Review of the March 15,16 2003 Healing Workshop with Steven Hassan
and news regarding AFF conferences
We had 30 in attendance, about 30% of which were guest speakers. I must say I have never been to a conference where it appeared that EVERYONE there had a wonderful time, and came away with some sort of blessing and tools for personal recovery. Steve Hassan will have videos available in a few weeks. The audience was not taped, however, only the speakers, due to the fact that there were some who were currently still involved in certain high-control organizations.
The speakers included Tory Magoo, a former high-level Sea Org Scientologist of 30 years. Her website is www.torymagoo.net. Her story makes mine look tame.
Jim Procanik was there and told his story of how he was sent from the original Boston ICC (International Churches of Christ/Kip McKean, formerly known as the "Boston Movement") to spark the growth of a branch office in Los Angeles, and was directly responsible for a large percentage of the growth of the church on the West Coast. At this time, Kip has stepped down from leadership and the church is in a level of decline. They are actually stricter than the JWs in many ways. Jim has been out for a few years and is active in the same way many of us are in exposing the lies of the Watchtower. Jim's website is http://www.procanik.com/icc.html.
Mori Muster is a former higher-level Hare Krishna who was involved for many years, witnessing the horrific physical and sexual abuse of children and women and the murders and alledged mafia-type connections with drug trafficking for many years. They, too, call their leadership the "Governing Body." Nori's website is http://www.surrealist.org/betrayalofthespirit/index.html.
Steven Hassan is a former high-level Moonie who was the main speaker at the conference, and some info on him from his website at www.freedomofmind.com:
"Steven Hassan has been involved in educating the public about mind control and destructive cults for over twenty-six years. He is a licensed Mental Health Counselor, and holds a Masters degree in counseling psychology from Cambridge College. He has authored the critically acclaimed book Releasing the Bonds: Empowering People to Think for Themselves. Releasing the Bonds has been praised by former cult members, families of former members, clergy, and psychologists; people from all walks of life interested in the problems that destructive cults pose for the world today. For a sampling of the praise Releasing the Bonds has received, please visit here.
"The Boston Globe ran a feature profile on Steven Hassan, and his press kit is available online. Hassan TV appearances are also archived for viewing.
"Steven has pioneered a new approach to helping victims of mind control called the Strategic Interaction Approach. Unlike the stressful and media sensationalized "deprogramming", this non-coercive approach is an effective and legal alternative for families to help cult members. This approach utilizes family and friends and teaches them how to strategically influence the individual involved in the group. During his many years of work, he has helped thousands of persons victimized by cult-related mind control. He has provided numerous training workshops and seminars for mental health professionals, educators and law enforcement officers, as well as for families of cult members.
"Deceptively recruited into the Moon organization at the age of nineteen while a student at Queens College, Steven spent twenty-seven months recruiting and indoctrinating new members, fundraising, political campaigning and personally meeting with Sun Myung Moon during numerous leadership sessions. Steven ultimately rose to the rank of Assistant Director of the Unification Church at National Headquarters. Following a serious automobile accident, several former members at his parents request deprogrammed him. Once he realized the insidious nature of the organization, he authorized police officials to take possession of his personal belongings, which included a massive set of private speeches documenting Moon's secret plan to take over the world.
"During the 1977-78 Congressional Subcommittee Investigation into South Korean CIA activities in the United States, he consulted as an expert witness. In 1979, following the Jonestown tragedy, Steven founded EX-MOON Inc., a non-profit educational organization composed of over four hundred former members of the Moon group. Although now defunct, it was the first and largest ex-member organization in the world.
"Steven founded the Freedom of Mind Resource Center, an educational organization dedicated to upholding human rights, promoting consumer awareness and exposing abuses of destructive cult groups.
"Steven has appeared on innumerable television and radio shows and has also been quoted extensively in newspaper and magazine articles. Steve Hassan's online press kit showcases the great impact he has had on the American public through the media. In his commitment to fight against destructive cults, Steven devotes a major portion of his time and energy to preventive education. He has addressed hundreds of campus, religious and professional organizations throughout the world."
Saturday evening Steve was summoned by Fox news to appear as an expert in mind control regarding the Elizabeth Smart case, and Sunday he did several media interviews as well regarding this current news situation. He is the busiest man I have ever known. :-))
Bill Bowen gave an excellent presentation on the child abuse issues currently affecting the Watchtower organization. Most of us are familiar with these matters already, but his new website at www.silentlambs.org. On Friday Cynthia Hampton of exjehovahswitnessescalifornia brought bill Bowen over for me to do a 32 minute video interview, which I had intended to put up on my websites, but my computer is crashing and now refuses to edit video, so it may be a few weeks before I get it up for all to see.
Randy Watters 3/20/03
AFF Annual Conference 2003
June 13-14, 2003
Conference: Understanding Cults and New Religious Movements -- Perspectives
of Researchers, Professionals, Former Members, and Families
Information Click here
AFF Workshop for former group members
July 11-13, 2003
Estes Park, Colorado
Information Click here
Registraion Click here
AFF Conference 2003
October 17-18, 2003,
Information Click here
Registraion Click here
The FACTNet Staff
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