Monday, July 14, 2014

Dennis Muses on: Important Closure

Just a short posting to bring some closure to a thread to be found at:

Sometimes we let the hurt, pain and experiences in our life run our life. I certainly have done that myself.   Emotions are the body's reaction to the thoughts of the mind.  For all our differences, we all share and process our experiences with WCG, here on Banned,  as minister, member, family , male, female, children and friends differently because each experience is unique and experienced in their own unique settings.  Reading this site and eventually being invited to help grow it has been very therapeutic for me personally and have been grateful for it.  It got me through some dark times and serious self doubt and pain.  Let's face it, if I can get through the " Former Ministurd" label,  and not take that personally, I can get through anything!  

  It's a journey and a story but we are not our story.  We have a story but it's not our identity.  It's easy, however, to confuse the story of our lives with who we are.  It is a deception but most never see it or journey out of it.  

I won't post the apology given nor my response here, but you can find it at the end of the thread at on the above posting .  It was both encouraging to me and gives me hope that all can progress and keep moving in positive ways along the path to wherever it really goes...  Sure beats getting stuck in the mud for the rest of one's life.



Byker Bob said...

Well, that's a gas!

It's always better to have discussion and understanding if that is permitted as one of the choices. We've got to remember, if HWA's daddy had only known about condoms, none of this drama would be happening.

Hope you guys have a great phone discussion!


NO2HWA said...

BB: Its always permitted here. I allow a pretty good flow of information back and forth and 99% do not block comments. I have blocked a couple of racist, bigoted, homophobic and sexist people here in the past and will continue in that going forward. The last couple of postings aimed toward Dennis were inappropriate, snarky and uncalled for, that is the reason they were not posted.

You would be appalled at the comments that come in directed towards me. I have never laughed so hard at Armstrongite stupidity as I have at those! It is easy to see what the group think mentality of Armstrongism has done to people.

Anonymous said...

So.. Is August the month when 3 church leaders die all at the same time? If so, Dave is being much more low key about it. Guess he is hesitant to put it out there so boldly as last time. Thanks Dennis for all that you contribute here.

Anonymous said...

Heck, if YHVH had only known about condoms, we wouldn't have to deal with any of this New Testament drama either!

Anonymous said...

I still feel this person is Velvet that is harassing you. If you look in the new issue of the Journal she is "prattling" on in the same manner. There is also a letter from Bob Etheridge that was treated in the same manner you were.

Anonymous said...

I doubt it's Velvet Delorey.

James said...

Gary, trace their emails to city and country. Then post it.

Byker Bob said...


I for one appreciate the latitude of discussion that you allow for here. There was a challenging cast of characters at the other place we used to frequent as well. Sure am glad at least three of those don't post here!


Byker Bob said...

Velvet's nuanced writing contains certain "tells" that are signature. Favorite words, figures of speech, and regional expressions. UT's writings do not contain any of those same tells.

The similarity that probably prompted the inaccurate comparison or identification is the overkill used in mounting the attack, and ensuing relentlessness.


DennisCDiehl said...

I think it's interesting the discussion is on the who or who not and no one thinks the apology is noteworthy lol :)

Anonymous said...

But is it a real apology or just another one of the persons snarks. He/she says all kinds if nastiness and then "apologizes" because he/she assumes that is what we want to hear. I don't believe the person but will wait and see if he/she comes clean.

NO2HWA said...

BB. Thanks. I do miss the previous forum and still check it occasionally, but it is mostly dead. By the way, I have not let through several posts attacking you too. The nastiness is not worth giving light to.

rsk said...

I've joked a couple of times when someone got a headful of steam over something, "That you, Velvet?".

Anonymous said...

If you only post and comment as a form of self-therapy, why do you care how people react to it?

Anonymous said...

I had not read any of the comments on the post Dennis refers to until today, but as I skimmed through all of the comments I was reminded of the adage that points out that relationships can be tested when discussing history, politics, and religion.

What seems to be overlooked is that everything a person thinks, says, and does contributes to a reflection of what they are. Every critical remark implies there is an improvement to what is being discussed.

I can honestly say that I do not share any of the bitterness that seems to be affecting the lives of some posting and commenting here. It has been extremely disappointing that those once active in the Worldwide Church of God were abused and suffered physically, mentally, emotionally, and psychologically.

In the 42 years I was with the organization those in the congregations I attended that may have had such experiences were minimal or had other problems not related to the church teachings. It seemed that most of the difficulties surfaced when there was an aggressive movement to transform the teachings to harmonize with the doctrines of mainstream Christianity.

I knew this would create problems, but I did not expect the paid ministry to be as divided as they were. It seems to me that headquarters and each pastor had built personal domains and were unwilling to consider the members when making the so called transformation.

What kept most of those of us who were long time members with the organization was a shared fellowship with people who had a simple faith in a real God that had a purpose for human life and came together to share a common belief even if that belief wasn’t the same as the world in which we live.

As we can see history, politics, and religion has a lot of variables and people can distort, twist, and use words in those areas to mean whatever they want them to mean, but why do we think that our personal views need to be tried and proven to establish acceptable relationships. I could give many illustrations showing some very positive experiences in the 42 year, but I must admit disappointment in the way some tend to set themselves up as judge and jury of people rather than the flaws they have or had.
Of course these are just my opinion.
A. Boocher

Byker Bob said...

Thanks, Gary. I can only imagine what those attackers attempted to post! One of the things I learned early in life is that if you have strong opinions, or if you are principled, people will have something to say about it, and not always positive things. I was in student government in high school, and later wrote articles for the Courier while I attended Pasadena City College. Everything I said or did was second-guessed. And it wasn't as if the critics were always some of the looney tune ad hominem attackers, or had obviously low mentalities. Some of them, I respected as formidable adversaries who had legitimate, well-presented but differing opinions, and could not be easily dismissed.

Compromise is an art that is anathema to Armstrongism, and to most alpha males. When you have a motley crew of posters schooled in rigidity of opinion, and you add to that mix some former ministers for whom members had to bite their tongues in the past, and allow to win, sometimes people forget that how one goes through the process of winning or losing is important in how other posters perceive one and take one seriously. You get your occasional melt down, and nonsensical diatribes, but it is always refreshing when there can be a better ending.

It also amazes me that when there is disagreement, the number of posts spikes. Everyone loves a good train wreck!


Byker Bob said...

Dennis, regarding who, what, and why vs the importance of the apology, not everyone comments on the obvious, though I'm sure it registered with all of us as well.

It is interesting that people automatically equate some sort of offense with Velvet, though. On another forum that Gary and I posted on several years back, there was a character who called himself T&L, short for "Truth and Light". His comments were patently mean-spirited and offensive, and his identity never came out. This guy was a real piece of work, and even invented additional cyber characters when he got banned. It got so bad that for years, any time a new person appeared and was either sarcastic or went on the attack, people commented that this must be T&L. This actually made one of the most prolific and well liked posters (who had trust issues because of Viet Nam) so paranoid that he disappeared from the forum and blogosphere. My point to this little digression is that we never know how strong or how fragile the next guy or gal behind the keyboard might be.

So, yes. Apology and new understandings are good. This is one that goes down as a win for both parties. Who knows, sometimes initially adversarial situations morph into the best of friendships.


DennisCDiehl said...

Anonymous said...
If you only post and comment as a form of self-therapy, why do you care how people react to it?

"Only" is an inaccurate perception. I suppose I am not detached from or unhopeful that something said can be of help to those who struggle. I found it a positive thing and worth noteing when someone can have, even if just for a time, an awakening to perhaps a better way of being .

I do recognize that even after all these years and experience, I tend to be either naive or just taking folk at face value which can be a formula for a good punch in the face too. But it is my choice and fits my temperament and hard wiring pretty well.

Anonymous said...

A. Boocher,

The most negative aspects of HWA's legacy have to do with the fact that that he was extremely lacking in biblical intelligence although he vociferously claimed otherwise - and that he also had "Hitler syndrome".
That's more real than any assessment that describes the god that HWA promoted as real.

Yes, when the WCG fell apart, it "created problems" - because of HWA's half-assed "truths" that his little 'Hitler-wannabees' could take and run with for their own profit.

Anonymous said...

"In the 42 years I was with the organization those in the congregations I attended that may have had such experiences were minimal or had other problems not related to the church teachings. It seemed that most of the difficulties surfaced when there was an aggressive movement to transform the teachings to harmonize with the doctrines of mainstream Christianity."

It's clear that mainstream Christianity has a lot to do with what's stuck in your craw.
I recognize how most of mainstream Christianity sucks, so I'll agree with you there.

But, don't forget that there are many people who died because of Herbert Armstrong's church teachings.
Those thousands now have no voice, although there are plenty of COG folks to say, "It's all good because we'll be together in the Kingdom."

Oh, please also note that broken families were also a very common result of Herbert Armstrong's church teachings.

Byker Bob said...

"It seemed that most of the difficulties surfaced when there was an aggressive movement to transform the teachings to harmonize with the doctrines of mainstream Christianity."

WCG was marketed as a utopia. Anything which tended to diminish that was suppressed for years, and not allowed to be spoken of. Those who noticed the flaws, and allowed their tongues the privilege of a little slippage were said to have a bad attitude, were thought of as unconverted, or branded as Laodicean. I believe that HWA and his trusted lieutenants anticipated that all questions, displeasure, hardships, etc. could be suppressed until 1972, when the church would flee to the so-called place of safety. If we read the historical records preserved in Ambassador Reports, we see not only that field ministers had severe doctrinal questions, and crises of conscience, but numerous ones also expressed that there were potentially explosive situations ongoing in their congregations, that needed to be addressed or relieved. It also became painfully obvious that 1975 was not going to be some sort of all purpose solution to all of the unrest.

D&R, HWA's interpretation of tithing, and the medical doctrine were perhaps the most explosive issues affecting members, and in some cases, causing extreme hardship. D&R had gotten worse, because HWA was using third tithe for purposes other than what was preached from the pulpit, and chuch "widows" whose marriages had been broken up by WCG, were being sent to collect welfare. There were members who had been enduring extreme hardship, barely hanging on in anticipation of 1972, and these people were deeply affected by the bogussness of HWA's prophecy mold.

There was a massive exodus from WCG in the mid 1970s. D&R was changed, and rather than this causing "liberals" to stay within the fold, it actually caused Conservative backlash, and splintering. There was slight relief regarding tithing, as members were allowed to tithe on their net pay instead of gross. But, it was several more years until the medical teaching was modified to reflect HWA's personal practices, rather than what he preached and enforced upon his own family members. Irregardless of the fact that secular physicians do not practice sorcery today, there are still those who privately hold to the church's original medical doctrines, and die of easily curable conditions.

The reason transition towards mainstream Christianity has been rejected and has caused so much controversy is completely aside from its merits or veracity. The fact is that the minds of Armstrongites have been poisoned at every turn, and in every possible way towards it. WCG really worked overtime in the intensity of their programming in this direction, so much so that even though all the prophecies have failed and the sexual and financial sins of the leaders have been exposed, people persist in believing that HWA was an apostle who restored the teachings of the early apostolic church.

So, I can understand why the people who drank the Kool Aid would make statements like the one I quoted to open my post, blaming possible solutions rather than re-examing the doctrines and looking to more learned scholars of theology for any sort of guidance or course correction. It is an awfully naieve, and quite frankly a willfully myopic attitude, one for which there really is no excuse, considering all of the resources just a few mouse clicks away.


Anonymous said...

What troubles me the most was the arrogance of the leadership in claiming to know so much and to look down upon those in other churches, as well as their hypocrisy. If they were more humble in their opinions and more honest in their own lives, perhaps the change in doctrines would not have been as destructive to the organization. I attended AC for two years and left the church the next year.

Mr. Armstrong said...

I used to rag on Dennis also until I had a email talk with him heart to heart back in the early 2000's. My opinion changed when I saw who he was and what he stood for.

The original anti-harmstrong video producer.

Anonymous said...

I did not make the previous comment to make Worldwide Church of God (or splinters) look better or claim that they were or are doing God’s work. It in my understanding that one of the foundational beliefs of the Christian faith is that God the Father and Jesus are the only ones qualified to judge a person’s beliefs, since we do not have the capability of knowing the internal thoughts of another person’s mind. We can judge the actions and the words, but passing judgment on a person’s belief system requires a total understanding of a person’s whole life.

My point was and is that people often focus on the negative and destructive elements some have experienced and assume that everyone goes through the same trauma. This is not true. We live in a world that is replete with the negative and destructive elements many may have experienced in WCG, but everyone in the world is not totally depraved and suffering. I personally know many who were or are members of WCG who have well balanced wholesome lives, but this does not mean I justify any of the corruptive destructive behavior and characteristics that has been revealed here.

My view is simple if a person believes in the God of the Bible. If God allows something then He is capable of using it to fulfill His purpose. We may make bad choices, but those bad choices may be the ones He uses to build the character He wants in us.
Of course these are just my opinions.
A. Boocher

Anonymous said...

Hey KScribe!
Hope you are well!

There's a great new Armstrongist cult I'm joining- (The Intergalactic Church of God)- It's a UFO cult that has 7 cloned Mr. Armstrongs at the helm.
Apparently, some cat-DNA leaked in during the cloning process and the 7 Herbies are now Fherbies.
I got some of their booklets like 'The Seven Paws of Success'. Most inspirational!
There's another booklet we've been trying to translate from Fherbish to English... But so far, all we got is the title which is, 'To Serve Members'...
We are now preparing to board, as our spaceship takes off tomorrow for the distant planet Herbulon.

Gotta go now to Costco and buy all of that olive oil and salt and pepper that my new Fherbish Overlords want me to bring on the journey.

Best regards to you and yours.


Velvet Delorey said...

Hi guys,

I am having some trouble with the Blogspot comments, hope this goes through. I was directed to this thread today. Haven't read the article (nor the links), I just wanted to confirm I would never attack Dennis. At all. In any way, and certainly not behind an anonymous handle, which I let go of, when the Baptists of Shadows of WCG decided to dox me, some years back.

I do find it odd that Dennis hasn't confirmed that it's not me (unless he has, subsequently--I really don't feel like digging to find out), given the man does have my email address, and all he had to do was ask. I am disappointed he did not choose this option, as Dennis and I have always had cordial communications in the past.

Also, I realize posting here makes me a hypocrite, because I said I never would again.) Although this does explain several other comments/replies I've gotten in recent days.....

Suffice to say, this wasn't me. Though I highly doubt any of you are going to believe this (especially a year later, as that's how long it's taken to filter back to me), God looks on the heart, and knows the truth. Which, at the end of the day, is all that really matters.