do believe in them.

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kath
You will find ways of saying that all these operations are biblical, to me that shows the nature of the bible and of human nature.

I don't need to find ways of saying the operations are biblical. People need kidneys. You can survive with only one. Someone with two can give to someone with none. We are not saying you have to give one of yours. But what is so evil about some of us deciding to do so?

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kath
I am not a Christian so I won't argue as to whether your groups' interpretation of the bible is correct or not from a theological standpoint.

Ok. Then you wouldn't need to argue as to whether things are biblical or not.

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kath
All I will say is that these operations are very invasive to have done to your body without any medical need, and must carry a significant amount of risk.

That's probably the most level headed thing I have read on this thread. Yes, there are risks as with any operation. That is why people need to think seriously about all the risks invovled before deciding that they want to go through with such an operation. Although you are right that there is no medical need for the donor to give one of their kidneys, the medical need is very much for the recipient. If there were no such need, such operations would not exist.

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kath
It does seem that a lot of what is asked of you in your group, most people would balk at.

There is a lot that people baulk at from our group. However, nobody in our group is asked to give a kidney to anyone. That is a matter of personal choice on the part of the individual.

Thank you for your post, Kath.

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Australian cult: Anyone recognize this?
Posted by: Fran ()
Date: August 28, 2006 05:11PM

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TD
You must be very forgiving to let a woman who called you the devil stay at yur apartment with you. Did she join your group?

We have lots of people who stay with us from time to time who are not members. This is especially true when it comes to relatives of members. We encourage good relationships between members and their relatives. However, in some cases, as in the woman from the U.K., the parents freak out (often because someone has whispered in their ear that we are a brainwashing cult, etc.) and they create a self-fullfilling prophecy.

Once that woman calmed down enough not to print lies about is in the newspaper she was invited to stay with us. Her son also went and stayed for a few weeks with her over the Christmas holidays in the U.K.

As far as forgiveness goes, people can say and do very hurtful things when they are emotional and not thinking through what they are doing. In that case it was just being called a name, which is no big deal.


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TD
Just a thought. You mention that you do not have time to have children?

I am not sure that I put it that way. There are couples who do have children in our community. There are also others who have chosen not to have their own.

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TD
Life is short and you should never be too busy for family life.

Life indeed is short and that is why we have to decide what it is we want the most out of life. Some people feel they want their own children. That is fine. Others feel that there are many children who do not have parents and they can better serve those by not having children of their own. Others want to concentrate their time and energy on other projects. To each their own, I suppose.

I don't think it is wrong to have children. Neither do I think it wrong not to have them.

That's all for now. Love, Fran.

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