Monday, November 4, 2013

Wadsworth Residents Deeply Concerned About David C. Pack's Cult Compound

"Something isn't right about this whole thing."

The letter below was sent to Exit and Support the other day from a resident of Wadsworth, Ohio. For those still living in the darkness, Wadsworth is the home of Dave Pack's personality cult, The Restored Church of God.

The interesting thing about this letter is that it refers to the reporter that is mentioned in the previous post to this one, Wadsworth News Reporter Still Giving David C. Pack A Free Pass .  The writer below says that this reporter KNOWS about the issue with Dave Pack but "...couldn't write about it."
Wadsworth News Reporter Still Giving David C. Pack A Free Pass - See more at:

The letter states (highlights, mine):

Concerns in Wadsworth About Restored Church of God:
November 2, 2013

I moved back to Wadsworth, Ohio after being gone for several years. A friend drove me around to show me all the changes to the town. As she drove me to the new Giant Eagle off of 261 and 76, I noticed a huge new building. At the time she was a reporter for a small paper in [city removed]. She said it was to be a new HQ for a church. We both looked at each other with the same idea. Pretty odd to have that kind of fancy odd looking "church" in a small town. As time went on rumors began to go around calling this some type of compound--even cult like. Many of us joked it off until facts started coming out. The Akron Beacon did a story; then recently the Trading Post did one.

Many in Wadsworth are not happy and many are skeptical. A reporter I know did the newest story on this group, but only just a general story; nothing of the alarming facts. She said she's heard all of what I just told you, yet couldn't write on it. Why is no one able or willing to call these people out for who they really are? How in the world can the people who live in this town not fight these people and run them out? The city is in bed with them. It's all about money. Why else would they turn their nose to all this?

Many people I know went to school with his daughter Jennifer. Pack was weird then but more crazy now. This town thrives on money. Money speaks. The city, especially the mayor, has turned down countless businesses to be built here. Now all of a sudden a super "cult" (as the town's people say) is being built here. Some say David Pack was lining the pockets of the politicians way before he built this new million dollar headquarters. They say he had something to do with helping [a former mayor] out of his debt. In return he helped Pack bust through to get all that property [88 acres] to build on. Then the next mayor comes along and happens to be best buddies with the former mayor and seemed pleased of the new RCG construction.

No one can pull full financial records on RCG, but people are curious to find them. There is a trail somewhere. Also, a man who did construction there ended up pulling his permits. David Pack wanted him to sign off on construction that his own members did, but wouldn't allow him to see. So he had no choice but to pull the permits and Pack apparently never got in trouble or caught for the unapproved construction. Something isn't right about this whole thing. --name withheld


Byker Bob said...

There have been many stories over the years regarding cults pretty much taking over small towns, changing the lifestyles of the original residents, and even becoming involved in local politics and the public school system. Really, so long as they pay their taxes, and don't cause police problems, there isn't a heck of a lot anyone can do. A cult's primary activities are fairly well protected under the Constitution and Bill of Rights.

The entire "rust belt" has been hard hit by loss of manufacturing jobs first to Mexico, then China, and India. If a group that is flush with cash comes in and sets up some sort of business that leaves a small carbon footprint, even temporary construction jobs are seen as a positive. Best bet for the surrounding community is to take the temporary influx of cash, and then just bide their time until RCG crashes, and the Maranatha people to come in and take it all over.


James said...

Need the DA to investigate the allegations. If one witness steps up the domino's will begin to fall.

Wadsworth residents, don't worry about it. It can't happen here.

Douglas Becker said...

And in a few more decades we could have the RRCoG with a different scenario, but still reminiscent as a pattern of these two towns taken over by a Fundamentalist sect.

Anonymous said...

Wow man, sounds like a FRINGE conspiracy theory! All because of one letter to the editor by some ... who knows who. Of course, the erudite people on this site would NEVER believe ANY conspiracy theories, would they? Not a chance. They hate conspiracy theories. They are a fact-based bunch--totally supportive of the mainstream. They are done with conspiracies, having had enough of Hoeh, Hislop and Herbert (the three H's of hype). They watch PCS, CNN, Fox, and History Channel and nothing more. End of story.

Anonymous said...

Bagwan Dave's Rajneesh Church of God!

Byker Bob said...

Although you probably intended your statement as Aristotelian rhetoric, that would still be a generalization, or stereotype there, anonymous 7:47. How would you classify mythicists?


Mary B. said...

Do these ministers know they are phony and scamming people or do they really believe they are something?

Anonymous said...

Conspiracy: a secret plan made by two or more people to do something that is harmful or illegal
If Pack had an accomplice or paid somebody off, it was a conspiracy by definition.

But the world is full of very nice and honest people who would never cheat, so how in the world could the esteemed Mr. Pack get away with it. Bribe someone? Get real! Who needs the money? Who would stoop that low?

Anonymous said...

Do these ministers know they are phony and scamming people or do they really believe they are something?


Byker Bob said...

Mary B, that is a difficult question. Did any of us know that we were involved in a scam for the greater part of our membership? That is a key question, and whether it also has application to the majority of the ministry may be widely variable. You would normally think that their greater closeness to the source would have provided a higher level of (and earlier) visibility.

There is a key difference, one that acts as a powerful modifier. Most of us lay people, when we left, enjoyed a significant improvement in our financial picture. You really can't make the same statement about a departing minister's prosperity, in most cases, because the ones who came into the ministry through Ambassador College mostly had no other career training. Although most were articulate, and might have acquiired crossover administrative skills, leaving put them almost back to square one.

The psychology of it all becomes somewhat muddy in the case of a David Pack, who has claimed that the health food stores which he inherited from his parents constituted a million dollar business. Yet, he jettisoned that opportunity in favor of his "calling" in the ministry, and now uses that as evidence of sincerity.

He also claims past closeness to HWA, which, if true, one would think would have created an awareness of some of the highly questional aspects of HWA's character which have surfaced in the years since his death. Is Pack wearing blinders? Is he protecting the legacy of HWA as an "apostle" to create a continuation of that legacy? Is he naive? Are these questions even relevant, or should we just examine Pack's fruits?

I believe that there are probably as many answers to your question as there are individual ministers. We know there are some who bucked the system, and did have honesty and integrity. We know some who left ended up leading exemplary and humble lives, like David Jon Hill. Knowing human nature, some of the ministers could be repressed homo or bisexuals, or be wrestling with other inner conflicts which we can neither know, nor fathom.

The best you can say about Armstrongism is that in no way was everything as it seemed or as it was professed. Often, people did whatever their consciences allowed in order to survive. For those who never left, or had position and status they were unwilling to lose, that could have become a given in their lifestyle, about which they stopped being conscious a long long time ago.


Anonymous said...

Anytime I have ran into them at the store they were very unfriendly and would not speak when I said good afternoon. Just a dirty look and nose up in the air.

Anonymous said...

For a church, they have some serious security. As an example, take a look at the credentials of their director of security.

They have apparently learned from the Church of Scientology and have a substantial firewall between themselves and the general public, to shield their activities.

Many Wadsworth residents, and others in the surrounding areas agree, that it will only be a matter of time until something bad happens at this compound that makes headlines.

Anonymous said...

The RCG continues to thrive in Wadsworth as many in the community are becoming uneasy about their growth and presence. They haven't done much to become part of our town, except to continue to buy more of it.

I have never seen an invitation from the church to the community to attend a service. This is extremely odd behavior for a church.

They have no community outreach that has been made public, and they have a gated entrance to their property, another unusual situation for a "church".

It's interesting to note that they have been buying properties from homeowners along Akron Rd going west into Wadsworth. As they acquire more property and continue to secure themselves behind gates, they are portraying themselves more and more as a cult compound that bears closer scrutiny.