In the cult there was a little girl named Merry Berg. She was the granddaughter of our “prophet.” She was a talented singer and we listened to her music on audio cassette tape. She was beloved by all until the “prophet” wrote a long cautionary tale to us, his followers, about how she was rebellious, and disobedient. What he didn’t outright tell us was that her “rebelliousness” consisted of her questioning him as god’s prophet (as he was always drunk) and that she resisted his sexual advances (imagine that shit).
She was 11 years old. He said she must be full of demons and he and other adults in that home inflicted corporal cruelty, exorcisms, banishment to one bedroom, and the like on her.
Eventually she was able to leave the cult, however, and her court testimony was groundbreaking. It helped to modify the rules within the cult. Not that the cult changed its beliefs. They still believed sex was a “spiritual” way to engage any and all (including children), but they no longer wanted to deal with severe legal complications (and having all of us kids taken away). So in essence, Merry was a hero, one who saved many more children from even worse abuse.
Merry died 5 days ago. I cried and cried. Though I never did meet Merry, her story is personal to me, and thousands other children raised in this ridiculous Christian cult. There will be a memorial for her in San Diego that I would like to attend.
Thank you to everyone who has emailed, called and otherwise reached out during this time of loss for all of us. I have returned from San Diego this morning after clearing out Merry's apartment. She was very loved by her whole community there, and was comfortable, and from what we can tell she passed away in her sleep, more than likely from respiratory failure. At the beginning of next year we will make plans for her farewell memorial. I will not be posting much until after the New Year, as now is the time for me to mourn and be close to my family, but I will reach out and we will perform our final act of love and dignity for my sister who gave love and dignity to so many.
Posted by Don Irwin on Monday, December 18, 2017
Here is a touching tribute to Merry, from her brother Don.