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Old 12-26-2017, 08:53 PM   #1
Baruch
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I am happy to have found this website 3 or 4 days ago. I worshipped with the local churches in Texas and Colorado from 1975 to 1987. My wife and I very politely left after a lot of turmoil in the churches and in our locality 30 years ago. I had a very strong salvation in 1971 through a college ministry and a good foundation in the Word meeting with some evangelical churches until my last year in college. However, I was not entirely satisfied with my Christian experience and was looking for a closer knit community of believers when I met the local church Christians.

I met some wonderful people and my Christian life was revitalized the first three years. It was very exciting being a young person traveling to conferences in different cities, staying with other believers in their homes, going to the love feast every Saturday night and being filled with joy and peace singing hymns in the young people meetings. Best of all I met and married my wonderful wife of 41 years! I was kind of impulsive in those days, naïve and a little crazy in a good way.

However, over time the control issues, being limited to only Living Stream publications, an underlying current of legalism, the continual disparaging of other Christian groups and the constant upheaval from rumors of rebellions and labeling of dissenters as "poisonous" took its toll on my wife and I. It all began to affect my mental health so we quietly went our own way. It took me awhile to decompress, but we eventually started to meet with other Christians in primarily independent Bible churches. We are still committed Christians and I have enjoyed receiving help from other Christians of many varied backgrounds.

After I retired a few years ago I began to study more church history from the early church through the reformation to the present. I'm reading about the exclusive and open brethren and the various Christian writings which had an influence on Watchman Nee and his mentors. I have already found a lot of very interesting narrative and references listed on these forums. I am here to learn and understand everyone's perspective. I pray that God will pour out his grace and mercy on his so that we can forgive others for past wrongs, give us wisdom and discernment to know the truth, and fill us with love for God and for all of our brothers and sisters in Christ.
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Old 12-26-2017, 09:07 PM   #2
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Thank you for posting and welcome! I'm new to this forum also, but haven't been out the church for as long. It's really encouraging, at least for me, to hear about meeting with other Christians after leaving. I'm still having a hard time coming to terms with it. Some doors have been opened so we'll see! I just wanted to thank you for your uplifting and encouraging post
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Old 12-27-2017, 08:58 AM   #3
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Welcome to the forum!

Like many bro/sis, you left during the chaos of the late 80's. Most of us in the Great Lakes Area had not a clue as to what really happened, and were kept in the dark thinking it was some vast global conspiracy to take down the ministry of W. Lee. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Unfortunately for LSM, when they decided to quarantine us in 2005-2010, their past history was made available for all to see on the old "Bereans" forum, and now on this one. Before the internet came along, LSM used to hide their old sins under the cover of lies, but now all can see who they really are.

I too read much on the initial Brethren split in order to understand the underlying dynamics at work in both of the exclusive systems. Darby's actions against Newton and Muller exposed everything. If you read any of the Exclusive historians, you will never know what really happened. I was helped by the following:
  • W B Neatby's "History of the Plymouth Brethren." Excellent insider account, but scholarly and difficult in places, at least for me
  • F. Roy Coad "A History of the Brethren Movement." Great history.
  • H.A. Ironside "A Historical Sketch of the Brethren Movement."
  • Henry Groves "Darbyism: Its rise, Progress, and Development." His father was A. N. Groves whom I consider the real founder of the Brethren Movement
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Old 12-27-2017, 11:07 AM   #4
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Awesome and amen! Welcome.
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Old 12-27-2017, 01:22 PM   #5
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Welcome to the forum!

Like many bro/sis, you left during the chaos of the late 80's. Most of us in the Great Lakes Area had not a clue as to what really happened, and were kept in the dark thinking it was some vast global conspiracy to take down the ministry of W. Lee. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Unfortunately for LSM, when they decided to quarantine us in 2005-2010, their past history was made available for all to see on the old "Bereans" forum, and now on this one. Before the internet came along, LSM used to hide their old sins under the cover of lies, but now all can see who they really are.

I too read much on the initial Brethren split in order to understand the underlying dynamics at work in both of the exclusive systems. Darby's actions against Newton and Muller exposed everything. If you read any of the Exclusive historians, you will never know what really happened. I was helped by the following:
  • W B Neatby's "History of the Plymouth Brethren." Excellent insider account, but scholarly and difficult in places, at least for me
  • F. Roy Coad "A History of the Brethren Movement." Great history.
  • H.A. Ironside "A Historical Sketch of the Brethren Movement."
  • Henry Groves "Darbyism: Its rise, Progress, and Development." His father was A. N. Groves whom I consider the real founder of the Brethren Movement
Thank you for posting-I was personally so affected by just the situations in the last few decades but obviously, there's so much more to understanding the movement. I've got a few things added to my reading list now- thanks Ohio!
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Old 12-27-2017, 04:37 PM   #6
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I am happy to have found this website 3 or 4 days ago. I worshipped with the local churches in Texas and Colorado from 1975 to 1987.
Welcome. There are several posters on this site from Texas. I was in Houston in 1978, moved to Irving when the construction began and then moved to Odessa 18 months later after the Peter training.

OBW is from the DFW area and Igzy is from Austin.
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Old 12-27-2017, 04:53 PM   #7
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Thank you for posting-I was personally so affected by just the situations in the last few decades but obviously, there's so much more to understanding the movement. I've got a few things added to my reading list now- thanks Ohio!
Back in 2002 GLA and Anaheim leaders met in AZ and agreed on the so-called Phoenix Accord. Perhaps it was posted here. It was really childish, promising things like "we will not use the podium to bad-mouth one another." It was never adhered to, and after I saw it, I realized that another quarantine/storm was brewing. The Lord then put in me the interest in understanding what happened to the Plymouth Brethren, our forebears. I read all I could, and those were the best.

The similarities were striking. Even some of the characters -- 160 years and 2 continents apart -- seemed identical. By knowing Darby, I could understand W. Lee, which I felt was difficult. There is no way to conclude, at least in my mind, that LSM leadership was all good or all bad, and that seemed to be the decision most were faced with. Roy Coad said it best with his simple summary, "with John Darby there is so much good, and so much more wrong." The same applied to W. Lee.

I post here because so many people got hurt in a movement, which would never would admit any wrong doing. How can they ever defend the character of Philip Lee who ran LSM, ruled over the co-workers, and became a defacto dictator? I'm not here to judge the Lord's servants, but when their actions damage God's children, then others cannot be silent. (Matt. 18.31)
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Old 12-27-2017, 06:44 PM   #8
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"By knowing Darby, I could understand W. Lee, which I felt was difficult. There is no way to conclude, at least in my mind, that LSM leadership was all good or all bad, and that seemed to be the decision most were faced with. Roy Coad said it best with his simple summary, "with John Darby there is so much good, and so much more wrong." The same applied to W. Lee. "

I suspect, for really intelligent minds who genuinely love the Lord and want to serve him, the ability to influence and control behaviors due to being so gifted-actually becomes a curse to them. The need to control our environments is something we all have to face, learn to manage, and learn to balance. I can imagine WL being elated with the beginning growth of the churches but when problems start to happen, the need to control came in. Obviously, I don't know- it's just a speculation that would make sense, to me at least.

I really want to read those, thanks again for posting. I've said it a lot but the sociology of the movement is almost predictable and gives a good perspective on what mistakes are commonly made with Christian groups and many other groups.

I'm really interested to learn about Darby, I have only read good things about him. Is that because I was raised in the local church? Guess I'll have to read to find out! Crossing my fingers there is an audiobook for them too
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Old 12-27-2017, 06:51 PM   #9
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I post here because so many people got hurt in a movement, which would never would admit any wrong doing. How can they ever defend the character of Philip Lee who ran LSM, ruled over the co-workers, and became a defacto dictator? I'm not here to judge the Lord's servants, but when their actions damage God's children, then others cannot be silent. (Matt. 18.31)
So they never admitted and apologized publicly for Philip Lee's abuse? I almost can't believe it. I don't understand how you could even call yourself a Christian if you didn't repent to the saints, part of the body of Christ, for any support or power given wrongly to Philip Lee. I definitely don't want to throw out allegations that are hearsay but it's pretty obvious with him being excommunicated that there is some truth there. I heard one sister got pregnant due to this abuse. Like I said, I heard this from a child of another elder who was close to the situation and don't want to accuse without really knowing. I just think its important to say to convince people that these things that are being said have never been addressed with LSM. Do you really think an organization or business just CHANGES overnight with him being gone? He set up the business a certain way. I would be very interested to know where/how the money comes in/is spent/and what royalties are paid.

Does anyone know that??

Did the church in Anaheim say anything about it, ever??

I feel like I still subconsciously give them the benefit of the doubt with things and assume it was handled in the best way. That's typical church kid thinking for you! But really looking at this, I feel like to not acknowledge it publicly and apologize is such an abusive power move over the saints. People were hurt, sexually assaulted, and they pretended it didn't happen?

Even the Catholic Church admits their faults with abuse.

I don't want to have the wrong idea here so I want to make sure I'm understanding this. They really have never apologized to the saints on Philip Lee's behalf or acknowledged the abuse publicly? I just don't understand how they could do that and get away with it. It literally blows my mind.

Sorry- I'm not "quoting" your comment correctly Ohio, I'm not sure what I did there! oops

Also, I'm apologize for my "newbie" bad manners saying this on other peoples threads. I'm still figuring all this out
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Old 12-27-2017, 08:06 PM   #10
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Thank you Kumbaya, Ohio and others for your posts! I will definitely take a look at the books listed as resources on the history of the brethren. As a side note, there is a group of Plymouth Brethren in Queensland, Australia who have really taken the idea of "Exclusive" to an extreme level. They won't even eat with anyone else but other members of the group. They number about 40,000 and are very controversial in Australia.

I have a question about the "Shouters" in China. Did these house churches eventually grow out of the remnant of the Little Flock members who stayed in China after the communists took over? The government considers them a cult and there is conflicting evidence as to whether they are connected to the local churches (I assume the church in Taipei). Of course there are thousands of other house churches in mainland China in addition to the government sanctioned Christian churches. I read that there was a tremendous Christian revival in China after the cultural revolution and there are probably as many born again Christians in China as there are in the U.S.
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Old 12-27-2017, 08:16 PM   #11
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Welcome, Baruch. I like the spirit of your posts. I say a big amen to your prayer.

The Lord be with your spirit. Grace be with you.
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Old 12-27-2017, 08:29 PM   #12
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Thank you Kumbaya, Ohio and others for your posts! I will definitely take a look at the books listed as resources on the history of the brethren. As a side note, there is a group of Plymouth Brethren in Queensland, Australia who have really taken the idea of "Exclusive" to an extreme level. They won't even eat with anyone else but other members of the group. They number about 40,000 and are very controversial in Australia.

I have a question about the "Shouters" in China. Did these house churches eventually grow out of the remnant of the Little Flock members who stayed in China after the communists took over? The government considers them a cult and there is conflicting evidence as to whether they are connected to the local churches (I assume the church in Taipei). Of course there are thousands of other house churches in mainland China in addition to the government sanctioned Christian churches. I read that there was a tremendous Christian revival in China after the cultural revolution and there are probably as many born again Christians in China as there are in the U.S.
LSM has recently disavowed any connection with "shouters" in order to protect their image.

One off-shoot of the shouters is the "Lord Changhow" sect, which is Lee's name in Chinese. These have begun to worship him, taking the Minister of the Age title to new heights. Another one is the Eastern Lightning cult. The poster aron has written much about these aberrant LC splinter groups.

Exclusive Brethren have become super strange. One legality is that they cannot eat with unsaved family members older than 12 years. Another is the rule that their underground sewer lines can not be shared with unbelievers. The true Darby lineage is the most strange. The sooner in time that they had excommunicated you, the better your chances of normality. They have a similar lineage of leaders as the RC popes. One of tnem, James Taylor Jr, who succeeded James Taylor Sr., had the morals of Philip Lee. JTsenior was the one who excommunicated W. Nee.
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Old 12-27-2017, 08:39 PM   #13
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Unfortunately, local church leadership views all requests for apologies, discussion of problems, and/or issues as “rebellion”, “opposition, “poison, etc. Instead they excommunicate, make pronouncements of “quarantine”, order shunning, and/or threaten and sometimes pursue lawsuits. So, nothing ever gets resolved. At least I haven’t seen any since 1978.

It’s sad, but it turns out that violating “Love one another” for the sake of loving “The Minister” and “The Ministry” is Standard Operating Procedure.... straight out of Darby’s playbook?
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Old 12-27-2017, 08:48 PM   #14
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Thanks. I also just found the thread "Eastern Lightning/The Shouters and the Local Church Cult" which has a lot of information.

I just started reading the 2006 edition of "China's Christian Millions" by Tony Lambert of OMF International which is the successor to the China Inland Mission. Mao and the CCP caused so much suffering in China. The moving of the Holy Spirit there has been incredible after Mao died and the Cultural Revolution ended..
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Old 12-28-2017, 06:54 AM   #15
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So they never admitted and apologized publicly for Philip Lee's abuse? I almost can't believe it. I don't understand how you could even call yourself a Christian if you didn't repent to the saints, part of the body of Christ, for any support or power given wrongly to Philip Lee. I definitely don't want to throw out allegations that are hearsay but it's pretty obvious with him being excommunicated that there is some truth there. I heard one sister got pregnant due to this abuse. Like I said, I heard this from a child of another elder who was close to the situation and don't want to accuse without really knowing. I just think its important to say to convince people that these things that are being said have never been addressed with LSM. Do you really think an organization or business just CHANGES overnight with him being gone? He set up the business a certain way. I would be very interested to know where/how the money comes in/is spent/and what royalties are paid.

Does anyone know that??

Did the church in Anaheim say anything about it, ever??

I feel like I still subconsciously give them the benefit of the doubt with things and assume it was handled in the best way. That's typical church kid thinking for you! But really looking at this, I feel like to not acknowledge it publicly and apologize is such an abusive power move over the saints. People were hurt, sexually assaulted, and they pretended it didn't happen?

Even the Catholic Church admits their faults with abuse.
I never heard a sister got pregnant. What a shame. The Catholic Church only admitted sins when the spotlight was too bright to deny. LSM has never reached that point. Put them on "60 Minutes," and then they will repent.

Philip Lee was excommunicated by the elders in Anaheim. So W. Lee portrayed these elders as part of a vast global conspiracy to destroy his ministry. They were libeled and slandered. (Read John Ingalls' account Speaking the Truth in Love.) Meetings were held, books were written, and Ingalls and other godly men were all expelled or left voluntarily. After all the smoke settled, W. Lee had his new lackey elders restore Philip to good standing. What a sham!

Some questioned how Philip could even be excommunicated since he was probably unsaved and never even met with the church. But then how could WL place him in charge of a Christian publishing house, when his real role was to bring all the elders and co-workers around the world under subjection to him. (Read the horror stories of what Philip did to the German saints when John So refused to bow down to him.) Philip was a known predator like Harvey Swinestein with a trail of victims. There is no more reason to extend the "benefit of the doubt" to any LSM leader. They are all complicit.
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Old 12-28-2017, 07:01 AM   #16
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Unfortunately, local church leadership views all requests for apologies, discussion of problems, and/or issues as “rebellion”, “opposition, “poison, etc. Instead they excommunicate, make pronouncements of “quarantine”, order shunning, and/or threaten and sometimes pursue lawsuits. So, nothing ever gets resolved. At least I haven’t seen any since 1978.

It’s sad, but it turns out that violating “Love one another” for the sake of loving “The Minister” and “The Ministry” is Standard Operating Procedure.... straight out of Darby’s playbook?
Yes, straight from the Exclusive Brethren playbook. Like WL, Darby tried to "stay above the fray" by allowing thugs like G.V. Wigram to assault George Muller and any who sided with him. But Darby was fully complicit as evidenced by his infamous last encounter with Muller, who btw demanded a little accountability.
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Old 12-28-2017, 09:33 AM   #17
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I never heard a sister got pregnant. What a shame. The Catholic Church only admitted sins when the spotlight was too bright to deny. LSM has never reached that point. Put them on "60 Minutes," and then they will repent.

Philip Lee was excommunicated by the elders in Anaheim. So W. Lee portrayed these elders as part of a vast global conspiracy to destroy his ministry. They were libeled and slandered. (Read John Ingalls' account Speaking the Truth in Love.) Meetings were held, books were written, and Ingalls and other godly men were all expelled or left voluntarily. After all the smoke settled, W. Lee had his new lackey elders restore Philip to good standing. What a sham!

Some questioned how Philip could even be excommunicated since he was probably unsaved and never even met with the church. But then how could WL place him in charge of a Christian publishing house, when his real role was to bring all the elders and co-workers around the world under subjection to him. (Read the horror stories of what Philip did to the German saints when John So refused to bow down to him.) Philip was a known predator like Harvey Swinestein with a trail of victims. There is no more reason to extend the "benefit of the doubt" to any LSM leader. They are all complicit.

This is all heartbreaking to me. I think, because my parents followed and believed this movement so strongly. It's not that it's just wrong, it's the lies and deceit that made people separate from extended family members and sacrifice so much! I know the stress my dad was under and his life and choices were his own. I just wish I could talk to him now about what he saw/knew and I can't help but wonder about the level of stress he had going on- knowing some of this. I know he loved Jesus, and meant well. I just can't imagine how hard it would be to serve or be an elder, see this abuse, and just go on. That has to be a burden mentally. I'm realizing too that we all have so much in common, but there are different pro's and con's of coming into the LC as an adult, and growing up in it. The level of indoctrination is something I feel I need professional counseling to come out of, and I'm looking into that for next year. On the other hand, I'm grateful that I have the majority of my adulthood to find myself and grow my relationship with God outside the LC. I'm really thankful for that.

I've read John Ingalls account and didn't put two and two together that the disconnect between the church in Anaheim and WL was because of Philip Lee, or mainly because of him. I'm remembering now his account talking about making a decision about a "brother being excommunicated" where the elders didn't agree. I didn't realize that he was talking about Phillip Lee! That makes me have more respect for him knowing that now. He never even mentioned the offenses, I read about it elsewhere. I didn't sense any spirit of attacking, just love and honesty. I also didn't realize that after they left and confronted WL about his son, PL was still involved. That's just shocking that they would keep him there. I read on here that some suspect PL was blackmailing WL. I just can't imagine why WL would keep his son on after being confronted about this issue and knowing what had occurred. Obviously it's just speculation but it would make sense that he was either being blackmailed or that things at LSM weren't in a position to just hand over to another member. Given WL's control over LSM, it seems like WL could still support his son without him continuing to run the business. It makes me wonder how corrupt the situation was at LSM that no one else came in at that time - knowing PL's actions. Still, I don't know and don't want to accuse. I do think though that these are things that should have been explained a LONG time ago. But instead, yes- they attacked the ones confronting PL and sent others to different localities in "less powerful" places. How interesting to be punished and attacked for standing up to abuse in the church. At what point is this not "recovering" anything- just an opportunity for evil to come in and reside? I just wish I could tell this to my family and they would listen. It sounds so crazy, that I will look crazy to them. I wish 60 minutes or some production company WOULD made a documentary over it. I think it would be really helpful to a lot of people. Sometimes I wish I would have gone into investigative journalism- I wish someone who was one would cover this. There are so many people it would help!

I just talked to someone this morning that I grew up with that told me why they left. Her husband's family has many generations in the LC and they all left because of manipulative practices, too much control from Anaheim (has anyone heard that they're appointing deacons and deaconesses now?) and actual physical abuse from a brother to someone who stopped tithing due to not being comfortable with how money was spent. He stopped tithing and just wanted to take a few months to pray about it. I was told he was asked to sign a contract to pay for as long as he earned money and ended up being punched repeatedly in the stomach when he refused.

Please understand, I hesitate even writing that because it's a "rumor", it's a 3rd person account at this point and the person I heard it from was asked not to say names. I don't know names and I don't know if it's true but why would a lie this big spread if there wasn't something suspicious going on. I've always heard, "where there's smoke, there's fire." Someone needs to be looking into these accusations and bring them to light. If stories like this are being spread then I believe a HUGE SPOTLIGHT of accountability to the elders and their practices needs to be put in place. However wrong things were in the 80's, they are shifting still into majorly controlling abuses of power. Since when did the blending brothers in Anaheim pick out the elders and now deacons and deaconesses? It's seems like they're just giving people little power trips and making them feel important and "part of something." It's just so manipulative. So now, being a deacon or deaconess appointed by the "blending brothers" in Anaheim - I'm assuming they "answer" to the brothers now. I would imagine that limits the Lord leading them in how to handle situations. It just seems like the level of control is getting more intense. I've personally felt it when told to "worry about myself and to let the brothers worry about these things." I'm just at a point where I feel like it's been something that's always gone on but is getting worse. It's very strategized now with Christians on campus and recruiting. I've personally heard the term "inoculate" to describe how to talk to students about WL to desensitize them about what they might read on the internet. I'm sorry, but I don't believe Jesus would tell me to do that. The Holy Spirit exists so there is no need to inoculate. What they're doing is coercive persuasion. It's not right. When issues come up and might look bad to new members, there's a lot at stake with losing them and others, so offenses are just swept under the rug. They're afraid of losing people so they aren't holding people accountable for their abuse. I'm going to try to find out more about this "brother" that was punching the other one over tithing. I'm hoping he was held accountable! I just know I've seen other situations where there are no apologies made and things are just swept under the rug in efforts to not "damage people." If you do know of a bad situation, more pressure is put on you to be quiet, AKA "know your function in the body", and if that doesn't work- its "doctrine over person" mentality so just cut off the relationship or worse, attack and quarantine them if they speak out against the LC! I've spoken with a child of an elder (who many of you probably know and have been mentioned on this site) that told me they heard about people being hushed in the Philip Lee scandal and "paid off" for their silence. I just wish everyone could come forward and share their stories. I know many do but I feel there's an indoctrinated fear to stand up against the leadership. I can't help but to think that if more people did, that they wouldn't be able to get away with it.

I know this is a CRAZY concept, but why can't the local churches just STOP buying materials from LSM and stop letting the blended brothers (LSM) control them? There's no reason why they couldn't function as an independent Bible based non-denominational church. I really don't see that as division. I see it as healthy! I heard of a situation in a church where the members were voting on various issues and discussing them as a group. I can't believe I've never thought about how normal and healthy that could be and also that I've never seen in it the LC. I wish more people in the LC could see this and deprogram without fear that their identity would be take away or that they would suffer in their relationship with the Lord or fellowship with other Christians. I personally know that I would come back and meet with them and I think that a lot of others would too! Cut out LSM, cut out the bookstore, cut out the FTT (AKA thought reform practice school where you read the Bible too) and just read the Bible. Focus on what the BIBLE says, the main issues of the faith, and let the Holy Spirit lead you to other Christian books on your own. I believe those are the basic ideas of a healthy church. I don't believe anything needs to be recovered. If you're saved, you're a member of the body of Christ and we all have our own paces and journey, and experiences with the Lord. It's not produced from a school like the FTT that uses thought reform methods to make Christian clones that all think the same. I wonder if there's a thread about the FTT graduations, now that is something I believe we could all laugh at, with Jesus. I'm sorry- it's beyond ridiculous. Anyways, I just want to find somewhere they let the Lord guide the growth and fellowship and have some strategies in place for accountability and limiting power/control. I believe its possible with believers in the LC to change because I know most are followers of Jesus and I believe anything is possible with Jesus! They have just been completely taken over with the LSM mindset. With Jesus, anything is possible, With LSM, nothing is possible except their agenda! When I say LSM, I'm using blending brothers and LSM interchangeably bc I believe their goal is one with LSM- just my opinion. I've asked this before and hoping someone can confirm- Is it Benson Philips who is over LSM and also one of the blending brothers? I know several of them, but not sure how many there are. Are they elders too in a locality? Hoping to clear that up if anyone knows....

Back to my point of speaking out against the bad practices. There's more I want to say but I don't want people to recognize the situation and cause problems for people I care about that are in the LC. That's their story to share, not mine. I do wish more people would speak up though! I'll just say that there are older saints who have been around since the 70's that love the Lord, my parents included, and many of my friends parents - and a lot of them just feel stuck. I know of some that don't like what they're seeing but their mindset is, "Where else can we go?" They don't realize that this has become something so bad, they still think the church needs to be recovered and they are the ones doing it.

I believe they know and love the Lord and on some level, we can talk about spiritual things. But it's automatically strained because we both know that we don't agree on these issues so we can't really go past surface level conversation. Then the elephant in the room of us not agreeing makes me feel like they spiritualize everything and that just gets annoying as well. That's the "doctrine over person" technique kicking in, it limits fellowship. You can have a relationship with them but they want to "enlighten" me on God's economy AKA "drink the cool- aid" (sorry, that's mean but you get the point), so our relationship is just stuck in this limbo where I feel like its superficial. That's my biggest issue right now that I'm trying to navigate. We're both trying to "enlighten" each other but the difference is, I've felt the way the have felt before. I see their perspective and know they aren't hearing me so I don't push. I know they see me as "lost and poisoned" and it hurts. It's not a great feeling. I feel like what I'm experiencing is real though and no matter who is right, I can see their mindset is so narrowed that they can't separate their relationship with Jesus from the LC. That in and of itself shows me that they're not in a good mindset. I wish there was a documentary or something like the one recently made on Scientology that would put all the pieces together!

The pieces are all coming together for me slowly and I have more books on my reading list than I'm able to read this year! Ohio, besides the ones you listed, I also want to read the Ferm. of P.R. - maybe just to get a good laugh. Does anyone know if this is one of the ministry books available for free online?

If anyone is interested, there's a documentary on Scientology on A&E that I highly recommend. I think it's worth mentioning because it helped me put things into perspective with the church and my childhood. On the downside, the similarities of many practices are the same- they just vary in degree. It's all mainstream well-known cult/thought reform group tactics. I thought it was interesting how their "sea org" compared to the FTT! But on the bright side- it made me realize how much worse things could be. I at least have to be thankful that even though my family took it to the extreme, not everyone in the local church did and also, the degrees of the unhealthy practices I feel are at "level orange" in the LC as opposed to some cults.... In other words, as bad as it was, there WERE some good things and it could've be worse. We all could have been in a Scientology cult! Yikes! At least we know Jesus even if some of the tactics are the same! If the similarities of practices (not doctrine) between scientology and the Lord's recovery don't make you realize the LC is unhealthy- I don't think you can be convinced. Like I said, its just the practices being used with the Christian experience. But, they didn't offer me anything with my relationship with the Lord that I couldn't have received somewhere else or on my own. The "good" there is found elsewhere, in my opinion. I would definitely recommend that documentary to anyone in or that has been in the LC, just to get some perspective and pick out the similarities. It can be healing if that's what you're needing

God bless you guys today- have a great day!!
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Old 12-28-2017, 11:58 AM   #18
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I never heard a sister got pregnant. What a shame. The Catholic Church only admitted sins when the spotlight was too bright to deny. LSM has never reached that point. Put them on "60 Minutes," and then they will repent.

Philip Lee was excommunicated by the elders in Anaheim. So W. Lee portrayed these elders as part of a vast global conspiracy to destroy his ministry. They were libeled and slandered. (Read John Ingalls' account Speaking the Truth in Love.) Meetings were held, books were written, and Ingalls and other godly men were all expelled or left voluntarily. After all the smoke settled, W. Lee had his new lackey elders restore Philip to good standing. What a sham!

Some questioned how Philip could even be excommunicated since he was probably unsaved and never even met with the church. But then how could WL place him in charge of a Christian publishing house, when his real role was to bring all the elders and co-workers around the world under subjection to him. (Read the horror stories of what Philip did to the German saints when John So refused to bow down to him.) Philip was a known predator like Harvey Swinestein with a trail of victims. There is no more reason to extend the "benefit of the doubt" to any LSM leader. They are all complicit.
What did he do to the German saints? (PL?) I'll search for it but if you know of a thread or link can you send? This really bothers me because I believe he may have been running the FTT in Tapei when my dad was there, and other people I know of....

What was the explanation to the saints when he finally was excommunicated? That it was just all John Ingalls and the other brothers made up story? I know thats when they released the book F.O.P.R.....So he was brought back in, put in place at LSM and then what? When did he leave? Is he alive/kids alive?

Sorry, so many questions! I guess I just feel like if I ever talk to my family about it that I want to know what I'm talking about.
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Old 12-28-2017, 12:45 PM   #19
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This is all heartbreaking to me. I think, because my parents followed and believed this movement so strongly. It's not that it's just wrong, it's the lies and deceit that made people separate from extended family members and sacrifice so much! I know the stress my dad was under and his life and choices were his own. I just wish I could talk to him now about what he saw/knew and I can't help but wonder about the level of stress he had going on- knowing some of this. I know he loved Jesus, and meant well. I just can't imagine how hard it would be to serve or be an elder, see this abuse, and just go on. That has to be a burden mentally. I'm realizing too that we all have so much in common, but there are different pro's and con's of coming into the LC as an adult, and growing up in it. The level of indoctrination is something I feel I need professional counseling to come out of, and I'm looking into that for next year. On the other hand, I'm grateful that I have the majority of my adulthood to find myself and grow my relationship with God outside the LC. I'm really thankful for that.
Don't be too hard on your Dad. He probably began in the LC (like most of us) long before the real nasty stuff happened. Most elders around the country had no contact with Philip Lee, and never saw him in the Trainings. Only the volunteers and staff at LSM in Anaheim were forced to put up with him. Most of the decent LC elders focused on the saints and truly meant well. They perhaps (like me) overly trusted the brothers who led them. Many spent much time in the word of God, a habit begun from the early days.

Since you still cling to the Lord, who is your Healer, you will prosper in the faith by occupying yourself with all the positive -- time with the Lord praying, fellowshiping with others, hearing healthy teaching, studying the word privately, etc. Long ago a great counselor recommended that we go "treasure hunting" our bad experiences, iow digging up what ever positive you can find in your past, clinging to them, and saving them for ever. I have had to do this with my own father.
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Old 12-28-2017, 01:07 PM   #20
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Don't be too hard on your Dad. He probably began in the LC (like most of us) long before the real nasty stuff happened. Most elders around the country had no contact with Philip Lee, and never saw him in the Trainings. Only the volunteers and staff at LSM in Anaheim were forced to put up with him. Most of the decent LC elders focused on the saints and truly meant well. They perhaps (like me) overly trusted the brothers who led them. Many spent much time in the word of God, a habit begun from the early days.

Since you still cling to the Lord, who is your Healer, you will prosper in the faith by occupying yourself with all the positive -- time with the Lord praying, fellowshiping with others, hearing healthy teaching, studying the word privately, etc. Long ago a great counselor recommended that we go "treasure hunting" our bad experiences, iow digging up what ever positive you can find in your past, clinging to them, and saving them for ever. I have had to do this with my own father.
Thank you! I'm sorry if what I wrote suggested I was being hard on him and if I was, I don't mean to be. I wouldn't care so much about all this if I didn't miss him so much and want to ask him all these things! He’s not here though and I just wish I could understand how all this occurred because it’s obviously a major factor in how we were raised. We were extremely sheltered but he was an amazing father in our sheltered environment. There was definitely a culture of raising kids a certain way in the 80’s and 90’s and I think a lot of people inside and outside agree, parents and kids alike- it wasn’t always great for healthy emotional growth and a lot of us weren’t prepared for the “real world.” They were definitely more intense back then and focused on getting the behavior to a certain standard. I saw a lot of “acting” even as a kid and I’ve always been “allergic” to fakeness so I just never acted like I felt something or enjoyed something unless I did. I think that made it worse for me because i felt like somehow, I wasn’t good enough for him even though I know it’s not true. He genuinely wanted me to experience Christ but the way in which it was presented to me was never going to work and it just created a disconnect. I think a lot of kids I grew up with felt somewhat the same, like it was forced on them. We were all “sanctified” and everything was bad or “wordly.” I think a lot of people don’t understand, even Christian books or music was not allowed for a lot of us. I finally got a CD of a Christian female music group in 8th grade! I sometimes forget how sheltered it was back then! But, it did change a lot in the 90’s. I was the oldest and my younger sis had it a lot easier- the culture definitely loosened up for whatever reason. I just think you have to be careful with raising kids in a sheltered environment. I believe there’s truth in raising kids sanctified or set apart- but, it can be taken to an extreme and normal events in childhood don’t happen. For example, feeling disconnected from society and not developing a sense of community and neighborly love. I only developed those things with the saints. It was very “us vs. them” and it’s proven to be unhealthy- especially for kids. I really don't blame him and need to catch myself when I do get upset at his decisions- you’re accountable to what you know and I remember hearing very negative things about psychology. There’s obviously so much more awareness now with childhood development so it’s totally unfair to look back and criticize- I realize that and wouldn’t criticize them even if the world knew- bc they were definitely influenced by a group mentality. I may have suffered in some ways but I know I also have strengths and insight now that I wouldn’t have if my life had been different. I guess I also see my friends I grew up with and feel like they kind of feel “lost” now like me- not fitting in with their families. I just know there’s a lot of people like me and that weighs heavy on me at times thinking the cycle is continuing....I apologize for writing a novel on every response, it’s therapetic for me but I guess that’s what journals are for

I totally understand what you're saying about getting the good from the bad. I'm actually crying right now, that really got me! I kind of realized that I had some criticism for looking into this and wondered why I cared so much but it's to do exactly that. I have to be able to understand why our lives were the way they were so I can heal but also realize the benefits that come from personal growth when you confront this stuff.

Thanks for mentioning that, I think it's important for me to remember that's why I'm doing this. Thanks and I take it to heart )))))
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Old 12-28-2017, 02:31 PM   #21
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I also see my friends I grew up with and feel like they kind of feel “lost” now like me- not fitting in with their families. I just know there’s a lot of people like me and that weighs heavy on me at times thinking the cycle is continuing....

I totally understand what you're saying about getting the good from the bad. I'm actually crying right now, that really got me! I kind of realized that I had some criticism for looking into this and wondered why I cared so much but it's to do exactly that. I have to be able to understand why our lives were the way they were so I can heal but also realize the benefits that come from personal growth when you confront this.
In healing you, God is creating an opening to heal others. And there are others, many of them. The detritus of the LSM/lc, the forgotten, the abandoned, the collateral damage. They are out there, frustrated, confused, angry. Not knowing what went wrong & why they couldn't 'make it'.

As you get light and peace, others will too. God works that way. Because we're all connected.
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Old 12-28-2017, 04:45 PM   #22
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What did he do to the German saints? (PL?) I'll search for it but if you know of a thread or link can you send? This really bothers me because I believe he may have been running the FTT in Taipei when my dad was there, and other people I know of....
Took a while to find but John So's Testimony is here.

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What was the explanation to the saints when he finally was excommunicated? That it was just all John Ingalls and the other brothers made up story? I know thats when they released the book F.O.P.R.....So he was brought back in, put in place at LSM and then what? When did he leave? Is he alive/kids alive?

Sorry, so many questions! I guess I just feel like if I ever talk to my family about it that I want to know what I'm talking about.
Are you referring to John So in the bolded part? If so, the link should help.

As soon as the brothers in Germany learned what was going on, they immediately separated themselves from the corruption in Anaheim. Those in Africa also did so.

I printed it out years ago -- 14 pages -- transcribed from old VHS tapes.
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Old 12-28-2017, 05:06 PM   #23
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I saw a lot of “acting” even as a kid and I’ve always been “allergic” to fakeness so I just never acted like I felt something or enjoyed something unless I did. I think that made it worse for me because i felt like somehow, I wasn’t good enough for him even though I know it’s not true. He genuinely wanted me to experience Christ but the way in which it was presented to me was never going to work and it just created a disconnect. I think a lot of kids I grew up with felt somewhat the same, like it was forced on them.
What you describe here has been mentioned by many others who grew up in the system. Some of it is common to all dedicated Christian families, yet mandates from LSM took everything to the extreme. Like I said before, one of my biggest failures was trusting LC leaders way too much, especially related to my family.

I am concerned that those who are good "fakers" will be hurt the most.
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Old 12-28-2017, 08:42 PM   #24
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In healing you, God is creating an opening to heal others. And there are others, many of them. The detritus of the LSM/lc, the forgotten, the abandoned, the collateral damage. They are out there, frustrated, confused, angry. Not knowing what went wrong & why they couldn't 'make it'.

As you get light and peace, others will too. God works that way. Because we're all connected.
I read this earlier today and I had so much peace. Thank you, I believe that and feel it too. It's unexpectedly beautiful
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Old 12-28-2017, 08:49 PM   #25
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Took a while to find but John So's Testimony is here.


Are you referring to John So in the bolded part? If so, the link should help.

As soon as the brothers in Germany learned what was going on, they immediately separated themselves from the corruption in Anaheim. Those in Africa also did so.

I printed it out years ago -- 14 pages -- transcribed from old VHS tapes.
Thank you! I was going to watch a movie but I think I'll read this instead. I don't really need a "nail in the LC coffin" but I feel like I should be informed if my family ever asks. Thanks for looking up the link- I really appreciate it

I have no idea what occurred then but it's interesting that right now I know there is a lot of effort in Germany (with the Syrian refugees) and also in Africa to build up the churches in the LC. I wonder if they are the same or different cities as back then... maybe a little of both?

Thank you again for looking it up. I have some family and friends that I would be interested to read as well that are still learning/accepting this so it really does help. Thank you.
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Old 12-28-2017, 09:09 PM   #26
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I am concerned that those who are good "fakers" will be hurt the most.
I agree. At some point, you have to question what you're told (truly) and decide for yourself (truly) what you believe. I think the very few YP that I know of that stayed in the church may believe they did that, but in all honesty, they are a bit of the "rule follower" types. I'm not meaning to be condescending. I should probably be more of a rule follower, I really believe that. It's all about balance. I'm on one end of the spectrum though and they're on the other. You have to find the middle, right?

I know I was rebellious, and probably a little bratty and I was just going to question everything, even if it was the best thing for me. So I can take responsibility (at least I believe I am) for my attitude. But, the proof of the YP work not working is definitely in the numbers.

I feel you'd agree these probably apply to other localities- I've heard it's a pretty common issue. I'd estimate that when I was in high school, there were probably 30 of us from jr. high to high school, to maybe a little less than 50 tops counting ones that didn't always come to every meeting. I can think of 6 off the top of my head that still attend that locality. I don't know about others. One of the 6 who I think has issues with the way things are there. I do wonder how it compares to other Christian groups with just the number that continue in their faith. I know 6 might seem like a lot, but I'm thinking about the 30-40 and the ones in the group that I know aren't doing well. We were all like a family, we really were. Maybe a really dysfunctional one but we were all pretty close. There was your normal teenage issues but I can honestly say I feel close to most of them- even if we go years without speaking its very comfortable when I see most of them and I feel there's a bond there. We all spent a lot of time together and I really feel like I'm speaking for most of us. I just can't help but to think if things were different that we'd all be more connected. I know there is some hurt and hard feelings due to certain situations with some of them. I'm a hopeless optimist at heart though and hope this forum or something can turn something around in some way.

In any case, my point is that the one's who stayed weren't the fakers. At least thats how I remember it....Interesting....

Also, the ones who stayed seemed to have a much more lenient life at home growing up than a lot of us did. I think that says a lot.

I think anyone working with YP should absolutely be able to see past the behavior and find out what's really going on. Not everyone can do that- you either can or you can't. I agree that it's difficult to see things from a teenagers perspective but you have to try. Everyone was a teenager at some point!

There was one sister in our locality that I truly loved that was able to do this. Still though, it was pretty regimented. I loved her, but still not the system.

Nothing is black or white, is it?
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Old 12-28-2017, 09:35 PM   #27
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Yes, straight from the Exclusive Brethren playbook. Like WL, Darby tried to "stay above the fray" by allowing thugs like G.V. Wigram to assault George Muller and any who sided with him. But Darby was fully complicit as evidenced by his infamous last encounter with Muller, who btw demanded a little accountability.
I have to read about all this. I had no idea. I always heard great things about him and him being one of the "giant shoulders" WL stood on- or something to that effect. I know of someone that even named their child Darby in the LC- I never heard about any controversy with him. It's this kind of thing that really annoys me.

Realizing what a "spin" the LC puts on church history is just crazy. Just tell it like it happened and let people decide for themselves. NOTHING is black and white and there are always going to be issues, but I don't understand the need to rewrite church history BEFORE WL even came into the picture. Maybe it was mentioned but I just don't remember, I just feel like there's too much that has the LC spin on it and this is probably just another one. Sorry, I'm just realizing I shouldn't post on this thread, should post on my own. Learning all this etiquette

Just out of curiosity- Ohio, do you know anything about WL and his relationship with A.W. Tozer? I like what I've read from him and read somewhere on the forum (can't remember where) that people wondered why they didn't have more fellowship. I've read just a little bit from Tozer and he talks about the Lord in a way that reminded me of how WL did- in some ways. Somehow you've become my go to for question asking since you keep responding, ha!
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Old 12-29-2017, 02:44 AM   #28
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I have to read about all this. I had no idea. I always heard great things about him and him being one of the "giant shoulders" WL stood on- or something to that effect. I know of someone that even named their child Darby in the LC- I never heard about any controversy with him. It's this kind of thing that really annoys me.

Realizing what a "spin" the LC puts on church history is just crazy. Just tell it like it happened and let people decide for themselves. NOTHING is black and white and there are always going to be issues, but I don't understand the need to rewrite church history BEFORE WL even came into the picture. Maybe it was mentioned but I just don't remember, I just feel like there's too much that has the LC spin on it and this is probably just another one. Sorry, I'm just realizing I shouldn't post on this thread, should post on my own. Learning all this etiquette

Just out of curiosity- Ohio, do you know anything about WL and his relationship with A.W. Tozer? I like what I've read from him and read somewhere on the forum (can't remember where) that people wondered why they didn't have more fellowship. I've read just a little bit from Tozer and he talks about the Lord in a way that reminded me of how WL did- in some ways. Somehow you've become my go to for question asking since you keep responding, ha!
I'm not familiar with his relationship wth Tozer.

Concerning Lee's use of spin to rewrite history, you are spot on. I have rejected every bit of church history which I heard from Lee. It was all distorted and self-serving. While other Christians have espoused remnant theology, calling themselves the Restoration, or in our case the Recovery, Lee developed a MOTA genealogy beginning with Martin Luther. In order to make it work, he needs to find a MOTA for every age. His choice of Jean Guyon for the 17th century is so comical.

Darby was chosen for the 19th century. Have you ever read about George Muller's life of faith and work with orphanages? Darby expelled him, and for decades, membership in his little church club was contingent upon condemning Muller. What kind of oneness is that? After all my study of history, I concluded that nearly every quarantine was just a lynching. They had nothing to with teachings or heresy, rather were power struggles to eliminate all potential rivals, and silence those who could speak the truth.

Be careful how much investigative reading you decide to take on. It's endless!
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Old 12-29-2017, 05:02 PM   #29
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Default Re: New to this Website

Quote:
Originally Posted by kumbaya View Post

I really liked that article from assembly life though- wow. Besides being a great writer, he covered so many topics in the LC I've had issues with and more I didn't know about. I had no idea about the factions other than the MW LC's and didn't realize the details of the movement in China. He had some really great points about mistakes being made and I thought his outlook for the future makes sense. I liked his line, "A ship headed towards an iceberg, if not moved, will hit the iceberg." That's probably not an accurate quote but it was something to that effect!
Here is the latest message John Myer gave at Grandview Christian Assembly.

Tell me what you think.

John has made a complete exodus from the Recovery, after serving full-time for nearly a quarter century. He has the dubious distinction of being evicted by both Anaheim and Cleveland.
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