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THE SAD STORY
There is a very dark, disturbing side of the Roberts Group. It's bad enough that Jim Roberts teaches his disciples to loathe all of humanity, not to have contact with their families, and not to seek medical attention. Roberts is often unmerciful when it comes to excommunicating members from the Roberts Group.
Members are forsaken due to such reasons as disagreements with the Elder or the development of physical or emotional problems. They are abandoned or told to go to another city and wait, never to meet up with the Roberts Group again.
Being forsaken creates a disturbing problem with those members who have been indoctrinated into the Roberts Group and now find themselves sent away. In many cases the forsaken member has spent their entire adulthood living in the shadows of life with the Roberts Group. Left on their own, a whole new world of problems is created. They wander mindlessly brainwashed from their years in the Roberts Group, unable to find a place in life because the Roberts Group has crippled them emotionally and intellectually. They can't go back to the Roberts Group and they can't find their way home. The Roberts Group has isolated them forever and many times their families remain unaware of the situation.
The following story about a forsaken member is told by his parents:
Saga of Robert (Bob) Carroll's Association with the Jim Roberts Group
By Delores E. and William T. Carroll (Bob's mother and father)
Picture taken 1974
In September 1974, Bob was recruited by a nomadic religious group while returning alone from an Alaskan vacation. He was 22 years old at the time.
The group, of strict fundamentalist persuasion, referred to themselves as "the church" or "the fellowship". They were led by a man named Jim Roberts. He was called Brother Evangelist by the membership.
Since the "flesh" family is considered evil or the enemy, Bob's correspondence with us soon tapered off from frequent to rare, and eventually we had no word. An exception was a home visit one year after his recruitment, accompanied by another brother. We were overjoyed to see him until it became obvious that the purpose of the visit was to recruit the family into the group. When they were unsuccessful in achieving this end, they departed. As a result, we have not seen nor spoken to Bob in the last 23 years.
Over time, we have learned through association with ex-members and parents of members, some of the characteristics of this group;
Autocratic...Strict control of membership by the leader.
Isolationism...Breaking family relationship and any other outside influences.
Zealousness..."The Lord will provide", therefore no eyeglasses, no medical attention, and other stringent restrictions including no salvation for non-members. They only work for hire when necessary, and then only on a cash basis (no payroll record).
About ten years ago, we learned from a recent ex-member that Bob had an emotional breakdown while at their Houston, TX location. As a result, he was sent on his own (essentially abandoned) to Milwaukee, WI. Our efforts to locate him there were fruitless. About two years later, we encountered one of the cult's "elders" at a location in Portland, OR. Upon inquiry, the "Elder" confirmed that Bob had displayed impairment, and was no longer with the group. He suggested the Bob might be in either Memphis or Nashville, TN. In an effort to locate him and tend to his physical and emotional needs we have visited with public safety agencies in all of the mentioned sites to no avail.
Banished members, afraid for their eternal salvation, have been known to follow members or loiter near group locations in hope that they can again reestablish membership in good standing.
A good documentation of life in the group was covered by ex-member Rachel Martin in her book Escape, published by Accent Publications, Inc.
Any information concerning Bob Carroll's whereabouts would be deeply appreciated.
Click here for email to the Carrolls.