142 thoughts on “Dog and Pony Shows”

    1. “5Samson went down to Timnah together with his father and mother. As they approached the vineyards of Timnah, suddenly a young lion came roaring toward him. 6The Spirit of the Lord came upon him in power so that he tore the lion apart with his bare hands as he might have torn a young goat. But he told neither his father nor his mother what he had done. 7Then he went down and talked with the woman, and he liked her.

      “8Some time later, when he went back to marry her, he turned aside to look at the lion’s carcass. In it was a swarm of bees and some honey, 9which he scooped out with his hands and ate as he went along. When he rejoined his parents, he gave them some, and they too ate it. But he did not tell them that he had taken the honey from the lion’s carcass.”

      Judges 14: 5-9

    2. First thing I thought was the episode of “Gilligan’s Island” where Ginger, Mary Ann, and Lovey Howell form a girl rock group, calling themselves the Honeybees, as part of yet another plan to be rescued… don’t ask. :mrgreen:

  1. HAmen! That’s some good stuff right there. We need more of the old paths, and when I say old paths I mean fundamentalism from the 60s!

    1. Haha. Sometime Darrell needs to do a post on who would play various men of gawd in a hollywood biopic of their lives

  2. I love his mad math skilz.
    There’s only one place for them to go…that’s back to the street, to the cemetary or to the prison house. 1+1+1=1

    1. More math:
      You multiply 800 by 15,000 and you’d see what buildings and what things we could do in reaching other prople for Christ.
      800 x 15,000 = reaching people for Christ

      1. btw, that is 800 churches multiplied by 15,0000 children who were fortunate enough to be truned away from the Roloff concentration centers.

    2. Roloff is displaying his “straw man” logic. It is very unfortunate that this type of argument is so wide spread, and that so few listeners detect it.

  3. An excerpt from Wiki on his homes:

    “The only literature permitted to those living in the Roloff homes was the King James Version of the Bible. Television was forbidden, and only one hour of radio per day was permitted to listen to Roloff’s radio sermons. Daily church attendance was mandatory; each Roloff home had its own church and pastor on the grounds. Other policies, in accordance to the state, included windows being locked and alarm systems in order to prevent any truancy or escape. Contact with the outside world was denied except for monitored phone calls with parents. In addition, each dorm room had an intercom and loudspeaker.”

      1. Yes, Scorpio, the disciples spent all their time with the WORD of God that they had: Christ Jesus. So, Christians should spend all their time with the WORD of God that we have: the King James Bible.

        (It is noteworthy that when I typed “disciples,” my computer auto-corrected it to “disciplines.” 😆 )

  4. For those who can’t bring themselves to watch the entire thing:

    “It’s our desire and it will be done, to double completely. We have between 4 and 500 young people that are terminal cases. All of ’em have to go to the Intensive Care Ward. And that’s all we opperate.

    We take what nobody else will take. We take what no licensed home will take. And… we have between 4 and 500 and that’s about the limit. And the Lord willing, and he is… we’ll double this year and we’ll have at the end of the year either 800 to a 1000. You say, ‘Where you gonna get’em?’ We get 50 calls a day, and have. (sic) We’ve turned, since you saw me one year ago today, wherever you might have in this area, we’ve turned over 15,000 away. There’s only one place for then to go…that’s back to the stree, to the cemetary or to the prison house. And so… if… there were 800 churches, I said 800 churches like this one right here, over the top we’d be.

    You multiply 800 by 15,000 and you’d see what buildings and what things we could do in reaching other prople for Christ.

    And so Brother Pastor, though I did not ask you to make a pledge… I never have, never will. But when a pastor leads his people to do such a noble deed, my heart rejoices and I am glad to be among our most faithful stockholders. And we’re calling a stockholder’s meeting tonight and we brought a few of the dividends along, with us.

    So than you with all my heart. And for the preachers… I know we must not waste time… and I never do… but I woul like ever (sic) preacher and pastor and full-time Christian worker to stand to his feet just a sedcond, Quickly…will you do that? So we can see the crowd that undergirds this preacher and hits the home mission field with me. Thank you for coming you may be seated.

    In every service in our church there’s one some that’s sung, built on the four verses, Habakkuk, Romans, Galatians, Hebrews 10:38. ‘Now the just shal live by faith and anything tha’s not faith is…sin. Without faith it is impossible to please God.’ And tonight the joy of my life is to live by faith. People think you’re crazy. Some know ya’ are. But, uh, Nevertheless… I mean faith has settled every earthly time, ever financial time. I have no hospitialization, I have no Social Security… I have a lot of spiritual security. I have no insurance, I have a lot of assurance. I don’t have any savings, never will have any except in the BIG bank that will never bust… but we sing this song…”

    1. “We take what nobody else will take. We take what no licensed home will take.”

      Kids are “what”s now? Real nice. 😯

      1. The “we take what no licensed home will take” was Roloff’s justification for refusing to apply for licenses or submit to state inspections of his “homes.”

        It was also a false claim. He didn’t keep any children or youths that “no licensed home” would take.

  5. Another interesting tidbit of trivia from Wiki:

    The wreckage of (Roloff’s)crashed airplane is the centerpiece of Roloff Park at Hyles-Anderson College, a Bible College in Crown Point, Indiana, partly named for the pastor Jack Hyles.

    1. Wiki makes it sound like there is some sort of internal IFB conspiracy theory about his plane crash (just based on reading between the lines and how it goes on an on about the odd coincidence that he crashed the same day the AG that “persecuted” him won the election). Anyone have any details?

    2. Here’s the best summary I know of the Roloff saga:

      There was no conspiracy. Roloff insisted on flying his own plane into a major storm. Also, according to a person who used to ride as his passenger, Roloff was a marginally competent pilot at best.

      By the way, in Texas, the office of Governor has very limited powers, which do not include law enforcement. The state Attorney General is much more powerful in matters of civil law. So having one of Roloff’s chief adversaries move from being AG to being governor was not a disaster for Roloff, although Roloff couldn’t have been happy about it.

      1. Makes sense. You just never know, because usually when fundies start emphasizing a “conincidence” involving a public figure, a conspiracy theory is not far behind. 🙄

    3. I attended HAC the year the wreckage was installed in the courtyard. For me, it was macabre reminder of death at that dismal institution called a “college.”

      1. Yeah, forget the man-worship or anything else this implies. What kind of place puts the wreckage of an airplane on display??? How does that look to prospective students – “…and here in our beatiful courtyard, we have the remains of an airplane that someone died in!”

        Bizarre. 😕

        1. But Mag, it wasn’t just SOMEONE who died in that plane. It was JOHN THE BAPTIST. 😯

          “Oooh, said all the little crocodiles.” (Those who read the trippy 80s childrens book will know what I mean.)

        2. “What kind of place puts the wreckage of an airplane on display???”

          Very eerie to say the least, Mag.


      2. Someone once told me they put a plaque on the wreckage with a verse, 2 Kings 2:11, “And Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven.” Anyone know if that was true, or was I having my leg pulled?

        1. I remember there was a plaque. There was a verse or two on it, but I cannot remember what the verses were. The display tripped my creep-o-meter, so I avoided it.

    4. wreckage. Apropos for Hyles Anderson College. It makes wreckage out of people’s lives. It has wrecked the title Baptist in today’s society. It has been the ruin of hundreds of marriages and thousands of young men who may have learned to serve God, but they were trained to run bus routes. Wreckage.

      1. I know, right? I’ve found the term “wreckage” to be so versatile, especially pertaining to destructive people and their sick behaviors, Bob.

  6. This is just a little weird, granted I’m not a child of this particular generation, but reciting those psalms sounded like something evil out of a horror movie. Also, nothing like people singing about joy without ever cracking a smile… wow. I worry what those kids had to endure.

    1. Agreed! There seems to have been this whole style of teaching scripture memory that was based on those weird cadences and odd pacing. I heard many a missionary family get up and have their kids rattle off a passage in much the same manner with the odd rushes and pauses where they didn’t make any sense. I think that reciting the passage that way just goes to show that it is empty words to most of those kids and devoid of meaning.

      1. Glad it wasn’t just me, because I was expecting to hear them say “we are here to eat your children” sometime in this.

    2. Its all about control. Instead of conditioning the mind to make rational, constructive, good decisions. It is about training the mind to deceive, hide. The behavior of the child submits, the heart does not submit.

      1. Yes, and then many of the children are, like me, taught to be hypocrites. And then when you hit your teen years, all of a sudden they flip the switch and start bearing down on you about how you probably aren’t “really saved” because you don’t have the right “heart attitude.”

        I obeyed all the rules but I was never good enough.

        1. “…Taught to be hypocrites…”

          Exactly. It’s been said here many times – being a fundy taught me how to ACT like a good Christian. The heart issue gets completely ignored – it doesn’t matter, as long as you’re good on the outside.

        2. In our circles, the heart wasn’t ignored. It just became another issue to beat us up with though. I remember feeling utterly crushed because no matter how hard I tried on the outside to live up to their standards, if my heart wasn’t “right” (and as a perfectionist I knew I was never fully right), it wouldn’t count before God. The Christian life became an exercise in joyless futility.

          If they wanted to capture our heart for the Lord, they needed to emphasize the Gospel. They needed to show a Jesus who loved us and forgave us and accepted us utterly. But they were scared of that kind of extravagant grace so they emphasized rules and then scolded us for not loving Jesus enough.

        3. PW, thanks for that insight. I know just what it feels like to obey all the rules and yet never feel like I was a good enough Christian for them.

  7. but I would like ever (sic) preacher and pastor and full-time Christian worker to stand to his feet just a sedcond, Quickly…will you do that? So we can see the crowd that undergirds this preacher and hits the home mission field with me.

    That would be a “Crowd” (??) of 1…

    1. Yes, I noticed only one person stood then– at least, the camera only caught one person standing. Probably not the dramatic effect Brother Roloff was hoping for.

  8. I really don’t care for the song “He Didn’t Come Down.” Makes it sound like right up to the last minute of His death, God was still dithering over whether to actually save mankind or not. I don’t like southern gospel songs (or CCM songs for that matter) that add cute nonsense to Bible stories that are rich enough in meaning without the embellishment.

    1. The theology in that song is abysmal.
      The Honeybees sang well, in my opinion, but the songs they were made to sing were execrable.

      And knowing how children and teens in the Roloff gulag were systematically abused, mentally, emotionally, and physically, makes it impossible to watch them without cringing.

      1. When you’re nailed to a cross, it’s very difficult to put your fingers in your ears when the Honeybees start singing. 😈

  9. So, growing up, I was vaguely familiar with Roloff Homes mainly because our pastor idolized him and because one family in our church had worked at the Corpus Christi mothership at one time. But that’s about all I know (besides what the wikipedia article says about all the legal hullaballoo). I would be interested to know more. Was there some sort of big scandal meltdown? Or was is a place of abuse like Hephzibah house?

      1. Oh my God. It is just as bad as I feared. This is so awful.

        [As usual, David Gibbs makes an appearance. I am an attorney and I will tell you that it is a violation of professional ethics rules in most states (don’t know about Texas) to testify before a legislative committee and not disclose who you represent. That man needs to have his licence revoked.]

      2. Dear Don:

        Three words come to mind:

        1] Sick
        2] Sick
        3] Sick

        Wasn’t Jesus’ mission about releasing captives [Lu 4:18]?

        Christian Socialist

        1. Please stop with your Jesus heresy. Jesus was only ONE character among MANY in the Inspired, King James Bible. You ignorant liberlas always twist the King James Bible to mean what you want it to say. Show me a man who tries to cover the truth by pointing to Jesus, and I will show you a liberal or a catholic.

        2. Fundamentalist Forever,

          How can you possibly say that? Its all about Jesus! If it were not for Jesus, we’d all be heading to hell. You are the one example of why the IFB is so screwed up. Jesus is the only ONE. Didnt he say, “I am the way, the truth and the life”?

        3. Fundamentalist Forever,

          How can you possibly say that? Its all about Jesus! If it were not for Jesus, we’d all be heading to hell. You are the one example of why the IFB is so screwed up. Jesus is the only ONE. Didnt he say, “I am the way, the truth and the life”? Oh yeah, John the Baptist said, “I must decrease, and He must increase”

    1. I cannot speak about Rebekah home as we at the Anchor home for boys were seperated from each other, but I will tell you that things that happend out on the Intercostal Waterways and in the Orchards were Brutal…just Brutal…If you think anything otherwise your ignorant or in denial.
      I have spoken to Don on this blog about what has happend there on several occasions in the past, and he is well versed on the things that went on out there.
      Having said that, I believe that Roloff had good intentions, but the staff that he hired “to control the boys” were way out of hand…call it what it is abuse.
      Was it worse than Hephzibah house?
      I dont know
      Was it worse anywhere else?
      Who knows.
      It is what it is Abuse.
      And thats what it was.

      1. Hey John! I know that this stuff is probably painful for you to be reminded of. I hope that by shedding light on it and exposing it for what it was we will save some child, somewhere, from having to live in one of these behavorial modification camps and go through what you and others endured.
        Take care my friend.

      2. John, I absolutely agree that abuse is abuse. For me, personally, I grew up with the same kind of abuse. The only difference was that I got it from my parents rather than some random Christian volunteers. I have thought for a while now that the whole concentration camp model worked so well for the homes for “troubled” kids that a lot of fundie parents started adopting those same methods for use at home.

        1. King and Ford were there when I was at Anchor Home along with Patterson..
          When Olen showed up, things were about to get ugly.
          He was the enforcer there.
          Several times I went to bed with blood in my underware, most of the time for what I considered minor infractions.
          The Carnal sin was speaking of “Old Times” If you were caught, which I was on three occasions, The wrath of Olen was about to come down on you.
          What I never understood, and now a middle aged man, still don’t understand is this..
          We all recieve our salvation from Christ.
          So when Jesus said “Suffer to me all the little children” what do you think he did when they got there…. beat them?
          Also being New Testament Christians, When your children or Wife step out of line, to correct them, you revert back to the Brutality of the Old Testament.
          So how do you seperate the two?
          Again, The Fundies say they hate the Taliban… but they sure like they way they control their women and children.
          The one thing positive that I got from the 2 year ordeal was…
          I will NEVER, and I mean NEVER step foot into a Church ever again.
          Yep, they beat it out of me.
          To Deacon’s Son, I don’t know how to explain it to you other way than I just did. I am sorry that you had to go through what you did with your parents…NO child deserves it.

        2. John 55, thank you for speaking out about your experiences. So many people don’t know what the Roloff gulag was really like.

        3. John, I am so sorry to hear your story. I am sorry to think of all the fat happy Christians who sat smugly in pews and sent money to these homes while internally approving of their abusive practices because many of the donors were engaging in the same practices at home.

          Corporal punishment is not biblical.

        4. More Links regarding Olen King, Mack Ford and the New Bethany Homes abuse.



          This from three New York Times articles in 1984:

          May 30: Olin [Olen] King 40…..wa[s] charged with unlawful neglect of a child and conspiracy to commit unlawful neglect as well as kidnapping, authorities said. The child neglect warrants alleged that the defendants allowed a student to be handcuffed to his bed and beaten with a plastic pipe. “There were six or seven boys we found evidence of corporal punishment being inflicted on them”.

          May 31: Accounts of hunger, isolation and beatings with plastic pipes and wooden sticks emerged today in the investigation of a fundamentalist boarding school who’s operators have been charged with kidnapping and neglect.

          June 2: “They [King/New Bethany] said if they did something wrong, they might spank the boys, but not beat them,” said one mother, Patricia Sexton of Chicago. “They shouldn’t treat people like animals. You don’t take kids and lock them up in a jail cell.”

          Olen King, has moved again and is reportedly operating an unlicensed, unregulated “Ranch” in North Carolina. The King Family Ministries boarding school is located in Danbury, North Carolina and is nicknamed the Second Chance Boys Ranch.

        5. I spanked and was spanked. But what went on there was past spanking. As someone else said, call it what it was, abuse.

      3. John, I’m so sorry for all you had to suffer. Abuse of children is evil, and when it’s done in the name of religion it is unthinkably evil. (((you)))

  10. “There was a man sent from God whose name was…..Brother Roloff” What? He took God’s Word and completely changed it, and thought it appropriate to think Roloff should be likened to John the Baptist? Wow…Man worship indeed.

  11. Those girls look dead inside! There is no expression, no excitement, nothing showing in their eyes at all. A very successful attempt to create zombie automatons! Congratulations, Doctor Roloff! They’re alive (but just barely), they’re alive!

    1. I would suspect they are scared witless of stepping out of line, messing up, or worst of all doing something to displease Roloff and make him look bad.

      1. Exactly. Insecure males like that are über-controlling. As if anything someone else does makes them look bad. They never realize that they do a good job of that on their own. But they think no one knows how evil they are!

    2. Dear cordovan:

      I was thinking the same. It is as if no soul resides in them. Over the years, I have had occasion to look into the eyes of several murderers. One was a serial killer. The vacant look I saw there is the closest thing I’ve seen to these poor girls. If I could say one thing to them, it would be this:


      Christian Socialist

  12. I read the links Don put in about those homes. They have to be some of the saddest stories of abuse I think I’ve ever heard. And all in the name of man worship…

  13. Interesting that 2 of the 1st three great pastors that this pastor mentioned as having preached there were Bob Gray and Jack Hyles

    Maybe he should have waited until after their deaths to praise them, then those 2 would not have made the list!

  14. Of course, great men of God are Pastors and Evangelists that have been through this pulpit over the years….let’s hear some of the names.

    Jack Hyles
    Bob Gray
    Jack Van Impe (!)

    1. All they had to look forward to was a nice Sunday dinner at a churchmember’s home, and then back on the bus to the gulag.

  15. There were 3 things that actually made me angry.

    1. He started his ‘sermon’ off with, “It is OUR desire and it will be done. That almost sounds like something I’d say if I was intentionally going to blaspheme the Lord’s Prayer!

    2. He honors all the paid ‘xian’ workers by having them stand up and say that it is them that undergirds the work of the church. Why are they any better than the people who put in their 40+ hours and then do all the extra volunteer work with their local church? They don’t even get paid for it.

    3. His tactic of ‘not asking for a pledge’ was extremely deceptive and manupulative. “I’ve never asked for a pledge and never will, but it makes me sooooo happy when people do. You’re a great man of God if you lead your people in that direction.” Nope, not asking for money.


  16. I’m not familiar with these homes, so someone please, please tell me that the modern fundy “homes” aren’t as bad as what’s been mentioned in these comments.

    1. I would Love to tell you that these things are not going on today…However, and sadly, you may never know.
      I am in my mid 50’s and the stories of abuse started comming out about 10 years ago.
      Mind you I was 15 years old (40 years have gone by) when this happened and we are just now begining to hear the stories as of late.
      I speak with 2 of the men that were there when I was and we all have a difficult time speaking of it.
      I think men have a harder time talking about these things.
      So to answer your question…
      We may never know.

      1. John55, that breaks my heart to hear your story. Have you ever read the book “Too Small to Ignore” by Wess Stafford? He’s the CEO of Compassion International, an organization that helps children all over the world. He too suffered brutally at a Christian boarding school. It is an amazing story of healing. All the best to you.

    2. Annie Moose, I think it probably still is going on, unfortunately. I was (tangentially) connected to Bill Gothard’s training centers for troubled teens and I know there were allegations of abuse there. And that was in the early 2000s.

      1. My dad was deep into Bill Gothard’s stuff when I was a kid, and as an adult I don’t think I have anything to say about Gothard that isn’t blasphemous, scatalogical, or violent. He gave my dad license (as if he needed more excuse) to abuse us kids and terrorize and verbally abuse our mom. All in the name of his twisted idea of authority.

        Especially awful when you remember that Bill Gothard never married, and lived in the same house with his mother until she died.

  17. Did he say Jack Van Impe? Woah, I never associated him with any of this. Always thought he was just an end times prophecy pundit with Charismatic leanings. Fascinating.

  18. Ron Williams of Hezbollah House patterned his home after Rolloff’s. I think he even met with him for advice on how to set it up.

    They used to make us sing b/c Ron liked to hear “his girls” *shivers with repulsion* sing for him. I remember all of us getting up to sing while just Ron sat in the congregation to watch. He’s such a pig and that’s me holding back. 👿

    1. All roads lead to Rome…

      And in this case “Rome” is in Corpus Christi.

      Funny thing is Corpus Christi means “The body Of Christ.”

  19. Growing up, I never heard of Bro Roloff, but I grew up a long way from Texas. I was in college in the midwest when he died. He was kind of a hero for fighting the state. All we were told (maybe all our church knew) was that he had a successful program, and the state was trying to shut him down.

    When I moved down south, one of the churches I was in supported the Roloff Homes. One or two of the groups came to sing for us; they seemed to do a fine job. I do remember being disturbed that they sang the praises of the Home far more than they sang the praises of Jesus Christ.

    But I’ve really only been on the periphery of the Roloff scandal.

    If he was taking hardened youth (drug abusers, etc), I can see that strict discipline would be needed. American attitudes have changed regarding disciplining of children: we could be spanked in public schools (and often received another at home). People could joke with kids and call them names (affectionately), and no one thought anything about it.

    Abusing a child is a terrible crime, but I think our society may have over-corrected a bit.

    Now, everyone is afraid to touch a child for any reason (hugs are sexual abuse; spanking is considered abuse); harsh language is called “emotional abuse”, and even joking around with kids is dangerous. Some children use this leverage on parents and teachers: “give me or else I’ll tell people you abused me”.

    1. Guilt Ridden
      I am gonna be nice about this because of this forum

      You have NO idea what you’re talking about.
      Three weeks ago I saw a stand in Dr. at my regular Doctor’s office and during a routine physical she asked me “What are these scars on your back?”
      I told here its where I was corrected as a young man.
      I did not have the heart to go into it with her, or tell her the story.
      When you are struck with a 2 foot long leather strap it tears the skin and leaves whelts and scars.
      This happened to me in the orchards off highway 665 40 years ago.
      I needed stiches in a couple of places so they took me back to the home early that day..laid me on my stomach and proceeded to pour alcohol on these wounds to “clean me up.” Mind you I had to be back in the orchards picking the next day.
      This is not being corrected, disiplined, or being spanked.

      This is Beatings..

      To compare your “spankings” to this is like comparing a dissagreement with your wife,
      to Vietnam.

      1. I am cheerfully willing to admit that I don’t know what I’m talking about; as I said, I was on the periphery of anything to do with Lester Roloff.

        We were told that he had a 95% success rate, as opposed to the state’s 50% success rate.

        Strict discipline is OK (no magazines/radio/television is not abuse in my book); abuse is NOT ok. I get that you were abused, and that is not OK. I get the impression from your story that this was after Roloff died, so is blaming him for what wrong men did in his name fair??

        1. Lester Roloff died on November 2, 1982.
          40 years before now would have been in 1972, when Roloff was near the peak of his popularity and power. Roloff was fully in charge of his operations, including the day-to-day details of operation, in 1972.

        2. I agree with the math, but earlier, he posted “off hwy 665”, which isn’t a state highway in Texas (that I know of)… it seems to be in Ohio or Louisianna. Earlier, he spoke of Jack Patterson and others, so it may be that his experiences took place after Roloff’s death when the Anchor Home was moved.

        3. I’ve actually driven on that road, which runs from Alice to Corpus Christi, so I can attest that it is, in fact, in Texas.

        4. I was looking for a highway, not a FM road. I believe you — just thought that you were talking about a later experience.

          Thanks for the clarification.

          I’m appalled at what they did in the name of helping children and in the name of Christ.

        5. John55: I don’t mind admitting my ignorance of Bro Roloff – I do thank you for posting your story here.

      2. Beatings are not spankings. It’s an error to even make an analogy between them.

        Nor is locking a girl in a cell for days at a time (something that was done in the Roloff “homes”) comparable to putting a child in “time out.” I could go on, but you can read the reports for yourself if you want more details.

        1. I agree, Big G. However, the difference between a “beating” and a “spanking” often confronts one with a classic Sorites Paradox. How hard and how many is ok and how hard and how many is not ok? It’s the classic problem that proponents of “Christian” discipline have yet to address.

          My whole life I was told that I was not being abused because I “only” got “spanked” with certain objects in certain ways and only certain numbers of times (often 20, 30, 40 plus). I’ve said it on here before, but my abusive mother would say, “well, I don’t whip you with electric cords” as if that made it okay.

          And just for the record, I don’t find the “doing it in love is OK” argument to be persuasive at all. Not once in my entire life growing up in the homeschool community did I EVER see a single parent use corporal punishment in a “loving” manner. 😥

        2. I’m not in favor of hitting children for any reason, and especially not with weapons (belts, cords, boards, paddles, etc.).

          But I still don’t think spanking (with a hand) is the same thing as a beating. It’s just not the same thing.

  20. These videos are so weird to watch. The honeybees all look so dead inside. It is scary and sad that no one caught this or was able to help them. These people have so much to overcome because of the name of Christ. That is shame.

    1. Had those girls not gone to Roloff’s home they would most likely would have been dead literally, in a gutter somewhere drunk, on drugs or a prostitute. You are so clueless, it’s pathetic.

        1. TKS how do you know these girls didn’t go back to their destructive lifestyle as a result of their mistreatment?
          I worked in a Christian rehab, there is a need for some restrictions on outside contact at first but not treating people like slaves.

      1. Replacing one evil with another is never justifiable. Particularly when some man has the unmitigated gall to stand up and claim he’s doing his evil deeds in the name of God. That’s both obscene and blasphemous.

  21. I thought the Honeybees sang beautifully, but I also think that formerHACgirl is right: they look so dead inside. There’s no joy shining in their eyes, whether or not “He Didn’t Come Down”. I was going to watch the whole thing, but turned the video right off when the introductory speaker compared “Brother Roloff” to John the Baptist. That made me sick enough to bring this “dog and pony show” to a halt.

    What arrogance!

    1. Actually, I was a bit put off by their singing. It was all tight, perfect harmonies, with no sense of pacing, no sense of what the words were that they were saying. It reminded me of video of captives forces to record a greeting and say that they are all right and being treated well. In fact, that is EXACTLY the feeling I get from their singing.

  22. I heard Roloff preach once. The only part of the “sermon” I remember is him talking about wiping his nose on his sleeve and how it would dry and be crackly. Weird. It’s hard to believe anyone can abuse children the way he did – and use the Bible to justify it.

  23. Love the old school glasses. These gals look like the gals Hyles was trying to auction off on the video “Jack Hyles Dating Game”. Look it up on YouTube and yes Roloff was a Hyles comrad and every year at Pastors school he would say “You so called fundamental pastors need to be more like me and Lester Roloff and forget about Bob Schuller and Paul Crouch.”

  24. I was also struck, when watching the close-ups of the young ladies singing, of how vacant and/or haunted the expressions were. I don’t know if they were scared to sing, or afraid of messing up.

    1. I think it’s safe to say that they were afraid of severe punishment if they slipped up, not just in singing, but in any part of the act Roloff was exhibiting.

    2. I’m sure you’re right; I don’t remember the group that I saw in, oh, about 1986 being like that… they were fairly outgoing. In fact, we put up a couple of them at our house (pre-children days, when we had room!). They impressed me as decent Christian young women.

  25. I can’t watch the whole thing. I just can’t. It makes my guts squirm. Lester Roloff was a LIAR! Just like Mack Ford is STILL a liar!

  26. One thing that’s interesting about this is that I was part of the Dog and Pony Show for my Christian (non-fundie) college and we felt the same sense of squirming anguish every time we were called on to serve as free advertising at “events.” Just because we liked to sing. Not my favorite part and one reason I left there after two years. Even the non-fundie Christian colleges use music designed to worship God for marketing purposes way too much!

  27. I prayed earlier today, and I truly meant it, that Roloff and others complicit in these sins repented before the end, that they saw what they’d done and sought forgiveness from God. But if they did not… it is a comforting reminder that God has justice in the end. Perhaps I shouldn’t wish this on them, and again, I do pray that they turned from their evil ways before the end (and hey, it’s possible! Look at Paul!). But… even if they escaped judgment in life, they won’t in death. God wins in the end, every time.

    I don’t know if I can truly say there is a “worst” sin, but one in the running has got to be someone who commits terrible sins while claiming to be acting for God. That is just so obscene to my mind.

    1. I do believe the common saying that people should and will ultimately be judged not by how they treated the powerful and those otherwise in a position to benefit them, but how they treated the most powerless.

      Roloff put himself in a position of control over young people who were almost completely powerless, and used his position to treat them in unspeakably cruel ways.

  28. These “homes” are just creepy. There was a group from upper Michigan that would come to our school every year to sing and do the bible chanting thing. Turns out the guy running it was sleeping with the girls.
    A kid I grew up with got sent to one in Ohio because his parents couldn’t control him (I think he was ADD). I remember the stories he told scared me to death.
    My HAC college roommate went to agape boarding school. He was really quiet. I honestly dont remember having a conversation with him that whole year.
    My parent threatened to send me away to a home when I was in high school. I guess in that respect the homes worked.

  29. sa·dism (sdzm, sdz-)
    1. The deriving of sexual gratification or the tendency to derive sexual gratification from inflicting pain or emotional abuse on others.
    2. The deriving of pleasure, or the tendency to derive pleasure, from cruelty.
    3. Extreme cruelty.

    1. That’s a good question.
      It’s the same singing group, the Honeybee Quartet, but I don’t know if it is the same individual girls.
      The information on the YouTube age says this performance was in 1979. The fatal plane crash was in November 1982. So it could have been different singers by then … or not.

  30. I was always baffled by Roloff when he came to visit our ultrafundie church when I was a kid. He made no effort to hide the “sinful wickedness” of these girls before he got “aholt” of them. Then he would proclaim how they were each going to marry “PREACHERS!” (as they would yell in unison). I sat there at 15 years of age, with a desire to be a preacher, thinking “But I’m supposed to be wanting a VIRGIN!…cross these cheap Ho’s off my list” Years later I compromised and became a pimp.

    Not really, I write Christian books and cite Brennan Manning as my favorite Christian author, which causes many of my old fundie pals to pray for my soul.

  31. I wonder how many of these poor waifs carved swastikas in their foreheads with bottle caps and dreamed of Charlie….err Lester being their Daddy.

    1. He’d be 98 now.

      Maybe that’s why God gives us limited lifespans– to limit the amount of damage any one person can do.

  32. A childhood friend was sent to one of these ‘correctional facilities.’ I saw her when she got out of it; we were both about I guess, fifteen or so.

    She was different than I remember her. She used to be loud, opinionated, and bright. She came back… muted. I don’t really know how else to describe it.

    She linked once on Fbook to this site

    And then it all made sense.

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