Sunday, August 19, 2012

Should I Stay or Should I Go?


Since I began this blog a year ago, I have received many emails from people both inside the group and outsiders who want to help their friends and acquaintances. The questions I get most often are: “Should I leave?” and “How do I help my friend get out?”

Contrary to what many people may assume about me, I am not on a mission to create a mass exodus. Do I think you should leave? I don’t know. How can you help someone else make that decision? I don’t know. It depends on your age, family situation, and tolerance for rejection.

Although, I am not on a mission to tell people what to do with their lives, since I’ve been asked this question so many times, I have created a decision chart to help individuals consider the variables. If you click the flowchart, you will be able to read it more clearly.



Disclaimer: this chart is intended for examination purposes only and should not be considered personal advice. In the words of Dr. Phil: "do not replace my judgement for your own."

If you are seriously considering leaving, please seek the spiritual counsel of an ordained minister or pastor.

83 comments:

  1. The chart is interesting but I think over simplifies the process people go through when deciding to leave. Your advice to seek spiritual counsel of an ordained minister or pastor is good advice, but that could also cause shunning if people knew. Most people there have a lot of fear seeking out a pastor to talk to. You spoke about your own fear when going to another church for the first time, it is intense and takes a while to overcome.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You make some good points. It does oversimplify things - the point being that I am not qualified to make someone else's decisions or guide them.

      Yes, it is overwhelming to speak to a pastor/preacher from a "worldly" church. Maybe I should amend that to be: "please seek the counsel of a trusted believer?"

      Delete
    2. I don't think the question should be; Should I get out, but should I expand my understanding of what happened in the past to bring us to this point, and then consider opening up your understanding to the bigger picture. The FOC/COTFB is a wonderful way. Some have found the pathway to a brighter hope through a vision of greater understanding. I suggest you consider visiting another Assembly, COTFB, changed as I have said in my other posts from FOC in in 1918. The church is still the same, only the name has changed, and after all, what does the name have to do with it if it is still the same church. If you will go to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Followers_of_Christ
      You will find that the church was founded by Marion Reese, who is directly in my up line baptismal records found at;
      http://www.globalsunshine.com/ChHistory/MyBaptismalrecordsbackto1830.pdf
      This is the way to find your way back to where you need to go. If you are already baptized, your baptism will be accepted, and you will be able to worship with the original church. If you are not baptized, you will be required to attend for some time until you are convinced that you are where you wish to be, and you can then choose the minister of your choice to baptize you, at which time you will then take the Holy Ordinances, foot washing, and greeting the church with a Holy Kiss as we are asked to do in the scriptures. That is my recommendation, and you can email me with any other questions you might have at, bp.clbdirect@gmail.com
      Bro. Bill Porter, minister for 50 years, in; The General Assembly and Church of The Firstborn, now living in Arriola, Colorado

      Delete
    3. A move to the COTFB would be a big step sideways. The COTFB face the same issues as the FOC in Oregon City, those issues being children dying when they did not have to and shunning when you do not follow the rules perfectly.

      Instead, I would suggest that if people are going to leave the FOC they seek Jesus, not another church where the minister claims to have been baptized by the right preacher. 1 Corinthians 1 Paul was facing the same issues where people were so overly concerned about who baptized them, losing sight of Jesus.

      Bill, you say that "the FOC/COTFB is a wonderful way", with respect, the bible says Jesus is the way.

      Delete
    4. Bill,
      If we are going to understand what happened in the past to bring us to this point, we need to go much further back than 1918. Genesis 3 tells the story… sin entered the world because Adam and Eve did not believe God’s word. Ever since then man has lived in a fallen world with an inherited sin nature and are deserving of God’s wrath. Genesis 3 also tells us the offspring of the woman (inference to Jesus) will crush the head of the serpent (inference to Satan). The rest of Genesis traces a single line of Seth’s descendants, observing that it will eventually produce a King through whom all the nations of the earth will be blessed. This is the only lineage that matters, you baptismal lineage can add nothing. Your claim to being the original church is hopeless and fleeting. Jesus is the savior, believing in Him is the only thing that will bring lasting peace and joy.

      Delete
    5. Garth what do you care. You have your prison ministry to worry about. Why try to disprove a cotfb minister. He didn't attack your ministry. The lineage he is pointing to is his churches history, who cares if he is proud of where he comes from.

      Delete
    6. If you ask me Garth seems to care about everyone? Strange isn't it? Whether he knows them or not. The "lowly" and the rest! What's with him caring about others? Strange guy indeed.

      Delete
    7. Re: Anonymous 9:48 AM...it sounds like Garth cares about the truth. It's not Garth vs. Bill as you suggest, but rather the truth of scripture vs. religious tradition. He's not attacking anyone's "ministry" and his own jail ministry isn't the issue. Bill and others who seem to trust in (emphasize as important) their supposed lineage, baptism, or affiliation are totally missing the message of the gospel.

      Those who neglect or pervert God's message with their own pseudo-christian tradition will suffer the same fate as unbelieving Israel. Beware. Eternal life/death is not something to toyed with.

      Consider this frightening warning: Galatians 1:7-9 "...there are some who trouble you and want to pervert the gospel of Christ. But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed. As we have said before, so now I say again, if anyone preaches any other gospel to you than what you have received, let him be accursed."

      Delete
    8. Dear Anon. August 20, 2012 11:25 AM
      I have written a response to your specific questions. I thought it may be best to send it to you privately. If you and Bill would like to send me your email address, I will get you my response. If not then it will be a public comment.

      I really want you to know that it’s good for you to ask questions. I and others on this blog will do our best to get you answers.

      My email address is on the blog, just press the contact tab.

      Delete
    9. Actually, that was for Anon. August 20, 2012 9:48 AM

      Delete
    10. Garth, it's admirable that your working with the most at risk people in our society. Do you speak at church as well, and how far does your ministry extend?

      Delete
    11. My ministry starts with my family. I have been very blessed with a beautiful wife and five children, ages from 19- 2.

      The jail has been a great opportunity for spreading the gospel. The fruit is few and far between, but I have seen many men come to faith through the hearing and reading of God’s word. For the last three years, I have been the administrator for the Saturday night church group at the jail. This month I stepped down from that responsibility and let someone else take my place, but I still do go and speak.

      I am not an elder or a deacon, I have not been to seminary or Bible College, I do not know Greek or Hebrew, but I do speak at church as well. Everything I say at church I am held accountable for. Tuesday nights we have meetings to discuss the things that have been spoken and the message for the coming Sunday. It is a great model for accountability, humility and improvement, as even the elders are given review. If there are any men interested in attending one of these meetings, you can email me.

      Delete
    12. You've truly made an admirable life for yourself. Having the gumption to do the things that you know you should do is the opposite of what most accomplish in their lifetime. I'm sure that you have ambitions beyond what you've accomplished so far, but what a nice start.

      Delete
    13. You are very kind, and I do appreciate your compliments, but I did not make my life, the only thing I contributed is my sin. If there is anything admirable coming from me, it's because of Jesus. I'm not trying to be humble, it's just the truth.

      Delete
    14. “Party On Garth”

      1 In response to what Anonymous wrote.
      2 “A move to the COTFB would be a big step sideways. The COTFB face the same issues as the FOC in Oregon City, those issues being children dying when they did not have to and shunning when you do not follow the rules perfectly.”
      3 What you have written are part truths about the negatives… adding on more truth, all religious factions can be like the F.O.C or COTFB when it comes to rejecting.
      4 There are people in all religious groups that just want to pick on you for anything and every thing, get rid of you as soon as you walk through the door,
      5 Never give you a fair chance at all, saying they can discern your spirit to be evil just to lay eyes on you, even though they tolerate you being around for a short time… till you are so sick, you leave…
      7 Sometimes the ones that have power come up with whatever a cockamamy thing they can just to get rid of you because they don’t like you… doesn’t matter how well you do.
      8 Small religious groups are generally closed of because they have trepidation about the maintenance and administrative requirements...
      9 Their not like: the Catholics, Lutherans, Baptize, or presbyteries.
      10 For baptism, don’t you agree that every religious organization has it procedure of such a thing if you want to be apart of the organization?
      11 As far as women: and babies dying, for not going to the doctor, that is their religious belief, and they are entitled to it…
      12 I wish people would stop bashing them for it, but rather show an act of courtesy to them.
      13 I am sure they did not ask for that to be the case.
      14 If a soldier beliefs it righteous to die for their country, they should be entitled to die in service of what they believe is serving god.
      15 You are 100% correct about Jesus being the way: not a group of people, not their slogan on a building, or their baptism linage.


      J—

      Delete
    15. The generalities you talk about are not true for all religious groups. It sounds like you have been to some weird churches and yes there are some bad ones out there.

      "As far as women: and babies dying, for not going to the doctor, that is their religious belief, and they are entitled to it…"

      Not true. That is why the Hickman's are sitting in jail for six years. Medical care for children is a legal duty.


      "I wish people would stop bashing them for it, but rather show an act of courtesy to them."

      You should explain why you believe that people should show courtesy to those who allow children to die needlessly. To be clear the position taken by the FOC recently is not about religious freedom, is it about the "right" they want to keep and that "right" is to deny children medical care.

      Delete
    16. 1 The generalities I spoke of about religious groups were taken from statistics of truthful witnesses.
      2 I agree that letting a child die, by refusing medical care, in this day and age, is not a highly looked upon thing.
      3 For an adult to refuse medical care: based on validity from the “Original Holy King James Bible”, I have absolutely no problem with that at all.
      4 I understand why they would choose… their kids to live the way they choose to live… I try and put myself, in the other guy’s shoes… so I can understand why, they do what they do.
      5 They feel they are entitled to live free, in peace, and obey their religious believes. And that was the founding principles of The United States Of America.
      6 I’m pretty confident in saying that I don’t think they knew something like that would happen… nor did they wish it to happen, it just did happen.

      Delete
    17. Good can be found in many churches… Encountering opposition some times just comes with the job. By no means is it an uncommon thing for people in the church to have disagreements about certain beliefs of the bible. The one thing that most all Christian churches recognize to be the same: is that god and Jesus are love, peace and truth, in them is no darkness at all.
      It is true that smaller churches are generally closed off because they do not desire the maintenance and administrative requirements... A lot of people do not really stroll into small churches… at all without knowing something about them to begin with, or having some sort of affiliation to them. It is quite evident that if they wanted you there like the Presbyterians, Catholics, Lutherans, Baptist, or Mormons, they would have been doing the administrative requirements of recruiting, advertizing, etc… to welcome new people there.
      Sad to say, but if you are a pretty woman, and such, you might get welcomed in and obtain social acceptance. It is evident to see that pretty ladies have their questions answered, and get invited to church events and such, here in social media.
      Just because: you have rotten luck, in one church, do not give up hope, of finding good, in other churches… it is out there.

      Delete
    18. “Of Course”

      1 “Good can be found in many churches… Encountering opposition some times just comes with the job.”
      2 I know it to be true… i have found good in a lot of churches in my time… with more to come god willing.
      3 Life has its up’s and downs for everyone. It doesn’t slow me down from living a happy life…
      4 I am not trying to saddle churches up with negative baggage… I was just stating a statistic that I have heard from many truthful witnesses.
      5 Hearing the bad things about churches, maybe what has turned a lot of people away from religion these days.
      6 Many things can go good in life; many things can go bad in life… Hope for the best, but don’t be surprised if something doesn’t go that great…
      7 If you do have a bad experience, don’t lose your faith in god just because of it.

      J—

      Delete
  2. I like your flowchart Suzi. :) It really addresses the main concerns, mates and children, and shunning.

    Your disclaimer is great.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Something to consider when looking at how simplified this flow chart seems to be is that people in crisis tend to overcomplicate things and become mired in their own reasoning. I think this chart may be valuable to those who can look at it and see how very close they may be to resolving their own personal issues and dealing with their fears.
    Would it also be helpful to add a box suggesting that the person contact trusted family and friends on the outside who have already left the church?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes - and that's one reason for including contact information of guest bloggers. However, most do not know how to contact those they have been shunning for many years. They should know, however, that their lost family/friends will be happy to hear from them.

      Delete
  4. thank goodness for the internet and facebook. when i left there was no such thing as an internet or cell phone. i was really on my own in a scary world.

    when question what you are doing if it is right or wrong, the holly ghost will answer your prayers and let you know. best spiritual counselor i know.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love how facebook and the Internet has allowed us to reconnect with people from our past.

      Delete
  5. Why is there a secret facebook site for ex followers, seems so dumb on all you guys part. You seem to have the freedom to run us down and tell us how to live our life, but the entire time living your life as you please. And still feel impowered to have your secret little facebook site started by yes Miss Suzi herself.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It serves the purpouses of a way for old friends to reconnect, and for people hurting from what they went through to try and heal, I am not personally apart of this but you have to understand it is traumatic coming out of that place.

      Delete
    2. Yes, I started a support group. Obviously not a secret - and there's no reason it should be. It IS private, as support groups should be.

      Who do you claim is being "run down"? I think this post is proof that I'm not interested in telling anyone how to live their lives.

      Oh, and why is it that the people who make accusations against those who have left can only do so under the secret "Anonymous" pseudonym?

      Delete
    3. please do not write bad things about suzi. if you do not like what she writes don't read it. start your own blog about your own experiences. enlighten the world how life is in the church now.

      suzi you are a wonderful woman and a courage woman. thanks for writing your story.

      Delete
  6. It goes both ways, but more information does no good. Why dont you add other religions and churches in extreme depth to this blog? Its because your mission is the FOC . Who has never bothered you a day since you left. We simply live our life peacefully and quiet. Your facebook site is set that it cannot be found by searching.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't understand how more information can do no good. Knowledge is power. If you don't want to read my blog, you have the freedom to chose to ignore it.

      I look forward to writing about other topics in the future. At the moment my work-in-progress is about my life in the FOC so this is my subject.

      A support group is meant to be private ... if you'd like to join the group, send me an email.

      Delete
  7. Your a piece of work Suzi, I wish you well and the depths of hell, you never fit in and sorry, but your mission to run us down is not fair in any way. Your statements of facts and all that is a whatever, because nobody can cross you, but anything a FOC says is always wrong. Why should anyone even try? It is tossing yor pearls before swine.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So, people who don't fit in with you deserve to go to hell? Salvation is not a popularity contest.

      Delete
    2. "I wish you well and the depths of Hell" the FOC members may not haul you off but they will call you out with vicious words. It has been proven so many times through this blog. Where in god’s name is the love, charity, compassion in such words. You should be ashamed for speaking to anyone that way.

      Delete
  8. This blog is to convince yourselves that you are right and we are wrong. Not fitting in is not a sin. It is a fact that even in high school is not fair. Many work through this, many dont. Suzi was a nice person who could of done ok but made choices, we are not bad people, it does not matter what we say you people find us wrong, but you give yourself the freedom to say any matter of thing you choose. There is no charity in this blog, we are called everything you choose including a cult. I still find it interesting that we dont even ask about the churches you belong to,
    you get to make your own choices. We dont ask how many times you are married, how often you attend church, is it a cult... etc. We let you make your own choices for the religion that you choose. But that is not returned to us. Why wont you leave us alone. If you leave us and our beliefs, ok, you know what we believe before, so why be bitter after? We dont seek you out and blog about you, you have the right to make your choice, why do we not have that choice? There is zero fairness in this blog, it is set up to destroy who and what we belive and that is very not fair. And to correct you Suzi, salvation is not a popularity contest. You would be surprised how much we do for those that life did not give them what we would call fair. Everytime we fight back someone gets after us and shames us, that is not fair. We are tired of the bully effect. LEAVE US ALONE, and none of you ever hear from us ever. We are sheep, trying to stay together, it is not for you people to understand, it is our faith, and we have that right. You will never find us blogging on the ones that left, it was their choice, why can that not be understood? We are living how we believe, if you studied all the religions in the world, they all have their own way, and that should be respected. We are good people, but not perfect, and do not profess to be. Is anyone in your church perfect? no, you all could write many pages on the inperfection of the church members you attend with. Do not get after us for compassion, go back and read from the beginning all that has been said, if it were you people you would find it very weary after a long period of time. Please leave us alone, you have made your point or information that you set out to do. You succeded Suzi

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. But why is it always about your right and I'm wrong wouldn't a better argument be proving God and His word right, rather than a group of people? And why do you guys always have to say "you made the choice to leave" as if it has some eternal consequence, isn't the Christian gospel supposed to be about loving your brothers and sisters? Then why the seperation? Will there be a seperation in heaven? If not why should there be one here? Is it not a reasonable argument that God sent his only begotten Son to die for the sins of all mankind, and not just a particular group of people? Or just certain sects? Will any of my questions that I have struggled with for so long ever be answered by a follower of Christ? But I guess that I made the choice to leave so...

      Delete
  9. Yes many made the choice to leave, many did not. Some followed there mothers and fathers. Others couldn't abide by the rules or were in the "wrong" family with no one to marry. so why stay? Some are bitter but others are not, they just long to see there parents, brothers and sisters, neices and nephews, grandparents. In all these postings no one has explained why families cannot visit and love each other like a family is suppose to.

    ReplyDelete
  10. To 9:35 pm

    You don't ask about any part of their lives because you don't care about them. Where's the charity in that? The Bible convinces them that they are right, never mind how wrong you are. If you don't want these people tearing apart every lousy thing you say, try saying something nice! They tear it apart because you say rediculous things, false accusations, and NOTHING kind. Telling someone to fade away and never speak to, or about you, isn't love. You speak as though your doing them a favor by not looking them up and taking an interest in their lives, it's confusing to you that they don't do the same for you. It's not a favor, indifference is not love, they do love you. They can't do to you what you do to them because they have a conscience. Then you mentioned "fair", as though you could be construed as a victim in any of this, is it "fair" for a person to do no wrong and lose their entire family? Seeking God is not a sin, it's not disorderly conduct, and it's not an attack on you. You are not a victim, your Blog is word of mouth. When a child of someone who has left is molested it is spread throughout the FOC like wildfire. It's celebrated in a sick and perverse way that makes your skin crawl. Compassion? Is that what you call that. When ex- followers get divorced, same story. But where does this information get discovered in the first place? Yes. You do care about past members, but only the horrible things that happen to them. Maybe this blog is so bad for your delicate feelings because it's about overcoming you. It's about a fulfilling life with God, not you. They talk about what a wonderfully full life they have and it must infuriate you. You wanted them to fade away, not be happy. As one of you so perfectly put it"i wish you well in the depths of hell", is that more of the compassion and charity that you'd like to see directed at the FOC. They are the victims here, make no mistake about that. If your tired of being shamed on this blog just stop acting so shamefully. If you can't take good news for what it is then stop reading it. What are you hoping to read? Are you holding out for someone to write about something terrible that happened to them? Are you just waiting to spring into action with a" that's what you get"! If so your in the wrong place. These are success stories, sorry to disappoint you. As Suzie wrote in an earlier entry, hate is not the opposite of love, indifference is. Your demanding that they do to you as you do to them, then you'd criticize them for it later.

    ReplyDelete
  11. You are bitter and filled with lies! Just like Suzi. Stop blaming the church for your actions just like all the rest of the exfollowers do.

    ReplyDelete
  12. To explain how and what we believe is not going to happen. This blog has proved to be a place where nothing we say matters or is right. The fact is we believe very deep that when you leave as much as it breaks our heart, we dont have to do with you. We can back it up with scripture but to try here is a complete waste of time. You have already convicted us in your minds. We dont see many that better there life, they just live the way they choose. We never stop being sad, but we move on. Finding other churches, and making a life does not infuriate us, that is something you said untrue. You want us to take every matter you say and react none, and when someone reacts we are wrong and you let that be known attacking us. Our charity is the fact we do not blog about those who left, we live our life quietly. We may never stop loving that person, but we believe without waivering we have to let that person go. None of your words will change us and the way we believe. People leave for many different reasons, and even here we have had the morals to not discuss those reasons. People on this blog paint a nice picture of themselves and their family that is not entirely correct. I wish the bashing would stop, It is obvious we will never be correct in your eyes. And we dont have to, and you dont have to in our eyes either.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If the Followers of Christ can back up disowning they're own family who leave to find Christ with a "biblical" basis, then why don't they answer the question in private then? My email address is brianmoore1988@yahoo.com send me an email of your supposed "biblical" proof and you will never hear me again speak out against these people, I would be surprised if I recieved any emails!

      Delete
    2. Aug 22, "no hi didn't" is that one of the unjustified attacks you speak of? The lie is that ex-followers don't get talked about, that they are left alone? Inside the FOC they are eaten alive. Regardless of their reason for leaving. The "shameful" thing I said was an example of that. So
      something that terrible should've never been celebrated by you, or used as a cautionary tail, it was a sad time for them, and I do feel bad that they had to endure it. I hope they heal and move on.

      Delete
    3. Just food for thought... If in fact there was a scripture to illustrate seperation of two groups of Christians don't you think that it would be proclaimed throughout the follower church? When I was there I never heard of any such scripture, if they are in fact a bible reading people then wouldn't they be teaching this biblical seperation to they're young? Just like the scripture about being baptized by the "wrong" guy, I was told that I was going to hell for what I had done, when I asked for one biblical account I got a "what's the point, you already did it" I brought up a biblical account of people who were rebaptized in the name of Jesus Christ, and got a response of "that was two thousand years ago" so what is a person supposed to think and take home from expirences like these? Is it not a fair for the sake of an argument that someone could be confused by these answers?

      Delete
  13. When CS's daughter was molested the FOC reacted shamefully. That's not a lie, neither was any other thing I said. Typical though, it doesn't make you look good, then it must be a lie. Even if it's obviously not a lie, you say that it is. Do you realize that that's a lie in itself? If you think it's a waste of time to explain your views, try saying anything of substance and see. If you won't even try to back up your position with scripture it makes people think that you can't. You should be able to, if not then you should consider changing your position.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. What... that man went to jail and no one was happy to hear such a horrible thing. I didnt see anyone act shamefully, it was sad for that mans family he hurt a lot of people. Why even talk about something so awful its not helping anyone.

      Delete
  14. I agree. that is a hurtfull thing to bring up and has no need for further discusion. please don't bring up such personal and hurtfull things on this blog. it proves no point to talk speek of it and can only bring back painfull memories.

    ReplyDelete
  15. No one acted shameful, they supported the mans family that went to prison.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Are you referring to the man who comitted manslaughter, or the man who abused his daughter? Or do you mean the other guy who was convicted in a court of law for not seeking medical help for his daughter? Did you support all of them or just one? Would you support a man that was convicted of grand theft auto? Murder 1? Did you support the guy with the piano store and all of the surveillance cameras in the apartments he was renting to young men? Your all pretty nice to each other. Just wondering which major felonies are supportable, or what limits are applied to this sort of judgement? If I'm wrong about the camera guy I'm sorry, but I heard he was a part of that church.

      Delete
    2. No, the only felonies supported are child neglect/ manslaughter due to withholding medical care. In other cases the family suffers terribly with gossip and "soft" shunning.
      Whenever a child is sexually abused there is usually a discussion weighing the costs of reporting and having everyone know what happened. There is always a fear the victim will have trouble finding a spouse because they are "tainted" in some minds.

      Delete
    3. So sexual abuse is held against the victim? In Afghanistan a woman is jailed when raped. It's as though the FOC has a lot in common with radical Muslims. The news probably hasn't reported these sort of crimes as FOC specific, but how many members have went to jail for abusing FOC children?

      Delete
    4. Not enough! There are still abusers out there!

      Delete
    5. I can only think of two recent adults jailed for physically sexually abusing victims in the FOC. There was someone back in the forties who molested his own daughter and went to jail for it I have heard. A third elderly man received probation, but his crime was not against a FOC child.

      Delete
  16. What is shameful is to bring this up to begin with.

    ReplyDelete
  17. C'mon Suzzane. I know that all the Shumakers think that they are smarter than everyone else, but do you really think people are so stupid that they can't see you for who you truly are after this blog. Give me a break, no agenda? I think you are a tool for the devil and you are too stupid to realize it. Good luck on future posts convincing anyone that your not full of it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Suzanne is a tool for the devil?

      I see a woman who is seeking truth, understanding, enlightenment, salvation, and closure, as well as some means of helping others to do likewise. These are not the sorts of behaviors that devils are known for.

      On the other hand, the devil is also known as "the accuser", so I would advise that you examine your own motives and the contents of your own heart very closely.

      After all, the only person any of us can control is our own self, and as is stated in the bible, each of us must work out our own salvation with fear and trembling.

      Delete
  18. you most certainly do not know what all the shumakers think. you obviously do not even know what one shumaker thinks. i do believe that God told us not to judge. let us keep our slander out of this blog.

    ReplyDelete
  19. the comment section is where you really see the true character of those that are reading and commenting. Suzi is not the author of anything evil. period.

    ReplyDelete
  20. look at the church in oregon city as a whole... what are the fruits of that church? is it growing? reaching out to others that do not belong? showing the way to their lost?

    ReplyDelete
  21. look around and find someone that seems happy. observe them and if need be ask them what makes them so happy. your answer will be because i am a christian...

    ReplyDelete
  22. to the person that posted mean things about suzi... you must not know her to write such evil things about someone so wonderful. i have known her for 37 years and she is a strong woman that strives to follow jesus.

    ReplyDelete
  23. Must be nice to have gaurd dogs ready at all times to answer for you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, it is nice when good folks speak up against unfounded and mean-spirited attacks. I appreciate the kind words.

      Delete
  24. I think too much of the FOC church is worried about what others will think or say instead of keeping their eyes on the Lord and in His Word....

    ReplyDelete
  25. I cannot keep quiet any longer. I have been reading Suzanne's blog since almost the beginning. A friend of mine (since childhood) wrote a guest blog of her memories from childhood through being an adult.

    She sent it to Suzanne to be put in her blog. Suzanne edited out some things that were against the Kisser belief. I will not send it to her, I will just comment on a thing or two that I also witnessed, along with my little friend. We heard a woman on Pleasant Avenue screaming in awful pain. We asked Doris (her daughter) why her mom was screaming & she said her mom had a painful problem but they were praying away the pain. We will never forget the sounds of a dying person!

    When we were in hi school, we felt sorry for the kisser girls who had no choice but to date the nerdiest guys in school. The girls always dressed fairly nice, but the guys looked like they just climbed off a tractor. No offense to farmers, but boys usually are a bit pickier about how they look in public.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We're you a cheerleader? You are pretty caught up on looks.

      Delete
  26. Why doesn't your friend start her own blog? Your opinion of FOC boys sounds really shallow. Glad you got that out.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't know why you don't get it, Anonymous. The acts and attitudes of the FOC had a profound effect on everyone who grew up in Oregon City. Your suffering was not yours alone, no matter how it may have seemed to you.
      Above is the testimony of a woman who was traumatized as a child by the screams of a dying woman, and she goes on to express sympathy for those girls (who possibly awaited a similar fate) and all you can see or hear is her criticism of how the boys dressed?
      She's telling you that she got a glimpse of what it must have been like for that little girl, Doris, who had to listen to her own mother's agonizing death, and in this way she has at least some small understanding of the pain that must have become all but embedded in the DNA of the members of the FOC church.
      Have you never recognized the face of compassion before?
      If you have ever felt hopeless, helpless, desperate or guilty, please understand that you are not alone. Even in feeling like you are alone, you are experiencing nothing that the rest of us haven't also experienced.
      You may believe outsiders to be worldly sinners who are very unlike yourself, but anyone would have to have a soul as hard and thick and impenetrable as bedrock to not be affected by events such as this woman has described.
      So would it be a sin to soften up and be more gracious towards someone who has carried the burden of that woman's suffering all these years? It had to be a terrible thing to listen to, especially from the standpoint of a little girl who had no idea why it was happening, who could see that her neighbor's family and friends had gathered to attend her in her suffering, but no one called a doctor or sent an ambulance. Things like these are hard for adults to reconcile in their minds and hearts, let alone for children to cope with, yet every one of your neighbors, irregardless of age or gender, has had to bear up under the burden of your faith in similar ways. The destiny of the FOC church is very intimately tied to the OC community, whether or not you are willing to acknowledge it.

      Delete
  27. I do understand that we are a community. I also understand that this woman was traumatized over that experience, and I wish her well. The author of that blog entry dropped the "k" bomb several times. She slammed the boys based on their appearance, and had such false pity for the girls it warms your heart. Call a duck a duck, this was no loving outreach to anyone, pull your head out.

    ReplyDelete
  28. At the risk of seeming shallow myself, I'm going to "pull my head out", and also stick my neck out.
    The boys of the FOC never did dress up much in my recollection, nor did they groom particularly well for the sake of appearances, especially as the whole group grew more and more isolated from outside society. And why should they? The women were busy vying for the attentions of the best available mate, while the men were assured of a good-looking, well-groomed, impeccably dressed and virtuous wife no matter what they themselves looked like. We all felt sorry for those girls because they were being played by the men. Many of them had drawn the attention of other boys, but none of them seemed to notice. To the boys in the FOC, it was like shooting fish in a barrel, so why bother to bait the hook?
    That's a duck as I see it.
    As for the K-word, it's not pretty language, I will admit. No one likes being called names.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. While I think its very vane to worry about how someone dresses. It isn't true to say the boys aren't well dressed or good looking. Some boys are not others are. Do you think all black people eat watermelon, or all Asians are good at math, all women suck at driving, all jocks are dumb. Why even worry about someone's sense of style. Some foc boys are very smart some are poor students, some are wealthy some are poor, some are good looking others not so much. It's stupid and prejudice to say all foc boys are ugly and don't know how to dress. Just like anywhere else the boys with the most to offer get the cutest girls. There are plenty of reasons for the boys to look presentable. Why do some follower boys not put much effort into looking good, the same reason any other boy does the same. Saying all our boys are ugly is just as rude as calling us kissers. Both are things that people will type but usually will not say to someone's face.

      Delete
  29. I would say any of these things to anyone face to face, because it's what I knew to be true in my school years, and furthermore it's my opinion, to which I am entitled. I mean no harm to anyone, and I hope that you can understand and believe that.

    The point is that some of us felt badly for FOC girls, even if it was wrong of us to judge by appearances. The point isn't that the guys were ugly or badly dressed, but that we felt some compassion for the women, even if they didn't recognize it or welcome it, then or now. Most of the FOC girls seemed destined for much greater things, but were limited to what they were allowed to do and who they were permitted to date, and that is all too familiar a pattern in the lives of most women for us to not feel the pangs of sympathy when we see it.

    The problem with church doctrine is that it dictates what I call "The Law of SHOULDS", which goes something like this:

    A woman is obedient, chaste, marries early to a man that those in authority find suitable to her social standing and she bears his children, supports him in his life and work and sacrifices her own goals for those of her husband and children, therefore she SHOULD be joyful, her husband and children SHOULD honor her commitment and sacrifice, and her life SHOULD be an inspiration for all women and girls. If all these things don't come to pass, she is then judged to have acted wrongfully in some way, and is faulted for her inability to comply to the Law of SHOULDS. In other words, everything would be ducky and wonderful if only she had done what she SHOULD have done.

    Another example of it is when someone desperately needs salvation or the counsel of a pastor, but won't seek it because they're not living the life that they know they SHOULD be living, and so help is not received.

    Or when people are introduced to someone and things go well clear up until they find out that the person they are meeting is a pastor or elder, and suddenly everything changes because they begin to relate on a basis of SHOULD instead of being true to self.

    The list goes on, but probably the biggest problem with the Law of SHOULDS is when people end up acting out living a life that conforms to that law, rather than relating to one another through love, compassion, concern and honest emotion. The Law of SHOULDS does not allow human beings to be true to themselves and genuinely who they are, but requires that they sell out to embrace a set of rules that promises things that it can't deliver.

    Hence women of innumerable cultures have been married off to men that they wouldn't have chosen for themselves for countless generations...with the promise that they will be joyful and blessed, and that the whole world will smile on their sacrifices and rejoice with them. I'm telling you that for at least a few brief moments in time, outsider women looked at their FOC sisters and felt regretful that those women wouldn't be allowed the freedom to shine their own light and to be who they were created and called to be.

    That's much of why I so earnestly applaud Suzi's efforts. Any time a woman's voice is heard above the cacophanous din of humanity in an effort to find that music of her own true heart, my heart sings in tune.

    ReplyDelete
  30. So they " should've" dressed up for you? They wetent trying to impress you. When they take a date, they dress up. When they go to church , they dress up. When they go to a school full of girls who they deem unfit to be a wife, or mother, they don't dress to impress.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No, I'm saying they should have dressed up for the women of the FOC. They should have treated their prospective brides with respect, awe and gratitude. The fact that they took it more or less for granted that they would marry well no matter how they acted or dressed is why outsider women felt compassion for the girls of the FOC.

      Delete
  31. Nice this little light of mine I am a gunna let it shine.

    ReplyDelete
  32. Why do they deem them in fit how come none. No one can take a date or Evan marry a girl who does not go to the foc. Is it because they are not born there or born holy? So by the oc foc the entire world is un fit. And that statement is correct. We all are un fit. The difference between the fit and un fit is the un fit need a savior. The fit have no need or time for a savior. I am so glad that Jesus came for the sick he claims that the whole need not a physician. He came and took the form of a servant for the un fit.

    ReplyDelete
  33. The reason is stated in 2 Corinthians 6:14 "Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?" Anyone on the planet not members of the Followers of Christ Church in Oregon City, Oregon are unbelievers according to what was taught by the last church elder. Since there is no way to be baptized, now the only way to be a believer is to be born of Follower parents or adopted by a Follower family as a baby.

    Many Follower families are home/ charter/ online schooling their children to stop the influence of the "world" and to limit the access of the authorities to their children in the public school setting.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This is the true reason that ALL the members of the oc foc do not associate with anyone outside there church. Oh there lips, or words will not say this. Or by many anyway will not say this to a outsider. But some are brave enough too. But ALL of there actions say a different story. By thier lips they serve him but by there actions the deny him. How else can one look at this line of thinking. It is by ones actions that a person will be judged. Please feel free to correct this line of thinking

      Delete
    2. I don't consider it "brave" to condemn the rest of the world. How arrogant are they to proclaim themselves the saved when the bible says that god would rather none should perish? Then gives them all the opportunity to repent and be saved themselves. Why would the bible be written as a lie? To believe that is the most selfish thing I've ever heard. To take salvation as your own, when it was promised to the whole world? Unbelievable!

      Delete
  34. So by that line of thinking the entire world. Meaning all those that were not " lucky enough to be born or adopted by parents that were born holy or born there and that have not been baptized", are doomed to hell. This is why your members do not date, assioate, mingle. With anyone out side of that body of people.

    ReplyDelete
  35. You nailed it, some boys were even considered too friendly to outside girls.

    ReplyDelete
  36. Wow

    Wow

    Wow repent, turn from that doctrine, and evil spirit.

    ReplyDelete
  37. Many are trying, some have Left, some are stuck, some are comfortable and just don't care. The ones that have left are vilified for turning to a false doctrine. Even thought he doctrine they follow is closer to the truth than the FOC. None the less they will be condemned for their actions.

    ReplyDelete
  38. Really bought their own press these ones did

    To anonymous September 7, 2012 8:39 AM
    You heard this from “Walter White” and he said he heard this from god and Jesus. (GODS APOSTLE!) He looked more like a clueless devil to me that couldn’t even see him-self for what he was… Please — I know god and Jesus face to face, and Walter White, other then being made by them had no affiliation to them whatsoever… they gave him to Satan for a possession. You poor people in the FOC are one hundred percent lost sheep, obeying his orders, no matter how absurd they are.

    To Anonymous September 7, 2012 5:27 PM
    You are just as absurd.

    To Anonymous September 2, 2012 1:07 Pm
    That was totally rude about what you said about the way the boys dressed.

    ReplyDelete
  39. For those interested in a website about spiritual abuse and recovery, check out: www.ChurchExiters.com

    For those interested in a website covering various abuse issues, this website is a good resource. www.AbuseResourceNetwork.com

    ReplyDelete

The catchpa has been removed to enable easier commenting. Spam and irrelevant comments will be deleted.