Re: Were the rumors about the Walk true or persecution from cult hunters?
jan w. lane
Date: September 19, 2015 08:14AM
Who arranged my first marriage? Well, that is complex. First of all, unless you were dating someone in the walk, be it your local branch or one of the other approved branches, you were walking outside of the protection of the church and you would in most cases be cast out. People who came into the walk as a couple were permitted to stay involved.
Most young people are on the lookout, naturally, for possible mates. In the Walk, this choice was limited to perhaps only a few logical choices.
I came into the walk in Campbell, Ca. Given my age, there were a few suitable candidates for marriage possibilities. Most of the time people would casually go out in groups with other young people, and perhaps at some level, there was choice involved, but in reality it was totally limited, nearly arranged.
The couple would approach the local pastor, say in my case, it was Howard Klein. Howard was a good person, and he basically would support a couple's decision to date. You would be checked out by the elders of the church and I really do not recall any issues that any of the young folks would have, but you were then generally checked out by Bro. Stevens, eventually. In my case, my first husband was from San Diego, and so was I. After having been advised to quit my job as a flight attendant, I decided to go home to San Diego, as the person I was going out with, purely as part of a young peoples group, was moving to San Diego. We attended Coniah Chapel, and just about right off the bat we were called on the podium by RD with a message that we should be thinking about marriage. Then we were sent to JRS for confirmation.
As far as personal choice in the matter of marriage is concerned, perhaps it was there at a very limited level. The only marriages that I know of that are still intact after 40 some odd years are the marriages in which the young couples had already come together in a much more natural process, meaning they had met before becoming involved with the Walk churches. Most are, sadly divorced. Very common outcome. My ex and I have been divorced for 30 yrs. and for the time between then and now, I remarried, and he only remarried last year. Coincidentally to a former Coniah Walk member. Very strange indeed.