What Happened Last Week?


Last week, I went to a memorial service in Portland and met someone I’ve been wanting to meet for a long time, Brad Sargent.

As long-time readers know, Brad has been a great help to me during my defamation lawsuit and on the blog for quite some time.  Brad spent hundreds of hours writing the BGBC archives because he thought my lawsuit was going to be another way that spiritual abusers would use to harm congregants. He’s been correct.  Since then, I’ve reported on other lawsuits or threatened lawsuits initiated by pastors against their congregants or former congregants. The archives have been a help for those congregants who are looking for information, want to know what could happen to them, etc. Most importantly, it lets those folks know that they are not alone, that someone else has walked that path, and no, they aren’t going crazy.

Brad has been studying abuse-related topics for decades and is in the process of writing a book and manual on systemic abuse. So, not only has he been a support to my case specifically, he has also been teaching me as we discuss other cases I’m working on. And he also looks over important posts that I think will generate a lot of interest and proofreads them for me.

Most importantly, Brad is a dear friend. I think the best support one can get for spiritual abuse is the comfort and affirmation from someone who also has experienced it. Brad gets it and has heard my tears. I hear a lot of stories, some of which can trigger what I’ve gone through or am currently going through. Brad is one of my sounding boards. So, after spending countless hours in e-mails and phone calls with him, you can see why I wanted to meet Brad.

I can attest that Brad is the real deal online and in person.  Here I am surprise attacking him with a selfie 🙂



On this trip to Portland, I also connected with Kathi again. We’ve met a few times – my favorite was when she invited herself to stay with me in Eastern WA (I loved that she invited herself, btw!!!).  I specifically wanted Kathi to have an opportunity to meet Brad, too, since we all work together in the same effort, so she was able to get off work early and drive in yucky Portland traffic to meet.

I tell you what, I didn’t seek people to help me out, they just kind of landed here and became part of the team, and I feel so fortunate to have these amazing people in my life. These two have tremendous hearts for hurting individuals. Not only are they great friends, but they are both self-motivated. When they see a need, they take the initiative to meet it — and I’m not just talking about the stuff you see visibly on the blog, but also behind the scenes, which also takes a lot of time. Kathi could be knitting, her favorite hobby, but she spends time giving to others. The same goes for Brad — well, I’m not sure about the knitting part, but you know . .  these people are the real deal.



If any of you follow us on the Facebook page, I’m sure you’ve seen Kathi and I go back and forth with each other, many times joking.  That’s how we do it. We have a lot of fun even while dealing with difficult and often tragic abuse cases.

Kathi and I decided to do a live Facebook video to share what our plans are for what’s left of the summer.  Let’s see if I can embed the video here. Here is a glimpse of what we have in the works and also what we are like when we talk together. It cracks me up. I love us.




Last week, you may have noticed there were no posts. Part of that was summer busy-ness – taking kids to music camp. Another time drainer is that we had a flood in our kitchen in July, so any kind of cooking is now camp style.  And I’ve had to spend time picking out flooring, counters, paints, appliances (since we’re doing so many upgrades), carpet, tile, yada yada. Holy cow – that takes a lot of time!

Additionally, there were doctors appointments and lab work done. I think I will make a new post for that. No worries. I’ll be fine. I think I’ll hit two birds with one stone in my next post, and you’ll see what I mean.



37 thoughts on “What Happened Last Week?”

  1. I really enjoyed your tape. JA, I hope your lab work is ok. On top of all you and Kathi do, I believe you need to also create a skin care manual. You both have beautiful skin!! Enjoy the rest of your summer! Ann

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Ann, I don’t know what Kathi does, but all I use is water. I try to stay out of the sun, too.

    There was nothing on my face or eyes that day – au naturale.

    Usually if I’m going out to something a bit more formal, I will put eyeliner and mascara and maybe lipstick. When I don’t wear mascara, people ask me if I’m okay, that I look tired. I guess that’s what happens when you have light-colored eyelashes. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Thank you for the lovely update. My church is already doing some of those things, so I’m encouraged. Abuse issues, we’re working on it, and your article may be shared. It seems that Lori Alexander’s theme of “always learning” should really be “always struggling”. We want to be a safe place, we want to share the Gospel with others, we want to encourage each other. And there have been some such situations you’re only aware of if you know the couple/family very well, and we keep on struggling with what’s the most loving response.
    As a widow myself, I’ve been the recipient of plenty of good support from church and family, and I keep on working on doing the same for others. Thanks for all you do as well.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. I’m encouraged about your church, too, JPU. Thank you for sharing. We seem to deal with a lot of negative stuff here, so when I hear of a church doing good things, I think it’s important to recognize that. That’s great that you have been the recipient of support and that you, in turn, have the privilege to do the same for others. I don’t like the overused word “blessing,” but I tell you, I find it such a blessing to help others. The reward of seeing someone being helped is so good!

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Wonderful video. Thank you for sharing and showing us the joy of your fellowship with one another. Beautiful to see. I continue to trust in the Lord but oh, am saddened that my trust level for man has been so diminished.
    Praying for true and sincere friendships to aid me in moving forward.
    Blessings to both of you as you minister to the vulnerable. ((hugs)) ❤

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Ann – Nothing fancy for me. Olay (or store brand version) face wash and the cheapest face lotion with spf in it. I don’t wear makeup either. I’ve never liked the feel of it on my face.

    But….changing a photo to black and white helps hide the shine! 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I’ll keep it real…last week was a bit stressful at home, which in addition to visiting people, watching the Olympics and trying not to die from the heat, left me not really in the mood to tackle the next kid’s book post. We’ve worked through stuff, the Olympics are done, and the heat is gone (for now). I’ll get something done this week!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Well, Kathi, the triple-digit heat would do any Oregonian in. Oregonians complain when it gets above 75 – lol.

    Don’t worry about not getting a post done last week. I don’t want posting to be a burden to either you or to me. We are both real moms with jobs/school and other responsibilities. People here are so great and understanding 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  9. How fun that you (Julie Anne), Kathi and Brad/FuturistGuy could meet up. Now we need to organize a California contingent of Spiritual Sounding Board and Wartburg Watch members to get together.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I live in metropolitan Washington, DC and we just endured a 2-week heatwave with temperatures of 95 or higher on 11 of those days, including three days of 100-degree weather. And did I mention the humidity? Thankfully we’re supposed to be in the low 80’s today with comfortable humidity.


  11. Yes, that is some crazy stuff on Twitter. I’ve been sitting on that one for a week and noticed other people talking about it. I decided to directly tweet the top dogs at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary because this abusive teaching must be addressed.

    Click on the tweet to see the whole tweet and what a seminary student at SBTS posted online in a Facebook group. You can then also read the conversations.


  12. Trust me, ccinnova, your heatwave was worse than Portland. Portlanders are more sensitive to the humidity, so they would have gone nuts there. When I was a kid growing up in Portland area, most homes did not have a/c. There were typically only a few days in summer that hit over 90 degrees and if we kept our houses closed up, at night, you can put a fan in the window and your house would be nice and cool in the morning.

    Some of my Portland friends are already wanting rain again – lol. They crack me up.


  13. Hey there!

    It’s about time I got to see WHO Brad is. Hey Brad!

    Great video and the topic is important. I’m not sure how the majority of church’s around my area does things, but the 2 church’s that I attend on a pretty much regular basis definitely has steps in place to protect people.

    Now, as everyone should know, I’m not a Calvinist, and we non-Calvinists believe in dialing 911, and if the church wants to get involved with the victimizer at that point, they can schedule a clergy visit in the county jail.

    In addition, both church’s I attend do background checks on anyone wanting to have anything to do with taking care of children, and I do mean anything, such as summer camp, or any church function that children are involved.

    Church’s do not, and, are not to circumvent the law in any way, shape or form.

    If anyone is victimized, dial 911 first, before calling anyone at the church. And if the church recommends a Matthew 18 in lieu of calling 911, leave that church, and never look back.

    Ed Chapman

    Liked by 5 people

  14. What a wonderful video of good Christian fellowship. The aspects of mutual love and respect within your friendship is so evident. Thank-you for posting this….I loved it!

    chapmaned24, I believe the same as you. Amen.

    Liked by 2 people

  15. Hey Guys,

    How neat was that–getting together and sharing with each other!!
    I was so delighted to read this post today and hear about your summer powwow!
    Meeting face-to-face is so special. I trust that the ideas and heart concerns shared will empower y’all for the next year’s blog and life activities!

    Yer Northern pal, Barb

    Liked by 4 people

  16. I could have wished to be there with y’all. Have wanted to do that for sometime. 🙂 Glad that it was a happening for y’all.

    I have found that the Holy Spirit is a great one to make networking happen with those of like-mind!

    Liked by 2 people

  17. Oh, that would have been fun, Barb. I wish I knew I was going to go with more notice. I was waiting for information from my doctor before making a commitment to go, so as it is, I think Brad found out I was going the day before (that is, if he read his e-mail before flying out).

    Liked by 1 person

  18. For those interested in this kind of thing, Josh Harris will be “speaking” (otherwise known as preaching) at Good Shepherd Community Church – in Boring, Oregon – this weekend.

    Doncha want to come back out this way this weekend, Kathi? 😆😂😇(KIDDING!)

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Hey all, I’m tying to make healthy choices for myself. I had hoped to get a post up yesterday, and then today, but I’m not feeling well enough for my brain to engage in writing. I need to stay put and veg for now. Thanks for your patience. 🙂


  20. Hey, JA,

    You da boss. You pick when it works best for you to post and/or rest!!

    Did ya notice that I have now somehow got a pink/white icon, rather than the black one I used to have–and I didn’t even try to change it. Sweet.


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