Tuesday, May 27, 2008

"Why Was It My Fault? Because I Was The Lady."

Four minutes into this video, a young woman describes her experience in an Evangelical church where she, at age 16, was raped by a member of the church staff. She refused to go to law enforcement at her mothers encouragement and went to her pastor instead. Hoping to find someone who would be a caring shepherd, an advocate and a protector, her pastor told her to "keep her mouth shut." She describes how she was found to be at fault for her own rape because she desired to have a boyfriend. (It sounds so reminiscent of the things that I heard Bill Gothard say and the types of immature arguments offered by those who followed Gothard's teachings.)

As I mentioned in a recent post, in my former cultic church, whenever there was an issue in a marriage, leadership perceived issues of sin in the lives of husbands to be a response to the wife's refusal of his authority or her lack of care for his needs. If there was a marital problem and a wife approached the elders to confront her husband, it was incumbent upon that woman to prove that she had not created a situation that caused her husband to sin. I also recall Jen Epstein's account of her experience at Boerne Christian Assembly where it was always assumed that a wife was "the squeaky wheel" in the relationship. I know this to be sadly true of these spiritually abusive churches based on my observations of the activities in my own former group.

How often is this heard in patriocentric camps and cults, in the words of this young woman on this video clip?

"Why was it my fault? Because I was the lady."