Best of the Letters from 2014
January 4, 2014
I got a call from someone this evening to look up the following article on PCG’s website:
“EDMOND, Okla. (Jan. 4, 2014) — At approximately 2:35 p.m. CST, Philadelphia Church of God Pastor General Gerald Flurry fainted briefly while giving a sermon to the headquarters congregation at Armstrong Auditorium. After awakening from the short fainting spell and being helped from the stage, the pastor general was anointed by his son, Evangelist Stephen Flurry. As he relaxed backstage, his color returned and he was able to catch his breath more easily. Approximately five minutes later, services were concluded with a hymn and closing prayer by Stephen Flurry.
“The 78-year old pastor general said he had felt tired and run down earlier in the week, but felt he needed to push through to deliver the sermon, which focused on new revelation from Ezekiel. Pastor Andrew Locher had noticed Mr. Flurry struggled with a weakened voice when taping an episode of the Key of David television program on Wednesday.
“The pastor general said he will continue to rest through the coming week and is looking forward to returning to full broadcasting and writing duties as soon as possible.” –Anonymous [emp. by ESN]
Heartache From an Institution Promoting Family!
January 6, 2014
Hello ESN, I too have been wondering lately what will happen when GF dies. How will they backtrack to explain the “eras” and “passing of the baton” then? Since the PCG has gone to big measures to prove that they are Philadelphians in the Laodicean era, how will they explain the turnover of leadership again? As my adult son (suspended and marked; former Armstrong College student) stated, they will find a verse in Ezekiel or somewhere that talks about the son of a prophet doing something and call it “new revelation” to attempt to explain these changes.
I have a personal interest as our family was once very involved in the PCG. Serving as a deacon and deaconess with our children participating in everything from camp to AC students until our family–like so many others–was torn apart. With suspensions, marking, and the “cut off” policy, we still have two children (over 21) in the PCG that have not spoken to us (parents and siblings) for over 3 1/2 years. It has truly been a heartbreak. All of this from the institution promoting family!
I think about all the literature that PCG has produced about “shepherds scattering the flock” and how they are the only hope. How can they possibly not realize that they have also done these very things!! Ministers giving opposing advice, then demanding that you not talk to another so these discrepancies won’t be uncovered. What happened to “speaking the same thing?” What happened to Gerald Flurry’s “open door policy”? Stephen Flurry’s Raising the Ruins tells how the WCG stole the goods produced on the backs of tithe payers. What about all the money given to build PCG’s college and auditorium and houses on the grounds?
Then those who have faithfully supported are thrown aside like chattel if they even ask a question! One minister was put out a few years ago because he would not advise people to divorce. (Read about it by typing “divorce and remarriage hypocrisy pcg” into a search engine. The first hit will take you to blogspot. We do not promote this website or views, but we do know the PCG minister marked over D&R, and his letter posted on that blog is good.) He was marked for not wanting to split up families! Is this their idea of the “God Family Vision“? We who have been on the inside know better, but this is still what looks good to outsiders when visiting their website. Well, when Gerald Flurry dies and they are forced to explain the “last hour,” “the last era,” and the fact that “That Prophet” is dead (and his prophecies did not happen as stated–see Deuteronomy 18:21-22); it is my sincere hope that people will wake up and question what is going on. Perhaps someday I will even be able to reunite with my children that I love and miss dearly. –Former PCG Family
Picked Up Many Compromises and Untruths:
January 6, 2014
I have lately been listening to many of GF’s older sermons. Listening to them years later, with a critical ear, I have picked up many compromises and untruth’s. I know that I will not support him again. I have been putting all the cassette sermons which I had of him on to mp3 format. (I did not destroy or return the cassettes as instructed in the late 90s early 2000s.)
Thank you so much for the work you are doing. –[name withheld]
David Fraser Still in Australia:
January 11, 2014
I checked out the Oklahoma county public records website on marriages and divorces and came across this information: MARRIAGE LICENSES – David Gordon Fraser, 46, and Donna Mae Grieves, 38. They aren’t in Edmond. They got married about a year ago and relocated to Australia according to my sources. They definitely got married in Edmond as the county records would not be bothered to have that info if it was not within their jurisdiction. –[name withheld]
I Realized Something Was Very, Very Wrong With PCG:
January 15, 2014
I stopped attending PCG last year before the FOT. I have not been suspended or marked but have come to the conclusion that the PCG is a false “church” led by a man who is a religious fraud. My family and I have suffered a great deal emotionally, financially, socially, etc., at the hands of the PCG ministry. In truth, to say that my life has almost been ruined in many ways would not be too much of an exaggeration.
Thanks to your site, I have read a lot of material that has only confirmed long time suspicions that something is very, very wrong with the way the PCG is run. It took me months of reading your site to finally get the courage to read other material. I was led to read The Plain Truth About Malachi’s Message and Reign of Error both by former PCG members. It was humiliating and depressing to realize that I had put faith in a man called Gerald Flurry who turned out to be a plagiarist and a liar whose only concern is for financial gain and power.
Someone at ESN was kind enough to email me Herbert Armstrong’s Tangled Web [available as PDF download] and that put the nail in the coffin of the “cult of Armstrong” as far as I am concerned. It sickens me to think I put a sexually immoral, thieving pervert on such a high pedestal. Looking back now with a more sane mind I realize that I put HWA on a level that only Christ should occupy.
I was one of the sound men for the Northeast region FOT and our local congregation since 1997 until 2006. I have seen how the Edmond fat cats treat others whom they look upon as inferior. I (and another sound man) were verbally assaulted by one of Ron Fraser’s sons at the FOT for a technical mistake we made in setting the sound up. Reading about the Frasers’ hypocrisy and opportunism on ESN confirmed that they were just part of the PCG con. –Former member of PCG
January 18, 2014
I want to relate another incident about neglecting child medical care in the PCG. There was a girl around 10 years old named Alicia Flory who died horribly of a virulent viral infection around 2000. She and her parents attended the Cincinnati area congregation. (They have a lot of family members still in PCG.) Her parents refused to take her to a hospital even though she obviously had a bad infection and had pus coming out of her ears. She apparently died in great pain. All this could have been avoided and the girl saved if she had had medical attention. They were later investigated by child protection services when the local authorities read her autopsy report.
I visited the family numerous times and had dinner and fellowship with them. I liked them and they were decent folk. However, the Armstrong/Flurry hypocrisy told them that trusting in doctors is a sin and would make God angry. Therefore this otherwise attentive couple allowed their little girl to die for the sake of a false doctrine. I am still haunted by the memories of a once happy, healthy little girl sacrificed to a cultish fraud. It keeps me up at nights. –Ex member of PCG [name withheld]
Comment: Tragically, the above incident about Alicia also happened to many other children in the old WCG. More about this policy is covered in The Broadway to Armageddon by William B. Hinson.
Those in PCG Who Feel the Right Person in Charge is What is Needed:
January 27, 2014
I’ve found that those in PCG who are dissatisfied will usually feel that “if only” the right person was in charge, things would be all right. Some do actually see the truth and get out and stay out, but others don’t see that the whole thing is wrong and they are in a very destructive group. The pull to be there, or somewhere similar, is just too strong for many of them. They might feel differently later when they’ve had enough of the hypocrisy. But when the PCG makes you cut off from family and friends, it just seems easier to suck up your hard feelings, put them behind you, and go back, just to be with family and friends that are there. But even if the ministers were “wonderful” there, we would still be in a organization of men (not God), with false doctrine that leads nowhere. These are my feelings after trying to help several of them. –Former member of PCG
South African Members Being Convinced They Will Flee Twice:
January 27, 2014
I have heard from an inside source that the South African PCG members are being encouraged to emigrate to Australia. The ministry will try and secure work for SA [South African] members with Australian members who have business in Australia. For those SA members who are not able to work, the plan is to get them into Australia as refugees. The ministers are convincing the SA members that the South African PCG members are going to have to flee twice as South Africa is going to fall first. Some members have already been offered employment in Australia.
Is this “new revelation” from Gerald Flurry that South Africa falls first?
I suppose with the new “flee twice revelation” the South African work will disintegrate. So much for preaching the Gospel to all nations (Mark 16:15). Fear and confusion. From where does that spirit come from again? II Corinthians 4:4. Scripture teaches us to test the spirits.
Thanks again for awakening us to the abominations of this false prophet. –Former PCG member
Samuel Seebran Continues His Reign of Terror:
February 5, 2014
Samuel Seebran, Preaching Elder in Trinidad, Caribbean, continues his reign of terror as he bullies and intimidates members to subject themselves to blind obedience. Most are living in fear of being suspended for even correcting their own mates and children because the PCG ministry has exercised absolute and sole authority over its members and their families. –Resigned member (Trinidad)
Comment: Info regarding Samuel Seebran and the problems in Trinidad can be found in: Concerns From Trinidad (Letter sent to Alex Harrison, PCG HQs).
February 7, 2014
I have been out of PCG now for three years. I have also been in contact with ex-ministers who left when they saw how things were carried out. They told me what had taken place in some of the meetings and how they couldn’t believe what was said and the lack of concern for the members, such as discussing how to extract more money from people (for their own needs, I might add). When a dispute came up between two members, without hearing both sides and making a decision based on how to help them, the minister only took one side (usually the side of the highest tither). People would be put out with no hope of returning and the decision was suppose to be “accepted by God.” I saw so many wrong things there that I can’t begin to tell you.
As I read my Bible, I saw no example of this. God forgave people, God brought people together, God never cut anyone off, or threw people away, as they do in PCG. (I can still become angry when remembering all I saw happen there.)
After leaving, I found out so much more; e. g., that Herbert Armstrong wasn’t who he said he was either. I was in shock to think that I gave my life to this and believed it to be true.
I have since found the real God and am much at peace, and very happy. I have made the PCG a thing of the past. I found I did not need them at all. God still heals, He still answers prayers, and He still protects. To think I wasted all those years in fear of doing the wrong thing and being reported, when God was there for me all the time. I needed them for nothing. We have a chance at life and need never go back there again.
I am very grateful to ESN. You helped me to get in touch with my real feelings after having my mind controlled for so long. And when I saw that what I was feeling was correct, and that others were feeling the same things, and I realized that it was a “cult,” freedom from that place was imminent. Bless you, ESN. –Former member of PCG [name withheld]
Your Website Helped Me to Understand Mind Manipulation:
February 16, 2014
Hello, I’m a former member of WCG and PCG in the Philippines. I found your website enlightening and it helped me understand the complexities of mind manipulation that these leaders inflict on its members. –R.
Control, Threats and Oppression in PCG:
February 17, 2014
I want to confirm and add to the testimony: Oppression and Evil in the PCG. Everything that was written sounded so familiar. In the Elizabethtown, KY, PCG congregation we, too, had dark blue coverings over the glass doors which were the only source of daylight. We had to walk only up and down certain sections between the chairs to go to the bathroom. If we came into the meeting room from another entrance other than the one that was allowed we had comments made to us.
We also had a “security” guy named Jay Hayes who sat in a particular spot each Sabbath. He was a rather large guy who could probably knock you around if he had to. I saw him one Sabbath get into it with another member outside the hotel meeting area where everyone was sitting on the patio seats. He was threatening to turn this member in to Cal Culpepper. The threatened member was pleading and saying, “I am asking you to forgive me,” but big “security” Jay Hayes was having none of it. The argument was so heated that Donnie Belden, the area contact person, had to step in to break it up. This is the same Jay Hayes that sent his minor aged daughter Hannah out of his house and to another state for being “rebellious.” He was directed to do this by Calvin Culpepper.
It is also true that we were forced to sit and eat a pot luck meal (“pot yuk”) and intimidated to talk “spiritual” and constantly reaffirm our commitment to Gerald Flurry. –Ex-PCG [name withheld]
More Control and Hypocrisy in PCG:
February 17, 2014
The replacement for Aaron Eagle [who was suspended August 13, 2013] is a new “minister in training” named Joshua Wainwright. He has no powers to anoint or counsel by himself. He is merely the mouthpiece of Culpepper. Before we left, everyone raved how nice he was and very accessible and non-threatening–unlike Culpepper. How long a “minister in training” has to train before he grows up and gets to be a real minister is anyone’s guess.
Before I left the PCG cult, everything that could affect the member in her/his life that had any semblance of importance was referred to the minister: changing jobs, dating, buying a car, buying a house, moving, taking long car trips, sickness, and most importantly, any moral lapse in a member’s behavior. All is placed before the minister for his judgment on one’s life. And once that judgment is made you must accept it as of it were from “God” himself.
I am aware that current minister Greg Nice knows it is all bogus but is taking the paycheck and is keeping quiet. –Indiana
Comment: Greg Nice, local elder, is said to now be living in Cal Culpepper’s condo (see the P.S. in the May 24, 2013 letter to ESN). More about Greg Nice is below in the November 11 letter. Update: As of 2017 Greg Nice was a Preaching Elder for New Jersey, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia, Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island and sections of New York and Pennsylvania.
More People Exiting PCG:
March 24, 2014
Seven people from one family recently left the PCG in the Cincinnati/Dayton, OH area. They didn’t hold any office, but were considered in good standing. –Ohio
Comment: Cal Culpepper is the minister of the Cincinnati/Dayton/Columbus area.
Security at the Feast–a Controlling Environment:
April 8, 2014
My friend volunteered to “serve” at the FOT when Gerry Flurry first started to force the PCG members to wear name badges and stationed numerous PCG security men throughout the meeting hall. My friend was put on the Security Guard detail. He was given a briefing the day before the Feast. He told me that some men that Calvin Culpepper had thrown out of the PCG had threatened that they were going to show up anyway to confront Culpepper for what he did. Those on Security were instructed that they had the right to physically restrain anyone attempting to enter the Feast meeting hall without the proper Church ID badge. They were to I suppose manhandle any dissidents as quietly as possible to another unused meeting room where Hotel Security would take over.
I remember when Flurry started to turn the Feast into a Jim Jones controlling environment. You were sometimes aggressively and unmercifully confronted with a gruff Security Goon as you attempted to enter a hall just to go to services. If you did not have your badge, you were sent packing like you were some sort of unbeliever. One man who was stricken with a sickness and confined to a wheel chair was absolutely refused admittance to the meeting hall on that day–even though every one knew he was not a dissident from the PCG. It did not matter–Flurry’s orders trumped any consideration for anything else. He was sent back to his room to get his name badge.
But don’t think that security was too tight at the feast. There were some people who were admitted into the meeting hall without any name badges at all. Guess who? Gerry Flurry and his minsters and their wives and children.
My thought at the time was if Gerry Flurry is a true Prophet of God why does he need a bunch of henchmen to protect him and his ministers? –Former member of PCG [name withheld]
What Flurry Teaches Compared to the Bible:
April 9, 2014
I have been out of Flurry’s cult for several years. I spend a lot of time thinking about what they taught against what the Bible teaches. A few of my thoughts are:
Baptism: They make you counsel for a long time. Read this and that booklet and it could take months or longer. I do not ever recall them telling you to read the Bible! In the Bible, the eunuch in the chariot got baptized right away [Acts 8:36-38], all of the people at Pentecost got baptized the very day they believed [Acts 2:41].
The One True Church: What would the “ministers” at PCG say if they read about when the disciples told Jesus that they saw people that were not among us casting demons out in your name (Luke 9:49-50) and Jesus said unto him, “Forbid him not: for he that is not against us is for us.”
Ole Mr. Flurry rebukes everyone that does not see things his way.
Those are just a few that I have thought of. Thanks and keep up the good work. –Former member of PCG (“Pathetic Controlling Group”)
Comment: Also read: Where is the True Church?
PCG Feast Sites for 2014:
April 10, 2014
Edmond, OK (headquarters)
Indian Wells, CA
Stone Mountain, GA
Osoyoos, BC, Canada
St. George’s, Grenada
Hunter Valley (NSW), Australia
Tshipise, South Africa (105 km to the west of the Kruger National Park and 54 km South of the Zimbabwe border)
The new site in the U.S.A. is Stone Mountain, GA. The new site in South Africa is Tshipise. PCG FOT sites have been going down. In 2012 they had 13 sites; in 2013 they had 11 sites; in 2014 they have 11 sites. –[name withheld]
Culpepper Recruiting the Elderly in Florida:
April 11, 2014
I was told by a very reliable source that when Craig Winters (former Regional Director of Southeast U.S.; no longer a minister) was living in Florida, he was scamming the elderly (retired people) by trying to recruit them into PCG. Now it sounds like Cal Culpepper is doing the same thing! There are a lot of retired people in Florida. –[name withheld]
April 11, 2014
Cal Culpepper is very abusive to the elderly and I have a case in point to relay.
There was an elderly widow named Fay who rode with us for several years to PCG services in Elizabethtown, KY (a two hour drive). Last year she drove to Florida to visit her sister. On the way back home her car broke down in Georgia. She was stranded and called Calvin Culpepper for help. She said Culpepper immediately at the start when she asked for help began to verbally accuse her and ask her why she was making a road trip, why did she not check in with him, etc., etc. He had no respect at all for a 78 year old widow in the PCG. So much for the Bible verse on “rising before the grey headed.” [Leviticus 19:32]
All this time, Culpepper thought he was talking to another widow named Fay (who lives in northern Kentucky). He condemned her for attempting to drive to FL when she “could not make it to services regularly.” In his confusion he thought he was talking to the Fay that was an invalid and a shut in. He belittled her for living in a “small cramped apartment” and then getting up and driving to FL.
Anyway, the point being was that Culpepper was yelling and belittling a widow (mind you, broken down and stranded) in the “church” in a most unchristian and unloving way. This is in spite of the fact that we are admonished in Scripture to “visit the widows in their afflictions.” [James 1:27]
Winston Davis used to be over South Carolina and John Cocomise was over Florida when we attended. But with so many regional directors resigning or dying and a shrinking PCG, it makes sense to give Culpepper the eastern sea board to run. A lot less people now. –[name withheld]
Update: As of 2017 Winston David, Preaching Elder, was over South Carolina, North Carolina, sections of Georgia and Virginia and John Cocomise, Preaching Elder, was over Florida, Georgia, Bahamas, and sections of Alabama. Update: John Cocomise died in November 2020: Read: December 3, 2020 PCG letter
I am Sure Flurry Has Justified the Relocation of His FOT Site in South Africa:
April 14, 2014
I heard how the FOT site for Africa will be at Tshipise. The Kruger National park borders on South Africa, Zimbabwe and Mozambique. It is not surprising though I think that member numbers have dwindled, and of course the red-faced shame that the PCG ministry might endure because of the facts around the Seabreeze Collusion story. [Read: Letters #1 and letter #2 to Gerald Flurry from Alex Foster in Articles on Gerald Flurry] Holding a combined Africa site would allow him to boast “numbers.”
I am sure that Flurry has justified the relocation of his vegetable patch to a more fertile compost heap. Being the Head Cabbage in the patch, he has probably used verses such as Deuteronomy 12:5-7; Deut. 12:17-18 and definitely Deut. 14:22-23 to convince the veggies that his “God” is revealing where the new patch is to be located. I guess the Seabreeze Compost heap has run out of nutrition? Flurry is probably not be able to lift up his head to trumpet his “Gospel” in George because of the exposure of his money laundering plan in South Africa. Who knows, maybe the Head Cabbage wants to channel the money through Zimbabwe.
Thanks for your wonderful work of exposure.–Former PCG member [name withheld]
Verbal Abuse of Young Son:
April 18, 2014
I have a friend whose wife is in PCG. She divorced him on the advice of Samuel Seebran [See: February 5, 2014 letter above: “Samuel Seebran Continues His Reign of Terror” for more about Seebran]. Even though they have joint custody, his wife physically and verbally abuses their young son. She instills fear in him telling him that his [other family members] are not in the “church” and that Satan got to them; that they won’t go to a place of safety and that they lost out on salvation and are damned. She has become a very bitter and angry woman when before I knew her as a soft spoken, kind and caring person. I was shocked and amazed when I heard this.
When my friend was in the WCG, he heard of these situations but it was quickly and quietly swept under the rug but now he is experiencing it first hand. When I was a member, I heard of similar things in the PCG youth camps (PYC) but brushed it off as “teen rebellion and lack of respect for authority” as the camp officials were very strict and disciplined. I have heard of correcting and disciplining one’s child by spanking but this has turned into child abuse. His wife refers to Seebran as “a minister from God” (isn’t this a form of idol worship?) and told him that God is not pleased with him because he abandoned the “church.” In a recent Sabbath sermon Seebran stated that Satan has possessed my friend. –Former PCG member
Update 7-22-14: This friend later won a court case against PCG where he now has custody; his son no longer attends PCG, and the judge said that PCG is a cult.
Exited in the Philippines:
April 21, 2014
Hello, I am one of those who left the WCG in 1994. I have been in three other groups–PCG, CGF [Church of God’s Faithful] and FCGL [Faithful Church of God in Laodicea]. I have been reading material on your website for quite some time already. Only now am I sending this email, to heartily express my gratitude of your effort.
I am no longer connected with any church group now. I just pray directly to God to guide me in my pursuit of being a Christian in a way He desires me to be. I am willing to be in contact with those who exited any of the offshoots in the Philippines. Again, thanks a lot. –Former member of WCG, PCG, CGF, and FCGL, Philippines
PCG Service Was in a Masonic Hall With Chaldean and Satanic Symbolism:
May 1, 2014
I arrived for my first PCG service at a Masonic hall after tithing for over a year and was surprised to find Chaldean and satanic symbolism all over the place. I spoke up and was told I had a “disobedient heart” and was banned from further services until I read a lot of material and repented and accepted the Masonic hall. I was told I was not welcome back–but my tithes were.
I just needed to have some contact with a person who was hurt also. –S.
Membership Continues to Decline in Elizabethtown, KY, PCG:
May 5, 2014
The membership in the Elizabethtown PCG is declining due to people leaving and Culpepper casting out members and their families. The attendance is down to only a handful now. –Anonymous
May 14, 2014
Cal Culpepper is now requiring members to attend at least three out of four services a month. First, the PCG eliminated all the congregations in Kentucky except for one (Elizabethtown), now they are requiring even those on a fixed income, the elderly, and the handicapped to find a way to attend services whether they can afford it or not or are physically able to endure the long trip, services, and “Bible study.” Many are driving many miles to attend or are carpooling. The members are intimidated and feel threatened by Culpepper to the point that they don’t dare not attend. –A. S.
May 19, 2014
Flurry has issued the “tighten your belt” command again. He is planning to build another college on the Bricket Wood property they are purchasing in England. [Refer to 7-15-13 letter] I can’t figure out how this is supposed to be getting the word out. It’s just another way to rob the members and make them suffer while they live high and mighty. I know several that are on the verge of quitting, or getting turned in. –[name withheld]
Update: We were later informed that the property at Bricket Wood was too expensive so Flurry’s plans are to purchase the property at Edstone Hall, Wootton Wawen, Warwickshire. His $4.5 million bid was accepted but financing has not been finalized as of December 2014.
June 16, 2014
I am glad that Dennis Leap was finally recognized as the insane man that he was. All the damage that he did was done with Flurry’s approval and knowledge. The people he threw out like trash could not comprehend at the time that he was doing them a great favor! I hope that most of them found their way to grace, but I am sure that many just sought out new chains to bind themselves in.
I hope you know how important the work you do really is! Jesus has used you to help unlock so many chains! You helped me! Thank you! –Former member of PCG
——– Original Message ——–
Subject: Janet De Gennaro
Date: Fri, 1 Aug 2014 09:36:54 -0400
From: Dan De Gennaro
To: Exit & Support Network
Please be advised in the death of our daughter Janet De Gennaro married to David Privratsky. The coroner and the police report will not be available for two or more weeks. However they are confident it was a suicide.
The full truth will come out. I will make sure of that. I want all the facts of our daughter’s death since we were not allowed to be part of their marriage nor getting to know David. We are from Toronto Canada …
We request all be confidential till all the facts are gathered.
Dan De Gennaro
——– Original Message ——–
Subject: FAMILY CUTOFF POLICY
Date: Fri, 15 Aug 2014 13:35:02 -0400
From: Dan De Gennaro
To: Exit & Support Network
I would like to update you on my daughter, Mrs. Janet Privratsky (formerly Janet C. De Gennaro’s) cause of death. The Medical Examiners Coroner Certificate of Death confirms the death was by suicide.
Please publish the letters on the web.
I will be writing of the danger the PCG’s cutoff policy has on family.
All the best
[UPDATE: Read: Our Family’s Devastation Due to Gerald Flurry’s No-Contact Policy (Testimony by Dan De Gennaro regarding the suicide of his daughter Janet) and An Open Letter to Gerald Flurry and the PCG Ministers by Dan De Gennaro.]
Following are the letters which were previously posted on the ESN site concerning the death of Janet Privratsky.
Suicide in PCG Due to No-Contact Ruling:
July 28, 2014
Janet C. Privratsky, age 30, a member of PCG, committed suicide on July 20 because she had to cut off her parents and only brother due to the no-contact rule. She became depressed and then killed herself. Her husband’s name is David. Someone I know (ex-PCG) attended the funeral and said it was heart rending to see the parents’ grief. Not one person from PCG was in attendance. PCG is truly a sick organization. –[name withheld]
Members Being Told Death of Janet Privratsky Was Due to “Heart Failure”:
July 29, 2014
Just read on your site this morning about Janet’s death being a suicide. Those in the PCG are being told it was “heart failure.” People have been so saddened and shocked!
Believe me, I know how this will be kept on the “down low!” They will not want this out there, for many reasons. One of them being, PCG is in the process of purchasing property in the UK, raising up another college. This would not go over well at all. I am shocked–not once did this enter my mind.
It sickens me. Here it is in a nutshell: You obey the PCG rules because those laws, rules, judgments, anything that comes down from the “government” (which, believe me, members strongly and devoutly believe comes from God); if you go along with all this, you will get along just fine in the PCG, and love it there. But if you disobey and voice any disapproval, and do not agree, and do not give in, you cannot stay in the PCG; cannot be among the people.
Janet’s parents and brother, for whatever reasons, were suspended from PCG. I do not know when. David and Janet would, of course, be told they could no longer see her mom and dad and her brother, since the ones who leave are considered to be “Laodiceans.”
In their hearts, to whatever degree, David and Janet felt God (down through His “government”) was telling them to do this. David, most likely still does, no matter how much he hurts. He’ll just suck it up and draw closer to all his PCG family, with all their “love and support.”
Everyone in PCG just hopes and prays no one in their family leaves. They don’t want to go down the same path as Janet or want that for anyone in their family.
I can tell you right now, many in PCG do not agree with that ruling! But if you choose to leave and your family’s in, you just cut yourself off from your own family! They’ll turn it around and say, “We did not cut you off, you cut us off when you left us!” They believe firmly, Satan now has you.
If you have any more details or proof about this, let us know. I do know for sure that it was a PCG minister that officiated at the funeral.
Thank you. –Anonymous
More Info on Suicide of PCG Member Janet Privratsky:
July 30, 2014
Janet was married to David Privratsky for less than a year; they had no children. She was formerly a student at Armstrong College. There were two funerals: the first in the United States, officiated by a PCG minister and the other, in Canada, officiated by her father. Janet and her husband lived in the U. S. She was isolated in Chicago, IL when she became depressed and killed herself. Yes, I have heard that PCG members have been told her death was due to “heart failure.” –[name withheld]
No Wonder So Many Leave PCG:
July 30, 2014
Hearing about Janet Privratsky’s death is very troubling. No wonder so many leave PCG for Restored Church of God. But RCG really isn’t any better–they just think they are. Dave Pack is trying to have the “greatest show on Earth.” That’s all it has ever been about with Pack and RCG. A BIG show!
I actually watched a “Key of David” program (from July 20th). Flurry is out of his mind. How can anyone listen to that nonsense? I only watched it because an ex-PCG friend asked me to. -Former member of PCG and RCG
Revealing News of Inner Workings of PCG:
July 30, 2014
Janet’s death is certainly very revealing news of the inner workings of PCG–especially considering the attempted cover up by calling it “heart failure.” –Oklahoma
Thoughts About the Sudden Death of Janet Privratsky:
July 30, 2014
I noticed that the last entry Janet did on her Twitter blog was during Days of U.B. I looked at her husband’s account and he is much more active. He has thanked people for prayers and is talking about an upcoming Planet of The Apes movie. Sounds like he is already moving on.
Some of the comments on the obituary page for Janet under “Memories” sure sound like suicide. That’s what so many celebrities supposedly do. Janet looked awfully thin. I wonder if she was anorexic? (She puts me in mind of Karen Carpenter whose heart stopped, too). She (Janet) may have taken some pills and they might call it an accidental overdose. Hence: stopped heart.
Janet’s parents surely know the truth, but it is way too soon for them to talk. I wish that people in PCG weren’t so wishy-washy. They are probably scared. If Janet did commit suicide, she probably has had mental problems for a while.
Listening to Flurry last week showed me just how unstable he is. He is much, much worse than when I was there. I don’t listen to him because he doesn’t have a sound mind. So where does this leave the general membership?
So many in PCG have got to have mental issues, there is just no way around it. It makes me wonder if even her husband doesn’t know the truth about this. I still can’t believe he has a tweet about that stupid movie. Here it is: “coming to theaters soon: Dawn of the Rise of the Dawn of the Planet of the Rise of the Rise of the Dawn of the Apes.”
How immature can he be? Something isn’t right with him either. Usually, the first year of any marriage is the hardest. But Janet being cut off from her family and living with this goon might have taken her down a very dark path.
Her Twitter account had no action for months. She seemed happy then. What happened??? –Former member of PCG and RCG [name withheld]
Comment: Altered states of mind and personality can happen quickly or gradually in these groups. Refer to the book, Snapping: America’s Epidemic of Sudden Personality Change by Flo Conway & Jim Siegelman. Also read: “What happens to their personality?” (Q&A under “Questions About Members.”)
Facts Don’t Lie:
July 31, 2014
PCG is a land of make believe. Flurry writes the story line as he goes. The problem is he has such a confused plot that even he can’t keep up with it. He is constantly reinventing himself with new roles and titles. Where does that leave his beguiled followers?
No matter how this young woman died, PCG is still a part of it. She may have been totally stressed out by her family being suspended from PCG.
It’s amazing how the spin doctors got hold of this. It even appears that ex-PCG members are against the truth coming out.
Facts don’t lie, only people lie. –Former PCG/RCG member [name withheld]
Truth About Janet Privratsky’s Death Will Give GF Bad Press:
August 15, 2014
The truth about Janet Privratsky’s death will definitely give GF bad press. Hopefully, this information will help people learn more about the PCG and help them stay away from it before they get tangled up in that mess. –Impacted by loved one in PCG
In-Laws of Janet Privratsky Are Local Deacon and Deaconess:
August 17, 2014
Jim Privratsky and Terry Privratsky, the in-laws of Janet Privratsky, are local deacon and deaconess.
Something I find so odd–but obviously cultic–is that neither Janet’s or her husband’s Facebook friends mentioned anything about her death. So tragic!! –Canada
It’s Time David Privratsky Wakes up to the PCG:
August 18, 2014
I went on my Twitter account and checked out Janet’s husband, David. He has now made his posts private. Apparently, he knows about the letters on ESN. It’s time he wakes up to the PCG, too. How could he even consider staying there after this? –Former PCG member
Another Instance Where Members Are Being Lied to:
August 18, 2014
Thanks for sharing the latest information about Janet. So sorry for the suffering the family has to go through. I hope others who misjudged your motives will acknowledge and correct their errors. This is just another instance where members are being lied to by the PCG. –Ex-PCG [name withheld]
Info on the Privratsky Family and the PCG:
August 18, 2014
This is such a travesty! My heart goes out to Janet’s parents. This evil group will obviously go on, but I want to try and bring out some information to help in making some sense to this mess.
David Privratsky is a writer for the PCG. His brother, Steven Privratsky, was also born and raised in Chicago, graduated from HWAC in 2010, and now has the title of “Security at Philadelphia Church of God.” (I found that bizarre. Who would need security for a real church?) Steven’s last job (on Linked in) shows he worked for “The Petra Group.”
Jeremy Cocomise is Co-Founder and Director of Operations for “The Petra Group,” along with Bret Smythe. (Jeremy Cocomise’s Linked in page doesn’t come right out and say he works for “The Petra Group”; however, if you enlarge his picture, you will see the words “The Petra Group” embossed on a yellow background.) In my opinion, it looks to me like this company is a cash cow for the PCG (zoominfo gives $5-10 million in revenue). It appears to be a closed company to PCG employees as all the PCG names I searched, such as Privratsky, etc., come up working for this company and are tied in with PCG and HWA College (AC). The Petra Group is not BBB accredited and BBB has received several complaints alleging customer service issues. I also discovered a “Notice of Federal Tax Lien” in November 2012 with an unpaid balance of $2944.55.
What’s interesting to note is that the Privratsky family is quite high in the PCG (the upper echelon). So the secrecy in Janet’s death, and also how they obviously helped her along the road to her losing her mind. –[name withheld]
What a Relief to Be Out:
August 19, 2014
Thank you so very much for this site. I am former member of the PCOG cult. I just about lost my marriage to these crooks. Jim Cocomise, the so called “minister of God” (and lead minister for Texas and Louisiana), tried to turn me against my husband because he left me. Cocomise wanted us to keep secrets from each other about what we talked about in the counseling. How can that be right?? I was so happy my husband was coming home but when I called Cocomise he was like, “Wait, he can’t until we say he can.” I was like, “No, he’s coming home now; it’s too expensive to stay in a hotel.” Then he said, “Oh that is okay.”
I cannot believe I was deceived by these people. I was so afraid of doing the wrong thing; i.e., not reading enough, not praying right, not giving enough money etc., etc., etc. I thank God I am not ever going to another service again. Oh, and this blew my mind: So now since I left the PCG, my kids who have never been involved in the PCOG “will die because I failed in my calling.” This was preached last Sabbath on August 16, 2014. Nowhere does it say that in the Bible.
What a relief to be out of that cult. We have been so mind controlled this last year that we are not sure what to believe at this point. Last night was the first time I realized I was in a cult. My husband knew months ago but he knew from reading your exit group’s writings that he had to let me figure it out for myself. Today I felt so much better. I’ve been oppressed, mind controlled, etc., for a solid year.
Sending Christ’s love to you for your work. –Tina Scott, former PCOG member, Ft. Worth, TX
Update: As of 2017 Jim Cocomise was a Preaching Elder in Texas and New Mexico. He was later over the Dayton/Cincinnati area, then was suspended in January 2021.
I Love This Article on Your Site:
August 20, 2014
Just wanted to let you know that I love the article, “The Law of Moses and the Grace of God.” I wish I could memorize it. It was very good. –Impacted by loved one in PCG
Never Heard a Sermon About the Gospel of Grace:
August 25, 2014
We want to convey to the De Gennaro family our heartfelt condolences and sympathy in their very sad loss.
It has been with shock, horror and disgust that we read of what the Philadelphia Church of God “Very Elect” has done to the De Gennaro family, and many other families around the world.
My wife and I were members of both the WCG and PCG until we were suspended on a trumped up charge by the minister. We experienced their outright lies and denials by their ministers and are very aware of the evil that exists in the PCG. John 8:44. [“Ye are of your father the devil …] For over three years we have not been allowed to be in contact with our family in the PCG. We know of grandparents in the U.S. who have not even met their latest grandson.
In all our years in the WCG and PCG we never heard a sermon or read any message about the Gospel of Grace or the great love that God has for His children and the Bride of Christ. –[name withheld]
Disfellowshipment of Aaron Eagle; Wife Stays in PCG:
August 28, 2014
Former minister Aaron Eagle tried to expose what Cal Culpepper has been doing to the PCG membership in his area. For his efforts he was disfellowshipped. He refuses to come back to the cult but his wife wants to stay on. Now Aaron’s wife is living at the Edmond compound with their children. She is granted living quarters and a 3rd tithe monthly payment. Aaron is not allowed to see or have any contact with his wife or children. Flurry is demanding a divorce take place. –Ex-PCG
Updates: Aaron Eagle’s wife was hired by Gerald Flurry to teach at Imperial Schools. This is part of a settlement the PCG made with her for not going back to her ex-minister husband. Flurry wants her to divorce Aaron Eagle as he has damaging info on how Cal Culpepper has destroyed so many lives in the NE region. (sent to ESN by former member of PCG) In 2015 it was rumored that Aaron Eagle started his own splinter group.
Your Freedom is as Close as the Door:
September 16, 2014
Over 30 years ago, the PCG ministers didn’t want us to marry, but we did it anyway. They said it would never last. Well, it did.
So, for all you people who are scared of leaving PCG, I would like to say the following:
After we left, no one died in my family (that is a lie they tell you); our prayers are answered and God still heals. We don’t need any man’s permission to contact God. We are adult enough to handle our own problems; we don’t need to run to some man who has no more idea about what to do than anyone else about a problem. How many times have you gotten the ministers involved and things got much worse? God intended that we think for ourselves and not run to a fallible, sinful man to do our thinking for us, and who causes more harm than was ever intended. I don’t have to worry about someone telling me I can’t talk to a family member. My life is mine. I don’t have to give money away that I don’t have, and can’t afford, with the threat of not making it into God’s kingdom. I don’t have to sell things that I want and need that God blessed me with to pay HQs bills that are far too extravagant. Why does Flurry need so much and our children need nothing? If they’re so godly, why isn’t God blessing them without taking our blessings? The PCG bases all their teachings on misinterpretations and outright lies. Since I have left, I have never been so much at peace and have never felt so close to God. Your freedom is as close as the door. Use it!! –Ex PCG
Comment: Leaving the PCG (or any controlling, exploitive group) is not the same as leaving God. See the lie: “If you leave this Church, God will leave you!“
September 17, 2014
I wish all members in PCG would be able to see that only believing in the Lord Jesus Christ and accepting His great sacrifice is the only way to be saved, and stop living in the fear of men. We feel so sorry for all of the people who have suffered at the hands of the leadership of these groups. These men think they are “in charge” when actually they are being used by Satan to destroy thousands of peoples’ lives (not to mention entire families).
When I was in PCG, they never emphasized the following Scriptures:
Romans 10:9: “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.”
Act 16:31: “And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.”
We were taught that when Christ said, “It is finished,” He really did not mean that because “man has to do this and that” to be saved also. They do not realize that when our Lord said, IT IS FINISHED! that is what He meant! What they teach is a total insult to what our Lord went through for us!
They do not know that it is not about what we do; it is all about what Jesus has done for us. IT IS ALL ABOUT HIM, not about little puny us. It is all about “Grace.”
If you want to talk about “THE PLAIN TRUTH” (as Herbert Armstrong used to say), then . . . The PLAIN TRUTH IS ALL ABOUT WHAT JESUS HAS DONE. . . PERIOD!
Since we have learned about the Gospel of Grace, our lives are being transformed from the inside out; not just behavior modification. We are praying that those in PCG all soon break free of the “fear” they live under, and realize that Jesus is truly “the Way, the Truth (grace) and the Life.” Forgiveness, mercy, grace–this is what Christ is all about.
Well, I could go on and on as (no doubt) you could too when it comes to the inaccuracies of the teachings of these groups. Now that we have learned real TRUTH I get carried away knowing that more and more people are leaving the PCG. Jesus is not a religion He is Grace personified! –Former member of PCG [name withheld]
Comment: Fear blinds the eyes of members from seeing that the fruits of these groups are evil. (Matthew 7:16-20) Read: Are We Still Under the Law in Spite of Grace? which covers “it is finished.”
September 20, 2014
Soon it will be the one year anniversary of our official resignation from the PCG cult. Flurry and his henchmen always told us that God would curse us or kill us if we ever stopped “supporting the Work” (i.e., putting money in their bank accounts so they can live in luxury). Or if we ever stopped attending services or keeping the Mosaic Sabbath Law, God would kill us or strike us down horribly.
None of this has happened. In fact, God has blessed me with a state job that has full time hours, a future and paid benefits. In three weeks I will graduate from the academy and become a sworn Peace Officer. This is God himself setting me free from the obsolete Mosaic Law that so many are still enslaved to by those gangsters in Edmond.
If I would have stayed in the PCG cult, I would probably be homeless and on government assistance section and housing. Keeping the Mosaic Holy Days and Sabbaths destroyed every good job opportunity I ever had. Gerry Flurry always told me that giving him money would ensure my salvation, health and prosperity. Instead, giving him the money I needed to live my life almost cost me everything I had.
Thanks to my good friend [name removed] who told me about ESN I was able to conquer the fear that the Flurrys, Turgeons, Malones, and Culpeppers used to keep me sending them my hard earned money to keep my salvation. Realizing from ESN that Gerald Flurry plagiarized most of Malachi’s Message and was arrested for being drunk on the Sabbath disillusioned me from the adoration I had for that fake prophet from Oklahoma.
The hardest thing now is to not be overcome with resentment and anger towards those men in Edmond who deceived me into giving them my limited resources so they could live in elegant homes, drive luxury cars, and travel all over the world in comfort. When I went out to Edmond OK and saw the wealth and extravagance that these people surround themselves with I was shocked. Then it was the snobbish arrogance and pride of these Edmond elites that sickened me to the core. Here are a bunch of individuals living off of the hard work, sweat, and tithes of others and they act like it was all owed to them.
The final straw was when a “minister of God” told me that God would kill my baby girl if I did not follow his instructions. We left and never looked back. Someone in Edmond like Brian Davis would read this letter and laugh and mock. But we are free now and for the first time we have the blessings Flurry always promised but never delivered.
God bless you all. –Brett and Carmen Streutker
PCG Wanted My Brother’s Money but not Him:
October 24, 2014
Hi, I found your site while looking up this sham of a “church.” I am so glad other people feel this way also.
My brother wanted nothing more then a family, ours is a broken one. He is an alcoholic and has had many trials and tribulations that only seemed to worsen after our mother died. When he needed a place to stay to start his recovery, our good friend took him in and I was very appreciative of that. My friend was in the process of turning to God when she found PCG. Because it had the Herbert W. Armstrong name behind it, I thought it was great because when we were kids my dad was involved with HWA’s organization, but now I know it is not the same today.
The things she had to do and how she was supposed to live to become a “member” of this cult really made me think, “What the heck?!”
My brother was becoming clean and getting his life back, all the while looking for the Lord’s help and then of course trying to get involved with PCG like our friend. After jumping through all their hoops and living as they said, my friend was baptized through them. Of course, her life changed drastically and she ended up selling her house and now lives with very little as the PCG cult wants.
My brother moved out on his own, all the while trying to become a member of this “church.” Why do you have to follow certain rules and do this and not do that to be part of the Lord’s family?! Oh, and then the money they want you to give them even though you can’t be a member because of your past discretions!! I am so angry.
Needless to say, after all the hard work my brother did to become clean and be on his own working again, he lost hope because this “church” would take his money but not him!!
yourHe is back to where he started 15+ years ago. Do they care? Are they reaching out to him? Of course not. No more money, no more “church” family. I pray everyday that Jesus will lift him up in the true sense of the Lord. I am so scared for him and I hate what this cult did to break him. Thank you for letting me get this this off my chest to someone who understands. God Bless! –Anonymous
Comment: This person has received a personal reply.
Tried to Please God; Ended up Being Used:
October 27, 2014
I never realized how evil these people were. It is so deceptive. All the while I thought I was trying to please God and these guys were using me for their gain. I really do appreciate your website, it clears up a lot of things that should have been obvious to me. –J. M.
PCG Ministers Extort Money From Members:
November 11, 2014
After one “holy day” gathering in the PCG my father-in-law ate dinner with minister Greg Nice at a high end restaurant. At the end of a nice expensive meal, Nice whipped out a PCG ministerial credit card to pay for dinner for his family. All the others there had to save up all year to eat at a place like that. My father-in-law was shocked as he assumed that the ministers all pay for their own food, lodging, and expenses during Sabbaths and holy days like all the “dumb sheep” of the non-Edmond slave class. No, the PCG ministers get it all paid for with the blood, sweat, tears, and paychecks of the lower orders of non-HQ PCG members. He was incensed and very grieved to have found out that day that all PCG ministers have a nice padded expense account via “company credit cards.”
I also remember another holy day (the LDUB) when the great PCG evangelist Wayne Turgeon (who just happens to be married to Gerald Flurry’s daughter) came to Cincinnati to beg for a large holy day offering. He said he felt “kinda bad” asking young couples with children and frail seniors on Social Security for more money but “God needs your support.” He also added that if anyone was thinking about being stingy with offerings to Flurry then a nice one way ticket to the Tribulation might be your fate.
It takes a man of low character to stand behind the pulpit and extort money from people they know are the least able to afford it. As they stand up there, they must have to look into the eyes of young children, infants, and older folk and know that Gerald Flurry is a fraud and it is all about the money. Yes, people like Wayne Turgeon, Wilbur Malone, Brian Davis, Andrew Locher and others will threaten “eternal death” and then take money from the poor sheep and run back to their luxury homes, cars, and $65,000 a year salaries. Oh, and now we may add–nice company Visas. –Brett Streutker, Former PCG member
Recent Victim of the PCG Fraud:
December 29, 2014
I’m a recent victim of the PCG fraud, I’m presently struggling to come to terms with how I got myself entangled with this cult of a group.
Could you kindly email me the PDF ebook copies of the following titles: The Broadway to Armageddon by William B. Hinson, 1977, and Herbert Armstrong’s Tangled Web.
Thanks in anticipation. –K. M.
Update 2019: The Broadway to Armageddon and Herbert Armstrong’s Tangled Web are now available as a PDF download.