The World Mission Society Church of God (WMSCOG) has been growing exponentially in recent years. The little known group, thought by many, including myself, to be a destructive group is taking to the streets and posting YouTube videos in an effort to recruit even more people into their ranks. I posted a video of a presentation done by a Korean anti-cult activist, Professor Ji-il Tark, on my vimeo.com site at http://vimeo.com/14811127
Amazingly, there has not been a single major media expose done on the group yet, and I am hoping that this blog will motivate a lot of coverage. The public needs to be warned.
What’s up with this group? According to former long-term members I have spoken with, they use deception and heavy pressure influence techniques. And, like most groups which employ Behavior, Information, Thought and Emotional control (my BITE model), family and friends report witnessing radical personality changes in people who get involved with the WMSCOG. People report marriages being disrupted and broken up, close family relationships and friendships cast aside if people do not choose to become involved and members are not successful in recruiting everyone else they know.
So, in December of 2011, the World Mission Society Church of God, A New Jersey Non-Profit Corporation, filed a lawsuit against Internet critics alleging defamation, trade libel, and civil conspiracy in connection with the website www.examiningthewmscog.com. Defendants in the lawsuit say the purpose of the website is to provide the public with information about the group. Former WMSCOG members and families of current members, have recently come forward on the site to talk about their experiences and concerns about the group.
I have become aware of Examining the World Mission Society Church of God web site. They are putting a lot of very important information online and encouraging people to reevaluate their involvement. I have been told that several long term and highly respected American members (and others) have defected in recent weeks.
The Korean group is telling its members not to believe anything negative on the Internet because it is of Satan, but younger Americans who have grown up on the Internet are beginning to realize that the groups’ leadership have not been honest with them about the history of the group and many other important details. For example, the group had prophesied the end of the world in 2012, but lately they are backtracking and saying that that was never a firm date. “Not true,” say former members I have interviewed.
It is so important that people be free to make their own decisions and think for themselves. Yet groups like the WMSCOG say that they know God’s Will and it is to be obedient to what they say. For me as a former member of the Moonies, it sounds so very familiar. I would not be surprised if it can be proven (at some point in the future) that this group took at least some of their theology from the Unification Church of Sun Myung Moon.
According to a press release by a member of the WMSCOG, on December 25, 2011 “the WMSCOG carried out a large-scale movement all over the world, which the European, Asian, Australian, African and South American media have covered about Second Coming Christ Ahnsahnghong and Heavenly Mother New Jerusalem, who is here on earth. It’s time for America to know about this incredible news.” [sic] On Christmas this past year, a holiday that the group does not observe, the WMSCOG choir, wearing yellow scarves, performed in NY Times Square. The WMSCOG later released this video of the performance where they sang songs proclaiming their god Ahnsahnghong, a Korean man who died in 1985 who the WMSCOG believes was the second coming of Jesus, while other WMSCOG members in the audience cheered and marched in place.
On January 1, 2012, WMSCOG members marched and sang at Millennium Park in Chicago (seen in this video) while holding up a sign that read “I have already come”. According to the video released on YouTube, the purpose of the march was to proclaim the name of their messiah. Members chanted the phrase “We Love You” in homage to a Korean woman named Zahng Gil-Jah, Chairwoman of the “We Love U Foundation,” who the WMSCOG believes is “god the mother”. WMSCOG members were seen lining the Martin Luther King Jr Parade holding “We Love U” signs in Atlanta on January 16, 2012.
If you think that cults have gone away, think again. I suggest you check out if this group is operating in your town, city, state or country and warn folks to be careful. In the meantime, it is important for Internet activists to take note of this group and do what they can to shine a light on their aggressive recruitment efforts and warn the public. I’d like to see a message sent that it isn’t ok for wealthy groups to misuse the legal system to stifle free speech.