She set in motion a spiritually and emotionally abusive, developmentally damaging subculture that can never face or take responsibility for the damage it has done.
Perhaps she was mentally ill. But why celebrate such a tragic, futile journey? Why perpetuate it?
If I were Ellen White, and had faced the implications of my spiritual, social legacy, I would want you to begin at once to work to heal the damage I unwittingly inflicted on generations of Adventists, especially religiously terrorized children.
I would want you to celebrate my birthday by getting free of me.
I would want my spiritual heirs to become world leaders in the study of healing developmental trauma inflicted by ignorant religious people, and healing the effects of spiritual, mental, emotional, sexual, racial and financial abuse…
I would want you to put the children first, not the church.
The thing I would never wish for is hagiography.
I would long for the opportunity to face you all and make things right to the extent that I could, and I would
grieve deeply for the damage and pain I had caused.
In these letters which I write, in the testimonies I bear, I am presenting to you that which the Lord has presented to me. I do not write one article in the paper expressing merely my own ideas. They are what God has opened before me in vision—the precious rays of light shining from the throne.
–Testimonies 5, p. 67
In my books, the truth is stated, barricaded by a ‘Thus saith the Lord.’ The Holy Spirit traced these truths upon my heart and mind as indelibly as the law was traced by the finger of God upon the tables of stone. --Letter 90, 1906
If you seek to turn aside the counsel of God to suit yourselves, if you lessen the confidence of God’s people in the testimonies He has sent them, you are rebelling against God as were Korah, Dathan, and Abriam.
You have their history. You know how stubborn they were in their own opinions. They decided that their judgment was better than that of Moses and that Moses was doing great injury to Israel. Those who united with them were so set in their opinions that, notwithstanding the judgments of God in a marked manner destroyed the leaders and the princes, the next morning the survivors came to Moses and said: “Ye have killed the people of the Lord.”
We see what fearful deception will come upon the human mind. How hard it is to convince souls that have become imbued with a spirit which is not of God. As Christ’s ambassador, I would say to you: Be careful what positions you take. This is God’s work, and you must render to Him an account for the manner in which you treat His message.
–Testimonies 5, p. 66.
God does nothing in partnership with Satan. My work for the past thirty years bears the stamp of God or the stamp of the enemy. There is no halfway work in the matter. The Testimonies are of the Spirit of God, or of the devil. In arraying yourself against the servants of God you are doing a work either for God or for the devil.
–Testimonies 4, p. 230
The passages where Ellen White seems to counsel the opposite of the above only serve as a double bind that makes Seventh-day Adventism a mentally dangerous place for people with sensitive consciences, damaged attachment histories and the inability to question authority. This can become literally life-threatening. It’s time to stop blaming people for “misusing” EGW who actually are only taking Ellen White at her unmistakable word.
EDIT: @efcee Regarding:
Please spare me the patronizing. Sympathy is beside the point, and not at all helpful. This is a systemically abusive organization that will continue to harm people spiritually, socially, mentally, emotionally and financially, and that template was set by Ellen G. White herself.
Because of Ellen G. White, the Seventh-day Adventist church is a cognitive swamp that can never on this earth be sorted out.
This isn’t about one person’s unfortunate, if isolated experience; this is about the fundamentally dishonest and abusive way the Adventist church is run, and always has been run, and will continue to be run.
It can’t be fixed.
If women are ordained, they potentially face the same fate as Desmond Ford and Walter Rea if they tell the truth. Ellen G. White made “truth” an ironic, meaningless word in the Adventist subculture.
Short of schism, Adventists are stuck with Ellen G. White and the 1844 cauldron of confusion. There is no help for it.
The ex-SDAs in the NAD probably equal the current SDAs. That continuing Stage IV Hemorrhage (“Survival is extremely unlikely”) should telegraph something about people’s experience of Adventism, I would think.
Adventist Review: Stats: Former members
The loss rate per 100 converts is 41—a constant hemorrhage that negatively affects church growth despite the steady influx of new converts.
I am not asking for “help.” I am neither surprised nor offended if people take offense at my words.
What “offends” me is that Adventism continues to mess with children’s minds and harm their development, or look the other way while others do.
That is sacrilege.