Protests on March 30 and April 4
(Kaiwind.com) According to WUSA9’s report of March 30, nearly 100 demonstrators peacefully protested outside of a Pentecostal church in Sterling claiming sexual abuse and brainwashing. And the TV website report of April 4 said that again a few dozen people protested Calvary Temple Ministries in Virginia Friday claiming the church is a cult that abuses and brainwashes its members.
The Loudoun County Sheriff's Office confirms they have recently reopened the case of alleged sexual abuse at Calvary Temple Ministries, a decade after they closed a case involving similar accusations.
Calvary Temple Ministries in Sterling, Virginia
Shelley Shultz hasn't been back to the church for more than a decade, until Sunday. She joined dozens of other protesters wanting Calvary Temple Church closed because of alleged abuse and what she claims happened to her.
"I think when you get out you want to run. You want to get away. I was abused by one of the teachers. Once a week. He would take me somewhere and park the car," Shultz said.
The abuse claims are not only sexual or isolated.
"I was told I was ugly, worthless, fat, anything they can think of and they would do it in front of my peers," added Cynthia Azat an ex Calvary Temple member.
Alleged victims say brainwashing is rampant and has torn apart families.
"They're taught that if they leave they will not have a relationship with God because no one teaches the standards they teach," Azat said.
But those who have left have sacrificed contact with loved ones.
"I left six years ago and they told me you forfeit your wife and son," explained John Miuccio.
Andrew Lawrence watched his two- and four-year-old daughters walk into church while protesting. When he left the church, his parents stopped talking to him, his wife left him and he is now fighting custody of his children.
"I want them out, I want them free, and right now what they're getting ready to have in there is being told everything out here is Satan they're getting brainwashed every time they walk in there," Lawrence said. "I'm scared of the sexual abuse and how these children are told how to live."
Kaitlyn Skeeters is the granddaughter of head pastor Star Scott through marriage. She says because of her alleged sexual abuse, Loudoun County Sheriff's Office launched an investigation a decade ago that resulted in no charges.
"Adults who knew I was being abused turned their heads. They lie and turn everybody against you," Skeeters said.
Skeeters alleges that her mother saw the pastor touch her inappropriately.
"At this age you're not aware, my mother saw him touch me inappropriately.
"when I got off his lap she saw his fingers reach across my private area," Skeeters described.
Skeeters said she's not only haunted by the alleged sexual abuse but that physical and emotional abuse runs in the family.
People who have left the church say members are trapped in a painful cycle of abuse and don't even know it.
"My abuse story is horrible there are still other children in there," Skeeters said.
More than half a dozen alleged victims told WUSA9 that they want Calvary Temple's dark secrets exposed.
"The justice that needs to be brought to Star Scott and all these people making pretty penny justice needs to be brought now," Lawrence said.
When WUSA9's Surae Chinn and her photographer tried to talk to church leadership they said they had no statement and were told recording is prohibited.
They were greeted by several men in the lobby and escorted into service where Pastor Star Scott addressed the congregation and said the protesters outside were people who were making allegations and nothing more.
Roughly 350 people make up Calvary Temple's congregation. WUSA9 said.