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Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Child Abuse Did Occur in the Twelve Tribes - Don't let TT leaders rewrite history

The Twelve Tribes leadership will tell you that every instance of child abuse within the Edah (church) is due to ignorant members who "misunderstood and inappropriately applied" Sprigg's teachings. One such leader told me in a conversation on FactNet, specifically, "Many people have received help for trying to apply spiritual principles without love because of the fear of doing wrong and unfortunately they end up doing wrong anyway. One cannot apply spiritual principles without love."

The major problem is the head of this organization, Elbert Eugene Spriggs is unable to "man up" and admit that he caused the abuses to happen through his teachings and example. Eddie Wiseman, Spriggs' second in command drove these teaching home and had a key role in "teaching" through demonstration how to administer them.

Yoneq (Elbert Eugene Spriggs) is the person who wrote the teaching "Execution of Justice" which I published last night. He was the one who lead by example in that teaching by telling a story where he beat little two year old Lydia Mattattall (who will be shown in the video below) who he had taken from her mother and father to be his and Marsha's own child since she was barren. They took Lydia to Europe to avoid her return to her father which a court had ordered.

In his teaching, Spriggs brags that she had been beaten until she bore the "brand marks of Yahshua" all over her body. He did this because she refused to give her thumb to him to "cut-off" with a huge pair of scissors. She finally succumbed and presented her thumb to him (to stop the beatings). This is an example of physical and mental torture of a child by the self proclaimed apostle! So when you combine this teaching with the method of thought and behavior control the group administers where members are expected to obey without question Spriggs' commands, how could they expect anything but child abuse to occur?

Over time, due to the intense pressure from media and government officials, the group has toned down their methods and teachings on beating children. And now they parade parents and children in front of the public who have been brainwashed into thinking abuses never happened, it was all just lies told by the "evil one" through his "agents" on the "outside". This is all evidence of classic thought and behavior control techniques. The Twelve Tribes should not be allowed to rewrite history and continue to spread their lies. Therefore, I publish the following teachings and video testimony to remind people what really happened in this community of fear and oppression. Watch the following video but with your "outside" eyes and remember, Spriggs' teaches that it is ok to lie to "outsiders":

Channel 5 - Chronicle

Let me highlight two key points from the video: 1. Eddie Wiseman pleads to stop the charges of child abuse (he wants the pressure to end) 2. He makes a blatant misrepresentation of the facts around the Island Pond VT raid. He says the judge "found no evidence of abuse and dropped the charges". That is not true. The judge found the raid to be unconstitutional, which it was, and therefore dropped the charges. Government officials were unable therefore to inspect the children and had to release them. In fact, State officials were acting on a warrant issued by another judge after they presented evidence that included a previous ruling by Judge Mahady in a child custody case. In that case, Judge Mahady ruled in May 1983 that the four children involved ''have been subjected to frequent and methodical physical abuse by adult members of the community''for ''minor disciplinary infractions." The Twelve Tribes is continuing their practice of lying to the outside world and attempting to rewrite history.

In contrast, with your critical thinking (reasoning) hats on, listen to what Michael Painter and James Howell have to say about the raid in the video below. But let's start with the origin of the abuse, Elbert Eugene Spriggs:

First example: Below are quotes from Spriggs' Execution of Justice Teaching:

“Unless your son has blue wounds, by this standard, you know what kind of a standard is in you — it is the spirit that hates your son. If one is overly concerned about his son receiving blue marks you know that he hates his son and hates the word of God.” No date – Execution of Justice – Page 1

“Tell Hannah that Hephzibah (name Marsha and Spriggs gave Lydia when they took her away from her father and mother) is like Paul and says: “From now on let no one cause me trouble for I bear on my body the brand marks of Yahshua.” They are blue and she is receiving her discipline. She is growing up to be that last generation, being prepared, even in her nervous system, to be in that hour of supreme demand. Love Elbert.” - Elbert Spriggs, Execution of justice, Page 4

"Hephzibah is coming to understand that she is living for her father and belongs to him. The other day she was having great difficulty being obedient to his command: not to suck her thumb in bed. Elbert asked her to stick out her thumb because he was going to cut it off. He took a huge pair of scissors and came toward her. She was terrified, but (after receiving her discipline) she willingly stuck out her thumb to be cut off rather than let it cause her to stumble in her obedience to her father." - Elbert Spriggs, Execution of justice, Page 4

Below is the eighth video from an interview Channel 5 had with two high ranking defectors of the Twelve Tribes.

Example number two of the Leadership not the sheep abusing children:

Eddie Wiseman beat a 13 year old girl for 7 hours. This was a practice the TT started called "scourging" to break the will of a child. The father, Roland Church was forced to watch this take place. The next day, he took his children and left the Twelve Tribes after spending many years there. The following video has the testimony of both Roland and his daughter.

Example number three:

Eddie Wiseman was the Elder of the community where Michael Painter was one of his "Deacons". Eddie told Michael he needed to go support his wife in what she was doing. Michael found out his wife was told to "scourge" their 18 month old baby. She had broken 25 "balloon sticks" on the baby's body and was still beating her to make her "break". This was how Yoneq (Spriggs) and Eddie Wiseman (Yoneq's second in command) were "teaching" even the leaders within the TT to administer this teaching.

I have read so many examples from other ex-members in addition to the stories above. It is heart wrenching to hear a father lament over having to beat his child until marks were left on his body against his conscience because he felt he was submitting his will to God. The guilt and anguish still rest deeply in this man's soul. It is not acceptable to point the finger at the sheep. It was the leaders, Yoneq and Wiseman that made up these methods of abuse and lead by example on how to administer them. It is Elbert Eugene Spriggs that needs to stand in front of the entire Twelve Tribes and the World and repent for his actions.

The child abuse committed by Spriggs and his followers was a horrible thing. However, the more terrifying issue is that one man, Elbert Eugene Spriggs, was able to, with the stroke of a pen, cause loving parents to abuse their babies and small children. If he can do this, what else is he capable of talking these people into doing? The Twelve Tribes Media arm has started to put the following quote on their video and printed propaganda:

"Why do the people with the "right" doctrine persecute and kill the people with the "wrong" doctrine and not the other way around?

I asked one of the leaders of the TT Parchment press this question in my open letter published yesterday, "Are you proposing, persecuting and killing Christians next? I don't mean to be an alarmist, but, coercive control groups such as yours have done much worse. So maybe an alarm needs to be raised?"

It is very scary to think what Spriggs could convince his follower's to do. He has already convinced them to follow his commands without question. He has already proven they will do this. One of his teachings or commands is that his group does not have to obey or submit to the authority of the government if it conflicts with what God is telling them to do (via Spriggs teachings of course). They refer to this as a "moral" verses "legal" decision in which the "moral" will always outweigh the legal. They use double talk in that they will uphold the biblical teaching that all government has been put in place by God and therefore must be obeyed. The disclaimer is that is true only if the "moral" verses "legal" conflict does not exist. This group needs very close scrutiny. It is very far down a dangerous path that far too often we have witnessed only after the fact and then asked ourselves, "Why didn't we see that coming? Why didn't anyone say anything? Where was the red flag?"

I am Voice - Here is my red flag:

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Anonymous said...

A comment on video number two:
I'd had my suspicions for awhile, but after seeing the brief interview with Roland Church, I realized for certain that he and his wife are still members of the TT. They currently reside in the Bellows Falls community. He goes by the name Manasseh, and runs his farrier business throughout southeastern Vermont. Nowhere in the "official" story of the Darlynn Church affair is it mentioned that her parents returned to the group afterwards. VOR and others, what do you make of this?

Voice said...

Roland is like so many who have suffered from post traumatic stress and battered spouse syndrome, they return to get abused all over again. They leave and return, leave and return. If it benefits the TT, they are welcomed back. In Roland's case, to get him to come back and take back everything he said against Wiseman and Spriggs and the TT was a big feather in their caps. Have you thought about how allowing him to come back is so contrary to Spriggs' teachings and how other members who have left and spoken against the Edah have been handled?

The TT would say it is proof he was never telling the truth. Would you say the same about an abused wife who returns to her husband of 15 years? I wouldn't. She was still abused.

Anonymous said...

Wow, I had never thought of it that way before. Your right about the abuse allogations. Those who leave can't ALL be "disgruntal ex-employees" making up stories and lies. And even if they were, how odd that they all seem to have very similar accounts of deciet, abuse, and bad government. I only pray that current tribe members who get to see your sight will see just how many seem to aggree on the many problems within the community. Thier answer to outsiders who question thier lifestyle is consistantly "come and stay a few days, see the life, live the life" well these testimonies are from those who have "lived the life" and they all point to something being really wrong.
--divine interuption

Anonymous said...


I knew all the people James & Michael were talking about.

I drove with Michael to Boston one time and could tell something was "up" with him. James also seemed like he wasn't too happy. I liked them both (well actually most everyone). It amazing to hear what was really going on from their testimonies.

I knew Roland Church and his family. We lived in the Maples together. I joined the community in 1985 after the raid. He had returned. Darlyn left and stayed out. Her sister Faith married Jonah, a guy I worked with on ODD JOBS with Jarvis and Paul Koch.

Thanks for keeping us ex's informed. I didn't realize all that was going on since I left. I still had hopes that they might be the "ones" after all. A conversation with Bill Mehr (Lev) opened my eyes first.

You have put up an incredible site. Thanks for all the hard work.

Voice said...

Thanks Daniel. If you would like to have your personal testimony published, please send me an email and we can work it. I have a few ex-members who are working on doing this now. I think it is important for prospective new members, current members and ex-members to hear testimonies from those who left the Twelve Tribes.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for all your hard work on this site. Please know your information is intervention and making a difference with current,prospective, x-members, and those observing in the community.
I considered 'the life' in community.
Your information has helped me come to my senses.
Graciously appreciative!

nabashalam said...

and the beat goes on...

Anonymous said...

those are the happiest abused children i've ever seen! if that is what abuse produces then god praise abuse!

Eric Christopherson said...

Regardless of past abuses, which I'm not qualified to comment on, what I have seen in the Twelve Tribes for the past 17 years when visiting or living in the Tribes, has been much love for the children. One brother admitted to me that the community has made many mistakes in the past that they regret. It is now emphasized to encourage a child 100x more than they are disciplined. I want to see the Twelve Tribes be the best they can be for God and society. Like many ex-members, I've gone through times of being an enemy. But, what would Jesus do. Wouldn't he want us to help one-another and be kind. I see a lot of tearing down by ex-members who no longer have a desire to live and work daily together or gather together in prayer with one-another. No ex-member has shown me a more meaningful life. Instead of being enemies toward the communities, let's be a friend, and be there for one-another. These ex-member sites are not giving an accurate view of daily life in the 12 Tribes. I'm not excusing any past failures where they actually occurred. But what is there in any of us, that would want to tear the communities apart? Think about why we joined to begin with. Is there any Yahshua/Jesus left in us?

nabashalam said...

And what did Yahshua say to the lying, conniving false Pharisees?

"Brood of vipers" comes to mind...

Martin said...

As a Ex TT member I can honesty say, I only found several points in their doctrine wrong, which is missing the narrow way that few find unfortunately. His true church must obey everything He commanded as 1 Timothy 6:3, and Acts 3:22-23 clearly points out. It's why so many are off course and missing the mark, including much of Christianity, as He said " Not all who say Lord Lord will go to heaven but ONLY those who do my will." (Goggle it) So first I found out that they did not believe in Luke 17:4 when I tried to repent they said I was not forgiven because God,was not forgiving me despite what it says in 1 John that God faithfully forgives those who confess their sins, they told me they could not forgive a person if they said I repent, because if they did it would cause people to want to sin more and just say I repent ( That's what Luke 17:4 says..."If a brother says I Repent you SHALL forgive them") it was clear by me that they were disagreeing with Christ not just me. 2. They teach woman can talk at their gatherings, which many do as they relate to the scriptures they point out, yet the Apostle Paul warned in Timothy that the woman be silent. 3. Husbands sometimes are not allowed to rule over their wife's, this happened with me and my Ex,who now lives in the TT community, hence which started our separation that lead to our divorce. 4. Many of Yoneq teachings that Clearly add to the words of the bible as Proverbs 30:6 Warns..For example in one teaching he condemns people who retire because they are not working by the sweat of their brow, in another he teaches that Christ cursifiction was not enough but that He had to go to death for 3 days to see corruption despite Christ saying on the cross..."It is finished", as for myself while there many times I was not forgiven when I gave up all my possessions and lost so much...when I tried to repent then my past was brought up in condemnation of me despite what Corinthians says about love where it says..."Love holds no track record of wrongs." So I wanted to point these facts out to you who are considering joining...Everything I said here is very True....Respectfully Martin.

Nabashalam said...

I agree with you Martin. After leaving I tried to return with a repentive, broken and contrite heart and Yoneq, who miffed because I sought help from Bob Pardon, still refused to let me back in... WWYD?

For my German Speaking Visitors

Follow this link to review a presentation made by Leipzig student Florian Böhnhardt.

Boehnhardt Zwoelf Staemme 2007

For my French Speaking Visitors

Interesting news article concerning the Sus House (castle) and controversy in France with the Twelve Tribes.

Entre bric à brac et vie de château, les drôles d'apôtres de l'Ordre Apostolique... (Tabitha's Place)

Click on the following link to get a wealth of information from an Anti-Cult Site in France

News Reel-1 on Tabitha's Place

News Reel-2 on Tabitha's Place

Place a checkmark beside all items that characterize the group in question. If you check many of these items, and particularly if you check most of them, you might consider examining the group more closely.

The above check list comes from Dr. Michael Langone, editor of Cultic Studies Journal, and often characterize manipulative groups. Dr. Langone suggest prospective recruits and family members compare these statements to the group. If one or more of these apply to your group you may have a cause for concern. I say, if all apply as in the case of the Twelve Tribes, you should repent (turn 180 degrees) and run.

Please Leave a Review

Yoneq 2004

I dedicate this song to Yoneq and the elders of the TT

Elbert Eugene Spriggs

Ok - This one is a little angry, but therapeutic just the same

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