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Pastor's Morning Brief: 80% Cult!


ConureDelSol
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So I just came back from the weekly staff meeting the church has. The pastor tells us what's going on, sometimes preaches a little and then we head back to work. This morning's meeting bugged me.

 

The pastor began talking about how some people have called our church a "cult." He even said that the church fits about "80% of the definition." Then he said but according to the Bible's definition the church fits about 95% of it.

 

Let me fill you in on this church. This church takes in people from the street. That's good. Then they shove like 20 guys and gals into gender-separated houses. Then they give them a Bible and they are expected to read it day in and day out. They are expected to be able to recite verses on cue. During the day, they are split up and are made to work at the various facilities the church uses. This includes the thrift store, the food pantry, janitorial duties, landscaping, etc. They work 8-12 hours for no pay and then are expected to go out on the streets and "soul win." This means they're supposed to heckle and harass those unfortunate enough to pass by within their field of vision about Jesus. Then they get to their overstuffed house and sleep for a couple ours before having to get up and go do everything again. Once they've been in for 6 months, they can go and get some sort of seal of approval or whatever. The problem is, they've been so brain washed, that they don't leave. They keep coming back, still for no pay, and do whatever menial task is assigned to them.

 

People who aren't coming from the streets end up getting reeled in by various testimonies, sermons and the wide range of classes and services that the church offers. A man may come in, get saved and be a good person. Then he'll get involved in a ministry. Then he'll go to classes. Then he'll do more and more and more. Meanwhile, he is spending 6-7 days a week at the church all day and the man's wife never sees him. When she does, all he ever does is talk about church and God and Jesus and all the "blessings" he saw today. The wife would rather have her husband back. She would rather have the man that she married love her or help take care of the children. She would like to have a normal conversation with her husband. Now the husband has come up with this idea of a "Biblical woman" and begins trying to shape and mold his wife into this Godly woman she can never be. She's afraid to say anything about him spending too much time at church because according to society it's "good" to spend time at church. She doesn't want to be shunned by her husband. So she tries to live up to her husband's standards so maybe she can spend time with him. The more the husband berates her for some "unGodly" trait, the more her self-esteem and self-impression is deflated. Next thing you know, you have a woman having routine nervous breakdowns and constant bouts of depression. Her children have either been brainwashed by dad, barely know him, or are spiteful of him for hurting their mother.

 

Yet, the pastor says that it's necessary. He says our church promotes "discipleship" and that we have to "hate our family before we hate Jesus." This is what the Bible says isn't it? You need to give up everything. Love, food, shelter, all to follow some guy who apparently came back from the dead and actually preaches about the importance of FAMILY. The church is always going on about how we need to encourage "family values." In reality, they are enslaving the minds of people gullible enough to believe in their crap and tearing families apart.

 

My aunt went through those "discipleship homes" with other addicts and homeless folk. She is bipolar and has a number of medical issues including dystonia. The woman running the discipleship home refused to take her to the hospital or give her medication because she believed that "God would heal her if she had faith." Eventually, she did get medicine after going to the emergency room. When she got out, the woman who ran the home was downright awful to her. Soon my aunt had a dystonic reaction to her meds. It's essentially when all of your muscles tense as hard as they can in your whole body and can't relax. Her body became contorted and she was rushed to the ER. The woman who ran the home kicked her out after this. Now the homes won't take in people with mental disorders and debilitating medical problems. So I guess the policy for them now is "Oh we'll help you out, but only if you're perfectly healthy." Guess if I ever end up on the streets, I'm fucked.

 

The other scenario with the husband and wife is the exact scenario that has played out between my parents. Dad is the one who spends more time at church than with his wife. Mom takes care of her grandparents, me and my aunt on occasion. In addition to this, dad insensitively berates her with insults about how ungodly she is. When she is stressed, she eats. Now she is obese. Her self-image has nearly been shattered. She breaks down on a daily basis. She desperately tries to make things right by doing little Bible studies with dad and going on dates. They do nothing. She works to keep up with costs of her parents, mine and my cousin's medical costs. She doesn't have the time to go to church all the time and go to classes. If she did, she would lose her job and we would lose the ability to take care of ourselves. I can seriously see my parents getting a divorce after I leave. Mom often comes to me when she's upset, but soon, she'll be stuck with that husk of a human being I call my father and no one else. I am the child who is spiteful of her father because he has hurt my mother. He continues to hurt her. He doesn't help enough with taking care of my grandparents because he is "working for the Lord." I hope I never EVER become like my dad. It is because of the CHURCH that he has become the sad excuse for a husband and father that he is today.

 

My pastor continued going on about how you need to "sacrifice" for the Lord. He went on about how if "you're only here for a paycheck, you don't belong here. You will be miserable the whole time you work here." He's right about that last bit. I'm here for money and a job where I can study for school while working. I am utterly miserable. Guess I need to look harder for another job.

 

So I don't know what definition of a cult he was looking at. You know though, he's right. "Cult" doesn't quite fit my church. It breaks up families. Breeds hate and deceit. Brainwashes people and spreads a message of disdain for homosexuals, seculars, transsexuals, environmentalists, and anyone of another religion. It forces people to work for free on properties that brings them wealth. It reaches out primarily to those who are impressionable or have little to nothing. This isn't just a cult, it's a destructive cult. Personally? I think Hell sounds like a better place.

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Conure, this letter is amazing.Thank you for sharing. I dont have time right now - but I am going to respond to this later........ sounds sooooo much like my old church!!!woohoo.gifWendytwitch.gif

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So I don't know what definition of a cult he was looking at. You know though, he's right. "Cult" doesn't quite fit my church. It breaks up families. Breeds hate and deceit. Brainwashes people and spreads a message of disdain for homosexuals, seculars, transsexuals, environmentalists, and anyone of another religion. It forces people to work for free on properties that brings them wealth. It reaches out primarily to those who are impressionable or have little to nothing. This isn't just a cult, it's a destructive cult. Personally? I think Hell sounds like a better place.

 

Welcome to ex-C! Thank you for sharing your experience. If I had to put up with that I would go looking for another job and when I could I would definitely leave that church. Hope your situation improves.

 

I think your pastor is using the Christian definition of "cult". Don't let him fool ya. Christians like to think "cult" means a religion that is competing against the Real True Christians, and of course whoever is using this usually means their own church is part of the Real and True.

 

A better definition in my opinion (I heard this one on the net somewhere but I don't remember where) :

 

A religion is a large, popular cult.

A cult is a small, unpopular religion.

 

In other words the only difference is size.

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Maya Angelou once said, when someone tells you who they are believe them.

 

I'd say when this Pastor tells you what his church is, believe it. Now it's up to you to decide if you want to participate in what he's already admitted he's fostering as a cult in the name of his idea of what god would approve.

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Got a website for this cult........sounds like a bad one.

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Sounds a lot like the assemblies of god, the church I used to belong to. Their comparable program is called teen challenge. They have another program called MAsters Comission that sounds freakishly similar. Very controlled, communal, lots of street preaching and working for free.

 

I too would liketo see the website!

 

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The pastor began talking about how some people have called our church a "cult." He even said that the church fits about "80% of the definition." Then he said but according to the Bible's definition the church fits about 95% of it.

 

Yikes. Judging by what you've shared, that sounds like a cult. That said, 10 years ago I would have merely called it 'over the top'. I too have been closely exposed to religious systems like this. They really fu(ked with my head. At the time I really thought I'd discovered something. You know, some fringe 'remnant' or something. WendyDoh.gif

 

Cults make you focus all of your time, thoughts, energy and money to one goal. They take you out of your familiar surroundings and place you into intense immersion experiences (communal living). Everything you do is for the organization which is hierarchical. Sleep deprivation is often used, so you're always off kilter and succumb more and more to the group.

 

Good for you for recognizing the signs and listening to your inner voice of reason. I'd recommend getting out ASAP--it's just plain creepy. You sound employable, which is more than some in that situation can say. Run!

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Sounds a lot like the assemblies of god, the church I used to belong to. Their comparable program is called teen challenge. They have another program called MAsters Comission that sounds freakishly similar. Very controlled, communal, lots of street preaching and working for free.

 

 

 

Don't forget their secular college ministry, Chi Alpha.

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Oh yes, I forgot to mention that the church has a "School of Urban Ministry" where people who complete the program go to be further brainwashed. I see a good program as helping someone get over an addiction and getting them on their feet so they can go and get a job, start a family, contribute to society and generally be successful in life. Here, they get them over their addiction, work them for no pay so they have no money when they get out, stick them in a school to be "shaped" into the zombie that our church wants, and then, now not knowing any better, they stay working at the church for menial to no pay for the rest of their lives. To me, that's enslavement.

 

I recently searched my church as a cult in Google. What I found on a cult education forum was a 62 page topic full of testimonies of the corruption of this church. Apparently the pastor was caught with a 14 year old girl while he was married and had two kids. He ditched his wife and kids to run off with the 14 year-old and now she's the lead singer for the praise band. Every girl who works in the office is a beautiful young woman. There are rumors that leadership has slept around with all of them. Funds are misused, pas lives in a million dollar home, has several cars, a $100,000 motorcycle, and is always wearing expensive clothing. Dad recently talked about how "wonderful" he was because he sold his Audi to cover a $60,000 debt for the church and bought a BRAND NEW silver, hard-top Jeep instead. He used to have a Hummer and got tired of it and that's when he got the Audi. My guess is that he just got tired of the Audi, in all honesty. There's more.

 

PatrickG, I'll send you a link by PM. I don't want to have anyone I love that are here penalized for my posts about the church. I am currently looking at jobs around the area.

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