Wow the thread on this page pretty much sums it up about The Church of the Living word or what ever the "Hargraves family" changed the corporate names to.
It has taken a small group of survivors all these years to fit enough pieces together to identify the crimes. Yes, crimes in the guise of "bring in the kingdom of God sacrificially" con.
Growing up in what was first a loving church with wonderful people in Iowa I felt safe - until the circus/ the "medicine show came to town to oooo's and awe with prayer and "holy secrets" revealed" to the good people with the "lights and glamour" of the show put on by predators.
I was child and I felt the over-sexualized undertones of the honored guests/ entertainers. Being an already silenced victim I had sort of adjusted my thinking that this was the way adult men behaved and I had to learn to be invisible in my own way in order to avoid the yucky/ creepy/ dirty feelings I had come to expect. If I did not "behave" with complete compliance I knew I would be beaten by my parents. Only God could have known what the leaders of the church could do to me. I lived in fear - pretending to live with happy days. ( Sick, right?) We did not talk about such things in those days. too bad. Most of us were not in a position to have any place else to go except to the church in order to survive.
But, now #Metoo movement open Pandora's box. And Shalom's honest open letter blew the lid off The Church of the Living Word. The ugly truth carries an initial sting of shock and disbelief at first. then the truth sets us free when we are willing to face the honest to God's truth not the lying :living Word"
At 8, 9, 10...16-18 I cognitively had no clue how to process the yucky, dirty uncomfortable feelings when being in the room with leadership guest preachers like, JrS, Arnold, Williams and more in the early years.
I heard rumors. But, who spoke up? a better question might be, 'who listened?" I don't know the answer. Nor do I know why 100's of more people could be speaking up, but aren't, yet? surely other people had picked up on the 'dirtiness'.
I even heard my mother complain about sexual advances on her- which she rejected with a vengeance.I saw what I saw - JRS was not the first man to hit on her that I saw- she was attractive up to a certain time before depression and lack of therapy took her over with shame and bitterness. But, no one came to her support. My own father did no have a clue of how to handle the advances on my mom- he simply wanted to know the secrets of the kingdom of god promised by JRS. ( My dad loved the traveling 'medicine shows. He was a sucker for them. He really desired and prayer to be a respected mega church leader. that would not happen because he loved God and people and didn't lie. And he was incredibly gullible and naive.)
JRS wanted my sisters and I in Blicks House- but gratefully my mom raised too much of a threat. She had left the church numerous times with bitterness no one understood- not even me at the time. She saw things that should not have been happening. "forgive and for get. Don't be bitter" was the message.
So, I bare my soul taking my families responsibility for the part we played in being duped in the foundation days. We fell for the medicine show. We participated. After the fact we "should have known" the Walk was a godless fraud that hurt 1,000's of good people.
The con was systematic where the little people were never given all the facts and distracted by the theatrical acting jobs with smoke and mirrors.
Please, remember in the Happy Days our parents and grandparent were still recovering mentally from the Depression and WWII. We Baby Boomers could only comprehend peace and safety unlike what our parents had known growing up. We trusted WJ so it was assumed we should truth JRS. We were wrong. I'm sorry.
Then newbies jumped on the band wagon and gave birth to children who only knew the ways of The Walk.- a totally different perspective than my perspective. Children had no choice but to be in the cult because of their parents' choices.- How do we ever explain this mess that has taken us so long to fit each of the pieces together that only few of us who have spoken out on this forum or Facebook?
How do we explain this mess to the law?
I think the quotes in this thread sum it up pretty well. We know that those who were still in TLWF when it fell are still trying to figure out "what the hell happened?" they have been told not to read stuff on-line nor talk to blow outs.
Why? Because we know bits and pieces of the lies and have fit the truth together. Mean while Gary Hargraves is on the his"higher calling" internationally thus leaving a path of wounded behind and survivors who only want healing for our family and friends with or more people victimized.
Most people in the early years had their eyes fixed on Godly things.- Any relationship with the real God the Father, Son, Holy spirit was personal doings
- never from the snake oil mixed with Kool-aid- NOT the vaudeville show actors selling the name of Jesus and the peddling the bible for wealth, glory...
The very best things about TLWF cult is not a 'thing'. We found deep friendship and love among the little people.I have no regrets over the loving bonds we all formed with good people who wore the same shoes.
Here's to recovering with the TRUTH!
Posted by: Reepicheep ()
Date: November 18, 2019 09:50PM
> Posted by: Cloudwatcher
> Date: November 17, 2019 08:28PM
> JRS laid the foundation for Rapistolic Company of
> pedophiles and perverts.
Posted by: Reepicheep ()
Date: November 18, 2019 09:50PM
Yes, he sure did, Cloudwatcher. Wondering if some
> of those people even believed in God. Was it all
> an act? A medicine show?
Posted by: changedagain ()
Date: November 20, 2019 02:56AM
I recall having talking with Dan S. just prior to him being declared unfit to be a ministry and subsequently shunned. He was telling me how adept John was with magic tricks, specifically making money appear and disappear in his hands. No, I don't think he was being facetious...and yes, I did briefly consider making a snarky remark. Anyway, it obvious after all these years that at the core of this movement was/is a combination of greed and carefully-crafted deception. It's understandable that some people will never be willing to accept this. They cling to the belief that they have received a "living word" from true men of God, that it will one day be fulfilled, if only they remain unwavering in their faith and dedication. The issue, of course, is always the people-what they have not yet become. The idea that they have been played for years by unscrupulous, heartless leaders is too difficult to even fathom. After all, most of their lives have been given to this quest. Some were born into it.
Posted by: kBOY ()
Date: November 19, 2019 09:13AM
A very impressive con indeed, spanning almost 75 years, from the early '50s to just last year (and still continuing for some Kool-Aid addicts). Too many of us bought what was being sold, with many suffering serious 'side effects'.
Just one more of many examples of our CREATOR having to suffer the indignities of a lot of bad press and fake news, none of which had anything to do with the GOSPEL of LOVE.
Edited 4 time(s). Last edit at 11/21/2019 02:57PM by NancyB.