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DoYouEverWonder Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-18-05 07:49 AM
Original message
The End Timers thrive in Lake City
but what goes on behind their walls and fences is not always so pretty

Apr 17, 2005

LAKE CITY, Fla. (AP) -- Of late, Judy Ayers had been on edge. She'd noticed some peculiar things around her neighborhood: armed sentinels watching motorists through binoculars; brown-suited men fixing up homes into the wee hours.

She had tried to shrug these things off as eccentricities, coincidences. But then, while driving into town one fall afternoon in 1987, she spotted her 21-year-old son, Eric, cornered in an Amoco lot by two angry men in khaki jumpsuits.

Ayers swung her car to a stop. She yelled: "What's going on here?"

One of the men snapped back: Eric had been trespassing.

Eric, pallid as scraped bone, spoke up. All he'd done, he said, was take a picture of the house of Charles Meade, the leader of a doomsday sect whose followers had been moving into Lake City in increasing numbers.

more...

http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/F/FL_THY_KINGDOM_C...


Nice to see someone exposing this cult that have bascially taken over Lake City, FL. Lot's more info in the article. This is one scary group of folks.




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DoYouEverWonder Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-18-05 07:51 AM
Response to Original message
1. Just found part one of this series of reports
Meade, the self-styled prophet: a man cloaked in lore and mystery

Apr 17, 2005

Lore and legend have long swirled around Charles Meade.

What little he has said publicly about his life is posted on his ministry's Web site. (The Internet, once branded an instrument of Satan, was accepted once Meade's End Time Ministry found it useful for recruiting new members.)

The Web site says he was born "near" Paintsville, Ky., in 1916, the twelfth of 15 children. "The Lord," it states, "appeared to his mother before he was born and told her that the child she was expecting would be mightily used of the Lord in a great end time ministry unlike any other."

It goes on to add that Meade spent four years on the front lines during World War II, was "seriously injured during several invasions," and left the U.S. Army as a highly decorated veteran.

In 1967, "the mighty hand of God reached down and performed a complete and total healing miracle on a dying man," the Web site states. This miracle "resulted in a divine health that has enabled him to actively and vigorously lead the congregation all through the years right to the present hour."

more...

http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/F/FL_THY_KINGDOM_C...

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hlthe2b Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-18-05 08:05 AM
Response to Reply #1
3. this isn't the cult that sent some followers to Israel for the millenium
"end of the world," was it (year 2k)?
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pnorman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-18-05 08:11 AM
Response to Reply #1
4. Here's another news item:
Edited on Mon Apr-18-05 12:16 PM by Skinner
Part I: A Self-Styled Prophet, a Legion of Followers, and a 'Promised Land' in Florida

By Todd Lewan The Associated Press
Published: Apr 16, 2005

Advertisement

Click here.
LAKE CITY, Fla. (AP) - In the beginning, there was an elderly widow who owned a modest brick house in the most heavenly part of town. One year she decided to put her "home place" on the market, and along came a dapper gentleman and his adoring wife, cash in hand.

The gentleman, who was 67, must have been a preacher, it was rumored, for he often could be seen strolling about his new yard in a funereal suit and necktie, even on the muggiest of summer days, with a countenance of serenity and beneficence that could belong only to a servant of the Lord.

But there was something disquieting about this man, too, something inexplicable that made his neighbors uneasy whenever he greeted them by politely touching the brim of his fedora.

By every measure, the old man and his wife were model citizens. They were early risers. They didn't cuss, drink, smoke, pry or gossip. They drove a gleaming, burgundy Cadillac (with gilded trim and hubcaps).

EDITED BY ADMIN: COPYRIGHT
>
>
http://ap.tbo.com/ap/florida/MGBWMV5XL7E.html

pnorman
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soup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-18-05 08:29 AM
Response to Reply #4
7. thanks, pnorman.
This is the article I read (Saturday? yesterday?). Scared the daylights out of me.

>>Although the people of Lake City didn't realize it, what was happening to their town had happened before and would again: a religious sect migrating to a small community and reshaping its economy and its way of life.

It has happened in Schell City, Mo., with the Church of Israel; in Spindale, N.C., with the Word of Faith Fellowship; in Hildale, Utah, with the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints; in Abilene, Texas, with the House of Yahweh; in Bellevue, Wash., with the Life Tabernacle Church; in Grants Pass, Ore., with the Foundation of Human Understanding; in Attleboro, Mass., with The Body.

In each case, the outsiders were able to exert influence through hard work, ingenuity, a bit of intimidation, and lots of money, says Steven Hassan, the author of two books on controversial sects - what he calls "destructive cults."

"The pattern is for the leaders of these sects to move their followers all at once into areas that are sparsely populated, low-income, on hard times," Hassan says. "Then they buy up real estate or cottage industries on the cheap, making them power players in that county overnight." <<

---

Seems several papers have picked this up. Wonder why.
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pnorman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-18-05 09:14 AM
Response to Reply #7
11. Here's another excerpt:
>
>
In each case, the outsiders were able to exert influence through hard work, ingenuity, a bit of intimidation, and lots of money, says Steven Hassan, the author of two books on controversial sects - what he calls "destructive cults."

"The pattern is for the leaders of these sects to move their followers all at once into areas that are sparsely populated, low-income, on hard times," Hassan says. "Then they buy up real estate or cottage industries on the cheap, making them power players in that county overnight."

Since the Internal Revenue Service classifies them as non-profits, member donations are tax-exempt, he says. So it doesn't take them long to accumulate millions, and the leader can use his followers' money as he or she wishes.
>
>

In another DU discussion, I had expressed (limited) support for retaining tax-emption for "religious organizations". Clearly, that has been abused by so many in last year's election, that it's CRYING for redress. Here's another clear abuse that needs some exposure.

pnorman
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PsN2Wind Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-18-05 10:45 AM
Response to Reply #7
13. Different religion, same scam
The Bagwhan Shree Rajneesh in Oregon.
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DoYouEverWonder Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-18-05 08:49 AM
Response to Reply #4
9. Thanks, for Part 1
I had only found Part 2.

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Moderator DU Moderator Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-18-05 10:26 AM
Response to Reply #4
12. pnorman
Per DU copyright rules
please post only four
paragraphs from the
copyrighted news source.


Thank you.



DU Moderator
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pnorman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-20-05 03:01 AM
Response to Reply #12
16. I guess that means cumulative in a given thread, for one person.
It makes sense, but I got drawn into the spirit of the discussion, and didn't think it out. My bad. I'll watch it a little closer next time.

pnorman
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rockedthevoteinMA Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-18-05 07:59 AM
Response to Original message
2. That's a freaky story... I can't believe this crap goes on in this
day and age. :scared:
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Spider Jerusalem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-18-05 08:16 AM
Response to Original message
5. Popular for cults to take over towns in Florida, it sounds like.
Edited on Mon Apr-18-05 08:16 AM by Spider Jerusalem
How far is Lake City from Clearwater? Maybe these guys could hook up with the Scientologists and learn how to turn their insanity into a revenue source.
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DoYouEverWonder Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-18-05 08:22 AM
Response to Reply #5
6. Both groups appear to be doing well enough already
from a financial POV, thank you.

In answer to your question, Clearwater is down by Tampa and Lake City is north of Gainesville, near the GA border. However, I am sure there are a lot more cults in between that you could chain together. Thank god I live in a liberal oasis. Jeb rarely dares to step foot in my county.

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leftchick Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-18-05 08:41 AM
Response to Reply #5
8. not too far from the cult in Tallahassee
I used to work in Clearwater and it was bizarro world with the Scientologists all over the place. I even saw Lisa Marie Presley in a restaurant with her kids. This was about 12 years ago or so and I have since moved out of thew state. I can only imagine how weird it is now.
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ck4829 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-18-05 08:51 AM
Response to Original message
10. I've overheard some people talking a couple of weeks ago
This one guy was talking about how his Christian friends were up in the mountains preparing for the End Times.

I guess the mountains must be full.
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PaDUer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-21-05 12:04 AM
Response to Reply #10
27. What's up in the mountains
for the end times? Do they crawl into caves to be saved or what? Would you please explain that to me..
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soup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Apr-19-05 06:19 AM
Response to Original message
14. Part III - An unassailable house of worship
Edited on Tue Apr-19-05 06:24 AM by soup
and incessant demands for money

By TODD LEWAN
AP National Writer

April 19, 2005

It had to be the shrine of shrines, the temple of all temples. It had to be majestic, inspiring, enchanting.

Most of all, it had to be colossal - a house of worship befitting a prophet who had walked with God along the Milky Way. No expense, no sacrifice, would be too great for this monument to the preacher who had proclaimed Lake City the Promised Land.

And so it was that in 1996, in a field where cows once grazed off County Road 240, the spiritual headquarters for End Time Ministry began to rise.
>snip<


---
on edit: AACK! hit 'post' in error.
Here's the link for those following this series:
http://www.tuscaloosanews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID...
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soup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Apr-19-05 09:45 AM
Response to Reply #14
15. and yet another article today on the End Timers in Lake City -
Edited on Tue Apr-19-05 09:47 AM by soup
Don't know if this is part of a series, or a stand-alone article - or why so many of these are popping up recently (maybe I just didn't pay much attention before?) - but, anyway, here it is:

Apr 19, 8:28 AM EDT

A 'promised land' made prosperous _ yet suspicious, divided

By TODD LEWAN
AP National Writer

LAKE CITY, Fla. (AP) -- Until a few years ago, it wasn't hard to identify an End Time family on the checkout line of the local Publix, or in the aisles of the Wal-Mart on Route 90.

The men invariably wore suits and ties; the women appeared in drab, ankle-length dresses and black, low-heeled shoes; their toddlers, obedient and withdrawn, followed their parents about in single file like a troupe of ducks.

Slowly, though, townies began to notice changes in the End Timers' appearance.

It was something of a shock at first. End Time women started to appear in public with glossed, pink, rosy, ruby lips. Not long thereafter, they took to applying eyeliner, mascara, even rouge. At the same time, bubble gum began finding its way into their little boys' mouths and nail polish began to sparkle on the fingertips of their teenage girls.
http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/F/FL_THY_KINGDOM_C...

on edit: it seems to be related to the original post article.
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LatePeriduct Donating Member (660 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-20-05 03:10 AM
Response to Original message
17. This is truth. They are all not to be taken lightly.
I've overheard their conversations in libraries, colleges, city sidewalks.

It's an entire epidemic. They talk about the rapture, Jesus returning to the world and ending plurality.

It is like the finders cults who were involved in the Jeff Gannon days with MK-ULTRA.....It is a very disturbing and unrelenting focus.

Every one of them has an underlying motive regardless of who's religion they claim is their own, and that motive, dominionism is one of the most dangerous.

Pope John Paul II said Bush may be the anti-christ in an interview somewhere. Very precarious. He does claim himself, that god speaks to him.

A corrupt fascist ideal colored in hoodwinked religion, dominionists can be very dangerous. It depends on if you engage them or agree with them.

http://www.yuricareport.com
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DoYouEverWonder Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-20-05 05:45 AM
Response to Original message
18. Here's Part IV
Apr 20, 12:04 AM EDT

Part IV: A 'promised land' made prosperous _ yet suspicious and divided

By TODD LEWAN
AP National Writer

LAKE CITY, Fla. (AP) -- Until a few years ago, it wasn't hard to identify an End Time family on the checkout line of the local Publix, or in the aisles of the Wal-Mart on Route 90.

The men invariably wore suits and ties; the women appeared in drab, ankle-length dresses and black, low-heeled shoes; their toddlers, obedient and withdrawn, followed their parents about in single file like a troupe of ducks.

Slowly, though, townies began to notice changes in the End Timers' appearance.

It was something of a shock at first. End Time women started to appear in public with glossed, pink, rosy, ruby lips. Not long thereafter, they took to applying eyeliner, mascara, even rouge. At the same time, bubble gum began finding its way into their little boys' mouths and nail polish began to sparkle on the fingertips of their teenage girls.

http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/F/FL_THY_KINGDOM_C...

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leftchick Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-20-05 06:01 AM
Response to Reply #18
20. All now regisitered repukes and well armed too!
Very interesting series DYEW. So these folks are never bothered by the local law either? Scary shit. I feel so bad for the parents who have lost their children to this cult.


~snip~

Evelyn Little, 76, wonders about the nature of this blessing. The retired schoolteacher still lives in Southwood Acres, one of the few natives remaining in a subdivision now populated almost entirely by End Timers.

As darkness settles over the neighborhood, it is not unusual for the stillness to be punctuated by loud cracks. Sometimes it's just a gunshot or two, Little says. Other times, the firing comes in bursts.

"They wait 'til just about dark, and then the guns start going off in their yards," she says. "Carl here, he knows guns, and he thinks they got automatics."

Her husband, a retired veteran of 77, nods. "You can't pull a trigger as fast as they do unless you're using an automatic," he says. "Now, if that's what they've got, well, what the heck do they need weapons like that for?" (According to Lorraine Heser, whose son is a member of the sect, End Time women train with guns to protect their homes.)

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arwalden Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-20-05 05:52 AM
Response to Original message
19. You'll Recall That Lake City Is The Home Of That Two-Headed Kitten...
... there must be something in the drinking water, or some sort of high-octane fumes there that's having an effect on living things there.
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soup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-20-05 06:30 AM
Response to Reply #19
21. re: having an effect on living things there
:(
Warning - Cover your beautiful puppy's eyes so he/she doesn't read this one-

From Part 1, upthread:

>snip<
And nobody ever saw an End Timer with a pet. (Animals, even pictures of animals, harbored demons, Meade told his followers.)
>snip<

Then, one morning in 1989, a stray dog was found in a trash bin, headless.

In the weeks following, several other canines turned up in people's yards, stiff as logs. Poisoned, several residents, including Judy Ayers and her daughter, Laurie, said. Sandra Smith, who had spoken out in the local media against the End Timers, said she walked out her front door one morning to see her five kittens beheaded on the walkway.

Complaints were filed at the sheriff's office, residents said, but no one was arrested. (Records of complaints are routinely destroyed after five years, local officials said.)
http://ap.tbo.com/ap/florida/MGBWMV5XL7E.html
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soup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-20-05 07:11 AM
Response to Original message
22. Links for further reading
A database of information about cults, destructive cults, controversial groups and movements. The Rick A. Ross Institute of New Jersey (RRI) is a nonprofit public resource with a vast archive that contains thousands of individual documents. RRI on-line files include news stories, research papers, reports, court documents, book excerpts, personal testimonies and hundreds of links to additional relevant resources. This database is well-organized for easy access and reference.
http://www.rickross.com /

-

There's a link on the site to the Cult News Network:

The Cult News Network is a daily listing of interesting links about cults, controversial groups and ideological movements. Links are submitted by the general public, and the most interesting submissions are selected to appear on the home page by a site administrator.

The purpose of the Network is twofold: First, it provides a resource for people interested in controversial groups. News searches such as Google News are terrific sources of current cult informaiton, but by nature are limited to newspapers and other common journalism sources. The Cult News Network receives submissions from countless sharp-eyed Internet users all over the world, casting a wider net than general news services and spotlighting overlooked, hard-to-find information.
http://cultnews.net /

-

Thanks for this thread, DoYouEverWonder. Fascinating, frightening stuff. Doesn't appear to be just one little group of 'kooks' that can be disregarded.
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readmoreoften Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-20-05 07:12 AM
Response to Reply #22
23. God, I could read about this cult all day! n/t
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icymist Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-20-05 10:57 PM
Response to Original message
24. Oh my! Everyone wants to be the one with 'the scoop' on the end!
What in the world makes people insane like this?
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smirkymonkey Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-20-05 11:25 PM
Response to Original message
25. What's the matter with Florida?
The place is a hotbed of wackos of every stripe. Seriously.
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icymist Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-20-05 11:55 PM
Response to Reply #25
26. Wacko enough to get B*$h elected!
Or maybe an overdose of chemtrail?
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