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Why We Left Christian Fellowship Ministries (continued)

by Al & Dee Mac

Al - April 21, 2001 - Agents and spies and conspiracy, Oh my! (a rambling lecture thingy)- There's a long thread on Matt and Mary's board where some people were discussing the possibility that Phil Davis might be acting as an agent of CFCMI. For what it's worth, I very seriously doubt that the leadership is using Phil to "spy" on anyone in order to figure out who you are. But even if they were, so what?

Step back for a moment and look at their ability to have any real impact on your life. They have almost none, save for the power you give them over your life . This goes for a few that have left the church, too - you're still worried that they can hurt you. In a lot of ways, that's quite understandable, and here's three reasons I worried for a while:

1. They ran my life for 10 years. I let them, because I thought they knew better than I did. There are other people that still let them run their lives. Some of these people could be persuaded to go to the witness stand (or call my employer, etc.) and "misrepresent the truth" concerning me in order to silence me. After all, who would make a better witness than an old roommate or friend; since we spent nearly 100% of our time in the ministry with at least one other person (you know, that two by two thing), there would be plenty of "old friends" and "old roommates" available.

2. I thought that Pete, Ed, etc., were well-known and influential in their respective communities, and could "do something" to endanger my career or future in the community.

3. I thought that they could hear the voice of God, and I could not. I feared that, if I left, I would miss out on God's will for me. They held my "passport to heaven" and if I dared offend them, they could go to God and get it revoked, resulting in all kinds of ugly Almighty-style retribution.

All of these, of course, are complete hogwash. They're also - surprise! - characteristic fears of people leaving authoritarian groups. So, please, stop with all the conspiracy theory stuff. You're not dealing with powerful, influential people in the community, omniscient puppetmasters, or prophets that can call down fire from heaven. You're dealing with the paranoid, psychotic, inferiority-complex-having leaders of a two-bit church founded by a homosexual sex maniac. Read the transcripts, read the news articles, watch LR being interviewed by The Justice Files - see how these "leaders" you worry about appear in the eyes of the rest of the world. And then stop being afraid.

I just got fed up with being afraid of these men. I let them push me around, let them talk about me behind my back, let them whack me on the back of the neck at the dinner table, let them run my life. The bully can only push so long before someone pushes back, and then everybody sees what a wimp the bully really is. They count on you being afraid - stop being afraid, and they lose their grip on you.

I'm sure that somebody will say it's easy for me to talk big on our own site, where there's nobody in my face. I guess it is; just like it's easy for CFCMI to talk big in their pulpits. Fortunately, the chances of CFCMI actually doing anything to stop us are just shy of zero, so I'll keep right on talking.

Anyway, after having said all that, let me state again that I'm not critical of anyone's desire to remain anonymous. After all, some of you have family involved, and you want to avoid (as much as possible) causing problems in the family. Some of you, like Phil, may be waiting for the right time to reveal yourself so that you'll be more credible and effective when you think the time is right to do or say something. Just don't let fear be your sole reason for remaining anonymous.

Al - May 23, 2001 - Just a couple of thoughts...- There are a couple of issues that have gone though my mind a few times in the last year, and I'd like to mention them. CFC is a corporation, and has considerable assets, such as vehicles, equity in church buildings, furnishings, and so on. Just suppose that, at some point in the near future, the controlling members of the corporation decide that it's time to call it a day - who gets all those assets?

I suppose many people would say, "Who cares?" I think there are certain people that would like you to think that way - just as much as they'd like you to trust them completely when it comes to how your money is used. This brings me to my second question: If, two years ago, the church was in "severe financial straits" and had to cut back on staffing and such, how are they keeping up everything now? A considerable number of people have departed, and taken their regular contributions with them. Yet the lights are still on in the church, the buildings haven't been taken back by the mortgage lenders, etc. What gives? I suspect that someone has been "misrepresenting things" and "making a few mistakes" when it comes to the money as well. But that's just my suspicion. ;)

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