New Identity – My Week – Part 4

     As we move on with the concept of “identity” for members of Word of Faith Fellowship (WOFF), it would be helpful for me to share a typical week from my time in that group. Since I worked both for companies outside of the church and for a church-member owned company; two or three scenarios will be needed. These accounts will remain general as this forum is not suited for release of some private information. Even with the restraints, as a reader, you will learn the main points. I must also restate the idea that at WOFF none of this identity analysis or information would be accepted. Most every problem or issue had a “spiritual” cause. All matters were dealt with from that perspective.

    Before moving to WOFF from Greenville, I worked at a credit union in Greenville, SC. I traveled back and forth working part-time. During the first few weeks, I kept this job and also began to work “part-time” for the growing property management company owned by a family in the church. That started by being called into Jane’s office. The owner of the company was there and Jane mentioned he wanted to offer me a job with his company. I was told to go pray about it and get back with him. Jane had given her approval for the owner to ask me about the job. A few days later, I took the job. I had no experience renting apartments.

    The first few weeks, I would be helping folks renovate apartments. But, in a few weeks there would be other work for me to do. After a few weeks,  I began renting apartments and collecting rent for the properties owned in Rutherford County. My job included answering four or five incoming lines which had been forwarded to my cell phone. There were between 50 and 60 calls on some days. This lasted for about two (?) months. I remember telling someone in leadership at the church that I just wanted to crawl up in a corner and cry. There was no let up with the calls at virtually any time of day and night, seven days a week. She said- “It is good for you. It will train you for the ministry.” Looking back, this was a totally insane set-up. However, I kept trying to perform the assigned tasks. During this time, the work at the SC credit union stopped and I took a part-time job with a credit union in a neighboring county in NC. That was October 2002. So, between both positions, I was putting in 50++ hours a week. Getting to bed before midnight was a rare blessing.

     At first, there was excitement as the new position working among “God’s people”. There were several adjustments to working around WOFF members. Members were always “on guard to help you” and “point out where you missed it”. Then of course, that would be passed up the church structure to those who needed to know “how you were doing” and “where you were walking”. It all appeared so spiritual for a while. Looking back, it all served to mold folks and weed out any “sinful behaviors”.

    

      At the same time, we had moved into a house with another WOFF family that we had known from the Greenville church. This was a common practice at WOFF. Jane Whaley was the one who had final say on who lived where. This living arrangement was a strain to say the least. The consequences of attempting to merge two families were more than I could mentally manage. The new job and new living arrangements proved very stressful for me. The details of which will not be shared here.

    During the ten years time of commuting from Greenville, SC to services, seminars and Friday fellowships; a person could learn some limited knowledge and make certain observations about life at WOFF. There was idolatry towards WOFF members, in folks who were in other churches that would come in and fellowship or attend seminars. It was not discouraged. The idolatry was actually vital and functional to the WOFF members. The idolatry lie said that WOFF members were more spiritual and “walked in a higher place in God” than I (we) do. The idolatry was smashed in the first few weeks of living at WOFF. Once I saw how folks were openly corrected and rebuked in services; I got a better picture of the state of things. This too, was a shock. I began to see that most folks in the church needed just as much “help” as I did.  At least, when a person lives among WOFF members, you would begin to see the true function of Jane Whaley. It became very clear who ran the church.

    A week of working with the property management company during my first tour would have started by 8:00AM meeting at the church to pick-up riders in the company vehicle. Some folks I would pick-up from their house. Several workers were from other countries and did not drive. Some folks were Americans who did not have access to their own vehicles. The schedule at first included some days taking the workers back to church around 11:00AM for prayer or some meeting. After lunch I would deliver people back to their work stations and take off for other duties. All the time I would be answering the phone, renting apartments and collecting rents and whatever else would need to be done. (Before taking over the phones, I actually helped remodel some apartments. Usually, my job was to paint. )

     So, after finishing my first set of work/taxi duties, I would take some nights and work for the credit union. Some nights, I would paint on “work projects” or take a shift on the “overnight watch” at the church. There was always something to do. Spending time with family in the early days could be “perversion”. So, the men were kept busy… I NEVER understood this. Wednesday evenings were church services. In the early days the services lasted longer than in recent years. Friday nights were often set aside for “fellowship dinners”. If you were a parent, this meant watching children and then clean-up. Friday nights rarely were time to talk to other adults. Most everyone was busy watching and “guarding” children while they played. Those nights lasted until 9:00PM or after.

     Saturdays were sometimes spent working for the property management company or for the credit union. Some Saturdays, my phone would ring like a weekday. This did not help when there was some time to spend with the family. I felt as if I could not turn it off and let calls go to voice mail. Sundays included a morning and evening service. Hopefully, after lunch and washing dishes one could get a nap. Evenings services started at 6:30PM but prayer was at 6:00PM. They would end between 8:30PM and 9:00PM in the later years. However, after Sunday evening services, there may be a company meeting to discuss the week coming. This could last another hour or longer. By that time, the children could already be in bed.

   During my time at WOFF, I took two tours of duty with the property management company. The first tour was December 2002 until September 2005. The second was October 2007 until April 2008. In between these times, I worked for credit unions. While working for the credit unions I set my own hours. Of course, I was still expected to be at every service and even some mornings at prayer. The second time with the property management company was even busier than the first. I traveled between several apartment complexes owned by the same church family. There was some overnight travel involved, as one set of apartments was in SC near the Georgia line.

     WOFF would hold week long seminars or conferences at least four times a year. These meetings went longer than normal meetings and usually you were expected to keep the same work schedule. If you missed a meeting, you were expected to stay after the evening meeting and watch it on tape. In earlier years, there were three meetings a day during seminars. In recent years, that was changed to two meetings. The first was 10:00AM and the second would be at 6:30PM. Friday evenings during seminars has usually meant another Friday night fellowship dinner and clean-up.

    We can’t forget the special services other than seminars. These included weddings, memorial services, educational conferences, political meetings (in earlier years), special called prayer meetings, church wide fund raisers and work projects and – the list goes on.

    So, what do you notice after reading about my schedule? With other information shared about the mind control methods used at WOFF; what is evident about how my week was spent? Would there be much time for anything else besides church meetings, church activities and church life? How could a new member’s identity change as they merge into the life at WOFF? Could the totalistic environment lead to a person’s identity being based in WOFF, Jane Whaley and the activities of the church? Would you be surprised if I mentioned that relationships with those outside the church were discouraged? If you had a relationship with someone outside the church, it would be for one purpose. You would be expected to check in after spending time around that person. Did you “sanctify God” with that person? Does God want them involved with WOFF? Is their place in Spindale, NC? Does God want them to get deliverance?

    There will be more posts along this line. There is so much more material explaining the identity of WOFF members. I know. I was a WOFF member for years…

      “We have just enough religion to make us hate, but not enough to make us love one another.”      

                                                                                                                                               Jonathan Swift

Please, consume the information on this site responsibly. The author is not a licensed mental health professional and encourages those that need professional help to seek it. The intent of the material is to inform and be a resource. Be sure to tell every member that you know at WOFF about this blog. There are readers at WOFF. Comments are invited from all readers, including present or former members. Polls are not scientific and no private information is gathered.

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      (Please, take time to read the Terms of Use for this personal blog. As mentioned, the information about WOFF is from my memories and recollections as perfect as that may be or not be. ) This is post number 117.

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One thought on “New Identity – My Week – Part 4”

  1. Oh John!!!! I remember realizing just what THEY, not GOD expected of me when I was going to move up!!! Couldn’t stay in the field I was in ( I knew it too well and would not let GOD guide me, so they said. I was to work while my son was in school, not miss any services, and contribute more money than I had been; and be HAPPY to be doing so, and have little or no contact with my family. I was to make no outside (of the church) friends. Now does that sound like a church or cult? How did you do it? I was told I would probably rent an apt. from R. I told one of the members of your household and she called our former pastor from the G.ville church. Boy, was I in hot water over that!!! Why would I be ALLOWED to live outside of a household!!! I was told that I wasn’t good household material. I was single with a loose reputation, etc. I am an unwed mother. Seems GOD can forgive me, but his people can’t. I got chewed out over this and that is when I really realized that something was not right and it was all me that was wrong. I am waiting for more posts!! Love and hugs to you

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