J. Michael Wittman has just published a very disturbing fact based book. When I think about the word cult, images of Heavens Gate, Waco Texas, and Jim Jones spring to my mind. I do not associate cult with something that could be happening in my back yard. NIMBY is the term that sums it up well Not In My Back Yard. As Michael Wittman explains in Pigs In The Pulpit, that is not the case, cult like activity is alive and well, and could well be happening in your neighborhood.
Michael was not involved in some ‘off the wall’ religious group, he was part of the very mainstream Pentecostal movement. His story is an unnerving one, a story that spanned many years of clear abuse at the hands of people that should be there to serve rather than rule.
I managed to get J. Michael Wittman to sit down and take part in an interview. I think it would be fair to say that his candid remarks on radio are every bit as chilling as the book itself.
Should a pastor be in a position to tell you who your friends should be? Or which jobs you can or can not accept?
Referred to as only Pastor Jason in Pigs In The Pulpit, we meet the very dark underbelly of what might be happening in your town.
J. Michael Wittman reached the stage of complete frustration and also had an awakening. But leaving a cult like environment is easier said than done. There are a set of complex dynamics at work in every cult. One method of control is to control peoples friends, over time the only friends a cult member has are fellow members of the cult. To walk away means leaving behind everyone you care about. But walk away is exactly what he and his wife did.
The author also explained that the act of breaking away was not the end of the story. When ministrations to lure them back into the fold failed, then scare tactics came into play in the form of threatening emails and phone calls. It reached such epidemic proportions that finally they secured a restraining order against the church.
I have to admit that my talk with J. Michael Wittman was most revealing, I learned a great deal about how cult like mentalities can destroy lives.
You can listen to the entire interview here.