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Marilee J. Layman

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08:36 pm: Short Day, Odd Announcement, and Church of Hate
I was awake, not my idea, until 10am and slept until 3pm. When I got up I checked the two-page info on the depakote, but it's supposed to make me drowsy and dizzy, not an insomniac. So I got the mail and dropped a letter off at the post office. On the way home, there was this guy who drove very strangely. He was about three inches from the right side of the lane (all single lanes where we were) and in places where cars could park and there were two or three here and there, he'd drive by the side, swing out and almost touch mirrors, then swing back to the side. It was very weird to watch. I wondered if he usually ran a streetsweeper. He took the wrong turn on a four-way stop, too.

I was reading an old Sunday WashPost last night and a wedding announcement caught my eye. It was much longer than most announcements and the picture made them look farther apart in age than the 20 years listed. So I read the announcement to find that apparently the groom thought of it as a cheap advertisement. If I saw that after I was married, I'd be heading for the divorce office.

Rob Foster was 16 when his family unraveled.

He had told his parents that he wanted to leave Calvary Temple, the Pentecostal church in Sterling the family had attended for decades. But church leaders were blunt with his parents: Throw your son out of the house, or you will be excommunicated. And so that December two years ago, Gary and Marsha Foster told Rob that he had to leave. They would not see him or talk to him.

"I was devastated," he said.


This is like a lot of churches I went to as a kid, although we weren't Pentacostals, no, we looked down on them. I bet they consider the King James version as the actual word of god. Boy, reading this felt so familiar. Particularly when I got to this part:

Charm Kern, a nursing student and mother, says she was traumatized by Calvary teachers telling her in her early adolescence that she was too overweight to be on the cheerleading squad. As punishment for being a "glutton," said Kern, who is 20, she was tied by a rope to faster children and pulled during runs. She and her brother, who was also overweight, would be required to run while other children ate lunch, she said. By ninth grade, she was rebelling against her teachers, and pastors tried to place her and her brother with another family. Her parents pulled the family out of Calvary.

Scott said that Kern's parents initially were supportive of the efforts to help her lose weight and that such measures "are discipline, not punitive."


Whenever my father hit me, kicked me, punched me, threw me at the wall, pulled me down the stairs by my ankle, turned his Navy ring over to smack me in the head, etc., he'd say "This is discipline; children need discipline." And when he said awful things to me he said: "This is motivation; children need motivation."

I sure hope folks who read this article take a good look at whether their churches are giving out hate or love.

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Comments

[User Picture]
From:fledgist
Date:January 24th, 2009 02:18 am (UTC)
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'Encouragement' is another word for the same thing. I used to hear that a lot as a boy. Being told that I wasn't good enough was supposed to encourage me to do better.
[User Picture]
From:mjlayman
Date:January 24th, 2009 02:30 am (UTC)
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Funny how that doesn't work.
[User Picture]
From:fledgist
Date:January 24th, 2009 02:33 am (UTC)
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Or not in the way it was intended.
(no subject) - (Anonymous)
[User Picture]
From:mjlayman
Date:January 24th, 2009 03:16 am (UTC)
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Jail would be nice, but it doesn't look like he's actually done anything wrong yet. Giving bad advice, and putting himself in charge and giving himself stuff, is not actually illegal.
[User Picture]
From:autopope
Date:January 24th, 2009 11:18 am (UTC)
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On the way home, there was this guy who drove very strangely. He was about three inches from the right side of the lane (all single lanes where we were) and in places where cars could park and there were two or three here and there, he'd drive by the side, swing out and almost touch mirrors, then swing back to the side. It was very weird to watch. ... He took the wrong turn on a four-way stop, too.

Translating sides-of-road, that kind of exaggerated slow response to being in the wrong place sounds like a classic drunk-driver to me. Stay well back!

That wedding announcement: he comes over as a complete sleazeball even before you get to the ad. I am inclined to wonder at certain other aspects of the announcement: I wonder if the bride's view of the groom's net value at divorce is higher than it actually is?

That pastor: shoot him. Now. Please? Or failing that, he needs the SWAT arm of the child protection services to investigate him.


[User Picture]
From:mjlayman
Date:January 24th, 2009 11:58 pm (UTC)
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Oh, I never even thought of him being drunk. Well, I can watch for him -- his car had a lot of Libertarian stickers.

I was thinking the bride may have the mentor-love thing. She appears to have a more stable job than he does, but I don't know how much money he has.

That pastor? I'm not going to jail for him. I'm sure CPS is now paying much more attention. I have no idea if the churches we went to while I was a kid have changed or not, but they were very similar in their religious practice. Except for the "racing ministry."
[User Picture]
From:moropus
Date:January 24th, 2009 03:36 pm (UTC)
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That's the oddest wedding announcement I've ever seen.

And the church reminds me of why I am an ecsapee. I have a dream of a place where all the dumped family members can go and live together and love each other.
[User Picture]
From:mjlayman
Date:January 25th, 2009 12:02 am (UTC)
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It is a really weird announcement. The picture and the first bit caught my eye and the more I read, the more my eyebrows went up. I started reaching for the scissors before the end.

I became emancipated and then my younger brother's guardian when I was 17, but I'm still more of an alone person. The first neurologist is sure I had a mild case of Asperger's before the stroke (looking at my chart from before) so maybe I was born this way. I like people and I like to see them, but I really like living alone. With cats.
[User Picture]
From:heleninwales
Date:January 24th, 2009 04:25 pm (UTC)
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I'm totally boggled by the article about the church. How on earth do they get away with it?

Of course I live the most secular corner of the UK, which is one of the most secular countries in the world, so the whole thing comes across as totally appalling in all respects.
[User Picture]
From:mjlayman
Date:January 25th, 2009 12:03 am (UTC)
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Yes, exactly. This is an example of the worst of US religions. Even most religious people here would be appalled, so I figured it would be very odd for you guys.
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