Friday, 20 July 2007
Suffer little children
"Suffer the little children to come unto me," said the Stranger from Galilee - or the King James version thereof - and suffer they did. Church kids had a hard row to hoe with pressure on parents to keep their children in submission. Corporal punishment in the form of a solid whack was hardly unknown, and for some spanking was an art form. Garner Ted Armstrong's booklet "The Plain Truth About Child Rearing" set the tone, and the tone wasn't pretty.
Starting this weekend you'll find the first in a guest series on child discipline and the Bible by Samuel Martin on this blog. Samuel is the son of the late Ernest Martin, a major figure in WCG history who left in the mid-70s. He continued to exert a huge influence through his Foundation for Biblical Research and a variety of publications. Somewhere I still have a copy of his booklet that soundly debunks tithing.
Samuel Martin is author of Thy Rod and Thy Staff They Comfort Me: Christians and the Spanking Controversy. It would be interesting to get feedback and anecdotes from people who grew up in the church as the series progresses.