Let me start by telling you a little about us. My husband, Patrick, is truly one of the most loving, kind, generous and God-fearing men I have ever known in my life. He has never met a stranger and would do just about anything to help just about anyone. He's the type of person who always sees the best in everyone and keeps a positive outlook no matter how grim a situation is because of his profound faith in God.
Patrick was a member of a small church called the Living Church of God (LCG) when I met him. LCG is a splinter of a larger church that was called the Worldwide Church of God which was led by Hebert W. Armstrong. Patrick's parents dedicated their lives to the church and Patrick followed in their footsteps. He made generous financial contributions, volunteered at youth camps, helped elderly church members and widows, etc. When LCG moved its world headquarters to Charlotte, we sold our Kansas City home and moved there too. In short, we served LCG's ministers and members to the best of our ability for years.
In September of 2014 a blogger wrote some unflattering things about LCG on his website. LCG assumed that Patrick was the source of information because of his close connections with the minister in question, and then decided to "mark" both of us from the pulpit a few short days later in front of our congregation of over 250 people.
"Marking" in LCG is similar to shunning in Amish communities. Being marked means that we are of such a vile and loathsome nature that we are considered enemies of Israel, enemies of the church, cast to Satan, beyond salvation. We were never counselled; just cast out without question. Church members are to shun those that are marked. To not participate in shunning a marked member is akin to making the conscious decision to disobey church ministry and in so doing risk your very salvation.
With one fail swoop and on completely false accusations we lost every friend we had. We lost our church. Our children no longer had any friends (they are home schooled). We were cast out into the cold to wither and die. The heartache caused from such a profound loss was so great that we, in fact, felt like we were going to die.
We contacted the blogger who promptly emailed LCG and posted a statement on his website stating that we were not the source of his information but the church refused to clear our names.
We spent an entire year calling, writing, shamelessly begging and pleading for LCG to meet with us as Christians to try to work things out. We were desperate. But it was all to no avail.
Instead the church propagated more lies about us and spred them through whispering campaigns. They had to do as much damage to our reputations as possible to justify their completely un-Christ-like treatment of us to their members. Especially when our reputations were that of generous, devoted, serving members who were well liked in congregations across the US and internationally.
The Living Church of God continued to defame our character for over a year. After making many, many, many attempts to get them to work together toward peaceful resolution with no success, we initiated a lawsuit against them for Defamation of Character and Intentional Infliction of Emotional Distress. We want to restore our good family name and show LCG that it is not okay to use their power to bully their members.
They have hired a powerful and expensive law firm to fight us. While they have a huge pool of tithe-payer funded cash to pay their legal fees, we do not. We have opened this GoFundMe account in hopes that people will help us fight for justice. All money raised will go to pay our legal fees. If any should remain, we will donate it to St. Jude's Research Center.
Please help if you can. We are most grateful for any assistance! The WCG and the LCG have left many hurt, broken, bullied and abused members in their wake. Most felt they were defenseless and did nothing. We seek justice both for ourselves and for the many others whose lives have been negatively impacted by these organizations.
If you desire to donate to fight Rod Meredith then please go here: Religious Persecution (LCG)