Well, it should be no surprise. Publishing a book about my time inside of Word of Faith Fellowship (WOFF) has caused some reaction. Honestly, many have asked if I have heard from WOFF. This week, there was blow back. But, to put it all in context, let’s review events from a few days before.
Monday, I used my last contact for my left eye and called the local eye doctor to see about getting new ones. My prescription had expired and they required an exam to obtain more contacts. As it worked out, there was an opening for Tuesday morning. I took it and thought no more about the issue.
Tuesday morning, I arrived at the Eye Clinic and recognized the receptionist as a present WOFF member. She was cordial as I called her name and said I did not know she worked there full time. She quickly replied, “I do not.” Yes, the tension in her voice spoke louder than her pasted smile. I took my seat and soon was called back to the exam room.
Once in the room, the technician went through the normal questions updating my medical history. I stopped her and asked who had access to my records? She quickly pointed to a fingerprint recognition device and said only her and the doctor could access the details of my history. That was a relief and I explained why. I mentioned the name of the employee and said I used to belong to WOFF and did not want her having access to my records. Can you blame me? Anyway, the technician went on to say she had attended the employee’s wedding and almost simultaneously, we both made a comment about the reception food! She said the food was great and the people were friendly. She was clearly staying neutral and I understood her position. I told her the employee was probably a very good worker and if my memory served me right, we went on the same trip to Brazil in 2005. From there I mentioned my book and again, the technician kept a neutral position and did not ask me details about the book. She left the room and my comfort level was satisfied for the moment. Continue reading They said you had “mental problems…wacko…”→
Friday afternoon, a co-worker caught my attention with her eyes wide open, “John, come here…” She asked if I watched the interview with the former Word of Life Christian Church member Thursday morning, on television. I had not. She quickly found the link and asked me to sit down at her desk and watch it. As the interview played, she exclaimed, “That’s what you describe in your book. He used the same words you used in your book.” (Locked in)
It is at this point, I have mixed emotions about my printing and publishing projects. I am naturally glad the similarities between the destructive group in New York and Word of Faith Fellowship (WOFF) are not difficult for readers of my blog and book to see. At the same time, I have deep, unspeakable pangs of regret and remorse for the small daily decisions which led to my involvement with Jane Whaley and her crowd. On the one hand, I like to think there may have been some way to stop the progression of involvement in the web of WOFF. On the other, I cannot change the past. We can only move on from here and help those who want help. Continue reading Nathan Ames, “… they did whatever was told to them…” (video)→
Last Monday evening, October 12th, I was privileged to sit among the leadership of Word of Faith Fellowship (WOFF) and witness the Honorable Judge Martin Reidinger deliver a presentation on the Nuremberg Trials. As mentioned in a previous post, the irony of the whole night was stark and at times overwhelming. Before the Judge began his delivery, Karel Reynolds opened with a few remarks noting the 15th of October 1945 as the day the Nazi party was dissolved. She mentioned two other statements which I have not been able to forget. She mentioned the results of the Holocaust showed us “…what human beings are capable of…” and that education was not the only answer to stopping such atrocities. Hitler had highly educated scientists and engineers working for him.
As proof of that, in preparation for the prosecution of the defendants at the Nuremberg Trials, each was administered intelligence tests and psychiatric evaluations. (here) Karel quoted Hermann Goering, a leading member of the Nazi party, to say, “I have no conscience. Adolf Hitler is my conscience.” Mr. Goering’s intelligence test score was 138. That score is listed as “gifted.” (2.3% of test takers score this range).
Monday, October 12, 2015; Federal Judge, The Honorable Martin Reidinger, United States District Court Judge for the Western District of North Carolina delivered a methodical presentation on “The Nuremberg Trial: Legacy and Impact In Our Generation.” The event was held at the Mildred H. Keeter Auditorium at Cleveland Community College in Shelby, NC. Karel Reynolds, Holocaust Instructor for the College, Principal of the Word of Faith Fellowship Christian School and according to her recent court testimony, head of the video ministry at Word of Faith Fellowship hosted the event.
The calendar for Cleveland Community College specified 200 as the seating limit. Even before, I made it to the building; this clearly was a Word of Faith Fellowship (WOFF) event with possibly two-thirds or more of the audience consisting of leadership, youth, young adults and children. At first, Jane Whaley was sitting with her class, near the front, beside Brock. However, shortly before the event began, Jane received a text, looked over her left should and then her right. Right then, she heard God to give her seat to someone else. I don’t know if she sat in the back or left the gathering all together. I did not see her after she left her seat.
Let me apologize for stepping on Dr. Jerry Gross’ shoe when I passed in the aisle. Oh, clumsy me. I took a seat right behind Gerald and Linda Southerland and Gloria and Larry King. No, there were no handshakes or warm greetings. Looks of surprise, shock and disgust were more common. Expected. My main purpose was to consume what I believed would be overwhelming delicious irony while sitting among WOFF members listening to a presentation on the Nuremberg Trial. The whole scene was too inviting and I was willing to take the stares and grumpy faces just to witness what promised to be a night of unforgettable remarks. I did not have to wait long for the appetizers to be served. Continue reading Judge Reidinger Delivers Irony- Who Heard It?→
There is a lot of ground to cover in this post. We will begin with a timeline of known events, filings and letters issued during the last few weeks. Some of these events have already been covered or mentioned here. Also, we will note which ones have been reported by Rccatalyst.com.
In summary, five defendants from the Word of Faith Fellowship (WOFF) were indicted in January of this year on several charges including felony assault and second degree kidnapping stemming from events on January 27, 2013. The five defendants include Brooke M. Covington, Justin B. Covington, Sarah Covington Anderson, Robert Lewis Walker, Jr. and Adam Bartley. Tomblin, Farmer & Morris (TFM) started out as counsel for the five. After hearing a Motion to Disqualify TFM on August 3rd, Judge Marvin Pope issued an ORDER of Disqualification of TFM and their associates for representing any of the five. Adam Bartley and Robert Lewis Walker, Jr. have since secured counsel. Bartley’s attorney is Robert Denton and Robert Walker’s attorney is Matthew Cabe. Both attorneys practice in Morganton. TFM filed a Motion to Reconsider the Disqualification and took on Angela Beeker to argue for them. August 27th, Judge Pope issued an ORDER denying the Motion to Reconsider Disqualification.
9/11/15- Letter from Assistant District Attorney Garland Byers to Attorney Denton (not placed in court file until 9/18) (Rccatalyst.com 9/26) Byers explains the State’s position with Bartley’s bond and offered plea. Byers points out that Word of Faith Fellowship (WOFF) holds the security (land) for the bond and for any reason or no reason have the option to withdraw their security. This could land Bartley in jail until other means or considerations for a bond are made. The power that WOFF has in holding the bonds of all five defendants is a matter of concern or Byers and he is seeking a way of “eliminating this situation.” In this letter, Byers admits concerning the plea, he is “keeping the offer open and disregarding your client’s premature rejection…” This is not a surprise in my eyes.
Rccatalyst.com leads the way again by reporting the “Memorandum of Law” filed this past Friday in the Matthew Fenner Case. This document lays out the Assistant District Attorney Garland Byers’ grounds for the motion to disqualify all of the Tomblin, Farmer Morris firm from representing any of the five defendants in the case. His reasoning includes the argument Josh Farmer put forth for the change of venue hearing now rescheduled for September 21, 2015 at 9:30AM. Quoting from that change of venue motion:
“Defendant is a member of Word of Faith Fellowship, a church that for nearly two decades has been the subject of extraordinary persecution, hatred, bigotry, and discrimination in this county, spurred by the Inside Edition tabloid news, local, national, and international new media coverage, as well as continued social media postings”…
Garland’s motion says – “Given that public perception is key to this motion, the State respectfully shows that defense counsel’s own allegations support the State’s position in bringing the motion to disqualify counsel.”
Garland’s memo also includes several other reasons for the disqualification. Time does not permit me to go through every point; however, I will list a few of the focal points in the motion. As a further explanation, we will add understanding of the background nuances which Garland may or may not be aware of in this case. These nuances may or may not come out on Monday. Continue reading Another Chapter of WOFFGATE- Memorandum Filed for Hearing 8/3/15→
Saturday, August 01, 2015, in a stunning revelation, rccatalyst.com reported a plea was offered to Adam Bartley on July 22nd. The plea includes dismissal of the Second Degree Kidnapping charge in exchange for a guilty plea on a count Simple Assault. Under this plea agreement, Mr. Bartley would serve no additional prison time but will serve supervised probation. The letter conveying the plea from Garland Byers is in the article as well as the request for Tomblin, Farmer and Morris to withdraw from counsel. The letter was hand delivered to Caleb Farmer at 11:02AM per Garland Byers. See article Plea offered to Bartley. Use the BACK ARROW to return to this post.
No official word if Mr. Bartley has accepted the plea. He may need to secure new counsel before he can officially accept and begin negotiations. Folks, this looks like a great deal for Adam Bartley. No prison time if he agrees to testify to the happenings on that fateful night? Risk going back to jail for what? Why would he not accept? Why did the District Attorney offer the plea to Bartley? My opinion is since this defendant already has a criminal record reported by the Daily Courier Daily Courier reports: Continue reading Plea Offered to Defendant Adam Bartley in Matthew Fenner Case- rccatalyst.com→