Re: The Living Word Fellowship, The Walk, John Robert Stevens
Date: October 08, 2022 02:55AM
Responding to an overture of 'reconciliation.' A few posts from late August 31, 2019:
Posted by: changedagain
Date: August 29, 2019 12:48PM
I woke up wrote:
There are now pastors wives posting on Shalom’s FB post. On one hand I believe they think they mean well and they believe what they say... on the other hand, I feel they did not post without first getting permission from the higher-ups/abusers and/or were instructed to post. Their responses feel programmed and this saddens me.
For those of us who experienced years upon years of TLWF, it's nearly impossible to believe that anything originating from leadership (or former leadership) not be calculated to produce a certain response in order to facilitate an agenda they have in mind. Sad, but true. There are certain people in your life you trust instinctively, usually based on years of positive encounters, and others others you don't. You should not feel guilty for acknowledging this and factoring it in to your decisioning making. Knowing who you can trust, and who you can't, is a key to survival and having enough freedom to enjoy life.
Posted by: JesusJesusJesus
Date: August 30, 2019 09:21AM
I DO feel awkward in this community. I DO get uncomfortable when I run into people who used to be like family to me. That was true when we left Shiloh several years ago, and is even more so now (in part because I have no sense of who's still "in" and who's "out.")
To be honest, if something could be done to overcome that feeling of discomfort, that would be GREAT! I am leery, though, when I read the part that says, "It would follow Scripture to have the same love and respect for each other as we do with our other neighbors and churches in the community."
Perhaps things have changed in the past ten years or so and this is no longer true, but I certainly heard it insinuated and openly preached from the pulpit over and over again that Shiloh was better/smarter/more right than the other "dead" and "religious" churches in the area. So, if people are looking now to only have "the same love and respect for each other" as they do (or, at least did) for their "other neighbors and churches in the community" - count me out!! I don't want to be humored, looked-down-upon, and smirked at behind closed doors, and that's very much what happened to other Christians (especially Protestant Christians) when I was part of the Body.
I genuinely doubt the inclusion of this wording is duplicitous on their part, though. I would guess that they are still functioning in the same mindset of being the "remnant," and perhaps aren't even aware of the implicit judgment they've had (still have?) of other churches. Maybe that's an area that this counselor could point out and work on, and which would help the healing and reconciliation process.
Just my two cents' worth.
Posted by: kBOY
Date: August 30, 2019 03:40PM
J J J:
The desire for reconciliation is laudable, but the rub lies in the fact that TLW perpetrated/perpetuated just the opposite, and has not really come to grips with that fact that openly admitting it did so is obviously absent.
Physician--heal thyself first, and then do no harm.
Posted by: I_woke_up
Date: August 30, 2019 10:59PM
> I wonder if I will receive an unsigned Happy
> Birthday email from Shiloh this year...maybe sent
> in a cluster? Not that it will have an impact,
> one way or another :)
This had me laughing out loud!
My spouse also received the email and said that they should have replied with one word “unsubscribe.” Funny thing though, we both unsubscribed from Shiloh emails years ago. Huh?! SMH. I don’t know why it surprises me that they don’t respect boundaries.
At least Shiloh didn’t sign off the email with “In Christ’s Blood.
Posted by: puddington
Date: August 31, 2019 02:37AM
In Christ’s Blood
A great name for a Christian heavy metal band.
Posted by: Reepicheep
Date: August 31, 2019 03:18AM
Re: the "In Christ's Blood" sign-off used in GH's apology letter...
Even when TLWF leaders attempt to mimick mainstream Christian leaders, they sound awkward and out of their element at best. It reminds me of a certain president quoting "Two Corinthians". GH should stick with what is familiar to him, like lording it over what is left of his disappearing flock.
Posted by: changedagain
Date: August 31, 2019 07:04AM
Go ahead and share. I agree with your last paragraph. Not sure why C&P are still around and have their hand on everything if they “stepped down” unless they are still getting paid and/or want more money?! Does Haworth Family Ministries own any part of Shiloh or Marilyn Farms?
You usually can't go wrong assuming there is a monetary motive to whatever 'former' TLWF leaders decide to do. it doesn't mean you can't be 'cordial' if you cross paths, however :) I suppose if there was a specific acknowledgement among former leaders of how their actions have harmed congregants through the years, and helped ruin many innocent lives, than yes...'reconciliation' could be on the table. But I haven't seen that...and I don't think anyone else has either. This situation is not symmetrical (both 'sides' are equally to blame for the present state of things). Presenting things in that manner is dishonest as a starting point for any possible 'reconciliation.'
Posted by: Road to Damascus
Date: August 31, 2019 09:26AM
I understand the discomfort. I too have that, and not feeing comfortable asking where people stand. When it is family members and long time friends that are spouting how John's word is so true, I clam up, red flag alert. It is wrong to label this anything but wrong. God's Word is God's. Anything else is usurping God in peoples lives. Come worship JRS, etc is what occurred and is still occurring for some. I have been approached by some that claim that only the ones that are left are truly hurting because they are still on the front lines, and that any who have left are deceived. Give me a break. Maybe that is why at this time I go to a church occasionally. I can worship God on my own and let Him heal my hurts from this group. I hope one day to be able to put my feet down in a church community, but right now I am gun shy and suspicious of every church. There is one that I enjoy once in awhile. I miss those I have known for a long time, but I wonder if I ever was truly comfortable since I was always treated as a second class member except by a few. What is real? Until I have answers to that and the questions Who am I, and how did I get sucked up into this, and Where do I go from here I guess I am in limbo. I was always told I had the gift of Faith, well right how the only thing I am holding on to is that since God is love, I can rest in the fact that each of us is loved. No faith remains.