Re: The Living Word Fellowship, The Walk, John Robert Stevens
Posted by: changedagain ()
Date: July 18, 2023 12:21AM

From June of 2011:

Posted by: changedagain
Date: June 12, 2011 01:21AM

I've reached out recently to current members that I have known for years, but they won't talk about the walk or what is going on. They will not respond to me if I question what they are doing.

The short answer is they probably believe they are on the right path, and having invested most of their lives in this, are wary of listening to anyone that might sway them from their course. Most of the people in TLWF tend to be extremely loyal in nature, genuine in their commitment--and instinctively resistant to anyone that does not share the viewpoint that they are being led by a word from God. Their first responsibility, as they see it, is to be obedient and not lose faith. You represent a challenge to this.
That said, the double standard is obvious once you've created some distance from this mass hypnosis. The leadership
(Hargraves), do not subject themselves to the same requirements they lay upon everyone else. Is anyone, even if designated to do so, really free to check their actions or teachings...without fear of retribution?
But if you are Christ in the earth--why allow yourself to be crossed by someone else?
It's good being Christ in the earth.

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Re: The Living Word Fellowship, The Walk, John Robert Stevens
Posted by: changedagain ()
Date: July 18, 2023 08:03PM

From August of 2013:

Posted by: Saw enough
Date: August 13, 2013 02:52PM

It would be nice if churches, like doctors, took an oath to "First, do no harm."

The Living Word Fellowship has been marked by a series of abusive relationships and a lack of transparency, dating back to its beginning. For example:

Sexual abuse was common in churches like Anaheim, San Diego, Washington Iowa, the Valley, Brazil, the Bay Area, the Living Word Building and countless others.

Funds were misappropriated in ventures like Brazil and the ill-fated silver mine.

There was always secrecy around the function of the Blix House as a cover for John & Marilyn's relationship while he was married.

Hundreds of people were spiritually mistreated by their shepherds -- shamed, driven out, "blown out," shunned, put on demeaning discipline programs or publicly called out in the name of the work of the cross.

John claimed to have been transported 7 years into the future to see the Kingdom and to have returned from his several-hour long vision disoriented. One of the girls affiliated with the Blix House later claimed to have been with him that day. John may have also fathered a child -- some of these things were commonly talked about by people in the know or by younger kids but who knows if it was ever addressed publicly?

Secrecy surrounding John's last days, when commissions were given and authority changed hands to Marilyn Stevens and Gary Hargrave. Chaos surrounding John's death when some people claimed to feel a freedom and release in their spirits and others angrily took over services to demand John's resurrection because "We need our father back." Gary later announced that John had taken down Satan with his death. This may or may not be believed still.

Manipulative relationships, breakups, divorces, remarriages, affairs, and more remarriages.

The assignment of "designated relationships" where people were instructed to submit to relationships as to Christ. Sometimes this took the form of husbands being told to submit to their wives, pastors to church members, everyone to Marilyn and Gary, old people to young people. Many of these relationships deteriorated into abuse, but the leadership just moved on to the next subject.

Abusive relationships where Marilyn was allowed to vent her anger at the people because they had "violated" her spirit or not paid enough respect. Commissions doled out to those who were the most violent supporters of Marilyn. Angry sermons from the new pastors about either getting with the revelation that Marilyn was Christ in the earth or getting the hell out of the church were common. Mathematicians would be required to count the number of regime changes that have taken place in churches, schools, relationships and businesses in the last 25 years.

Hiring of public relations experts to improve their image. Cleansing their website from all of their defensive "We are not a cult" arguments and "debunking the myths" terminology and presenting themselves as a mainstream Christian church.

Claims that everything is different now, although the same patterns of controlling shepherding structures remain in place.

Always with the claim that they were on the front lines of creating change in the earth. Fasting and prayer to control the outcome of elections. Then when the results were disappointing to most of the people in the congregation being told that it was okay because in reality they are commissioned to control the nations through their prophecy, according to the vision from John. Or now being told that Gary & Marilyn's prayers for the Catholic church resulted in the election of the current pope, who seems almost too good to be true because he believes in weird things like mercy and not being judgmental. Maybe they can bathe in the reflected glory of someone else.

If they were just their own echo chamber and met together to reassure each other that they were awesome, perhaps they would not do much harm. But because they continue to come down with such a heavy hand on people, I do not think it is wrong for people to say somewhere like on this forum, "It seems that these people have done more harm than good."

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Re: The Living Word Fellowship, The Walk, John Robert Stevens
Posted by: changedagain ()
Date: July 18, 2023 08:17PM

Posted by: Onion
Date: April 28, 2019 07:58AM

Changedagain - Thank you for sharing saw enough from 2013. Whoever he or she is, I would like to give them thanks. This post is beautifully written and 100% accurate.

Some things began to change last year as a result of people bravely taking a stand. I understand some private communications started the ball rolling quite some time before the public exposures of October 2018. But many of the promises made in October and November are proving to be more smoke blown up our collective skirt.

I was advised by a very reliable source that there are weekly "prayer meetings" in various locations where the focus of the intercession is blessing Gary Hargrave and praying for the Lord to guide his next steps/his current and future ministry. Some of these groups are led by people who are unwavering in their loyalty to Gary and standing firm in their support, facilitation and probable participation in the wrongdoings of the past, or in present and future plans for more wrongdoing. One of the groups interceding for Gary is in San Diego and is led by Gary's cohort Bruce Larson, who is Gary's personal accountant and officer/director/trustee on Shiloh U, Hargrave Ministries, and likely the Trust which has been the source of funds for Gary's unfettered spending for decades (my opinion/conclusion based on credible information and documentation).

I am researching what action is needed to approach Legistors about the need for nonprofits to face consequences for housing sexual predators, blaming victims, and the gender bias involved in blaming women for their rapes, and likewise blaming children and adult victimes (male and female) for sexual abuse. Sometimes action is taken legally as we have seen with the Catholic church but much, much more needs to be done.

Churches should not be able to retain their tax exempt status when they behave as the source of harm to people, adults and children, and try to hide it under the guise of "handling it within their church." That's fine - but they shouldn't be able to benefit by retaining tax exempt status when their policies are, have been and continue to be harmful (lifelong consequences to the victims).

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Re: The Living Word Fellowship, The Walk, John Robert Stevens
Posted by: changedagain ()
Date: July 18, 2023 08:49PM

Saw enough wrote:
Or now being told that Gary & Marilyn's prayers for the Catholic church resulted in the election of the current pope

I wonder if the pope was aware of their role in getting him elected, and if so, he even bothered thanking them. I don't mean to cast aspersions toward the pope. It's just something that crossed my mind.

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Re: The Living Word Fellowship, The Walk, John Robert Stevens
Posted by: changedagain ()
Date: July 21, 2023 01:26AM

Bears repeating...

Posted by: rrmoderator
Date: July 16, 2013 05:53PM

Ten warning signs of a potentially unsafe group/leader.

Absolute authoritarianism without meaningful accountability.

No tolerance for questions or critical inquiry.

No meaningful financial disclosure regarding budget, expenses such as an independently audited financial statement.

Unreasonable fear about the outside world, such as impending catastrophe, evil conspiracies and persecutions.

There is no legitimate reason to leave, former followers are always wrong in leaving, negative or even evil.

Former members often relate the same stories of abuse and reflect a similar pattern of grievances.

There are records, books, news articles, or television programs that document the abuses of the group/leader.

Followers feel they can never be "good enough".

The group/leader is always right.

The group/leader is the exclusive means of knowing "truth" or receiving validation, no other process of discovery is really acceptable or credible.

Ten warning signs regarding people involved in/with a potentially unsafe group/leader.

Extreme obsessiveness regarding the group/leader resulting in the exclusion of almost every practical consideration.

Individual identity, the group, the leader and/or God as distinct and separate categories of existence become increasingly blurred. Instead, in the follower's mind these identities become substantially and increasingly fused--as that person's involvement with the group/leader continues and deepens.

Whenever the group/leader is criticized or questioned it is characterized as "persecution".

Uncharacteristically stilted and seemingly programmed conversation and mannerisms, cloning of the group/leader in personal behavior.

Dependency upon the group/leader for problem solving, solutions, and definitions without meaningful reflective thought. A seeming inability to think independently or analyze situations without group/leader involvement.

Hyperactivity centered on the group/leader agenda, which seems to supercede any personal goals or individual interests.

A dramatic loss of spontaneity and sense of humor.

Increasing isolation from family and old friends unless they demonstrate an interest in the group/leader.

Anything the group/leader does can be justified no matter how harsh or harmful.

Former followers are at best-considered negative or worse evil and under bad influences. They can not be trusted and personal contact is avoided.

Ten signs of a safe group/leader.

A safe group/leader will answer your questions without becoming judgmental and punitive.

A safe group/leader will disclose information such as finances and often offer an independently audited financial statement regarding budget and expenses. Safe groups and leaders will tell you more than you want to know.

A safe group/leader is often democratic, sharing decision making and encouraging accountability and oversight.

A safe group/leader may have disgruntled former followers, but will not vilify, excommunicate and forbid others from associating with them.

A safe group/leader will not have a paper trail of overwhelmingly negative records, books, articles and statements about them.

A safe group/leader will encourage family communication, community interaction and existing friendships and not feel threatened.

A safe group/leader will recognize reasonable boundaries and limitations when dealing with others.

A safe group/leader will encourage critical thinking, individual autonomy and feelings of self-esteem.

A safe group/leader will admit failings and mistakes and accept constructive criticism and advice.

A safe group/leader will not be the only source of knowledge and learning excluding everyone else, but value dialogue and the free exchange of ideas.

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Re: The Living Word Fellowship, The Walk, John Robert Stevens
Posted by: changedagain ()
Date: July 21, 2023 09:48AM

From February of 2014:

Posted by: changedagain
Date: February 04, 2014 06:18AM

paleface Wrote:
> There actually are a few dead bodies in the
> wake of the SS TLW. Several suicides from people
> that felt they could never measure up to the
> demands made by shepherds. I can't help but think
> they would be alive today, if they hadn't been
> exposed to the insane LW doctrines.

So much of the "dealings of the Lord" and the application of "the cross" pounded by the leaders (gary, marilyn etc.) into the minds of the followers have had the net effect of stripping people of their self-esteem, making them dependent on what approval they receive from their shepherds, and subservient to an agenda from which they really receive no benefit. The god revealed in the "living word", especially post-John, is at best a sociopath. Unfortunately, suicide has been the choice of some to escape this oppression. Sad.

Posted by: Invisible
Date: February 04, 2014 05:10PM

I remember how when one member died an early death - not suicide - his heart just gave out - I remember how the leader of the church , took a position at that man's memorial service to carrying on emotionally voicing how angry and upset he was with this man who died , for not having walked in the word over his life. He was voicing to the members of the church that this man was a spiritual failure.

Posted by: changedagain ()
Date: February 04, 2014 06:42PM

The man who died of heart failure was a friend of mine. His name was Bob. The man who broke the news of his death (during a church service in the Valley), and labeled him a failure, was Gary.
BTW, I know how this affected you, because I am aware of who you are.

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Re: The Living Word Fellowship, The Walk, John Robert Stevens
Posted by: changedagain ()
Date: July 25, 2023 03:59AM

And then there's this:

Posted by: Invisible
Date: September 19, 2014 02:27AM

I was told that at the end of the memorial service, a love offering was taken up for the children of the man who had died. After the memorial service was over, one of the family members went to the ministry who was in charge of the offering. Instead of receiving the offering taken up for the children, they were told by the ministry that it was being given to the apostolic travel fund, because that is what their father would have wanted.

One of the men who was not a member of the church, who attended the memorial service privately gave an envelope with his gift of money for the man's children directly to the children, saying that he "wanted to make sure they received his gift, so he did not put it in the offering plate."

Interesting how a non-member went about giving his gift directly and privately to one of the man's children- rather than putting it in the collection plate.

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Re: The Living Word Fellowship, The Walk, John Robert Stevens
Posted by: changedagain ()
Date: July 29, 2023 07:32AM

Changed4me wrote:
To be clear, there were several woman prior to Marilyn who were thought to be groomed as John's right hand support ministry... it was not just Marilyn. Ultimately she became the final chosen one.

A belated congrats to Marilyn.

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Re: The Living Word Fellowship, The Walk, John Robert Stevens
Posted by: changedagain ()
Date: August 03, 2023 12:44AM

"Autocratic leaders often lie as a way of demonstrating how powerful they are - so powerful they can bend the truth, deny reality.
-Anne Applebaum

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Re: The Living Word Fellowship, The Walk, John Robert Stevens
Posted by: changedagain ()
Date: August 07, 2023 11:28PM

Discussion group stats:

Posts: 12,389

Page views: 3,469,477

note: This is the 25th year I have been driving the L.A. freeways without a covering. I have no idea why I keep testing fate. Anyway, wish me the best.

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