His name is Esteban.

(Copy with some tags I had to exclude.  First published 11.08 am Bulgarian time.)

I watched the recording last night of last week’s sermon by Kristian Lythe.  I had forgotten his name, I’ve not seen or heard of him for ages.  But Kristian mentioned him in his sermon, he had made a traffic lights illustration.  He was saying something about red lights, among other things.  I don’t know how much of the sermon I would need to talk about to have you understand.  It can be found at http://www.kt.org/media. (note: please don’t be distracted by the shouting and his insistence on having the word of the Lord or anything else you see and hear.  If any of it is true [how much of it can be?] it is still not the point).

I don’t know how they get hold of information like this about people in my life, but it particularly concerns me that they have sufficient information about this man, Dr Gallo, to use a lookalike of him. Maybe my concern and the way I am handling it are stupid, selfish, treacherous and ungrateful.  I was assuming that they had the information through having had direct communication with Dr Gallo, but that might not be true.   But if it is true, although personally and emotionally I would like to come out and patch things up, I really think there is cause for concern here.  They had told me to leave the church.  I haven’t been there for over a decade.

What are they doing with something like this, it is none of their business, and neither Dr Gallo nor anyone else has ever brought this connection up with me. I’ve known for ages they do the same things with close family and past friends and acquaintances.  As I have said before, I do feel love and I do feel loyalty, but this is stalking, in a way the psychiatric team has told me doesn’t happen, or at least, isn’t happening to me, and they have partly based their diagnosis on my insistence that it does and is.

My Christian response is my biggest felt response, but also I need to keep identification with others in the psychiatric patient community (excuse terminology, maybe I should talk more in terms of mathematical sets, for which being a part of one doesn’t necessarily imply relationship)  and recognise that this is stalking, it is a step, or more like several steps, too far in ruling a church and church discipline and discipleship, I need to employ the term ‘heavy shepherding’ because people recognise it, and recognise myself that this is what is happening in this situation.

They and other churches I’ve been involved with have been challenged many, many times by me about this, in emails, through my blog, and emails are not answered and no conversation entered into through my blog.  David Shearman’s church bounces my emails back to me, whether I have mentioned his name or not in the address or body of my email (I no longer send them and have assigned any responses to ones I do send to the spam folder) saying david.shearman@christian-centre.org is not a valid email address.  If this is supposed to be heart talk for please come home, then I am sorry, and it is probably my loss.  That email address used to be valid, I don’t know if it is only me that gets that kind of response, or used to until I stopped emailing.

I’m very, very sorry, but this is awful.  I feel awful for handling it this way.  I’m not even fully convinced that they are wrong to do this anymore, and that is one of the reasons I need feedback and help from people in whom I have expressed trust who might be more convinced than I am.  I am too emotionally caught up to fight, and the way my readers distance me, on the whole, makes that worse. These people know who they are, and some of them know I love them because I believe they are the sort of people who would want to help and not cause injury.

I might be mistaken in my assessment, in fact at the moment I would like to cause injury myself and have obviously felt that way for ages.  I don’t think in a situation like this that makes me nuts or dangerous, even if under extreme provocation and in distress I even employ gestures to demonstrate how I feel when everything else is ignored.  When I was a kid ‘I’ll kill you’ meant ‘you have gone too far’, not ‘you’d better take steps to separate yourself from me and protect yourself’.  It might be crass and it might not be used in the kindest of relationships, but that is still the way it is for plenty of people who are not considered to be in need of incarceration.  I had it said to me plenty of times.  I’ve never thought of considering that anyone who said it should be locked up.  But maybe I should, on hindsight.  It is emotional thuggery if nothing else.

Ps I have heard Christian leaders involved in this say ‘prove it’.  In something like this that is neither honorable nor Christian.  Robb Thompson was one of them.  He might have been talking about something else.

Tommy, I really do believe this is something that needs to be dealt with, not only for my sake, but for that of others as well.  You have taught me well on that and I’m grateful (even if I don’t always feel I like you very much).  It is as close as a church can get to kidnap.  I know even this gesture towards you rather than coming to you directly is enough to break trust.  I feel that and it feels irrevocable. Partly I feel I’m disempowering myself in any way I could relate to you, and I believe you also need me to be empowered in any relationship we might have, as I need it myself.  So maybe this is just useless empty gesture time again.  I am implicating you, but I’m implicating you to try to empower you, if you think that is something I’m capable of.

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