Slaps forehead!

I should have looked for this earlier. TeamSilsby’s friends have established a Facebook support page: Bring Laura Silsby and Charisa Coulter Home!

This is taken from the page information:

A little administrative note: those who join this group with their own personal axes to grind will not be accepted. Those who post strong negative comments will have their comments removed. This goes against the mission purpose of this group…a positive prayerful supportive group for Laura, Charisa, and their families. There are plenty of opinions surrounding this case. The negative opinions and statements don’t belong here. By joining this group you are agreeing to abide by the above statements. Thank you.

That means most of the world isn’t welcome to their Kaffeeskltsch (or is that Tea Party?) As of this writing, they’ve gathered only 129 Friends. One dropped off while I was writing this.

FB Friends include former detainee Paul Thompson (private page), his wife Renee Culberth Thompson (private page) and a few people who might be relatives. Also Silsby’s sister and fellow New Life Children’s Refuge incorporator, Kim Barton (private page).

All comments are valentines to Miss Laura or ponderous scripture. Here, for example, is the latest posting from page creator Esther Hardman, in which she frames Silsby’s incarceration as a sacrificial conversion technique (my emphasis):

Lord, we don’t know what’s going on in Haiti the last couple of days, but you do. Please care for Laura, send her encouragement. Help expedite the court proceedings. Please move in the officials’ hearts. Help Laura and the other native Christians around her use this opportunity to glorify your Name. Please send her comfort, food, healing,wisdom, and encouragement today. Help Charisa, and both Laura’s and Charisa’s families today as they await further developments in this case. Encourage them as well, help them to feel your love in a special way today. In Jesus Name Amen.

Another FB Friend, not doing irony too well, posted:

“He will make your innocence radiate like the dawn, and the justice of your cause will shine like the noonday sun.” Psalm 37:6- Father God, I pray this over Laura.

No prayers yet for the children and families TeamSilsby exploited and coerced, the chaos the group created with legitimate relief efforts (including the possible deaths that resulted from their bad behavior) , the PersonalShopper.com employees and creditors Silsby stiffed, and her own left-behind children.

Another FB page: Pray for the 10 Americans in Haiti was set up a few days after the arrests. It has 533 members. No one has posted on its wall since February 19 when all but Coulter and Silsby were released. Go to the Friends List and you’ll find many of the detainees with links to their FB pages. Do the comparative membership numbers between the two pages indicate suspicion or mistrust of Coulter and Silsby amongst a majority of Team Silsby FB supporters? Do they care?

NOTE: I’ll be posting a second part to this shortly. It didn’t mesh well, so I’ve separated them.

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  1. I’ve heard it all before….same fundie BS, different pseudo-cause. I grew up in that atmosphere. Is it any surprise that I find just about all organized (for its own purposes) religion offensive? I hate those prayers that give the (putative) Almighty orders to give them what they want. In this case, they are petitioning God to allow this woman to get away with kidnapping and misrepresentation. But, they will say, she did it in the name of the Looorruuddd! UGH

  2. I’m going to take the liberty to “lift” the opening sentence of a comment on the FB page:

    Esther Hardman “Lord, we don’t know what’s going on in Haiti the last couple of days, but you do”.

    Full stop, my “God” tells me that’s true. My “God” tells me that “he/she/all loving” doesn’t send people in his name to kidnap children in disaster zones. My “God” tells me that “he/she/all loving” wipes away the tears of a child before he comforts any adult who claims his name in gathering children off the street to fulfill a “mission purpose” for any sanctimoneous ADULTS who wish to “save” them from their own culture which my “God” “he/she/all loving” also created, as if creating a mosaic, where no two tiles are alike.

  3. “God’s Will”: If people aren’t careful, they can justify any outcome using this phrase and then come up with some “Godly” reason why it makes sense that fits into their belief framework. For example, if Silsby winds up being convicted and jailed in Haiti, it will be called “God’s Will” since she can evangelize from her cell – ignoring that it may be really be “God’s Will” that she is punished for illegal actions – God doesn’t doesn’t give a “Christian exemption”, we have to serve the time for our crime.

    If Silsby does get returned to the US, will anybody help her out? She has no place to call home, a number of court cases….anyone that helps her has to realize Silsby will want people around her who will not question her behavior or motives and will do what she wants to do (not what God wants) but she will mask it in God so it’s palatable.

    Silsby supporters have not had their trust broken directly by Silsby – yet. They don’t want to look at her overall character as evidenced by her actions over the years, and some of them may know her personally, but just can’t come to grips with her issues. Humans really want to believe the best of someone, which is why it is so easy for people to be duped and carry on in the charade.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if there are people close to Silsby who have been hurt by her and simply do not want to add to the negative press at this time, not wanting to taint things further, and staying out of the fray. They say nothing, waiting for others to find their own way out of the the “Silsby Fog”. Perhaps the Christian 8 (and the other Christians in DR) are not saying anything due to being “lawyered up” or it could be that they experienced Silsby’s lies (the stories changed so many times!) firsthand and are coming out of the “Silsby Fog”. All of these people who were associated with Silsby – they aren’t out of the woods yet – and I would bet at least one of them must be a bit angry over what happened in Haiti and vowing never to let such a thing happen to them again.

    There is NO ONE speaking out day after day for Silsby on a consistent basis. She doesn’t have a legal team that is seeking publicity. Look at all of the work Jim Allen’s wife did to rally support for Allen. And the wives of Thompson and Culbreth.

    This small support group on Facebook – that is all they are doing – the praying. They are the only ones left. Prayer doesn’t create websites, videos, television appearances – hard work does. Silsby has reaped what she sowed and it’s evident in her dwindling support base. She did a good job in surrounding herself with other people who had thousands of supporters, now they are all peeled away and she can’t use them for cover any more.

    Now, they need to pray that, once cornered, and alone in Haiti, Silsby doesn’t start throwing some of them under a bus. She lied about many other things – would she lie to save her skin and make up a few things about her associates, just to muddy the water further? I wouldn’t put anything past her. I have wondered if this was possible for a number of weeks now and time will tell if she decides to go this route. She has NOTHING to lose and all of these associated with her have EVERYTHING To lose. That might be why they aren’t saying anything negative about her, since she could make up whatever she wants about them, just to send the judge down some rabbit holes and to get some company back in her jail cell in Haiti. (Anon J)

  4. I’ve found that God’s will” and whatever you (the generic, not you personally) believe always coincide. Amazing.

    I’ve wondered, too about the silence. I am pretty sure they are lawyered up. The big chink was the note slipped to MSNBC, but I’m sure there are other problems we don’t know about. There most definitely will be a stateside investigation about some if not all of this advcenture that’s going to involve a lot of people getting a knock on their door. (FBI, Homeland Security, IRS for instance)

    I seriously doubt anyone will be sent back to Haiti for a trial, but there must be other things they need to keep quiet about. In a group that big, though,somebody is bound to say something, even inadvertently, that could blow the lid off.

    I am particularly curious about CVBC and Clint Henry. And why is the Texas group so quiet and why did the run outta Dodge? It still makes no sense to me. If they had stayed on a few days and then left, I’d understand that, but to leave immediately after the arrest begs a lot of questions. No loyalty there. And why has there never been, but for that one brief news report, any mention of Nancy Rodriguez. Why did her husband hide her visit to DR though interviewed several times by the media? Why doesn’t the church own up it was there?

    They all might be in real or imagined danger of being thrown under the bus by Silsby. She’s a pathological liar, but, as they say, “truth hurts,” too.

    I’m also wondering about high up DR connections, and that’s rather documented from other sources, though some of it is speculative at this point But things do come together. They certainly have a stake in Silsby keeping quiet. She’s been stand-up as far as we know, but we don’t know what she’s told Saint-vil in private. She was up to her eyeballs in questionable activities and relationships. It would be in her interest to keep quiet and certainly other people’s interest to make sure she keeps quiet.I wonder if that’s some of the fear the others say they felt. I never believed they were in danger from Haitian police and jailers who certainly didn’t want a bigger international incident.

    It’s ain’t over yet, though I doubt ther will be a Lifetime movie heroizing her. Though I can see one about Baptists duped into a child saving cult.

  5. I know this will sound “out there” but I have wondered if perhaps Jorge was contracted by someone to threaten Laura or heaven forbid, even to kill her. I remember how he was at the airfield with the plane for the missionaries that were all going to be released (as he proclaimed). I wonder if that plane would have gone down? Then, they would have been “martyred”.

    Another “out there” – the one minister said if he hadn’t been ill, then everything would have been okay. I wonder if Silsby didn’t do a very good job of handling things – not to mention running into the journalist (HaitiVox) – and “they” (the real bad guys) realized that Silsby wasn’t who they wanted to run this operation. She was trying to get the Picketts’ children, crying and pleading, basically drawing all sorts of attention to what was going on – and during the very first run of this whole operation. So, minister gets sick and she gets “caught” and then her her actions and behaviors keep everyone focused on her versus what is really going on. Bribe and get her out of Haiti and cut her out of the operation, then, find some level headed person to pick up later and carry on. The equivalent of a bad guy pink slip.

    I know this is all “out there”; just wondering if anyone has had similar thoughts. (Anon J)

  6. That’s interesting J. I don’t think Jorge is a killer or even much of a physical threat. He’s a con man, and if anything, he’s a fixer. I’ve wondered, despite his statement to the contrary,if he didn’t go over there to try to fix things. I have more to write about that later, but I’m so far behind, and it’s getting worse since I’ll be out of town next week for 5 days. I have 2 pieces today I want to finish. We’ll see.

    I think Silsby was way too much for anyone to handle once they saw what she was about. Kinda like The Ransom of Red Chief. She looked good on paper, and as a smooth talker with apparent money she was not only an easy mark, but a “viable” partner. It makes no difference what her motives were, the higher ups or whatever, were going to get a cut of it. They each had their own motives. I’ve mentioned this a little bit in a piece I want to finish today. Maybe I’ll elaborate now) I believe Silsby was way over her head with her entitled Barbie amerikan attitude and faith that God was leading her charge.

  7. From the Facebook group – “Send Laura visitors who will pray with her and hold her hand while she waits for YOUR timing and answers.”

    I have been wondering just who is visiting Laura in Haitian jail. Does she have anyone? I don’t think so since the Facebook group doesn’t seem to have insights into what is going on there. You would think there would be ONE person down there in Haiti visiting her, who would be reporting back to those in the US who can share what is going on. Unlike the other missionaries’ legal teams, there is no communication link between
    Silsby and her supporters.

    So, if there isn’t anyone there, shouldn’t one of these prayer warriors “get off the couch” and head down to Haiti to support Laura? Why don’t they take up a collection and select one person to go there? Or donate money to Silsby’s sister or father to travel there to see what the heck is going on?

    Or get at least get “dialed in” to whomever is visiting her…if there is someone….so they do know what is going on.

    Deep down, I think they know something is not quite right and it’s best to just pray…and not get too involved really…and then take a bunch of credit for their prayers…since if God’s timing is FIVE YEARS, well okay then, it’s God’s will….in the meantime, is anyone going to visit Silsby during those five years? (Anon J)

  8. No matter how many ways I look at it, I just can’t figure out what Puello had to gain by taking up the Silsby cause. It doesn’t make any sense. I cannot believe he did it out of the kindness of his heart. Not when there was a warrant out for his arrest. So there had to be a payoff somewhere.

    I’m beginning to think that Silsby is just plain crazy and really believed she was rescuing the children for God. Possibly she hit a trip wire somewhere that set other things rolling. Possibly she thought she was being a player and just got played.

    One of the things that gives me great pause though is the fact that she bold-faced lied about the kids when first arrested. She absolutely insisted they were all orphans when she knew very well she had coerced them from their parents. It is this that makes everything else look that much more suspect. I wonder if we will ever really know what the true story is?

  9. It’s ironic how Coulter will be flying into Boise tonight, to a celebratory crowd, per the Facebook group – and now a new charge against Silsby is announced today, that may keep her there until early May or longer if there is a trial. Gee, God’s timing is great, isn’t it? Start figuring out who to send to Haiti to minister to Silsby now. If she is left alone for two months in Haiti, what is she going to say? I wonder if the smirk left her face when they told her of the new charge today.(Anon J)

  10. Yikes, I went away for 3 hours and look at what I cam back to! When I left there was nothing.

    But it IS God’s will! Silsby was sent to convert Haiti, especially judges and jailers.

  11. Good questions, anonymous. I saw a news report the other day thatsaid somebody from consular services visits her every day to take her food and water. Boy, I wonder if they fight over that job.

    Early on a missionary who’d been in Haiti for years was visiting the whole group regularly, but that was before their release. He was very clear that he didn’t know them, he was just doing a kindnes. And of course, Yoram. I’m sure he’s not sneaking in to see her.

    It sounds like she’s really on her own at this point. Too much has been reported and documented on her. Her parents aren’t exactly paupers. Why aren’t they down there, at least for a few days to check up on her? Isn’t that odd? Or her grown son?

    You know I was thinking tonight. We’ve all had bright ideas that went awry. But this…this…as got to be the worse bright idea in modern history. I wonder what’s going through her head? And she probably has no idea what’s going on back in Boise.

  12. I am beginning to think that she wasn’t purposely connected to anyone who had heinous intentions. But her own intentions, grounded as they were in her arrogant hubris, were heinous. She was/remains too blind to see how her actions were reprehensible. So perhaps a higher power somewhere has decided she needs to cool her heels for a while longer.

    Her lies were not lies, because she was telling them in good faith! These poor souls who were trying to stop her/interfere with her plans just didn’t understand what she was trying to do. So rather than get waylaid by meeting their requirements, she tried to circumvent the law, and even just common courtesy, in order to push forward with her plan.

  13. It’s interesting how the FB group praises God for the 8 individuals who got to be “reunited with their families.” I guess the Haitian children weren’t worthy of the same reunion when they tried to remove them?

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