I Fired God
I Fired God
My Life Inside, and Escape From, the Secret World of the Independent Fundamental Baptist Cult
St. Martin's Press, Hardcover, 9781250026262, 293pp.
Publication Date: May 14, 2013
"A compelling memoir and account of the Independent Fundamental Baptist church and its shocking history of religious abuse."
Jocelyn Zichterman was born, raised, married into, and finally, with her family, fled the Independent Fundamental Baptist church. Founded by the fiery preacher Bob Jones, with several hundred thousand members, IFB congregants are told they must not associate with members of other Baptist denominations and evangelicals, with an emphasis on secrecy, insular marriages within the church, a subservience for women, and unusual child raising practices.
In "I Fired God, " Jocelyn Zichterman systematically details the IFB's disturbing history, exposing a cult-like atmosphere of corruption, greed, and abuse. Having been initiated into its innermost circles, Zichterman knows that the gentle demeanor America sees in the form of the Duggar clan on "19 Kids and Counting" disguises the truth about the darker side of the church.
With written documentation and sources so thorough that law enforcement has used her work as a foundation for criminal prosecutions, Zichterman exposes the IFB with revelations including:
- The disturbing world of abuse within the IFB and doctors and teachers who cater exclusively to church members and fail to report physical and sexual abuse
- The IFB-controlled Bob Jones University, which issues degrees of questionable value while making vast sums of money for its founders
- The way the IFB influences politics on the local, state, and national level, and protects its abusive culture under the constitutional guarantee of freedom of religion.
“An incendiary piece of work.” —Kirkus Review
“Zichterman’s compelling and moving book will appeal to readers of memoir.” —Library Journal
“This is one edgy, thought-provoking odyssey—from oppressed child to ultimate whistle-blower.” —Booklist