These comments were posted on a chat line in February 1999 by ex-Wayers who anonymously described how they were "marked and avoided" by TWI. Each paragraph is a new message by a different writer. Unrelated comments, personal references and rude language have been deleted, but the messages are otherwise intact.

I would really like to know why many of you were MA. Maybe there are still some fence sitters in TWI that will make a decision to leave that abuse if they see your heart story and know there are still believers out here that will help them through the many ups and downs that they will experience.

Why were we m/a? We had a very egotistical, love of lucre and what it gets you, in your face-screaming-swearing-accusing, kind of leader. His name is John Chelar, and he now is in NJ. He was the lc for our state, and when he came to visit you were expected to change your plans to be at the meeting (i understand this) but then he would change his plans and rechange his plans and if you could not accommodate him "you are hard-hearted and don't want to hear the word". Well, I work a professional job in an emergency situation--an operating room--and switching my call schedule around 2 or 3 times in a week is impossible. "well, maybe you shouldn't go to work when you are called" (so who is gonna deliver the c-section babies who are in trouble, or the car accident victim) "leave them, you are not believing properly" "you are obviously possessed" "maybe you should move closer to limb home" "why didn't your son go to communion in the other state?" (3 hours away in bad weather) "why didn't he go here when I came?" (he made a previous commitment with a sports team to participate in another part of the state-3 mos ago before we knew you were coming) "so, your son rules your house?" "where are your weekly schedules with all your hours activity listed?" "what? there is no personal intimate time listed here between you and your husband!" " you missed 2 functions in the last 8 months time---how can you expect to be the best when i come and pour out my life for you and you are not here to hear it?" and on and on and on and on and on.......control of my life, my emotions, (I left out all the swearing)... "so, what am I gonna do with you--you are a trouble maker--what if i told you that others said this about you" that it is not true sir? "are you calling them liars?" no i am not accusing anyone--i just never said that, nor thought that "you should just get out" yes sir i think i should--"remember you decided that".........M and A.

It is amazing how similar our experience was with another tyrant - M.A. aka Mike Anderson.

Unbelievable that his tactics, wording and swearing, yelling screaming, ego etc could be interchanged. We actually left after we wised up (understatement). Actually our fear was that if we held out for placements and could actually get out from under this one, we might end up with someone equally possessed - specifically, John Chelar

I was M/A because there was crumbs on my table. yes sir, i am not worthy to be called a son of God, because there were crumbs on my table.

I walked away from TWI back in 86, shortly after VPW died. I informed the leadership that I no longer agreed on many of TWI doctrines and that it was time for me to move on. Within a week, people who had been my "friends", who had sought my council, who I had served the bread of life to Gods people with...sent out and endorsed a letter to the local believers telling them that I was possessed and was to be avoided at all costs. It was at that moment that I realized that these people were not my friends and never were...I shed no tears. It wasn't until years later that I first heard the term "mark and avoid" being used by TWI as such a common term and applied to so many people.. Most of the stuff I hear now doesn't even resemble TWI as I remember it in the early 70's...small wonder that people are leaving in droves when I hear about the oppressive system that Loy is running..

We were M & A to be an example to the Household. After one and half years of being put down, insulted and told the leadership was learning a lot from us being in emeritus, we were out. We were told that we were hanging on to the past. The LC did not have the guts to face us, so he called us with his two bit branch coordinators on a phone hook up to give us the news. LCM ought to be happy with the quality of "yes " men he has working for him.

Prior to my husband and I leaving TWI, there was a Household Advance weekend in 7/97 in our state that we did not attend. We had made plans to go away that very same weekend and we told this to our TC. She (TC) questioned us twice to see if we would change our minds and go because it was an opportunity for the household to be together, but we stated that we had already committed to our plans. After the Household advance weekend, we were brought in front of our TC and 4 people in our twig about how we weren't contributing to the fellowship and that being advance class grads, we had to set a good example (we supposedly didn't set one because we did not attend the advance). Mind you this was the only function the whole year we did not attend. After this we commuted 30 miles each way to twig 3x/week. We were told by our TC that we should be smiling and showing each other we were blessed when we got together. We also had to make efforts to attend "fun nights" with the twig because we had to "fellowship daily with the believers." It got to where we weren't blessed going to twig because we were forced to be blessed, smile and gather together. Around 10/97 I questioned our TC about LCMs cursing on SNS tapes, the lesbian teaching in TWAP class and about a believer that left our fellowship. Her responses were: LCM can do what he does because he's "the man of God for our day and time," she didn't fully research the materials from TWAP class to give me a good response and the believer who left twig was drawn away by his unbelieving girlfriend (which was a blatant lie, he left because he couldn't go 3x/wk and that wasn't good enough). I told her that I needed to take time off from twig because I didn't agree with her responses. I was told to go up TW tree (through the LC) to get answers. I didn't want to waste my time and I was told I M/A myself! Since then, many of my believer friends that left were also blatantly lied about; I also found out that leadership in our area told TW people that we were starting our own ministry!! So what god called the accuser are they following??? Since then we've been blessed and haven't been "a grease spot by midnight." We are still part of the household of God and are enjoying our lives once again.

The Mark and Avoid bandwagon pretty much started with the "homo" cleansings and continued from there. LCM was obsessed with the idea of a "clean household". Our LC came up with the most heinous, unsubstantiated accusations about people from behind his desk...no one needed any proof whatsoever...spiritual suspicion was enough. Fantasies of the mind replaced sound thinking. They really thought they had revelation, discerning of spirits, but in many cases they were dead wrong. Fear, confusion and hypocrisy reigned. Way Corps were praised for coming up with spiritual suspicion about someone's life and confronting it even if they couldn't get specific. "It must be something" was good enough. Anyone who questioned Mark and Avoid were eventually marked and avoided, called "Old Way Ministry". Once someone was labeled, they were treated with suspicion and harassed until they left. Just typing this sounds too awful to be believed, but that's the way it was. One example was a family that the LC thought should move closer to a TWIG, although they didn't mind the drive. They had also recently moved from another area. The LC decided they'd moved because they were running away from something and that the father had probably had an affair or molested a kid. Really, really sick, isn't it. This is the kind of crap we overseers had to sit around and listen to about other believers. We were put on spiritual probation (marked and avoided) for being "Old Way Ministry" and told to go figure it out. I don't really want to know what the LC said about me behind my back .

Most people had no idea this stuff was going on. You had to be in the middle of it to know about it. I often wondered if even LCM knew about it. There's so much I could post, but I don't want to just gripe, complain and vent. I figure that if it helps you make sense of your experience, I'd be glad to post it, but all of us who have been marked and avoided know what it's like to have people you trusted turn on you..

I left the ministry in 1987. I continued to fellowship with a clergyman and his wife. One day after this clergyman had passed away, I called the LC of the state and asked where a fellowship was. He said that the persons I had been fellowshiping with were not worshiping the same God as Martindale. Therefore, I was not welcome at the Way anymore. I was hurt. But know I am so much better off now. It helped me to seek out old grads of the class. We continue to fellowship. I`m just trying to do the basics.

We were M&A'd because we found out about lcm sleeping with and using corp women from a corp person who uncovered and came face to face with Loy about this issue, who's life was messed up pretty badly because he wouldn't sweep it under the carpet. We told our tc's we'd decided to leave because of some things that we had found out, though we didn't say what, after seeing what had happened to the corp person who found out about it. We weren't shocked that they told everyone we were m&a because we wouldn't sell our house, and a whole bunch of other lies. The lc who took part in the damage control has since been demoted, probably because he knows too much. A note to anyone reading this who's still in twi: a lot of the people you hear were M&A'd actually left of their own free will! Same difference you say? Nope. That's a confusion they have caused by design, considering how careful they are about using the right words and terminology.

For the time being we are enjoying living life again, taking a step back to reassess things. We're also taking our time about joining any other organization, especially ones who seem to be trying to re-create twi.

I was M&A'd: For trying to protect my teenage daughter from a myriad of horny wayward males. For turning to a non-advanced class "believer" for support when I was being threatened with divorce and M&A. For feeling afraid for going against my physicians advice to seek medical attention for cancer screening after lump was detected and another time for a very serious eye infection lest I forgo God's hand of protection for going against my husband's wishes (I felt he did not have my best interests at heart at this time due to all the threats of divorce which made it extremely difficult). For not believing my Twig coordinator's wife's justification that my husband's domestic abuse toward me was able to slap the devil spirits out of me. For not buying all the crap about my dresser top indicating the chaos and confusion that I allowed elsewhere in the spiritual realm or that by reading my Bible from Genesis to Revelation was wrong. Or that speaking in tongues in the third person was suddenly counterfeit in '94. Or that not smiling at Twig indicated anything more than the stress I was under to please everybody all the time and never being able to. For resisting the twig coordinator's wife when she physically assaulted me by pushing her finger into my sternum as if to push me down. For not relinquishing my authority when the coordinators told my daughter that her step-dad was the only one she had to listen to or obey and my authority was taken away. Of course her step-dad was under the coordinator's authority so she only could respond to their beck and call. They told her it would be disobedience to God to disobey him/them and they demanded that she testify against me in court in divorce and custody proceedings. (I won) For finally recognizing that my husband and spiritual leaders were not my spiritual saviors but my mortal enemies when "hubby" tried to have me arrested which resulted in his arrest since I was the one with bruises and bleeding. The coordinator's wife came to me after his arrest to talk me out of leaving him and turned things around so that two weeks later they had me removed from my children and home with a temporary restraining order. Two days later the "believers" got together for a spiritual housecleaning party and went through all my things, disposing of things or putting things into a rented storage unit as they saw fit. For being angry that this "man of God" stooped so low as to get this restraining order by total false witness and with the coordinator's approval and support by simply claiming that I had tried to "shoot" him. There wasn't even a stitch of truth to that fabrication. For not being diplomatic enough in turning down the sexual advances of a wanna-be twig coordinator who just wanted a couple relaxing drinks with me in my basement to let down the defenses so we could talk about my personal matters when the hubby was out of town.

I called my tc on 1/11/96 and told him I would not be coming back to Twig. He asked why. I said, "John (Welch), does it really matter? People will make up their own reasons." HE AGREED. Then, about a month later, the Corps nerd Jim Dorr (who had been sent to this area to decimate it - and succeeded) sent me a letter telling me I was not welcome at Twig anymore... after I had already been fellowshipping elsewhere for a good while...just so he could have a letter to show to his superiors, I'm sure. The bottom line is that anyone who thinks for themselves is M & A. I believe they coined that term and took those verses out of context to keep present Way folks from hearing the truth. Anyone who ever heard what happened would get out.

Used by permission of the Trancenet chat line sponsor.

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