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Getting Out : Generations

Statement of Mr. John LaMattery

from LTN - Thursday, January 27, 2005
accessed 4824 times

Statement of Mr. John LaMattery former first-generation member of The Family International (aka. The Children of God) in support of the second-generations’ fight to expose the abuses of the quasi-Christian church of The Family International.

To all past and current first-generation members of The Family International; to ALL our second-generation young people; to the media and; most of all to my own dear children.

My name is John LaMattery. I first joined the Children of God in 1973 and was a full-time member until 1978. I then re-joined in 1985 under its new name: The Family. I left full-time membership in 1994.

My first son, John LaMattery, is now standing up to expose the abuses that occurred to many of the children of this group. I would like to say, first of all, how proud I am of my son. It is costing him dearly to make this stand: in finances and health. He is a fine young man who loves his fellowman and has always dealt honestly and truthfully with others. It is true that he suffered sexual abuse as a 9 year old. I would like to say that I was aware of this and failed to intervene on his behalf. I am ashamed that I failed my son and that I did not take steps to protect him from this. In fact, I sanctioned the incident that he refers to in news accounts. I was terribly mistaken in my judgment. I failed to guard him and to keep him out of harms way. For this I am truly sorry. I will not make any excuses for this failure. It was wrong and it is something that I will have to carry to my grave as a terrible mistake made in my life. As King David wrote: “my sin is ever before me.”

Two of my 6 daughters also suffered sexual abuse at the hands of Family members. I was not aware of these until years later but it still remains that because I kept my children in this organization I, whether knowingly or unknowingly, exposed them to an environment which allowed such things to occur. I regret that this happened to them. By placing my children into harms way I must take full responsibility for the results of this in their lives today.

All my children suffered some form of abuse. Not all necessarily sexual. There were other abuses such as psychological, which were degrading to their character or frightening to their young minds and spirits. They were deprived of a proper education, asked to go out on the streets and door-to-door nearly daily to raise funds for our living. They were separated from each other and made to live in locations away from their natural family. In essence their family unit was virtually destroyed while at the same time they were made to feel guilty for missing their brothers and sisters, father and mother. This is such a sad and regretful set of circumstances.

These events in my children’s lives are a sad blot on their childhood memories. I regret that as a parent I failed to provide them with the love and care, the oversight and proper attention that are expected of any loving and concerned parent. I hope that in some way they will find complete healing and that the hurt and pain which I allowed into their lives will some day fully heal.

I would also like to say I am very sorry to all the children in The Family whether you ever suffered sexual abuse or not. I am sorry that I didn’t fight for your rights and fight against the terrible insidious doctrine of ‘the law of love’, a doctrine which was twisted by many of my generation to give license to abuse you in one form or another. It is a doctrine which, through my recent conversations with some current members, is still strongly adhered to and professed to be a true and pure doctrine of The Family International. I do believe that Jesus Christ came to this earth to bring His pure and sacred new law: to love God and to love our neighbors as ourselves. But The Family has, in my opinion and judging by their fruits, grossly misinterpreted it and misused it. This is a sad testimony to the many honest and good people who originally joined this Christian movement. Some got out when they saw things were going wrong. I, regretfully, did not.

Through much prodding by my children and family I am now standing up to voice my condemnation of The Family International. Not the poor and blind souls of the average member, for they are but sheep, but I stand to condemn specifically Karen Zerby (aka Maria) and her hubris of continuing to promote, oh so subtlety, her long held doctrine of the ‘law of love’ which continues to this very day to cause widespread justification for the abuses of the past. It is this doctrine in particular that I believe has created a fundamental mindset which prevents first-generation adults to admit to any wrong doing concerning inappropriate behavior between adults and children in the past. It is, I believe, the mindset which caused Angela Smith (Sue) to continue to question what she had done wrong to Ricky as he was slitting her throat. It is the mindset that is causing Ricky’s own mother and leader of The Family to place the blame for the tragic fruit of her own body on so-called apostates instead of squarely on her own shoulders and the shoulders of her idol namely David Berg, founder of The Children of God.

There is no excuse for what I have caused my children to suffer. I take no refuge in the fact that I was a member of this group and believed in this doctrine of the ‘law of love’ as they put it. I voluntarily gave my mind, heart and soul to follow what was a lie and a deceptive doctrine of love. It was not the true love of God and I believe that we as parents must look honestly in the face of the children that we have produced and are still producing and say to ourselves “where did I go wrong?”

I call on all FIRST-GENERATION current and former members of The Family International to now follow me in supporting our children as they raise their voices to cry out against the lies and the falsehoods that they suffered under. I call on my generation to step forward and come out of the shadows and be counted. Perhaps you never personally witnessed the sexual abuse that many have suffered. But, I pled with you now to look deep into your heart and deep into God’s Holy Word and honestly admit that what David Berg preached and what Maria has continued to preach namely, that “whatever is done in love is right in the sight of God” was twisted and wrestled by them and thus has borne the terrible fruit of suicide and murder in their own home. Do not allow them to pass this blame any longer on to others. Do not, I beg you, allow them to run from the light of the truth of their actions. Do not allow them to continue to twist the truth to support their interpretation of God’s Word.

Our children need our full support now. They need to know that we love them even if it means a total destruction of our own livelihoods, the loss of friends and reputation. Fail not to remember that “greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.” If Christ asked us to do that for our friends then, I ask you, what would He expect us to give to save our children?

My son has said “it’s a war now between ourselves and our parents”. Let us unite with our children and turn this war towards those who share in our guilt but who continue to hide in the shadows and refuse to take account for their participation in following this false doctrine of love which reaped sorrow and pain in the lives of so many of our children. Stand up and make your voice clear that the “love” so preached was tainted by the lascivious ranting of a false prophet and was, and still is, supported by pride and arrogance, lies and deceptions in the person of Maria. We are all truly guilty of allowing this into our lives for whatever reason. We all share in this to some degree. Some more than others but as all Nazis’ shared in some part the blame for allowing Hitler to rise so we all share in our sin of not resisting the evil, not fighting the injustices and in not standing by the side of our children in their desperate hour of need. Let us remember what the Psalmist wrote in the 15th Psalm: “Lord, who shall abide in thy tabernacle? Who shall dwell in thy holy hill? He that walketh uprightly, and worketh righteousness, and speaketh the truth in his heart. In whose eyes a vile person is contemned; but he honoureth them that fear the Lord. He that sweareth to his own hurt, and changeth not.”

To the first generation I finally say, "May God help each of us, may He have mercy on our souls and may we pray that our children will in time forgive us."

And to you of the second generation I sadly say, "I'm sorry for failing you and for letting you down. I hope that many will now stand up to support you in your fight."

Reader's comments on this article

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from ktc
Thursday, February 02, 2006 - 02:33


Its just so sad and frustrating that the TF FG parents and ex TF parents don't get it. Look at all the open forgiveness there is here on this site for just one dad who confessed and asked for forgiveness. It has such far reaching healing effects. It seems more and more TF members are huddling together like pitiful little sheep as if they're oh so persecuted and anyone that dare speak up is deemed the enemy. If they were just truly open to dialogue and hearing what their children are trying to say, things could be so different. Children, no matter what age, DO love their parents and it takes a whole lot to turn them away. Love and acceptance mean the world to everyone. I never stopped wanting that up until the time both my parents died. TF brings so much of this "persecution" on themselves for being so close minded and deaf to anyone who doesn't speak their language. What a tragedy. So much could have been avoided. Remember their old saying, "Love, humility and prayers solve all problems." (honesty could be included as well). Guess they must've forgotten that.
(reply to this comment)

From Oscar Wilde
Friday, February 03, 2006, 03:27

Children begin by loving their parents; after a time they judge them; rarely, if ever, do they forgive them.(reply to this comment
from Big_brother
Wednesday, February 01, 2006 - 15:18

This thread is in The Trailer Park 
Friday, February 04, 2005 - 23:19


I want to keep this post alive cause I think many ought to read it.
(reply to this comment)

Thursday, February 03, 2005 - 16:39

I like this thread and want to keep in alive.
(reply to this comment)
from xolox
Wednesday, February 02, 2005 - 22:35


What is most absurd in my oppinion, is the way most current members who frequent this site tend to start by mounting a blind offensive, and then hidding behind their favorite cookie cutter terms. All they have to do is look around a little deeper and see what is really happening.

Here is this man, who admits to the wrong he has caused, and receives nothing but forgiveness and acceptance. And in reality that is all most people here are looking for. Sure there are a few voices here and there that have not yet moved past the millitant anger, but that is obviously not the main focus here.

So mister Johnny in TF come lately walks in, blatantly accusing eveyone in site of being (here it comes) Vitriolic Apostates, Detractors, Enemies! And when people respond with indignation at such a slap in the face, little Johnny in TF takes that to be proof of the rampant hatred and violence he's been expecting.
(reply to this comment)

Wednesday, February 02, 2005 - 18:07


If only more FGA's had the courage to confess and seek atonement the way you have.

I don't know you, but I do in a way. We have all come form such a strange place, and it seems that this simple provenance is a kind of kinship, for better or worse. This is the paradox a lot of us share. I only wish my parents had the heart to come forward and do the same as you.

Thanks to The Family, and my fathers choises, I have not seen my mother for over 19 years. She and my father split for "the Lords will" and soon after she left the group. Upon which all contact was cut off, The family of course citing security risks. (I grew up in Argentina, and after a couple of raids TF was pretty paraniod, as well they should have been). I cannot blame my mother entirely, she did spend upwards of fifteen years looking for us. It will take time to get to know her, and even more to forgive her. It is so hard to take that step. I don't know if I'm strong enough to face her, but I do know she's not strong enough to live much longer. The Family has robbed me of my mother, and they do not care. At least you have the spine to want to see the light. And wanting is the first step. A small one, but difficult for some.

You have my respect. One is not a hero for treading in the mud, and one is certainly no hero for stepping out of it. But to face the mess you have made in search of rectification, makes you a man of quality in my book. Facing one errors is never an easy thing, and I thank you for taking that step. Sincerely, Mike.
(reply to this comment)

From Bella
Wednesday, February 02, 2005, 20:42


Mike - I can totally relate to your story. As my dad just mentioned (John LaMattery Sr), we have a story that mimics yours. If you ever want to talk about it in a more private setting, write me under my profile. My siblings and I totally understand what you are going through.

On another note, thank you dad for once again acknowledging that was wrong. Each time you do that I have more respect for you. Enjoy your day over there. xox(reply to this comment

Wednesday, February 02, 2005, 22:13


Thanks Bella. I'm actually kind of shocked at my impulsive act, I don't talk about this much, and I never do it in a public forum. I think when I read your dads statement it caused something to tip off balance, and I spilled the beans. Oops!

I do know what it was. There was something so genuine about it all. I think I even waxed a little philosophical, and maybe a little metaphorical too. And what can I say? I truly believe the most of the FG was abused and misled as well. Most of them were high as kites at the time they joined, near the bottom end of their life spirals, facing a likely draft and there he is, this "shining prophet of God" waiting like a spider for the unwary. I'm sure the free sandwiches, doughnuts and coffee bait didn't hurt the recruitment process either.

I think you'll also notice that the whole thing didn't really get wierd untill most people had left the states, most of them without any means to get back. This could've played on their fear, along with everything else. Please don't take this to mean that I in any way defend the cult, I simply believe they were all duped, and that is were they still are, forever in a mental state of bewilderment, imprisoned by fear and huddled together like sheep.

I guess this is getting a bit long, so I might just take you up on that offer and continue this privately.

Here's another paradox: I'm so glad to have found someone who understands where I'm comming from, but am I really? Would I wish this on you?

(reply to this comment

From Haunted
Thursday, February 03, 2005, 06:15

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

Your story is also very similar to mine. When I was barely 9, my dad was shipped off "for the lord's work".

When I was 11, I got to be in the same home as him for 2 days.

The only other time I've seen him in the past 18 yrs was when he flew in to give me away at my wedding. He stayed for about a week.

To this day, he has never met my 7yr-old daughter, he's living on another continent, probably about as far across the world as possible....

My brothers and sisters and I still have abandonment issues, half of us don't even know our dad, and the other half (that eventually went to live with him) don't know our mom.

Ironic how they called themselves "The Family", when we grew up with absolutely no sense of family or family loyalty.(reply to this comment

Thursday, February 03, 2005, 08:58

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(

I guess this is more common than I thought. Apart from my mother being gone, my father was always on a "faith trip", or meeting for months on end, and my step mom was too busy caring for whatever little baby was around at the time. That left me to be raised by strangers. My dads was a very high traffic home for problem cases, many of them charged with the care of my siblings and myself.

I have a child now, a little 7 yr old girl who looks just like my older sister, and I just cannot fathom what my father was thinking. Here are the people who can't be trusted to live in any other home, for whatever reason, and they are here to be fixed by my dads totalitarian rule. Most of these transients were your run of the mill Uncle Touchy Feely or your Aunty Rebellion. Uncle touchy feely was usually nice, a little too nice to my sisters, situations that I knew about so they tried to stay on my good side. Aunty Rebellion however tended to develop grudges against my parents and naturally took it out on the easy prey, us children.

I don't think my parents ever knew about most of it, I know I never told them. Except maybe for the times this guy (Joseph of Vicky) would break stuff on my head or my brothers back, my brother was two and a half the first time. I told them about that. He was an ex boxer with a temper, and he lived with us twice. (wasn't once enough? Guess not.)

You know, the term The Family is very Cosa Nostra like.(reply to this comment

From Bella
Thursday, February 03, 2005, 06:02

Mike - go for it. Trust me, I can handle it. I have 4 siblings who feel just like you - you're not alone on this one. The offer stands open ;-)(reply to this comment
From LTN
Wednesday, February 02, 2005, 21:09

Thanks baby. There's a whole s___load of stuff to wade through and still many many apologies to be made. But, your respect is worth whatever the price I have to pay. There is NOTHING in this world so devastating than to lose the respect of your children--but I, like so many parents--has too blind to realize it. Love you Winwin --Dad(reply to this comment
From John LaMattery (Sr) [aka LTN]
Wednesday, February 02, 2005, 18:47

Mike, I feel honored and humbled that you should say "I don't know you, but I do in a way. We have all come from such a strange place, and it seems that this simple provenance is a kind of kinship, for better or worse. This is the paradox a lot of us share." When I read those first lines I seriously thought that you where an FGA posting anonymously on the site but then your next line shocked me, "I only wish my parents had the heart to come forward and do the same as you." God how the tears began to flow from my eyes. And as I continued to read my heart was breaking over your story. What a tragic set of circumstances for you--the loss of your mom for so many years. My own dear children can relate to your story as that is basically what I put them through. I took off with them to 'save' the world while I destroyed theirs. What a shame and sadness was that day we boarded the plane in L.A. to fly halfway around the world to 'preach the gospel of love to a dying world' while the hearts of my children were slowly dying within them but my blinded heart and deaf ears could not see it or hear their cries--the bleating of the sheep. God forgive me. And I hope that you will someday, somehow find some of the lost love.

Thank you from the bottom of my heart for your post and for counting me in "kinship" with you--I am truly honored.

John(reply to this comment
From xolox
Wednesday, February 02, 2005, 22:19


Thank you, you are most kind.

:::Skeptical now::: What about me made me sound like a FG, If you don't mind my asking? I'm very introspective you see.(reply to this comment

From John LaMattery (Sr) [aka. LTN]
Wednesday, February 02, 2005, 23:01

xolox I assume you are Mike? Is that right? So, you're wondering what it was that you said that made me wonder if you were an FGA? It was only the first couple of lines of your post and particularly the lines: "I don't know you, but I do in a way. We have all come from such a strange place, and it seems that this simple provenance is a kind of kinship, for better or worse. This is the paradox a lot of us share." To be honest I was thinking that only an FGA could or would consider saying such a know putting yourself together in the same boat so to speak as the FGA's. Saying "...I do (know you) in a way. We have all come from such a strange place..." So, little red flags were going up because the first line of your post reads "If only more FGA's had the courage to confess and seek atonement the way you have" and so I'm like yeah that's a great thing but why are you (a FGA I thought) posting sent these little red flags up because on one hand you're commending the posting of the Statement but on the other hand you're still hiding. So, I was a little...pissed you might say because you know if you're going to say "Yeah man great! I agree! Right on!" but don't have the guts or whatever to come out in the open and stand beside me then maybe you should just wait and think about it before posting because hey this is not for us FGA's here it's for the SGA's. But, then when I read your line, "I only wish my parents had the heart to come forward and do the same as you" I broke and wept because I realized that you had wrapped your arms around me and, though you are one of the very children I failed to guard yet you were forgiving me or at the least accepting me and it just really broke my heart there. And, then as I continued to read your post I was moved to share more of my story with you and more of the past with hope that it might be an opening for more healing. I'm so happy Windy (my daughter) posted and has made herself available to you. This is what it's all about...getting people to heal and mend and as we do so then great and positive changes are without doubt going to happen.

Forgive me for being so long on this but I hope it helps you to understand my reactions. It was just those opening lines that made me think you might be a hidden FG on the site. Thanks for asking. ---John(reply to this comment
From Joe H
Wednesday, February 02, 2005, 23:19

Average visitor agreement is 1 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
How about this red flag in Mike's original post: "I only wish my parents had the heart to come forward and do the same as you" ? Way to go, dum-dum. Why don't you just scurry off to already? Oh, and stop e-mailing me!(reply to this comment
From vixen
Wednesday, February 02, 2005, 23:24


LOL, Joe! You are starting to get fed up, aren't you...!

He did say he only thought it was an FGA whilst reading the first few lines, though. (reply to this comment

From Joe H
Thursday, February 03, 2005, 00:06

Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 3 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
I don't have time to read every single line of Jim or John's extremely verbose posts. I already waste way too much time at work reading things that are amusing and/or educational. I'm thankful for their heartfelts apologies, but now it's time for them to depart in peace, being warmed and fed, etc. Don't trust anyone over 30! YEAH!(reply to this comment
From vixen
Thursday, February 03, 2005, 00:47

Dammit! Only a year and a half to go. *cringe*(reply to this comment
Wednesday, February 02, 2005 - 17:31

This is a thread that cannot be swept into the archives and forgotten. I'm Cutting and pasting it and sending it out to as many as I can reach both current and former SGA's/FGA's.
(reply to this comment)
from AMC28
Monday, January 31, 2005 - 12:24

Your apology and admission of misconduct has done more in 10 minutes to restore my faith than 12 years of trying to forget. I commend you and I appreciate what you have done. I hope that more of our parents will follow your lead.

(reply to this comment)
From LTN
Monday, January 31, 2005, 16:02

Thank you so much for your support. My heart is filled with graditude for your comments and my face is washed in tears. I thank you from the bottom of my heart and hope that many moms and dads will join with me to reunite in love with their children. I'm over 55 years old and I STILL need to know that my mom and dad (who are both still alive and in their 80's) love me and accept me. In fact here's a note from my father, my children's grandfather:
Dear John:

I read your letter and the responses. Wow! The happiest birthday I ever had (Note: my Statement was posted on my father's 83rd birthday). I am so proud that you stood up in support of your children and admitted your failures. It also made me realize for the first time--with the murder suicide--how terribly important it is to show the children that we get it, that we understand. And that we apologize. You must write an email to your mother and tell her how important it is to tell the girls how sorry she is that it happened and that she understands how terrible they feel. Only you can change her from protecting you to admiting that you were wrong and listening to the girls. We are on the verge of something big. I hope more parents come out and admit the wrongdoing.

It has been a long day for all of us. Much weeping and sharing. Jim (my younger brother) has told us about how they intend to proceed (Note:against Zerby and to restore the familys of The Family). Write soon. Love, Dad

Again I thank you Angie and salute you for the brave soul I know you to be.


(reply to this comment
From Yes, yes, yes
Monday, January 31, 2005, 16:29


"I'm over 55 years old and I STILL need to know that my mom and dad (who are both still alive and in their 80's) love me and accept me."

Hos I wish my parents could "get it"! I have worked my tail off in the face of huge obstacles and achieved things many "worldly" parents would dream for their kids, but the lack of this acceptance is a minefield that I tread every day. I have long given up, but I used to plead to the blind and deaf queen with my tears to just "let my people go." But she will not.(reply to this comment

from dan
Monday, January 31, 2005 - 07:53


dude, you fucking rock!!!! look at the avalanche of healing you kicked off. good on you.
(reply to this comment)

From LTN
Monday, January 31, 2005, 16:17

Thanks Dan for your comment. I think you are the real 'rocker'. My son John (aka Sam) sometimes has talked to me about you. I viewed your photo in your profile and you've still got that great smile--just like your dad's. Please say hi to your folks for me. They're good people. What are they doing these days? Send me their email if you'd like.

OK, take care and thanks again for your honest comment. I really do appreciate what you said and am really deeply moved that you feel that way about my Statement. I was scared have to death to put it up there and it did take me quite some time (12 hours) staring at the 'submit' key to finally get the courage to press it. But, it's been the best thing I've done in over 30 years.

John(reply to this comment
from conan
Sunday, January 30, 2005 - 18:54


THANK YOU doesn't quite say enough under the circumstances but the English language is limited so those two words will have to suffice....over and over

Thank You!

Thank You!

Thank You!
(reply to this comment)

From LTN
Monday, January 31, 2005, 16:20

Dear Conan,

It is I who should be saying Thank You, Thank You, Thank You because it is comments like yours which have made this plunge into the unknown worth it all. --John(reply to this comment
from Webel
Sunday, January 30, 2005 - 08:11

John, thank ou so much for having the courage to write this posting. The thing we struggle with the most here is the issue of having our childhood abuse "swept under the carpet" by TF and having it written off as a non event. Having your parents deny what you went through is probably just as painful as the abuse itself. Our pain needs to be acknowledged and the message to TF is "stop lying" the "policies" that were in place whilst we were growing up were all about fondling children and getting us in touch with our sexuality when we should have been playing with Tonka, legos and Barbies.

My own father is still sympathetic towards TF and gives them money on a regular basis. He refuses to accept how wrong the twisted teachings are, it makes us sick. My mother on the other hand has apologized to all my brothers and sisters for dragging us into TF - this has been very healing for all of us. She acknowledged our pain and has really helped. I know I am one of the privileged few that has had this from a parent. Most people on this site haven't had the closure that I have had by their parents "fessing up", apologizing to them and having some sort of accountability for what happened. My father on the other hand, refuses to see the truth, because if he did he would have to do something about it. He is more comfortable with having a blase approach and ignoring what we went through, that's the cowards way out and I applaud you for your courage in taking that stand for your children.
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From LTN
Sunday, January 30, 2005, 08:37

Thanks for your post. I've got a long ways to go. All the years of denial and pain that I've caused may take just as many to undue. Of course, it can never all be "undone" but there's a look of cleaning up that can be done. I'm scared half to death to talk with my kids because I don't think I really know how to be a father. That's a sad part of the years spent in TF: we took our children's freedom away and our parenthood was stolen. I don't think I really can see right now all the work ahead of me to right the wrongs and all the work to undo the lies and undo the deceptions. It's really just a small beginning this Statement. I thought it would be 'the answer' but I think it may turn out to be just a small key that has unlocked a big door to a whole shit load (excuse the language) of mistakes that will need to be faced. (reply to this comment
From FGA with sis still in group
Sunday, January 30, 2005, 08:27


Yes, I totally agree. I have experienced the same thing with a parent who was never even IN the group, but who has had a hard time supporting me and what I have gone through after getting out because she has another daughter who is still in there.

My mom has never wanted to read anything negative that I would send to her, preferring to remain in denial and believe that they are all Christians who "love the Lord". This denial on her part has been very painful for me as I have been going through my own healing, but now, since all this has come out, she is finally reading and listening and so, hopefully, will not continue to enable my sister in her deception of still being in the group. That, in itself, is a victory for me, as I feel she finally "understands" (as best she can) what I and others have gone through and why I have been trying to expose this group for years. (reply to this comment

From LTN
Sunday, January 30, 2005, 08:48

God this is unbelieveable that I should read your post at this very moment because I just ended a one hour trans-pacific phone conversation with my brother Jim (he's helped me so much with coming to grips and to terms with myself)and we talked a lot about my children's grandmother, my mother. She has been living in denial of my children's abuse always protecting me and could never ever ever except their stories. When I spoke above about all the cleaning up to do and wrongs to right well, this is one of the major ones for me because this has estranged her from her grandchildren and her grandchildren from her. She has sided with me for years and this has deeply hurt my children and has offened them beyond words. I'll be calling my mom soon to begin the process of coming totally clean about the past so that both her and I can stop the charade (as my brother more or less put it). She's over 80 so it's not going to happen overnight. This is another conversation that I'm scared to have.(reply to this comment
From Bella
Sunday, January 30, 2005, 17:49

Good luck with that phone call, dad.(reply to this comment
From FGA with sis still in group
Sunday, January 30, 2005, 09:43


Well, just keep on taking those steps because they ARE all in the right direction. Your mom defended you all these years because you are her son, her baby boy (not in the physical sense...I think you said your brother was younger than you?--My sister is also older than me) who 'could do no wrong'...I say that because one thing that always hurt me was for my mom to say, "But ___ has NEVER lied to me," insinuating that I was by sharing these things with her about the group. This always hurt, because here I really was TRYING to be a Christian in the true sense of the word...a follower of Christ and His teachings..and to have REAL discernment, which included seeing the errors of the group!

One thing she could NOT deny, though, was when my brother,her son,(who was never IN the group) abused of my daughter...but then again, the responsibility came back on me from her own mouth, "I've sinned, you've sinned, we've all sinned, you're just going to have to forgive him." I was not ready to do that. I had a lot of anger and it was at that point that I started hearing about the abuse of the young people who had been in TF and started speaking out against the group. (I'm sure I have had letters written about me and curses put on me, but that's OKay..."if God be for us, who can be against us.") I was very angry at God for awhile, but that got me only brought me more pain and sorrow. I finally was able to see that and when I WAS READY, came back to Him, but not with the help of my mom who was always so judgemental of me, that's for sure

I tried sharing all this with my mom, but she never wanted to hear...she just thought there was something wrong with me and that I needed to just "get over it" as so many have said to those here. I actually finally had to release her and not allow my healing to be affected by what she thought, which is probably what your kids need to do. Anyway, now she finally DOES see, and I'm sure it is hard for her having her bubble burst after all these years, especially since my sister is still IN the group. By the way, my mom is 80 yrs. old and a committed Christian...she was just in denial (a self-protective mechanishm, they say.)

This situation with your mom and her grandchildren is heartbreaking, but you can really be the bridge between them...I firmly believe that. There is power and healing in admitting and confessing our faults as James 5:16a says. I think you will be surprised that as you continue to take the steps that you are towards that end, that great miracles will happen! I'll be praying for ya! I can't wait to hear the next episode!!

(reply to this comment

Saturday, January 29, 2005 - 14:19


This is such a sweet thread...I wanted to post it again...
(reply to this comment)

from Jim LaMattery
Saturday, January 29, 2005 - 07:48


Dear brother- It is good to call you brother again. It's been a long time coming. I am overwhelmed at what tremendous power Love has on us. Love means responsibility to stand up for that which is good and right. Your act of love will now open a flood of freedom within our family. As I sit here in our mother's and father's home, a home you and I shared, I rejoice that we are back to our beginnings. Beginnings where love mattered. The destruction of David Berg's family came because his children kept a small simple secret. The secret of their father and his sickness for child molestation. If Faithy, Deb, Hosea, or Aaron had stood up and told us,the first generation of family members, that their father was molesting them, then the movement would have ended in the year I joined, 1970. But you and I joined for reasons that are just as important today as they were in 1970. We wanted to stop a war, we wanted to love our brothers, we wanted a different way of life than what the world had to offer. Many of the parents of the children of the Children of God joined with us for the same reasons. We wanted to, in President John Kennedy's words, "fight the enemies of man; war, poverty, disease." We heard the call of a great man, and he was shot down in our streets, in front of our faces.

The first generation of TF have called their offspring many names, from "End-time warriors" to "Vandari." They should have always been addressed as "children." As you now embrace your children in truth, they can now call you father! It is a joy that I have wished for you for many years. As you and I stand up again to love and support them, I can truly call you "brother" again. This has brought tremendous joy to my lips, and overwhelming peace to my heart.

What I've seen happen in the last few days within our family, I am determined to see happen in as many families across these United States, and eventually the World. Stepping into the light is freedom, it is only hiding in the shadows that causes pain. Your pain can now cease as love once again fills your heart and soul. The tragedy of Ricky and Angela's deaths can transform into an exponential release of love in many families. As your son and I, and all the others that have joined into a solidarity of brother and sisterhood to bring all of the members of the first generation into the light of the truth of what happened to them, I am proud that you have put your hand in ours.

There remains much work to do. It is a work of love. Thank you for your brave first step! BTW- Isn't it beautiful standing here in the light of the world? It feels good, and it is warm, and you can see clearly for the first time in your life. Brilliant! I love you.

Your Brother,

Jim LaMattery

(reply to this comment)

From LTN
Saturday, January 29, 2005, 07:59

Dear Jim,

I am humbled by your words. I'm like the prodigal son coming home, really. I do feel the love and the renewed warmth in my life. It happened the minute I took a stand in my heart and reached out by faith to follow what I believed was the right thing to do no matter what the cost because the "cost" of making such a Statement cannot be valued against the lost love of ones own children, the lost respect and the lost years of separation. They are our very soul and may God have mercy on all those who turn their backs on them. He has on me and I know He will to all those of our generation who are his Sheep and who will hear His Voice.

I love you my brother and may your health stay strong during these pressing times and those yet to come.

John(reply to this comment
From LTN
Saturday, January 29, 2005, 08:07

P.S.Thanks so much for your encouragement and faith in me. You helped me beyond words to stand up and take the plunge. I couldn't have done it without you. I'm forever grateful.

John(reply to this comment
From FGA with sis still in group
Saturday, January 29, 2005, 07:57

Wow, I feel so priveleged to be witnessing all the healing that is going on here! I only pray that MY sister could also "see the light" and do as John as done! Thank you all for sharing this process with us! It DOES take time to forgive, and it DOES help if forgiveness is asked of whoever was wronged. The neat thing is that EVERYONE gets healed in the process...the one asking and the one giving. So cool! (reply to this comment
from Nikisan
Saturday, January 29, 2005 - 03:40



Children want so desperately to love their parents. It has been both heartbreaking hating you and exhausting interacting in a charade of mutual superficiality, attempting to suppress the past to cope with the present. Your statement above makes me proud, as if you are finally growing up so I/we can now reclaim you as a parent. But it is the little changes in your behavior over the past year that show me you are ready for that role again: taking an interest in my life, writing to ask how I am, and most recently sending Murasaki’s anime instead of (what I was expecting) “Noah’s Ark”. Yes, it is the minute and subtle things in life that matter most to a child; they are gestures that demonstrate you are indeed aware of your children’s interests again.

It is my wish that your example, both in language and behavior, inspires hope in other parents who similarly have children waiting to love and be loved. This is a ‘war’ that requires tearing down pretense to reconnect natural familial bonds. Thank you for meeting us half-way and letting us love you again. Doesn’t it feel good?

Your Child

(reply to this comment)

From LTN
Saturday, January 29, 2005, 07:29

My Dear Niki,

I could only weep as I read your letter. Thank you for not giving up on me. I pray I NEVER fail you or your brothers or sisters ever again.

Love always and forever,
Dad(reply to this comment
from Marc
Friday, January 28, 2005 - 18:49

Thank you!
(reply to this comment)
from porceleindoll
Friday, January 28, 2005 - 18:23

Thanks Dad for this. It means a lot to me personally, and I know how hard and what 'battles' you've faced to bring you to this point. Over the past year I feel that our personal relationship as a father/daughter has started to heal and come back into its natural balance. Thank you for taking the time you have to spend the day with us, to sleep over with the kids, to apologise every time you know I'm facing a difficulty that is directly related to your decisions in my life. It has meant more to me than you probably realise. Much love!

(reply to this comment)
From LTN
Saturday, January 29, 2005, 07:31

Thank you sweet baby. You're so wonderful and I'm so proud of you.

Dad(reply to this comment
from sarafina
Friday, January 28, 2005 - 10:56

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
“I am sorry that I didn't fight for your rights and fight against the terrible insidious doctrine of 'the law of love', a doctrine which was twisted by many of my generation to give license to abuse you in one form or another.”

These are the words we (the children) have been waiting to hear for so long! You have just lifted my soul today and brought a moment of peace to my heart.

I don’t even know what to say. You have no idea how much it meant to read your letter. I admire your courage to come forward and stand beside us. I know it must have been hard to come to terms with this. I wish more parents would stand beside their children and come clean. Just hearing this apology gave me such a liberating feeling, I had to take a deep breath and let it out.

Thank you, so much!

Please Parents, stand up for children!
(reply to this comment)
From LTN
Sunday, January 30, 2005, 06:16

I'm so happy that whatever I might have said in my Statement has lifted your heart in any way. I feel in awe at all the love that not only my own flesh children have poured out to me as a result of taking this first step in righting the wrongs of my past, but I'm very awestruck at all the others of their generation who've written about how they, too, have been given hope and courage for their future relationships with their parents. It's so wonderful the love that you SGA's have for your parents, a love just waiting for them to tap into and share with you. And while you're waiting for your parents to stand up and make the necessary changes go about your work with hope in your heart that they will someday do the right thing, because they truly love you.--LTN(reply to this comment
from Quotes
Friday, January 28, 2005 - 10:14

“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”
– Martin Luther King Jr.

“Most people prefer to believe their leaders are just and fair even in the face of evidence to the contrary, because once a citizen acknowledges that the government under which they live is lying and corrupt, the citizen has to choose what he or she will do about it. To take action in the face of a corrupt government entails risks of harm to life and loved ones. To choose to do nothing is to surrender one's self-image of standing for principles. Most people do not have the courage to face that choice. Hence, most propaganda is not designed to fool the critical thinker but only to give moral cowards an excuse not to think at all.”
– Michael Rivero

“Without free speech no search for truth is possible... no discovery of truth is useful... Better a thousandfold abuse of free speech than denial of free speech. The abuse dies in a day, but the denial slays the life of the people, and entombs the hope of the race.”
– Charles Bradlaugh

“You must be the change you wish to see in the world.”
– Mahatma Gandhi

"What luck for the rulers that men do not think."
— Adolf Hitler
(reply to this comment)
From LTN
Monday, January 31, 2005, 03:03

Thank you for these very inspiring quotes. It means a great deal to me that you would take your time to post them. How thoughtful and kind of you. I will treasure them. --thanks(reply to this comment
from Bella
Friday, January 28, 2005 - 10:11

I'm not even sure how to process this statement. Like John (jr), I'm in total shock. Perhaps now we can begin speaking again; perhaps we can take steps towards mending our very broken relationship. Thank you for taking responsibility for what happened esp to John and the girls. That was very important to me, and to them. -W
(reply to this comment)
From LTN
Saturday, January 29, 2005, 07:34

Thank you sweetheart for taking me back into your life. I will NEVER fail you again.

Dad(reply to this comment
from Haunted
Friday, January 28, 2005 - 10:09


Dear Mr. LaMattery,

My hands are shaking as I write this response. I wept as I called my mother and read it to her. I cannot express what you have done for me today - if feels as if a salve has been poured on these re-opened wounds.

From the bottom of heart I thank you.

With the utmost respect and love,

Joni Bogle
(reply to this comment)

From LTN
Saturday, January 29, 2005, 07:26

Thank you very much for posting. It means so much to me. Good luck with your mom. --LTN (reply to this comment
from Auty
Friday, January 28, 2005 - 10:03


Dad, I am speachless. Thank you for writing this and standing behind your children. I do not know what else to say except that I love and forgive you.

Your baby girl . . . Auty
(reply to this comment)

From LTN
Saturday, January 29, 2005, 07:36

Sweetie-pie you're so precious. You're words humble me and make me cry. Thank you for loving me in spite of my wickedness at times. You're a jewel.

Dad(reply to this comment
from moon beam
Friday, January 28, 2005 - 09:59

Thankyou for this full and humble apology. If this was from my Dad I would be proud of him. As angry as it makes me knowing how much pain and suffering our generation have endured at the whim of one man, it has also pained me that some of our parents were truly misguided, coersed and often forced through Bergs teachings, to become the untrusted, cold-hearted, unavailable, uninformed, opressors and abusers they became,in their(our parents) attempt to care for us and do right by us. So I can see how this is hard for you also.
(reply to this comment)
From LTN
Monday, January 31, 2005, 03:43

Dear Moon Beam,

Thank you so very much for your comment on my post and for taking your time to post it. I sincerely am grateful. It wasn't easy to put my Statement on the site. I wrote it and then thought for 12 hours about hitting the 'submit' button because I knew that once I did there would be no turning back. It wasn't really the possible negative financial fallout for me personally that stood in my way --I'd kinda got past that a few hours before actually writing it-- but it was a fear of the reaction it would produce in my children. I'd made lots of apologies for stuff in the past with them but it just seemed like I wasn't really getting it because we were still not at peace. This Statement was really a desperate act on my part to do something which I believed was the right thing for my children's sake. But, I was scared deep inside that they would think it was "too little too late" and just another "I'm sorry letter from Dad." I also feared the reactions of all of you here on the site,thinking you'd think it was "bs" or...

I'm saying this now because I think it's something that your parents may also face at the time when they finally stand up and say "Yeah, I f____ed up really bad and I'm really sorry for f___ing up your life along the way." That will be a joyous day for all of us as your parents take the needed stand.

Thanks again for sharing your words and feelings. ---John(reply to this comment
from Regi
Friday, January 28, 2005 - 09:52

It's hard to express in words how much your acknowledgement and apology means to me. Thank you.
(reply to this comment)
From LTN
Monday, January 31, 2005, 03:55

I feel the same about what you've written above. You SGA's are so wonderful. I'm so proud of you and so honored to have done anything that may be counted as a help in any way. I'm also proud to be on the side of the "apostates"!!! Very proud to say the least. As you may know apostate has a few meanings and one which I really like is the Greek apostates, from aphistanai, TO REVOLT! So I'm proud to be a small part of your revolt--more power the apostacy and I hope it rises strong and clear and drowns out the voices of hate and fear, lies and deceptions.

Thanks again for your comment.--John(reply to this comment
from Joe H
Friday, January 28, 2005 - 09:24

Thank you.
(reply to this comment)
from Mir
Friday, January 28, 2005 - 09:16


thank you for having the courage to write this. Thank you for showing such loyalty towards your son... That is something that didn't exist in the group. I know how hard it is to stick your neck out. May God bless you with healing for you and your family.

(reply to this comment)

From Spat
Friday, January 28, 2005, 09:42

Finally a heartfelt letter from a man with courage to face the music and see the truth, I admire you for having the guts to admit the truth and honestly try and make wrongs right, rock on!!! This is what I want from Zerby, only that her guilt is bigger and a simple I’m sorry might not do it for her(reply to this comment
From LTN
Saturday, January 29, 2005, 07:48

Thank you for posting and for your kind words.

Perhaps Maria will someday stand up and take an accounting on this earth (for sure, I beleive, she'll have to stand on the other side) but in any case that's really her thing and frankly I would be pretty surprised to see her volutarily coming out of the dark. I have a feeling that she might not come out until someone reaches down in deep and pulls her out like they had to do with Saddam. But, what can we do to help?? you might ask--cut off her supply line, go for the gold -- her supply of it anyway. As King Solomn said: "money answereth all things" (hey there's an ALL THINGS quote for ya --ha!) but anyway this is a long story. Maybe others have ideas along this line.

In any case, thanks again for your post. I sincerely appreciate it. --LTN(reply to this comment
Saturday, January 29, 2005, 08:44


I totally agree...get 'em where it hurts...why doesn't someone go after some of these?--from website:

It would seem from this list, that Family members freely use a variety of names rather than their official name(s), often making them up as they go. As ex-members will readily testify, the main purpose for using pseudonyms is to avoid being recognized as The Family and linked to their notorious past as the Children of God and Family of Love.

Another major purpose appears to be bookkeeping. Documents, testimonies of ex-members and recent eye-witness accounts indicate that The Family uses a network of non-profit organizations to legally redistribute funds internally - they write them off as expenses or gifts to each other's charities and projects - in order to benefit from subsidies and tax exemptions designed for bona fide charity work. Sources [1] also indicate that The Family has been able to infiltrate countries closed to The Family's proselytization activities, as registered NGOs (Non-Governmental Organizations).

Although these names were collected through primary sources, it is difficult if not impossible, to stay completely up to date - members uproot frequently and adopt new names to avoid detection. They do however, use recognizable common themes in their literature, activities, style and presentation. An informative brochure, "More Than Meets The Eye" about The Family's fund-raising fronts, core beliefs and practices can be found at

DISCLAMER: understands the information on this page to be correct and factual and provides this list in good conscience for information purposes only . We urge you to make your own judgement as to whether each individual organization carries out bona fide charity work according to their claims, and if they do in fact tell the whole story about their affiliation with the Family. If you believe has made erroneous claims regarding The Family's suspected front organizations and/or their pseudonyms, or published inaccurate information of any kind on this page, we welcome your suggestions/corrections. We will compare them with our own evidence and make any necessary adjustments. Please write to us

Official Names, Documented names, Associated Names and Suspected Pseudonyms currently used in The Family's "non-profit organization" mode

Name / Pseudonym

Domain and Era

The Children of God

60s to late 70s

Les Enfants de Dieu

The Family of Love

late 70s to late 80s

The Family

since the 90s

La Famille

Heaven's Magic

late 80s to 90s

World Services

70s to current day

Aurora Productions

MWM - Music With Meaning

English radio program

Musica Con Vida

Spanish radio program

CWM - Chinese Wonderful Music

radio show fashioned after MWM

WM - Wonderful Music

Chinese radio show, see CWM

New Teens for Christ, The

current day

Mountain Streams

Postfach 241,
8021 Zurich, Switzerland

A Helping Hand - Mexico


Asia Quest

Cincinnati, Ohio, USA


Bangkok , Thailand

Internet website

Internet website

Brighter Horizons Foundation

Portland, Oregon - member of the National Heritage Foundation

Calico Charities, USA

Oxnard, California, USA

Caring Hearts, Hungary

Budapest, Hungary

Casa Cumbre Presentations

Lima, Peru

Casa de Corazones-Guatemala

Guatemala, C. America

Cheer Up Missions, USA


China Bridge Ministries

San Diego, USA

China TIPS

Pahrump, Nevada, USA

Chinese Christian Literature Prod. Center

Taichung, Taiwan

Coloring the World with Love


Cornerstone Project


Creative Care Services

McAllen, Texas, USA

CVR Ministries

Glendale, Arizona, USA

East Taiwan Family Mission


Eastern US Family Outreach

Norcross, Georgia, USA

EECCC - Eastern European Christian Correspondance Center

Budapest, Hungary

Family Care Indonesia


Family Christian Outreach

Arlington, Texas, USA

Family Educational Services, Istanbul

Istanbul, Turkey

Family Intl. Vol. Serv. Croatia

Brezovica, Zagreb, Croatia

Family Mission/Corazones Unidos

Birmingham, Alabama, USA

Family Outreach Program, The

Romeoville, Illinois, USA

Family Project Hope

Miami, Florida, USA

Family Intl. Community Services

Amman, Jordan

Family Missions

Family Missions KC

Kansas City, Missouri, USA

Family Missions Milk for Many

Silver Spring, MD, USA

Family Missions Services, Mexico


Family Outreach Ministries, Inc

Eaos, Tenessee, USA

Family Outreach Program, The

Romeoville, Illinois, USA

Family Project Hope

Miami, Florida, USA

Family Services, Bangalore

Bangalore, India

Family Volunteer Services

Kathmandu, Nepal

FCF - Family Care Foundation


Lagos, Nigeria

Fellowship of Independent Christian Churches

Friend-Ship Missions

Carthage, North Carolina, USA

Friends in Deed

Mumbai, India

>From the Heart

San Francisco, California, USA

"Frown-Busters" Outreach

Indiana, USA

Hands At Work

Louisville, Kentucky, USA

Hands On Saigon

Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

Hands That Help:Project India

Ontario, Canada

Hands to Hands, Hawaii


Healing Columbia

SantaFe de Bogota, Columbia

Healing Hearts Bosnia


Healing Hearts, USA

Indianapolis, Indiana, USA

Heart to Heart Connections-USA

San Jose California, USA

Helping Hand, South Africa

Durbanville, South Africa

Home Services

HopeReach Missions

Orange, California, USA

Independent Christian Churches

India Reach

New Delhi, India

Island to Island


Lifeline Ministries

Texas, USA

Lion, the Dragon & the Beast, the

Family Band

Love in Action

Dallas, Texas, USA

Love in Action, Guad

Jalisco, Mexico

Love in Action, Pakistan

Karachi Pakistan


Matumaini - Hope for Tanzania

Dar es Salaam, Tanzania

Meet the Need

Hacienda Heights, California, USA

Mile for Smiles, Italy

Bergamo, Italy

Mission Assist

Fairmount, Minnesota, USA

Mission Care Taiwan


Mission Support & Humanitarian Services Program (MSHSP).

Native American Outreach

Flagstaff, Arizona, USA

New Horizons, Mexico


New Horizons Project-USA/India

Santa Ana, California, USA

New Improved Truth, The

New Start-Etchnic Ministries

Alaska, USA

N.Thailand Outreach Mission

Chiang Mai, Thailand

Overseas Mission

Santiago, Chile

Pacific Family Mission

Portland, Oregon, USA

PEARL (Africa)

Ulm, Germany

Philippine/China Mission

Muntinlupa City, Philippines

Portico Foundation

Bangalore, India

Portland Family Mission

Oregon, USA
- discontinued name in 2002, changed to "Brighter Horizons Foundation"

Project Queretaro

Duluth, Georgia, USA


Vancouver, Washington, USA

Reaching Out, Colorado

Lakewood, Colorado, USA

Reaching Out, Peru

Lima, Peru

Refugio De Paz

Carmel, Indiana, USA

Salem Family USA/Africa, The

Lancaster, California, USA


Bangalore, Karnataka

Sharing and Caring

Middlesex, North Carolina, USA

Side by Side Intl

Tokyo, Japan

Silver Lining, Hope 4 Tomorrow

Coahuilla, Mexico

Stand Up For Jesus

San Antonio, Texas, USA

Step Towards Home, A

Sunny-Side Up Entertainment

California, USA

South Reach

Zapopan, Jalisco, Mexico

Taiwan Volunteer Services

Kaohsiung, Taiwan

Tampa Family Missions

Tampa, Florida, USA

Teens for Christ

late 60s, California


Texas Soul Clinic

Texas, pre-COG era, in the 60s

Voice for the Deaf-Hyderabad

Hyderabad, India

Youth Mission Network

Nairobi, Kenya

(reply to this comment

from Albatross
Friday, January 28, 2005 - 09:02


Dear Mr Lamattery,

Sometimes the simplest words are the best. Your article moved me beyond words. I wish I could hear the same from my father.

Thank you very much sir.

With respect

Daniel Roselle
(reply to this comment)

From LTN
Sunday, January 30, 2005, 06:40

Daniel, thanks for your post I greatly treasure it and count myself unworthy of all the wonderful words that have been posted here in reaction to my Statement.

I met your dad about 10 years ago. I know he's a good man and I always believed he was one of the best teen shepherds around; he seemed to have a real heart for teens. I'm sure he'll come around some day. It's hard to let people we love go but sometimes that might be the only way for us to ever regain some of what we've lost. I think my children had to do just that with me--let me go and learn my lessons. I know it has hurt them greatly through the years when their eyes were opened while mine were shut. A lot was missed between us: weddings, graduations, births, celebrations, and so many things that the list could really go on and on. But, now we are on the road to recovery and united once again in love and spirit and though the past can never be undone there has at least been an ending to the hurt and a beginning of the healing process.

Daniel I admire you and your courage. You have fought hard to bring this change into many lives and if it wasn't for you many would never have found healing. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for being there now with my son John and the others who are working so hard to bring down the tyranny of the evil regime. (reply to this comment
From FGA with sis still in group
Sunday, January 30, 2005, 07:02


Wow, I totally agree with all you've said, especially the statement:

"It's hard to let people we love go but sometimes that might be the only way for us to ever regain some of what we've lost."

That is true with parents of adult children as well...or ANYONE in our lives, for that matter who does not see things the way we do. We cannot force them, and it is like a spiritual law that if we let go and TRUST that they will "see the light" one day, they just might. I have experienced that over and over with my loved ones!

Thanks again for your willlingness, John, to be so honest and transparent...healing starts there, then the forgiveness can come.

(reply to this comment

From challenger
Friday, January 28, 2005, 23:35

don't worry you will eventually get an apology from Him. Some things just take time. (reply to this comment
From challenger
Friday, January 28, 2005, 23:34


Do not

(reply to this comment

From challenger
Friday, January 28, 2005, 23:34



(reply to this comment

from John La Mattery Jr.
Friday, January 28, 2005 - 08:53



Reading this made me weep. I’ve waited so long for you to be able to come out and truly understand what we went through, without the tainting of the Family’s excuses. That was very unexpected and I’m feeling blind sided by your honesty. Although we may have had our issues in the past, today you have been the father and man I always envisioned you to be, and for that, I thank you.

My Father, I forgive you.

Your Eldest Son,

(reply to this comment)

From LTN
Saturday, January 29, 2005, 08:16

Thank you son. Your words cause me to weep. I'm so ashamed of failing you and for not being there so many times in the past. You've always thought about me and I've always felt your love and concern for me in spite of my failings. So many little things you've done for me like giving me your new watch and that nice coat before you left here. Or, reminding me not to overwork and asking about my situation. Little things which have shown me your love for me even though I didn't deserve it. I admire you greatly and have great faith in you.

I thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Dad(reply to this comment
from Guccigirl
Friday, January 28, 2005 - 07:54


Wow, About time one of our parents stood up for us and told the truth. A bit late might I add, but none the less better late than never. I wish my mum would take some accountability for her actions - even though she's not in TF anymore she doesn't feel she did anything wrong because she didn't actually "hurt anyone" She knew what what happening to my brother & I and did NOTHING. I don't think I'll ever get over that - Our own parents turned their backs on us - they knew what was going on, they saw what was going on and didn't do a damn thing to protect us. Well mum, you may not have beaten the shit out of me, sexually abused me or caused any other type of physical harm but you did abandon me, you turned your back on me, when I told you what was happening you called me a liar, you told my sisters not to listen to me - that I'm just bitter. You may not be responsible for the physical harm, but when it comes to mental & emotional pain you are guilty. You blame everyone else "they this" & "they that" At the end of the day you were suppose to protect us and you failed.
(reply to this comment)

from frmrjoyish
Friday, January 28, 2005 - 07:44


Like many, I so wish I could hear these words coming from my parents. Although they are out of TF, they still refuse to apoplogize to us for putting us in that situaiton. They know of the terrible abuses many of their children suffered yet refuse to apoplogize. My mother actually said just last month over Christmas that if she apoplogized to us it would be like 25+ years of her life was meaningless! I was floored by that statement and have still not finished processing it. I don't have kids but if I did I can't imagine ever letting anyone touch them in such a way and if I did I would never be able to forgive myself. My parents are weak and can't seem to see that a simple apology would go so far in helping to heal their older children.

I'm just grateful that my younger siblings have no clue of what we went through. Ignorance is bliss so I just pretend to be a happy family for their sake. I loved watching my brothers play football or my sisters in dance practice. Just the normal things that we never got to do. They will never know, nor should they, how lucky they are to be "forced" to get up at 6:30 am to go to school. That's part of what keeps me going is knowing that they have a chance. I have made huge strides and am in a very good place in my life now and everyday I'm thankfull that my younger siblings will never have to take the same journey to get to their good place.
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from exister
Friday, January 28, 2005 - 07:02

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
I am generally not too quick to cut FGAs any slack, but your statement has a ring of sincerity to it. I am convinced that there do exist Family members for whom the cloud of self delusion is too thick, but for those who's minds can be salvaged I hope they see the light as you did.
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from DeeJay
Friday, January 28, 2005 - 05:16

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)

It's never easy to admit error, especially on of such epic proportion. I sincerely thank you for it.

All that i wish is that my parents too could see the error of their ways. a simple apology would be sufficient - "sorry for ruining your life. sorry that the consequences of my life-choices are continued hardship and difficulty in yours". Sadly they are still blinded by the false prophet that Berg is.

I don't believe that it's a fight of us kids against our parents, i believe that it's a fight of us all against deception, deceit and irreversible abuse all in the name of one man's perversion of the truth. oh that those i care about could simply see that and have the courage to stand up for themselves.
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From LTN
Friday, January 28, 2005, 05:32

Thanks for your comment. I really hope that many parents will find the strength to raise up and say just what you mentioned in your comment: "a simple apology would be sufficient - 'sorry for ruining your life. sorry that the consequences of my life-choices are continued hardship and difficulty in yours'". It seems so simple but it's pride and clinging to a false doctrine that prevents them from doing so. But, where's there's still life the chance of change is not dead. I know that if I can change they can change too. Please don't lose hope. --LTN(reply to this comment
from ex-fga
Friday, January 28, 2005 - 04:27


Thank you for putting my feelings into words. I applaud you and all those speaking out to cause Zerby to face the truth of the monstrously wrong principles she adheres to and righteously disseminates.

My sincere wish is that TF will cease any all all current abusive practices, and honestly face up to the wrong it has done in the lives of so many.
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From LTN
Friday, January 28, 2005, 05:02

Thanks for your kind words but don't applaud me because I'd still be hiding if it wasn't for my own dear son who has taken some of the first steps along with Daniel and others to come forth and fight this injustice. Come out of the shadows and join us! --LTN(reply to this comment
from Baxter
Friday, January 28, 2005 - 04:15

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Let's just hope this sparks a chain-reaction.
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From LTN
Friday, January 28, 2005, 05:04

Yes, let's hope it does. And, BTW, if you feel it appropriate please send a copy to your dad. Isn't he still in TF?(reply to this comment
Friday, January 28, 2005 - 04:03

Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5Average visitor agreement is 5 out of 5(Agree/Disagree?)
Best thing I've heard anyone say!! Wish my own father would feel the same as you. It would make me so proud and wipe away some of the pain and hurt. Thanks for writing.
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From LTN
Friday, January 28, 2005, 04:59

Thank you for taking you time to comment on my Statement. Your words brought tears and hope that I have done the right thing. --LTN(reply to this comment
from melzar
Friday, January 28, 2005 - 03:02

moving...thank you.
(reply to this comment)

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