This website was probably inevitable. It’s basically a rebuttal to the harsh child-rearing ideas that are so prevalent in fundamentalist Christianity.
You can see a statement of their beliefs here. Like many (most?) religious folks, they endeavor to show not only that they are doing things a certain way, but that really their way is the only way, because it’s “biblical.”
I looked over the forum a bit, and in general, these tend to be women that I would describe as “crunchy.” There’s a whole section devoted to vegetarianism, for instance. And another to “natural health and nutrition.” And of course, homeschooling. I get the feeling that these are women who are totally immersed in child-rearing and homemaking. There is an actual section over there called “Joyous Homekeeping” and an entire thread devoted to how to clean a toilet. I am serious.
It’s understandable that Camille K. Lewis would have gotten involved with this sort of group. Denied motherhood for a long time, she was very motivated to “do it right” when she finally had a living child. The reaction is natural and commendable. It’s also a bit obsessive. It explains why Camille’s blog, during the years when her children were small, is filled with descriptions of how she quite literally played with them. A lot. I never did such a thing (I was my son’s mother, not his playmate), so I found it all a bit much. That doesn’t mean it’s wrong (I’m the one who could be completely wrong), it’s just different.
All that aside, the site has a forum. And Camille was a participant there for several years. This is where the people who came over to Sharper Iron to help Camille out during the spanking threads originated.
This announcement appears on Camille’s Facebook page, publicly, dated March, 2014. It describes events that occurred seven years earlier. Seven years. And it includes links to all sorts of copied stuff, screen shots and files. I took screenshots of all of it to do this page and I have 118 screen shots. Seriously. 118 screen shots. And she kept it all for seven years.
“The Lord has gifted me…” she says. I’m not sure what to say to that.
And she went to mediation, not to resolve the problem, but to leave. She says so. She had no intention of staying. She just wanted to “scream at the problem” so everyone would “notice.”
Maybe I’m odd, but if somebody came to me with a perceived problem, and told me that all they really wanted to do was “scream” a little bit and then leave, I would ask them to do their screaming elsewhere after they’re gone. Or, conversely, leave their complaint if they like, but don’t pretend to have a discussion that might result in any sort of reconciliation. Intent is everything.
The so-called mediation goes on for pages and pages and it’s in a format that makes it very difficult to determine who is saying what. I am going to highlight in various colors to try to differentiate between speakers. [Pink for Crystal, yellow for Camille] After reading through it pretty carefully, it appears that there were two intertwined issues. One was a beef about Camille’s friend Mollie, who seems to have said something in the forum that got moderated out of existence. Camille thinks that the admin who did this was being unfair to Mollie.
The second, probably more overarching issue is that this is a large forum. The owner has some women who are called “administrators.” But nobody, not even a few people, could keep track of every thread in every section of the forum and deal with a family and children too. So they have “moderators” who are assigned to specific sections. Camille was a moderator.
Crystal (in pink), who is the admin who stepped in with the Mollie situation, made the above comment and it sounds pretty familiar, I think.
Camille replied to Crystal, and it seems that Crystal is just wrong. There will be “silence.”
Remember, Camille already told us that she went into this conversation with no intention of working anything out. She went into it so she could pretty much stomp around and sling mud on everyone and then march out.
It’s clear from Crystal’s reply here that 1) she didn’t see the “Mollie conversation” in the same way Camille did, and 2) she doesn’t understand that what she is witnessing is a temper tantrum, not an attempt to reconcile.
And a bit further on, we get Camille doing her one-word-sentence thing for emphasis.
Funny how Camille is so often “compelled by God” to do things, and that’s just peachy, but if anyone else says that (Beth Murschell, for example) it’s horrible and awful and the sky is falling.
Remember this from about a year ago? Remember how they screamed about this for weeks on end? Remember how Camille never said anything like, “Well, I’ve felt compelled by God to do stuff before, like six years ago”?
Note something: If you resort to “I am compelled by God. . .” you are stifling all discussion. How can there be any debate if you’re directed by God himself to do something? Who can argue with that, other than to point out that maybe you have a serious delusion? This is true whether it’s Camille Lewis or Beth Murschell speaking, but the double standard here is sort of breathtaking.
Realizing that she has totally screwed up, Camille attempted to reword the whole “compelled” thing, but I do not have to have a Ph.D. in “rhetoric” to realize this is weaseling. There is not the slightest chance that Camille would allow anyone else to get away with what she is attempting to do here. Crystal didn’t buy it, at all, and continued to say, periodically, that Camille was accusing her of not listening to “God.”
Crystal refuses to be “helped.” At this point, if Crystal had had any sense at all, she would have exited and never had a conversation with Camille K. Lewis again. However, she didn’t. It went on for pages and pages. Crystal called Camille out for saying that Camille was purporting to straighten Crystal out because Crystal wasn’t “listening to God.” At this point, Camille denies ever saying any such thing, rephrases it, and then insists that the rephrase is her original statement. Of course, it isn’t. She clearly says that she is “compelled” to do this and she says that in the context of being the human being “sent by God” to “prick [Crystal’s] ears.”
Good golly, I have no idea why Camille thought it was a good idea to save this stuff or worse, post it on her own Facebook page, like it’s flattering.
At this point, a third person (Kathy) has entered the conversation. I have highlighted her question in green. She’s asking Crystal about the future. The future. The one there isn’t going to be because, remember, Camille didn’t go into mediation to settle anything. She went into mediation to have a temper trantrum and then leave. Notice that Camille doesn’t correct this notion. She lets them continue to think that she is open to a “future.”
Please note the date here: February 27, 2007. It is significant. On February 27, 2007, Camille allowed these folks to believe that there was a possibility of some sort of “future” – that mediation was intended to repair the rift and allow her to continue in her role as a moderator.
And she tells us that what other people see as a difference of opinion she sees as a “moral obligation.” She was sent by God, of course. This was seven years ago. She’s still doing it.
Can anyone say “lack of self-awareness”?
Having finished arguing with Crystal about leadership and the Holy Spirit and nose boogers (I’m not kidding), Camille then goes at it with Jeri Carr (comments highlighted in green), who is the owner of the forum.
It’s quite clear from the context of this lengthy exchange that the date is after February 27, 2007 – and Camille is still pretending that she isn’t planning to leave, that she’s not “organizing a mod strike” and that GCM is “God’s place.”
Note the sucking-up that Camille is doing. There’s a different tone in these exchanges than there was in the exchange with Crystal. Camille is flattering Jeri. She is also attempting to cover her ass regarding the “compelled by God” thing, so she repeats the morphing crap she pulled (compelled by friendship).
I include this solely because it made me laugh.
Camille made a typo, I think. The information was not “safe.” She meant to type: The information is in my safe.
And this is the final communication between Jeri and Camille. Camille tells us the date is February 28, 2007. And she is still in suck up mode. Jeri is a “peach.” Note that.
Also, I will pause a bit and let it sink in that Camille, at this point, was still employed by BJU. She is telling Jeri that BJU was paying her “a lot of money to help them communicate better.”
“A lot of money.”
How often has Camille ranted and raved on Truth Seeking Graduates that BJU doesn’t pay its employees squat? How often?
So then there’s this. A whole different forum. Isn’t that interesting? It appears that Camille and three other women left and started their own forum. Obviously, the problem was not resolved.
It hasn’t been a rip-roaring success. Compare that with GCM, which has in excess of 3000 members, and this during a period when online forums are struggling due to competition from other forms of social media.
But who owns this gem? Who started it?
Well, guess who. . . And please note the date the domain was purchased.
While Camille was busy sucking up to Jeri and conversing with folks about the “future,” she was also busy purchasing and setting up a forum to be in direct competition with GCM.
I can’t emphasize this enough. Camille was yelling about being open and transparent, while simultaneously plotting in the background. She was sucking up to Jeri, saying all manner of nice things, as she was purchasing a competitive domain name and setting her own forum, where she could be the one in charge of everything.
This is the earliest dated post on the forum, five days after Camille was calling Jeri “a peach,” and about a week after she was letting them all believe there was a “future.”
Return to March, 2014 on Camille’s Facebook page
Camille begins by releasing an email that Jeri sent to her after finding out that Camille had removed all that crap from her “safe” and posted it on Facebook.
Let’s get something clear here. When you enter into a private conversation with someone, especially one where the person goes to some trouble to clarify that it is, indeed, private, and you assure them that it’s private – and you then betray that understanding by putting it on the internet in its entirety, you are just a jerk. There is no other way to describe it.
The only valid reasons for revealing the content of a private conversation like that is 1) if you are served a subpoena and it’s not a privileged conversation, 2) it’s obvious that someone is in very real danger if you do not reveal it, 3) if so many years have passed that the principals are all dead long ago and the material has historical value, or 4) if the other party starts releasing it out of context and you wish to correct the public record (in other words, you didn’t initiate the revelation in the first place). If there are others, I don’t know what they might be.
“The Church” doesn’t give a flying fuck about this whole issue, and “the Church” cannot read. “The Church” is just a pious construct Camille came up with to excuse her very bad behavior.
And yes, we know that this is what Camille does.
I realize that all this stuff is confusing. I know that many folks won’t bother to try to put it all together. I did my best to condense it, color code it, and otherwise make a bunch of gobblydegook more intelligible.
In the event that she takes it all private in the wake of this page going up. . .
She did. But we want to see it, don’t we? And she said that “the church” could see it, didn’t she? And I like to do everything I can to help “the church.”
So here it is, in its entirety.
And to go one step further into Bizarro Land, there’s this.
What I want to know is how many of these freebie blogs has Camille started? The internet is littered with them. When does this woman do all this “joyous homekeeping”? When does she actually practice “attachment parenting” or parenting of any sort at all?
This anonymous (but suspiciously Lewis-powered) blog began, you guessed it, in March, 2014, just about the time that Camille posted all that stuff to her Facebook wall.
And with that note, we will return to our previously scheduled programming. Please forgive the interruption. . .
Genesis, Part 5
Gentle Christian Mothers, all files