Exit and Support Network has posted another heart rending testimony of what life was really like in HWA's WCG. This is the May 19 letter.
I began attending WWCG at age 2 in 1964 in a public school gym in Kitchener, Ontario, Canada. I am still traumatized from my experience in that "church" and still feel isolated and have anxiety. I remember going to the Pocono Mountains for the Feast of Tabernacles and going to the local airport to await Herbert Armstrong's arrival, then going to services in a hot or cold circus tent for hours upon hours of sermons. But what still stands out is the screaming of children being beaten in the outer washrooms, including myself. Then when the Feast was over, going home and back to school and being constantly behind in school work and being segregated from my classmates during Christmas activities or having to sit in the hallway and smell the hotdogs on Hotdog Day.People need to remember that the next time some COG "leader" tries telling people HWA's WCG was such a glorious community. The truth is HWA's WCG was a cesspool of oppression.
I remember my mom getting marriage counseling [by WCG ministers] for herself but not my dad because he was not a member. He tried to get her to stop going. The constant fights I can never forget. I remember the the deacons arriving in brand new Chrysler Imperials in our driveway, wearing fedoras and silk suits to anoint me for my stuttering. I remember my sister's best friend being carried into services on a lawn chaise with throat cancer, having received no medical treatment, and being placed at the rear of the gym and struggling to breathe. She died at the age of 15. Another man I remember had kidney cancer and was told drinking apple juice would heal him. He died within months. I remember Mom tithing all her money that Dad gave her for groceries and which, instead, went to pay for Herbert's aircraft fuel.
I'm 50 years old now and cannot forget that awful era. I have an understanding, loving woman in my life but I cannot forget how my mind, along with the rest of my family's, has been damaged by mind control from that cult. I still have that feeling of not fitting in anywhere. I could go on forever about my experience in the WWCG, but writing this relieves some pressure. Thank you for listening.