Re: The Living Word Fellowship, The Walk, John Robert Stevens
Date: May 22, 2020 10:10PM
A few posts from May of 2018:
Posted by: larry bobo
Date: May 06, 2018 11:52AM
Sexual abuse was more than just a rumor in TLWF. I was personally abused by a gay pastor as well as a woman everyone would know who was around in the 70’s. She wrote many of the worship songs sung during that era. I was 15 and both the man the woman were in their 30’s. I would never suggest their actions were directed by the leadership, however, the atmosphere was so toxic that many things existed under the radar that I do not now see in a healthier church. Hopefully, my perception is better in my 60’s than it was in my teens. In hindsight, how did I as a 15 year old, and my teen friends, know this “pastor” was gay and John, who ordained him with his great revelation, not have a clue. He was much more than a sincere gay man looking for answers – he was an evil predator.
The wounds many received in TLWF were certainly not limited to G&M, but on the other hand, they certainly directed the culture. I remember trying to figure out why my local shepherds treated people so harshly until I had my first discipline experience with Apco. It seemed every other word started with f..king this and that. No wonder they acted the way they did. Those who have been abused, abuse. I heard stories of the way Apco was treated by G&M and could only imagine how G&M were treated by “God” – especially the god who wants to kill, steal, and destroy that they seemed to serve. Anyone remember John's first encounter with "Jesus" in Holy Jim Canyon? It was not to bring life.
Posted by: GSchaeff
Date: May 06, 2018 12:32PM
If any current member is reading this and doubting whether John, Marilyn or Gary are culpable in perpetuating a culture of abuse, ask yourself this simple question:
"Here we have at least three people on this page alone who have spoken about sexual assault in the church. Why has there never been a formal investigation into any of these pastors, why were the police never notified about this?"
The answer is just as you described. "This is collateral damage, and there's always going to be casualties." It went under the rug to protect Gary's kingdom.
The number is much, much higher than 3 by the way. Larry, I'm very sorry to hear about your experience also. I hope you taking the courage to share it will wake some current members up.
Posted by: GoingRogue
Date: May 25, 2018 10:01PM
In my experience, the lying and tricking people was a common occurrence in the LW. The biggest concern of the top leaders (G&M and JRS) in such instances was for themselves and their reputation. Many casualties seem to have been considered "collateral damage", as has been mentioned before.
By the way, when people with stories to tell and points to make about this group are afraid to post, who wins? This is an anonymous forum for good reason. But it also allows people to undermine and attack other posters with impunity. And I'm pretty sure that I know who is laughing all the way to the bank when that happens.