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Criminal missionaries' son wants to wait for trail in prayer jail


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Accused MK Counterfeiter Asks To Be Released to YWAM

Bizarre story of a missionary son, married to a dictator's granddaughter in Uganda, turned criminal, caught and extradicted to the US where he is awaiting trail. 

He wants to be released in the care of YWAM, his parents' missionary organisation, who wil keep him in a regime of prayer, Bible reading and chores. They are convinced he has sincerely repented and wants to get his life back on track.

However, he is considered a flight risk, and with very good reason. YWAM cannot garantee he won't escape, but believe they will somehow know when things are going not right. His parents also believe he is on the right track.

To me the guy sounds like a smart manipulator with very good connections, just waiting for his guillable missionary friends to get him out of jail. I feel for his parents, I understand how they long to see their son back in the fold. But heck, he has been charged with some serious stuff. Nice touch, he hid counterfit bills in child sponsorship pamphlets.

Quote from the article:

"Mike Bordon, who heads the local YWAM branch, told the judge that though YWAM staff cannot guarantee that Gustafson won’t flee or kill himself, they can keep an eye on him.

“If there are signs that things aren’t going well, we’ll know that right away,” Bordon told CT.

Gustafson’s parents visited the Lebanon facility for a week last summer, and asked that they consider hosting Gustafson should he be released on bail. “They feel they’ve seen a big change in Ryan,” Bordon said.

After speaking with Gustafson in jail, Bordon said he felt Gustafson was sincere in his desire to repent and reform.

“He talked about how he’s really been reading his Bible a lot,” Bordon said. “He talked about how he was really trying to make a change in his life.”

“I realize this is serious with Ryan being a potential fugitive. I know it’s serious. It’s not a game,” said Bordon. “If we’re going to err, we want to err on the side of giving people a chance.”

 

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They'll "know" he would be thinking about fleeing and take care of it? Ummmm, like they knew he was doing illegal stuff to start with and stopped it then? Not a great advertisement for their powers of self policing. 

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In their dreams.  Gustafson is a 28 year old married (alleged) criminal not a teenager who went astray in his walk with the Lord. I liked that even Christianity Today put "missionary kid" in quotes here.

Given its practices, and many complaints over the years, in my opinion YWAM is a cult.  Others may differ.

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15 minutes ago, Palimpsest said:

Given its practices, and many complaints over the years, in my opinion YWAM is a cult.  Others may differ.

My take is that many missionary organisations have a strong potential to function as a cult on a local/national level, even when the organisation itself can not be classified as a cult. 

YWAM, with an anti-intellectual, anti- conventional and charismatic strike and many very young people in their fold, has an even greater potential for cult-forming in my opinion. Most YWAM people I know are quite immature for their age (though often adventurous and creative). The organisation seems to either attract or produce people like that. 

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4 hours ago, foreign fundie said:

fter speaking with Gustafson in jail, Bordon said he felt Gustafson was sincere in his desire to repent and reform.

“He talked about how he’s really been reading his Bible a lot,” Bordon said. “He talked about how he was really trying to make a change in his life.”

If he were truly repentant, he'd express regret about his actions and go forward bravely to take the consequences he'd earned, not try to get out of them by claiming some sort of "change".

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If you don't want to go to jail, don't be a criminal. This guy absolutely should not get special treatment by getting to choose where he goes, and a missionary organization is not a reasonable choice to supervise an offender awaiting trial. 

I agree with Refugee - if he's truly sorry, he needs to to accept that there is a consequence for what he did and acknowledge that he earned his punishment with his behavior. Repentance does not mean getting out of your consequences; it means quite the opposite. If all it took to avoid punishment was to claim to be sorry, the prisons would be empty because anyone can say the words. The hard part is showing it in your actions, which includes accepting that you have to pay for the laws you break.

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Whoa, counterfeiting US currency is a SERIOUS matter. Consider that Federal agents went to Uganda to track this down.

People have been arrested by the Feds at a neighborhood grocery or drugstore in the US for inadvertently paying with a counterfeit $20, even though they had no knowledge of the counterfeiting or any way to detect it before using the bad bills.

Homeboy definitely picked the wrong scam & I somehow think he won't be allowed to stay with YWAM to await legal proceedings.

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And he's married to Idi Amin's granddaughter whose father is a high up in Uganda and was still extradicted. 

Amin apparently had dozens of children and the sins of the father and all that.  However, the mere mention of Idi Amin gives me cold chills.

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4 hours ago, Palimpsest said:

Given its practices, and many complaints over the years, in my opinion YWAM is a cult.  Others may differ.

I don't know if I would describe it as a cult, but I am not impressed with YWAM at all. I have a few family members on staff with YWAM and another family member thinking of doing a DTS with YWAM.  Trying to talk this person out of doing it with logic is not going to work.

From what I have observed, YWAM has very little oversight. It attracts young people and they live in a bubble preventing them from completely growing up. I have been horrified by some of the stories I have heard from my family members.

I know I am being vague, but I don't want to dox myself.

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I don't have any experience with YWAM and I don't really know anything about them, but even if they were the best missionary organization or NGO in the world, I still wouldn't find this appropriate because it isn't their area of expertise to supervise people who would otherwise be incarcerated. That isn't their job or their focus. 

The fact that they don't realize that and feel prepared to take this on is a major red flag about the organization for me. Incarceration is not optional and providing an alternative should not be a task left to enthusiastic amateurs.

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5 hours ago, Ali said:

I don't know if I would describe it as a cult, but I am not impressed with YWAM at all. I have a few family members on staff with YWAM and another family member thinking of doing a DTS with YWAM.  Trying to talk this person out of doing it with logic is not going to work.

From what I have observed, YWAM has very little oversight. It attracts young people and they live in a bubble preventing them from completely growing up. I have been horrified by some of the stories I have heard from my family members.

I know I am being vague, but I don't want to dox myself.

@Ali, no problem whatsoever.  Caution on the Internet is a very sensible thing.

 YWAM has been on my personal cult-watch list for years.  Their practices have been very cult-like for a really long time.  It was created in the 1960s and some aspects of it may be less culty than others.  The second generation aspect of this interests me academically - and personally.

This is also true for those who grew up in Scientology and Gothardism ... again products of cults that got a foot hold way back when.

One of the nastiest cults I know about was a very minor one that simply called itself "The Organization."  Active in the late 1960s and 1970s it has never hit the headlines and is mostly notable as a fake Buddhist organization that established itself in India.  It did its best to destroy the lives of children born onto the cult.  Child sexual abuse abounded in the creches "The Organization" set up for the kids born into the cult.  The adults who subscribed to its glorious solutions to all the world's problems were so screwed too.

I've met a few of the adults and a few of the children that survived that cult.  So destructive.

 

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I looked up about this person online and it appears that he was facing trial in Uganda at the end of 2014. It's only just now being reported on again and coming up to trial in the US which I'm guessing means it's been very difficult to extradite him. I'm pretty sure therefore he stands no chance whatsoever of being released into the care of YWAM or even escaping a prison sentence.

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On 4/17/2016 at 9:48 PM, FrumperedCat said:

I looked up about this person online and it appears that he was facing trial in Uganda at the end of 2014. It's only just now being reported on again and coming up to trial in the US which I'm guessing means it's been very difficult to extradite him. I'm pretty sure therefore he stands no chance whatsoever of being released into the care of YWAM or even escaping a prison sentence.

I am under the impression that extraditions are like trials unto themselves, with a fair amount of either proof or political manipulation needed for the process to go ahead.

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