Tag Archives: Rick Cooper

AP- Church stoked tithing with unemployment scam, ex-members say

The next article released early this morning (here) in the ongoing investigative series from the Associated Press into Word of Faith Fellowship (WOFF) reveals a level of conniving and deception which causes me to shake my head in amazement and disgust. This account from ex-members outlines a premeditated fraud of a government program meant to help people who meet with temporary unemployment is shocking and sickening.

The scheme to have church members report themselves as unemployed and yet still be employed by companies owned by church leaders took a level of agreement and orchestration from the top leader, Jane Whaley, down the chain of command and influence. She convinced many of her leadership into compromising known laws and ethical standards of business in order to support her lifestyle through the resulting tithes and offerings which were under her total control. The glaring motive of personal enrichment cannot be ignored nor will it surprise those who have spent time as members of WOFF.

From the article:

“When Randy Fields’ construction company faced potential ruin because of the cratering economy, he pleaded with his pastor at Word of Faith Fellowship church to reduce the amount of money he was required to tithe every week.

To his shock, Fields said church founder Jane Whaley proposed a divine plan that would allow him to continue tithing at least 10 percent of his income to the secretive evangelical church while helping his company survive: He would file fraudulent unemployment claims on behalf of his employees. She called it, he said, “God’s plan.”

Please, understand the dynamics here. Randy and his family had been a part of WOFF for over 20 years. He had seen the results for those who choose to refuse Jane’s rendering of “God’s plan.” He explains-

“The price of the refusal, Fields said, could be beatings administered by fellow church members and public shaming by Whaley. The church also might mandate that he be cut off from any contact with his family, he said.”

Allow me to stop here and express my gratitude from all of the ex-members mentioned in this article. It takes courage to expose things done while a member of WOFF which may have crossed the edge into possible illegal activities. Each person faced a fearful decision to obey or lose all. Additional fear of telling the hidden secrets of WOFF had to be conquered or acknowledged.

Randy, “”I’m not proud of what I did, but I have to make this right,”…
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AP Investigation –Broken Faith –Audio Clips Released

The AP Investigation- Broken Faith has now posted audio clips under – “Voice from the Church.” The investigation revolves around testimonies of ex-members of Word of Faith Fellowship (WOFF). The content of these testimonies has resulted in two Assistant District Attorneys- Frank Webster and Chris Back being “no longer employed.” Also, Lori Cornelius, Cleveland County Department of Social Services employee “resigning” as of March 17, 2017. Link also includes 14 stories from the Broken Faith Investigation.

List of clips include:

Jeffrey Cooper: talking about a meeting with Frank Webster’s comments included. Second clip about the roles played during the mock trials.

Jane Whaley: explaining her perspective on not reporting sexual abuse. A second clip of her casting dispersions on a 13- year old young girl who was molested during her time inside WOFF. Third clip of her loudly encouraging David Caulder.

Jamey Anderson: explaining a meeting with Jane, a second clip about the fear in daily life of WOFF.

Jay Plummer: explaining the abuse he experienced.

Tiago Cherubino: talking about an attack he witnessed.

Rick Cooper: explain how WOFF worked to shape its reputation.

John Cooper: he describes the consequences of speaking out at the church. Second clip about the restrictions on marital sex.

Danielle Cordez: recounting a failed attempt to run away from home. (gripping) Second clip explaining what is needed to end the abuse at WOFF.

Tim Cornelius: he describes a 7 year-old retelling the experience of being beaten in the classroom for daydreaming.

Thank you, to each and every ex-member who was willing to be interviewed by Mitch Weiss and the AP Investigative team. We have shared experiences which have shocked this nation and the international community. Not everyone experienced the same level of abuse; however, in some way, each member of WOFF goes through some type of abuse whether socially, emotionally, mentally, spiritually, physically or destruction of relationships with friends or family who decide not to join or express some contrary opinion about Jane Whaley, church practices or any aspect of this dangerous closed sub-CULTure.

Telling the secrets is one of the first steps to healing. I encourage all ex-members to continue on this journey of recovery. There is hope; it is a new day in the saga called Word of Faith Fellowship.
Continue reading AP Investigation –Broken Faith –Audio Clips Released

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