I hope you can overcome your prejudices of my pseudonym. I know that ‘mother’ has negative connotations in the community. However, I choose to represent myself this way because that is what I am – a female and a mother. I am also an ex-member and have recently discovered these posts. I am disappointed by the childishness of some of the comments from both sides, really.
The reasons I left the community were simple- I saw with my own eyes the poor way that women and children were treated in the community.
* The lifestyle meant that women did the lion-share of the menial work. Women were expected to do the washing, cleaning, shopping, and cooking for up to twenty men, on top of home-schooling and maintaining leaflet distribution quotas.
* Children needed to be quiet for extended periods of time. If they made too much noise in meetings they were smacked forcefully and repeatedly.
* Parents were forced by Dave to discipline their children (if for example Dave thought the one to three year old was talking or laughing too much).
* Children were made to eat the cheaper food items while Dave asked for the nicer cuts of meat on his sandwiches (Kids growing bodies need the better nutrition)
* I saw Dave’s example of a very unhappy marriage. I don’t need to go into detail here Dave, but let’s say force and domination is not a way to show love. To Cherry my heart bleeds for you – there are counselors and people who could help you overcome your emotional pain-it’s never too late.
* Women and children were often put in their place through verbal insults. Some women in the group have been made too feel too dumb, mentally unstable or weak.
On a whole I think the Jesus Christians is a small group of people who need one another. I know that a lot of people have come from abusive backgrounds. I learned that my reason for joining was the same. However I wish you could see that Dave continues the abusive pattern in your life. He was abused as a child, he abuses you. He mostly abuses women and children, but also weak males like Ross, Martin and Roland.
As a concerned mother my heart is full of grief at the lives you’ve lost. You replaced the abuse and neglect from your childhoods to abuse from Dave. Deep down you know I’m right.
Guys, there is a loving God free from abuse and put-downs, manipulation and control. A loving God who doesn’t need your works to love you. A God that is happy if you walk hand in hand with your children, a God happy for you to have two kidneys and a penis that fires fertile bullets. A loving God who doesn’t need you to whip others for him to believe you love him. Truly.
God loves you…
Jesus was a pacifist…
Let the children come to him…
I have also posted this on the www.welikejesus.com forum
I agree with what you say here concerned mother. The community was not designed for families. Children were considered liabilities within the Jesus Christians. Their apocalyptic world view causes this to be.
I am happy for you that you are out now.