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Father David referred to anyone who was not part of the Children of God as “systemites.” He sent out comic books with illustrations of what these systemites looked like—ultra-cool boys with slicked-back hair and baggy pants, girls with dyed hair, dangling jewelry, painted fingernails and lots of make-up. We were taught to be natural and wear our hair long with minimal fuss. Boys kept their hair short and men were not allowed to grow facial hair.
Father David shunned any attention to fashion or outer appearance.
Soon they were running the mission full time, keeping it open and alive seven days a week with songs about Jesus and a message of the end times. In the 1970s he began vigilant protests against the established church.
His protests were called “Woe the Church Ministry” and members dressed in sackcloth, held thick wooden staves, smeared ashes on their foreheads and stormed into Sunday morning church sermons to warn the congregation of the end of the world.
David Berg was the youngest child of evangelist Virginia Lee Brandt and Hjalmer Berg.
After several attempts at following his famous mother’s nationwide evangelical mission, Berg was kicked out of the Christian Missionary Alliance, a group his parents belonged to, for alleged sexual misconduct, although Berg claims he was expelled for trying to preach to Native Americans who came into the parish, as he put it, “dirty and barefoot,” eager to hear the gospel.
Berg partnered up with Fred Jordan, a television evangelist and founder of the American Soul Clinic in Los Angeles, an organization dedicated to training missionaries for the foreign field.
I did not understand the proper rules of dress code.
As a child her parents dropped her and her younger sister, Eva, off at a Lutheran church every week.
Mom loved the sermons and excelled in church activities, eventually becoming a scout leader.
“Worldliness,” he called it, was a device of the Devil.
I was told I was special because I was born into the Children of God. Until I picked up that issue of , I thought we were just part of a religious missionary group with strict rules. All of our lives, we had never been allowed to choose where to live, what clothes to wear or what food to eat. For the next few weeks after taking the * * * The Children of God was founded on the shores of Huntington Beach, California, in 1968.