I was born into WCG in 1971. I partially left in 1992 because I was excommunicated, returned to it briefly in 1993, then again 2004. I left for good by the end of 2004. I remember seeing a video, I think they called it “A New Hope”1 and feeling exactly as you say, spiritually raped! I wondered why the WCG continued if it was all wrong to begin with. Wouldn’t its very existence be an abomination to God?
Since I was born into it I never knew anything different, yet never fully understood that belief system. I was a bit rebellious and questioned why, but convinced by the mind control that that was Satan’s work at hand–not even realizing it was all thought control. ESN has been very helpful in explaining how we were duped and tricked into staying once we began to question the legitimacy of it all. Everything was so carefully orchestrated to make us feel dependent on the “church” and therefore remain loyal. Admitting I was so manipulated since birth was difficult and the first step to recovery. Just like being addicted to anything else the first step was admitting there was a problem.
Today it has been 7 years since I have had any involvement with WCG and finding ESN taught me a lot I never knew. So many things were covered up! I was relieved to find that I am not alone in feeling like I never developed my own identity. I always thought this was a problem I had, never realizing that it was created by my association with the group. I have struggled with so many issues that could have been caused by all that came with being in WCG. It’s so odd that at 41 I am just beginning to see the true results of the “church.” I am relieved that I am not alone and it’s not just a problem I have, but many other survivors have experienced too!
Today I am so thankful to be saved by the grace of Jesus Christ!
I pray for those still on the inside and don’t trust that WCG has changed simply because the name has. The splinter groups still cling to the lies Herbert Armstrong told. Thank you, ESN, for your help in unraveling the real truth.
By Alyssa – Child survivor of WCG
(A child born into WCG who escaped and is learning to be free in my Savior Jesus Christ!)
1 The name of the video was “Called to Be Free” and it was produced by Living Hope Ministries. (Read our critique of the video.) It was filled with WCG propaganda.