True Crime

Broken Faith by Mitch Weiss and Holbrook Mohr

Check out if you enjoy writings on religious cults,
exposés on renowned public figures, and survivor stories.

The People’s Temple. Heaven’s Gate. The Branch Davidians. The Manson family. If any one of these sound familiar to you, you might have already dipped your toes in learning about some of the various religious cults that have risen and fallen, in mostly horrific fashion, in the latter half of the 20th century. It might surprise you that there are similar cults that exist even today.Broken Faith sheds some light on one of these, the Word of Faith Fellowship.

I picked up this book because I had read the AP articles that had come out and was horrified about some of the experiences described therein by ex-members. Disclosure: The Word of Faith Fellowship vehemently denies accusations of it being a cult and any accusations of abuse.

Led by Jane Whaley, this group began as a small following in the 1980’s and quickly expanded, reaching to places such as Brazil and Ghana. The book is written like a novel, and describes accusations of abuse as far back as the 90’s. The church uses a form of “strong prayer” called blasting. This is essentially exorcising someone’s “demons” by sitting the person down and screaming prayer in their face. Sometimes that is not enough to get those demons out and they must resort to physical violence to rid the person of their sin, real or perceived by Mrs. Whaley. This seems to have only escalated over time as more and more former members are coming forward to describe the various cruelties brought down upon them by an oppressive, domineering, and altogether shady organization. I’ll spare you the details, but if you’d like to know more, pick up Broken Faith today at your library.