Thursday, January 7, 2016

Kingdom Mandates and Spiritual Covering (QF: The View from Here)

This series of posts results includes excerpts from information shared with a journalist in August of 2015 who had questions about the Quiverfull Movement as it related to the Duggar Family.

Find the Index of all posts HERE.

Can you elaborate on the experiences you've heard from survivors of the QF cult? The lack of healthcare, emotional and physical abuse, risks of so many pregnancies and births, girls being robbed of their own childhoods, shame surrounding bodies and sex et cetera. It would be great to flesh those as a little so the readers can really understand the terrible impact of these on the women that you've helped.

Raising Children, Response Part Three:

Younger daughters often experience educational neglect, not only because their beleaguered mothers and older siblings are too tired and busy to teach them, many in the movement believe that daughters are not worth educating because their “kingdom mandate” involves a domestic role. 

R.C. Sproul, Jr. describes on pages 110-112 of his book When You Rise Up that the parents of a nine year old who cannot yet read need not be concerned if she can care for younger siblings, make breakfast, and tend to gardening. Parents are counseled against college for daughters in many cases, and resources tend to be channeled towards families’ sons who are permitted to work freely in society.

Women, even if adults, are said to be at risk of spiritual and physical harm if they move freely in the culture “without a male covering.” And for some like the Jackson Family whose brothers sexually abused their sister over a period of ten years, such abuse often goes unreported because of ignorance, entitlement, and personal shame. As we see in the scandal involving the Duggar Family of the cable TV show about their family of nineteen children, the subculture struggles with proper handling of this kind of abuse, particularly because of the excessive focus placed on purity, sex, and gender.

Particularly as a nurse and as a naturopath, I am deeply concerned for young women who have no means of support apart from their families and who are not offered health care coverage. Some families participate in the medical cost sharing programs that are popular with some within the homeschooling community, but many do not. Children are doused in kerosene to treat lice infestations. Rather than pay for inexpensive soap, in Luddite fashion families will go to great lengths to make their own soap, and many seek to stay “off the grid” by surviving without hot water, heat, and electricity. 

Children in the South have told me of awakening to find rats eating their hair as they sleep in bed. A notably large family in a rather famous “family integrated” church for homeschoolers “simplified” their lives by moving to a mobile home to be close to one of the QF/P leaders, but their property did not have potable water. The church venerated their sacrifice for their children’s daily work of carrying water from a generous neighbor’s property, as though this constituted suffering for Christianity itself. In a recent report about the Naugler Family, their family also relied upon a neighbor for drinkable water which they obtained without their blessing.

~ Cynthia Kunsman
The view of Quiverfull from my vantage
August 2015