Mon 23 Jul, 2012 03:49 pm
I am in my mid 40s. I was raised in an extremely restrictive environment by parents steeped in Pentecostal influences; it develops I spent quite a bit of time around people associated with the Christian Missionary Alliance, and some other loosely associated groups, including Latter Rain and Christian Identity splinter groups. I was isolated from family and society, and 'homeschooled'. There were some principles that I've recently been looking into thanks to the magic of the internet.
Anyway, I have the very recent recognition that the entire time my dad was working on principles that are EXACTLY and PRECISELY David Berg and COG (without any sexual anything. In fact, the family was extremely sexually repressed). However, I have absolutely no memory or knowledge of any mention of any kind of anything about COG, MO Letters, or 'David Berg'. Nothing. I'm baffled as to how, exactly, that guy could have somehow inculcated a complete COG doctrine ( I stress: COMPLETE COG DOCTRINE, without the sex) and never once talked about it in explicit terms, or done all of it without me ever once seeing any recognizable literature, or ever once meeting a COG member. Is this possible?
I mean, the parallels are so striking as to really make me doubt the possibility of coincidence. Reading the non-sexual MO Letters is like reading a transcript of my dad. The 'homeschooling template' and the 'teaching' I got matches EXACTLY the COG manifesto about homeschooling education, including 7000 years of History. My dad rambled endlessly about 'The System', and used terminology unique, and I mean, unique, to COG, starting, I think, about c. 1972. How is this possible? And, we were, eventually, entirely alone. It was one family. I never knew anyone else to be even close to anything my dad practiced.
Not only was my homeschooling direct COG, but at exactly the time frame, 1978-1981, Berg dissolved COG and did his purge, my dad was discussing selling everything and 'disappearing'; not even six months after that pronouncement he did a complete about-face, consolidated, and moved us into a shattered ghetto neighborhood in a major city! His rationalization was a near-perfect quotation of Berg's MO Letter about moving to cities.
I grew up in wrecked homes in really, really dangerous areas, most of the time without heat or running water, working endlessly, subjected to endless harangues about 'The System' and such COG stuff. I'm very, very interested to know if there were, for lack of a better term, isolated, independent 'cells' of individual families in the US, c. 1980?
The location was the Chicago area, 1967-1982; I know he had previously been in Boston, Madison WI, and Detroit, but never in California or the West. Oh; and he insisted on naming his first kid, my only brother, Jeremiah, in 1966! What is that all about?
Anybody? It's just too weird to not ask. Up until last week I'd never even HEARD of a 'MO Letter', and reading them is like being 11 years old again.
I'd appreciate any honest information. It would mean a lot to me.
Well, to be brief, there aren't a whole lot of these ideas floating around, so it's not remarkable to find yourself following someone else's system. Having had a decent amount of experience with different sane or crazy Jesus People-oid groups, I would summarize my advice to deal with COG literature as "man, this is wacko stuff; I have to find out how to unbelieve all this and still be a Christian."
I would summarize my advice to deal with COG literature as "man, this is wacko stuff; I have to find out how to unbelieve all this and still be a Christian."
Well, imo that is not too difficult, to still be a Christian. Knowing that COG/TFI literature only had/has a touch of Christian content you do not have to link those two, except for noting the vast contrast. Most of the religious content had nothing to do with Christianity.