I have a friend who has been a tremendous encouragement to me in the past few months. I am sharing her personal testimony about the Hepzibah House. Once you finish reading her letter please watch the CNN video. And feel free to pass this on. Our voices will make a difference.
o Whom It May Concern: My name is Connie Staie White. I am the daughter of Pastor Byron Staie, Fundamental Independent Baptist. I am am also a former student of Ambassador Baptist College. Seventeen years ago, while attending ABC, I served a summer session at Hephzibah House in Indiana with Pastor Ron Williams . I was absolutely dumbfounded at what I discovered there. The day-to-day mode of operation within this facility reminded me very much of a what I would expect to find in a Nazi concentration camp. Never have I seen humiliation and psychological tactics so skillfully employed. The staff carefully spread the word that one girl was ”contagious” with an STD. All girls knew they had to wait a certain length of time before using the toilet after this girl. The girls were then made to watch scary movies about the AIDS epidemic and how ”easy” it is to catch AIDS. Today, as a registered nurse and director of nursing, I see this practice for what it is, a form of bullying and psychological abuse.
Very few girls had periods while at the falicity. It was public knowledge when a girl did have a period. Pads were rationed and carefully monitored as though they were a controlled substance. I personally do not remember having a period while I was at the facility. However, my period has been (before then and since then) as timely as clockwork.
The girls were required to work in storehouses with delicious looking food and other fancy donations. However, these items were used for the Williams’ family only. The girls ate out of unlabeled cans. Whatever was opened is whatever was served. I feel very confident in saying that the girls were served canned dog food many times. The girls were allowed to choose small portions or large portions. The amount of food in these portions routinely changed. If the girl chose large portions, they would sometimes be given more than any adult man could eat. If they did not eat every bite, they would be punished. Similarly, if they chose small portions, the portions may be just enough to feed a toddler.
If the staff decided that a girl had an ”attitude,” she would be punished by not being allowed to make eye contact with any other girl. If the girls had ”misbehaved,” they were signified by what they wore to church. This way, the church members knew that they had been ”bad.” Interestingly, I never once saw a single girl misbehave the entire time that I was there. Yet still, they were routinely punished. Although I was a staff member, my personal phone calls were monitored. Pastor Williams quizzed me about my bowel habits as well. The living conditions were so suppressive and inhumane that I wet the bed while working there. Before you consider recommending this facility to a family, please consider how our Father disciplines. Yes, whom the Lord loveth, He chastens. Please remember however, to consider the whole Scripture. Proverbs 29:21 ”He that delicately bringeth up his servant from a child shall have him become his son at the length.”
Connie Connie Staie White