UPDATE 3/7/2018: Fern and Audrey now have their own non-profit ministry. Please donate to Discovering MErcy!
Fern and Audrey return with an update on their work with ritual abuse survivors, and introduce a colleague (“Beth”) who does the same work. Beth tells listeners her own story of growing up in “traditional” deliverance ministry, and how her approach to helping survivors now is different in light of the divine council worldview.
The episode is now live.
Those girls need to write several books on how to practice a UR ministry, for those of us interested in maybe getting into this sort of thing but having no idea where or how to start! How cool would it be if they had people they could trust spread out so when someone can’t afford to come see them from the Philippines, they could say, “We actually have someone practicing near you call XYZ.” Absolutely love them! Looking forward to their next episode! Thank you for all that you do!
We talked about how to produce some content in this respect this past Oct 1-2. At some point, that will happen in some form. They are consistently worried about the growth of the workload. They have difficulty handling the task now, so doing something that raises the profile makes them feel overwhelmed. The Lord will produce something here, but none of us know what that is at this point.
While I felt the descriptions of this “new” approach needs more detail it seems to me that what Beth is describing is traditional Christian counseling. The type practiced by non-Charismatic Christian counselors.
agreed — see my other reply in here. We’ll do another one.
This podcast was weird for me…they talked alot but didn’t say anything…Michael tried to pull details out with more pointed questions, but they didn’t seem to get the point…disappointing because the devil is in the details on this topic (pun intended)
They all actually felt a bit that way, too. This was Beth’s first time to be public. Because we all had to meet in PA there was no time to redo it. We just agreed we’ll do another one. And we will.
How do I contact Fern and Audrey? someone help!
Dr Heiser. I just listened to this podcast. I am trying to mentally and spiritually process what was presented. The main point that I received so far was that true deliverance is not so much about a confrontation between the deliverance minister and the demonic entity active in the person, but a confrontation between the lies and deception that the victim has believed and the truth of who they are in Christ. This in turn breaks the power of the demonic entity in the life of the victim. Would this be a fairly accurate statement?
I have, all my Christian life, dealt with self condemning and sometimes very dark thoughts that just pop into my head…even to the point of being prompted by these thoughts to harm someone. Of course I never follow those thoughts. I don’t know of nor remember any abuse of any kind, however, I did find out one of my brothers admitted to molesting both his daughter and a step some. As a kid, I was REALLY close to that brother and we were always together till about the age of 7-8 so I wonder if there’s something I’m not remembering. I also struggled with a very dark depression for about a year of my life. During a time of ministry at my church, the pastor went to pray for me and my body literally flew back about 3 feet and skidded another foot or so. It was like I was a spectator in my own body. Then I felt a rage well up and a growl came out of my mouth. The pastor told the spirit to come out. Although I have not had that depth of depression since then, I do often feel the rage and still have the dark thoughts. After hearing what Fern and Audrey said, I wonder if the entity that manifested then has just gone “more underground” and is still around. Any insight you could give, I would appreciate.
demonic presences area a small subset of what Fern, Audrey, and Beth see and have to deal with. A survivor may or may not have such a thing in his/her history.
traditional deliverance ministry of the type Beth described burdens the victim in a couple ways. It presumes demons are always the explanation (and hence driving them out by yelling at the presumed demon is the solution — useless if that isn’t the case). Deliverance tactics also involve the victim renouncing sins and praying renunciations against demonic spirits. A child who is raped didn’t sin, and if there’s no demon involved, this is again useless. When it doesn’t help the survivor feels like they’ve done something wrong – and so the problem is (again) them. It produces more guilt and helplessness.
So, to me, a programmer, it sounds to me that Fern, Audrey, and Beth do a sort of “spiritual debugging”. To be honest, I was confused about what it was that Beth was trying to communicate to the audience (it was too vague) until you asked her for some specific examples. It was after that clarification that she began to describe, from my perspective, a form of debugging. Specifically, “logic errors” (i.e. some misguided belief about what is required to be “saved”, or some specific disconnect with “truth” and what we would call “solid theology”) that are either introduced into a person’s operating system (which is what I call the cognitive capabilities of a person available to them to process their world) through a traumatic event, or some other manipulative programming (e.g. being constantly provided poor theological content). I’m wondering if the human mind is a sort of Field Programmable Gate Array. Such that our mind is created by God, but can be reprogrammed after “delivery”, as it were. FPGA’s are integrated circuits that are designed to be programmed by the customer or designer after production. I wonder, if this could be tied to the “free will” that a human being possesses.
Another “key concept” that I got from this podcast was that the model of “deliverance ministries” (for lack of a better term) appears to have gone from the “deliverer” doing something via what I would call an “active process” (e.g. casting out a demon), to one in which the “deliverer” is doing something through an almost “passive process” by getting the target of the procedure to invoke their will to connect with someone who can deliver them in earnest (i.e. Jesus). Which, to my way of thinking and my earlier metaphor, would indicate a mechanism to have the human mind (e.g. FPGA) be reprogrammed to rely upon “truth” and what might be categorized “right theology”. In my mind, this is the same as an application program that relies upon the usage of specific libraries or modules to perform its functionality. Those libraries and modules could allow the programs to make a connection to another resource via a particular port or network socket or sometimes they provide the application with the ability to understand particular data formats or even providing the necessary algorithms to even process those formats (i.e. consider complex mathematics and spatial computations).
That’s a good analogy — rewiring is another.
I have listened to both Fern and Audley episodes a few times and I am still confused about the details of what they actually do. From what I can gather, it is a cross between psychotherapy and a theology class. I would like to donate to help, but I would like some clarification about their sessions with people.
The simplest way to put it is that they (1) have a high clinical understanding of how the brain splits into “alters”; (2) they expose lies the survivors are told; (3) they address those lies with sound theology (the lies range from what survivors are told about themselves, God, their spiritual standing with Christ – it varies, depending on the circumstances of the abuse); and (4) they make sure survivors are not burdened with having to “integrate” or “renounce” a demonic presence — that is, they don’t do either of the things clinicians or deliverance ministers try to do, having been down those roads already.
For example, they may have a person who, as a child, was repeatedly raped in a cult setting. The child is told the rapist is Jesus, which may or may not involve a disguise, and that this is happening to them because God hates them. When such circumstances become apparent in counseling, they have to deal with (a) what a person has been told, and (b) the “alter” defense mechanisms produced by the brain to “protect” the child. It varies a good bit. Survivors don’t all have the same stories. Since many are in churches and ministry, they have spiritual issues that must be dealt with, either in terms of bad theology about God or themselves, or, in cases where they sense a presence is part of the person’s bondage, correct theology about the defeated status of that presence.
In even shorter terms, there’s a lot of content in Unseen Realm that simply resonates with survivors and produces healing, moreso than deliverance ministry.
But does that mean that, you (and by extension Fern and Audrey) hold to the position that there is no such
thing as real demonical possession?. Many liberal theologians would deny any
real spiritual activity (in this realm) in the Bible and explain away any such cases
as a form of mental illness and healing as psychotherapy.
I see how your approach has sense in case of spiritual oppression, but not in demonic possession.
Of course not. We all believe possession happens. It’s just that a good deal with what people think is possession may not be.
That has far more sense. Did any of the sisters encounter a demon possessed individual? And as a side note do you know of Russ Dizdar ministries? He has a similar approach to this subject although he helps mostly people from PTSD/Satanic ritual abuse/ dissociative identity disorder high occult.
Fern and Audrey are familiar with Russ. I’ve met him once (years ago in Roswell). We’d all say Russ is a good guy, but that his methods leave people in bondage. We’ve watched the “Detestable” documentary about DID/SRA and we all agreed that the people in the video helped by Russ are still not healed. What Fern and Audrey do produces quite a different result. But Russ is on the right side, obviously.
Dear Mike What happens when Fern & Audrey’s client has little to no “Christian” base or knowledge or even has been brought up with some other belief system? Do they adapt to the client’s worldview/belief system or do they “educate” the client about the gospel etc.? if the client has some other belief sysyem and Fern & Audrey try to “convert” the client to a gospel understanding won’t they be doing exactly what they say they work against viz. pressurizing the client to take on their system (that is, that it will be perceived as yet more coercion by people wishing to take control)?