Friday, June 15, 2012
It has been one year and six months since my husband, myself, and our immediate family have left the Rock Church of Montgomery, AL, and I am impressed to post this scripture concerning the furthering of any additional investigation or posting on any additional information which involves the Rock of Montgomery. I will, however, leave the original blogs posted, as I have no conviction in expressing the God known TRUTH of the grave issues within the Rock's organizational religion. Simply put, I am following my conviction, seeking the Father for my spiritual standing in Him, and I am NOT in charge of this war... He is. Our Father has the ability to convict those who are doing wrong, and He is so merciful, no matter how often we fail to heed His voice, He will continue trying until our dying day. With that being said, I am releasing the Rock leadership into the Father's hands and choosing to forgive all wrongs committed against my family during our twenty year stay. I rest in knowing this is not my battle, God knows the TRUTH of this entire situation, and because we are not greater than Him, we cannot hide the truth from His eyes... He knows. Throughout this lifetime, I have had MANY personal failures, and through my willingness to be honest with my Heavenly Father (2 Corinthians 3:18), He has brought immense healing into my life. I have not reached perfection, I still make mistakes, but I am growing through my willingness to be obedient to His call. He is not a respecter of persons (Acts 10:34-35), He shows no partiality, so what He is willing to do for one He is also willing to do for all, we simply have to be willing to listen.
Romans 2 says, "You, therefore, have no excuse, you who pass judgment on someone else, for at whatever point you judge another, you are condemning yourself, because you who pass judgment do the same things. Now we know that God’s judgment against those who do such things is based on truth. So when you, a mere human being, pass judgment on them and yet do the same things, do you think you will escape God’s judgment? Or do you show contempt for the riches of his kindness, forbearance and patience, not realizing that God’s kindness is intended to lead you to repentance?
But because of your stubbornness and your unrepentant heart, you are storing up wrath against yourself for the day of God’s wrath , when his righteous judgment will be revealed. God “will repay each person according to what they have done.” To those who by persistence in doing good seek glory, honor and immortality, he will give eternal life. But for those who are self-seeking and who reject the truth and follow evil, there will be wrath and anger. There will be trouble and distress for every human being who does evil: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile; but glory, honor and peace for everyone who does good: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile. For God does not show favoritism."
With this being said, I am now removing myself from any further involvement in pursuing what only God Himself can complete.
With all sincerity of heart to all parties involved, and in true love (the Father's love) for all human kind,
Deanna "Hope" Guest
Sunday, June 5, 2011
The Rock School requested my return as teacher in November 2006. They were in need of a
Kindergarten Teacher, as the person they had hired for this position had decided to resign. For the 2007/2008 school year I taught K-4. For the 2008/2009 school year I taught Third Grade. Upon the beginning of the 2009/2010 school year, I was requested to be the Head Teacher of the Kindergarten, First, and Second Grade classes, being told that I was one of the better teachers they had. I gladly accepted this promotion of title, and continued, also, as Third Grade Teacher. However, during the 2009/2010 school year, I had one of Nelson Cash's grandchildren in my classroom. During this school year, on two separate occasions, the granddaughter made below average grades on two separate tests. These grades would have prevented her from making A-B Honor Roll. On the first occasion, I was informed to re-teach the curriculum, and offer the test again to the entire class, counting the highest grade made. On the second occasion, I was informed to cancel out the lowest grade of each of the students in that particular subject. On both occasions, I notated the Grade Book, in large red writing, of the Principle's order. I was also informed that I was at fault for the below average grade, and that I needed to find new ways to help the students relate to the curriculum. At the closing of the school year, I was informed that both the Principle (Nelson's daughter) and the Dean (Nelson's wife) felt that my lack of ability as a teacher during the school year of 2009/2010 was due to my own lack of focus. There was another occasion during the 2009/2010 school year that I was called into a conference by both the Principle and the Dean, as they thought the disciplinary measures I used were too strict for the Third Grade Students. However, I brought The Rock School Teacher Manuel into the meeting in order to show them that I was simply following the Teacher Manuel's Rules, and that in the contract I signed on August 6, 2009 under Support of School, one of the statements clearly stated I should abide by all policies of that manual, "By signing this contract, I accept to abide by all policies set forth herein and in the Employee Handbook for the duration of my employment with The Rock School." This meeting came about because I had issued sentences to their granddaughter for talking excessively in class, yet while in class she decided to color on color sheets she had brought from home instead, so I sent the sentences home for homework along with a note that stated why she would have to complete them for homework. The Rock School Teacher Manuel stated, for this age group, that sentences could be issued after the third warning. After pointing this section out to the Dean during this conference, I was informed that these rules were merely guidelines, but that I could offer grace where necessary. The Dean then told the Principle to write that in my Teacher Manuel.
Unfortunately, I have not been the only teacher who has had to deal with the family inconsistencies of The Rock School. When this very same grandchild was in Kindergarten, she told her grandfather (Nelson Cash) that a little boy in her class was saying ugly things to her and picking on her. Nelson Cash himself addressed this young Kindergarten boy in the Kindergarten class one day telling him that he better stop picking on his granddaughter. On another occasion, another grandchild of Nelson Cash's was not returning her reading homework to school signed. The teacher gave grace to the child, but then sent a note home to the mother telling her that, if she continued returning the reading form unsigned, she would have to issue her a zero. The mother returned a letter the next day stating that her daughter reads all of the time and does not deserve a zero. And, yet another instance, when the Jr. High students were being made to walk laps around the field as a disciplinary measure offered by the school coach. Another one of Nelson's grandchildren, while passing through the hall, expressed to me her anger of having to walk and stated she was going to the office to tell her mother. Needless to say, the coach was told to not use that measure of discipline, and the students were not made to walk.
For the school year of 2010/2011, in order to pay my portion of my two children's tuition to The Rock School, I had agreed to clean the lunchroom every day between 12:30-2:30. After leaving the congregation of The Rock Church in January, I had planned to continue doing so, as my children were still in school there, and I would complete what I had promised. However, on Tuesday, January 18, 2011, after beginning my daily routine of cleaning the lunchroom, Nelson Cash's wife approached me with a piece of paper, and stated she had heard that we had left the church. I informed her we had left the congregation but we were still in the church. She proceeded to tell me that when the children were enrolled in the school at the beginning of the school year, they had given us a lower tuition rate because we were members of The Rock Church. She then added that because we were no longer members of The Rock Church, I now owed her $150 more, and there would be no more clocking in/out. Instead, I would have to go through the office as a visitor before entering The Rock School premises. At that point, I felt a burden had been lifted off of me, and I smiled at her saying, "I'm done." I placed the broom against the wall, and calmly exited the side door, walked through the under-eve walkway which entered the school, through the school hall way, and into the school office where I requested my children be called to the office for check out. The entire way, Nelson's wife followed after me speaking words she had hoped would anger me. After calling my children to check out, I waited in the hall by the school office for them. Nelson's wife stood there making snide comments toward me the entire duration. Including informing all who were in ear's standing, which included the 11th grade class whose door was closed, that I was apparently a mother who cursed at her children and kicked them out of my home, and that I was also a husband beater. I responded by informing her that she was misinformed. At this point, my 9 year old son had arrived at the office, and once she noticed he was standing there, she stated she was not going to argue in front of a child, so I told her to stop arguing then and grow up. She then proceeded to tell me that I "need help", which is when I walked outside to await for my 16 year old son. Needless to say, she followed me out there too. After informing my mother (who still remains in that congregation) of what had just happened, I received this email from Nelson's wife, "You lied again I did not say anything about going up on your tuition that paper I was trying to give you was showing you how much of your tuition you had worked off. The only changed I was telling you I was making was checking in with the office when you got there and checking out when you left instead of a time card. So stop your lies!" In which I responded, "May our Father convict your heart in the lies you and your family are telling others. If you do not stop attacking my family, and if you choose to continue with this nonsense, I will expose your husband in his own personal sin, which I have emails to prove as well as text messages forwarded to emails. You may have everyone else fooled who remains in The Rock Church, which are few, but God knows all things. God KNOWS ALL THINGS! Indeed, you did inform me that I owed you $150. If you, as a believer, truly believed that someone has fallen away, as a child of God, you would want to love and nurture the lost person back into Kingdom health. What YOU presented me with yesterday was an attempt to stab what "you feel" is a lost soul. I am doing as I've been instructed by my Father. May God bless you, and you and yours will forever remain in my prayers. (Luke 6:28) Do not contact or attempt to contact myself or any member of my family anymore." After removing my children from The Rock School, I quickly realized that they are not accredited by the public school standard, and my 16 year old was required to test in to the public school system, but was not able to transfer his credits. This could have caused him being placed into the 9th Grade. We had to begin home schooling him to assure that he would graduate on time. This also happened to another young lady in his class. She actually did end up back in the 9th Grade. Fortunately, her school offers credit recovery, so she will be back in the 11th Grade for year 2011/2012.
Tuesday, May 17, 2011
Please review the checklist taken from Janja Lalich, Ph.D & Michael D. Langone, Ph.D and can be found at: http://www.csj.org/infoserv_cult101/checklis.htm
In my experience, the Rock of Montgomery meets every one of these criteria:
- The group displays excessively zealous and unquestioning commitment to its leader and (whether he is alive or dead) regards his belief system, ideology, and practices as the Truth, as law. For instance, though odd behaviors are noticed by members of the congregation, they will deny what is seen and believe what is told. Here is a statement made by the pastor's son-in-law via email which aligns perfectly with the above mentioned behavior. "I am not saying anyone is right or wrong- I'm saying it doesn't matter. I have been angry and in disagreement with things so many times I can't count them. But I know Yahweh placed me here, and as long as the pastor of any church is not living blatantly in sin and distorting the truth, I will not move until the Father tells me to."
3. Mind-altering practices (such as meditation, chanting, speaking in tongues, denunciation sessions, and debilitating work routines) are used in excess and serve to suppress doubts about the group and its leader(s).
4. The leadership dictates, sometimes in great detail, how members should think, act, and feel (for example, members must get permission to date, change jobs, marry—or leaders prescribe what types of clothes to wear, where to live, whether or not to have children, how to discipline children, and so forth). Everything must go through the pastor, EVERYTHING. This is called "seeking wise counsel" or getting a "spiritual check-up." Those who had not arranged an appointment to meet with him in his office were of "concern."
5. The group is elitist, claiming a special, exalted status for itself, its leader(s) and members (for example, the leader is considered the Messiah, a special being, an avatar—or the group and/or the leader is on a special mission to save humanity). The pastor consistently told the congregation of numbers of people who approached him telling him he "looks just like Jesus."
6. The group has a polarized us-versus-them mentality, which may cause conflict with the wider society. As once stated, directly from the pastor's mouth, to the congregation, "You can leave this church, you can go to hell, but you can leave this church." And when statements were made about other congregations throughout the city, the pastor may have commented that the church mentioned was good, but the pastor would also point out what he felt that church was lacking. As if to say that no other congregation was as good as this one.
7. The leader is not accountable to any authorities (unlike, for example, teachers, military commanders or ministers, priests, monks, and rabbis of mainstream religious denominations). The only authority this pastor is accountable to is the founder of The Rock of Panama City, a church which was founded without accountability to any other authority.
8. The group teaches or implies that its supposedly exalted ends justify whatever means it deems necessary. This may result in members' participating in behaviors or activities they would have considered reprehensible or unethical before joining the group (for example, lying to family or friends, or collecting money for bogus charities).
9. The leadership induces feelings of shame and/or guilt in order to influence and/or control members. Often, this is done through peer pressure and subtle forms of persuasion. For instance, if there is a depletion of funds for the month, it is not considered that a certain number of members left the congregation, instead, the congregation is blamed for not being lined up in God's will, and then is threatened that the church doors will be closed if the lack continues.
10. Subservience to the leader or group requires members to cut ties with family and friends, and radically alter the personal goals and activities they had before joining the group. Once a member has left the congregation, those who remain are discouraged in continuing communication with them. My son was informed once by his grandfather, after my son had left the congregation, that his grandfather would no longer sit and eat with him because he was in sin.
11. The group is preoccupied with bringing in new members. New members come in, but never stay.
12. The group is preoccupied with making money. I once taught a Celebrate Recovery class at the church. I was the only Celebrate Recovery in the city who was self supported by the attendees contributions. The contributions were suppose to cover coffee, coffee cups, Celebrate Recovery Chips, additional curriculum, etc. Every Tuesday morning I would turn the monies into the office. However, when coffee, and coffee cups were needed, those who helped with the meeting provided these needs out of their own expense, and though I requested new chips on 2 separate occassions, they were never received.
13. Members are expected to devote inordinate amounts of time to the group and group-related activities. There were few "group related" activities outside of Sunday/Wednesday Service attendance. However, if women did not attend women's fellowship, they were addressed in disappointment, and vice versa with men's fellowship.
14. Members are encouraged or required to live and/or socialize only with other group members. My son was requested to play with a band at a different church one Wednesday night. He made mention of it to the Praise and Worship leader, who told him it should be ok. However, once the pastor was informed that my son had done this, he was corrected by the pastor and was told he was prostituting the gift the Father gave him for The Rock Church of Montgomery.
15. The most loyal members (the “true believers”) feel there can be no life outside the context of the group. They believe there is no other way to be, and often fear reprisals to themselves or others if they leave (or even consider leaving) the group.
My husband, myself, and our 9 month old son began attending The Rock Church of Montgomery, AL in July of 1991. At the time, I was only 16 years old, and in search of "something more." I had a life-long void that needed to be filled, and I believed that church attendance could assist me with this. My parents had already began attending this congregation approximately a month or so earlier. They seemed elated that we had requested to attend with them one Sunday. After preaching the message for the day, the pastor, Nelson Cash, called an alter call, which almost seemed directed for us, and both my husband and myself walked to the alter, giving our lives over to the Father in tears. Everyone seemed so happy that we began this journey on that day. The acceptance was more than we had ever received. Hense, the 20 year cycle of destruction began.
I could probably write a book on the number of families we saw destroyed throughout the years of attendance at The Rock of Montgomery. Those of you reading this who have attended or still attend may recall some of the stories written. The names have been changed to protect the anonymity of each person involved.
Chip and Deb left the congregation after Deb confided information she had about her best friend to Nelson, because she feared her best friend was having an affair, and did not want her to fall completely in unrepairable demise. Yet Nelson told the congregation that God showed him this information in a dream, and then announced the sin from the pulpit instead of privately addressing the matter with the one who had sinned.
The Kinser family left the congregation after years of faithful service in the Children's Ministry due to constant conflicts with the leadership family. It was said, after her leaving, that Mrs. Kinser had a jezebel spirit and was misleading her family.
Rodney and Sheba left the congregation after years of faithful service on the Praise and Worship Team, as well as Children's Ministry, due to constant conflicts with the leadership family. The congregation was later told that Sheba had falsely reported another pastor for harrassment which costed him his job. Statements like these were made in order for the congregation to look down on those who left the congregation, and in attempt to prove/or back up the original stories of those who "left in sin."
*Scare tactics were also used at The Rock of Montgomery.*
A man named Mel use to attend The Rock Church with wife and son. Mel was a very heavy set man who believed he was called to preach. However, he was informed by Nelson that if he wanted to preach he would first have to lose weight because God would not call a man who did not first tend to his own temple to share the message of Christ. Needless to say, Mel and his family left the congregation. Approximately five years later, the congregation was informed that Mel died of a massive heart attack, and his lawlessness of leaving the congregation was rehashed, even stating that his wife was remorseful they had left and wished they had stayed. As if, Mel's leaving the congregation had something to do with his death five years later.
A beautiful older couple named Will and Victoria attended the congregation for many years, teaching structure building discipleship classes for most of those years. They believed they were being called elsewhere and made the announcement to Nelson. From the pulpit, Nelson announced their leaving, with them present, stating he did not feel like God was calling them out, but they were welcome to return if they missed the mark. Not too long afterward, rumors of witchery surrounded Victoria's name whenever she was spoken of. Two years after leaving the congregation, Victoria fell sick with pneumonia and died. As you can expect, it was announced from the pulpit how while she attended the congregation she was never sick, but once she left, she died of pneumonia.
Mark and Lynn began attending The Rock Church, and stepped up to lead Praise and Worship faithfully for many years. Again, after many conflicts with the leadership family, they too left the congregation. I am almost certain, but not positive, that Mark could tell us much on the destruction caused to his family which includes his very own mother, who once attended the congregation, and his sons, who still attend the congregation, one of them being married to one of Nelson's daughters.
Nat and Nina left the congregation after many years of faithfully leading Praise and Worship and Children's Ministry, and after many years of being Co-Pastors to Nelson. I am almost certain, but not positive, that they both could tell us much about the ongoing dramas experienced in their personal lives because of the leadership family. Shortly before leaving the congregation, their teenaged daughter assisted in the preschool, and I personally was informed by Nelson's daughter to keep Nat and Nina's daughter away from the pastor's granddaughter, as they believed that Nat and Nina's daughter was sending death threat's to Nelson and his family via email. However, this story will hold no water with those in doubt once I reveal my own personal experience involving Nelson's claim of continual threats of death.
My oldest son use to play lead guitar on the Praise and Worship Team. He did this faithfully for many years. He began dating a young woman who did not attend the congregation, though she was professionally known by Nelson, because she worked at the salon which he regularly had his hair cut at. At the time, I was not in agreement with my son's relationship with this young woman, and expressed this openly to Nelson. He did not hesitate to say that she involved herself in witchery, and that he had been attempting to witness to her for quite some time, though she had not been receptive to his words. Approximately one month later, on a Wednesday evening while at church, I was pulled into his office and informed that this young lady had attempted to poison his drink. He stated he asked for a coke and she was the one who brought it to him. Then, he stated, after sipping it, he noticed he began feeling odd. Also, without mentioning names, he announced this from the pulpit one Sunday morning. When confronted by my son's father with the statement, he stated he never said who it was that poisoned him. Although, he did tell this to me, and it was confirmed that Nelson stated his claim, attaching the name, by his very own son-in-law, when confronted by my son himself. I will tell you, however, after meeting this 4'9", 90 lb young lady, there is no doubt in my mind that these accusations against her are false. She is one of the sweetest young ladies you could meet, and she would not hurt a flea. These statements almost caused the loss of her position at the salon, because the pastor and his wife have been regular, high paying customers for years, and she was just an employee. She eventually had to file a report with the Montgomery Police Department due to the constant harrassment she received from the leadership family, including threats left on voicemail by Nelson's son-in-law, which have been saved in case they are needed in the future. When my son continued to date this young lady, despite what was being said, he was informed he was walking in disobedience, and unless he met with Nelson, he would be sat down from Praise and Worship. My son left the congregation. Myself, his father, his grandfather, and his grandmother were encouraged to believe our son/grandson was walking away in disobedience and that he was in danger of hell fire. How ironic, now, the very same thing is being told to my parents, who still remain in the congregation, about me.
There are so many more names I've yet to make mention of here. It is my hopes that those who have experienced these behaviors from this leadership family begin blogging their personal stories to prevent other families from being as devestated as those I have written about; as devestated as mine has been.
*Please follow all blogs. There is more to come.*