Coming this week... January 13th Newsletter
What's coming this week?
January 13th - Interview with Emma Buchbinder, former member of Xenos Christian Fellowship known today as Dwell Community Church. PLUS EXTRA SPECIAL GUEST APPEARANCE!
In 1970, students of Ohio State University began printing an independent newspaper named "The Fish". Doubling as a current affairs and culture newspaper, it's true purpose was for Religious evangelising, with the word Fish being associated with the term "Jesus Christ, God's Son, the Savior". The people responsible for printing the paper soon began weekly bible study sessions in the same student housing basement that the paper was printed in. This became known as "Fish House" and these people would become known as the founders of Xenos Fellowship Church.
Xenos positioned itself as an unconventional alternative to mainstream Christian churches, teaching that an institutional "cell church" style approach was the true way to spread the word to those who do not go to church but also those who are "antichurch" - offering a "streetstyle" approach to bible study and thus, finding Christ.
This was accomplished through "home churches" where members would reside together, take part in regimented bible study in the home before being deployed to the streets to proselytise to non-church and anti-church members of society.
Within these home churches, accounts of cult-like and coercive control have been reported. including tactics such as slep deprivation, strict timetables, hierarchal structures of leadership and more. Notably, these methods have been reported on by former members speaking out, and also on a website titled "Xenos is a Cult"
Since bad press hit and the church's reputation was damaged, Xenos has rebranded to Dwell Community Church. Despite the revamped image and attempt to escape historical condemning from other religious groups, the Cult Awareness Network and major newspapers, the church is still being hit with the "cult" label. Emma Buchbinder tells her story of being part of the church and moving into a "home church" at a young age - her determination and commitment to the cause exploited.
During the interview between Emma and myself, my youngest child was struggling with her teeth. Eventually, I brought her into the interview recording where she was happy to meet Emma, offer lots of background noise to our recording and generally settle once she was with Mummy having cuddles and hearing Emma's story. I do apologise for the added noise in this week's content!
Tune in to this week's miniseries to hear me talking to Emma about all things Xenos and Dwell. If you would like early access to ad-free, full-length episodes, you can find me at patreon.com/thecultvault where you can support the show from only £1 a month!
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January 6th 2023 marks two years since the "Storm on the Capitol" - when various groups of Donald J. Trump supporters attacked the United States Capitol Building, under Trump's own encouragement, after he lost the 2020 Presidential Election to Joe Biden. This scene is how Mike's recent publication opens. "The Storm is Upon Us - How Qanon Became a Movement, Cult, and Conspiracy Theory of Everything" is this month's giveaway title and is widely available to purchase today. You can find your copy here: - https://amzn.to/3P0o5F9