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Above Adversity: HOW A CHILD RAPE SURVIVOR FORGAVE THE CATHOLIC CHURCH

March 26, 2017

"Thirty years ago I was raped by a man that said God told him to do it. I was eleven years old and he was my camp counselor and minister. But this horrific event is not the beginning of my story because I was already damaged goods before he ever touched me."

Growing up in an abusive household is not a unique experience for children nowadays. My father walked out on me and my mother while I was still a baby, but he would at times reach out to me and try to rekindle a flickering passion with my mom. My parent’s on and off relationship always seemed to end in more yelling, fist swinging, crying and destroyed property.  Dad would storm out leaving me alone with a broken woman needing to be loved by the father of her only child.

Animosity grew between my parents as my dad’s visits became more infrequent. I would hear my mother crying in her room frustrated because she was lonely. I felt helpless because I had to watch in anguish as the first person I ever loved was hurting. At one point I walked into her room to comfort her but she violently pushed me away and said words that I will never forget...

“You look just like him…GET AWAY FROM ME!”

I never thought that my mother would see me as an enemy until I started to look like my dad. Things grew progressively worse as his facial features imprinted themselves on me and I became his doppelganger. Her anger toward him would frequently be released on me as I would just cry and beg her to calm down.

Tired of seeing my father’s face in her home, she sent me to summer camp. I isolated myself from all the other kids because my social skills were a mess and I honestly did not trust anyone. My camp counselor saw that I was withdrawn and offered me words of encouragement to join in group activities. I started to open up and enjoy myself as he taught me how to canoe, build fires and survive in the wilderness. I eventually spilled the beans on everything going on in my household. His “empathy” for my situation allowed me to see him as a father figure that I could trust.

Needless to say, he was just a predator as he locked me in a cabin and raped me on the last day of camp. The man that I trusted had become a monster as I was afraid for my life. He forced me to do unspeakable things as he took advantage of me. I felt worthless as he used his strength to pin me down and had his way with me while quoting bible scriptures and declaring that his actions were ordained by God.

“Don’t fight this! This is what God wants! He gave you to me like he gave me to a priest 20 years ago! And if you ever tell anyone, God will send his angels to kill you and your mom! Your dad won’t save you and your life will be destroyed!”

After he was done I pulled up my pants and ran out of the cabin. I stumbled through the woods until I reached the departure busses where all of the other kids gathering. I said nothing to anyone as I got on the bus, put my head down and cried. Another counselor asked me what was wrong but I was afraid to tell her. I looked out of the window of the bus and I saw him staring at me and remembered his warning. I did not want God to kill me and my mom so I stayed silent. The bus pulled off and “The Wicked Man’s” secret was safe.

When I finally arrived home I immediately called my dad. Ignoring the warning of the wicked man, I told him everything. My dad said that he was coming to Atlanta to take care of me. He said that it would take him two hours to reach me because he was living in Birmingham. Well, two hours turned into two days. Two days turned into two weeks. Two weeks turned into two months and two months turned into too much time where I just didn’t care anymore.

That is when I realized that I was cursed by the Wicked Man. I made no further effort to tell anyone and I was too afraid to approach my mom about it. The last thing I needed was to hear another rant about how I ruined her life because she had to raise a bastard that looked like her domestic offender. My dad did not save me and my life began to spiral out of control in the form of more hurtful traumatic events.

1.       Homeless at 18 years old - 1992

2.       Failed Suicide Attempt - 1994

3.       Two Failed Marriages – 2000/2004

4.       Youngest Daughter Taken Away by The State of Georgia for 1 year - 2001

5.       The Death of My Father - 2007

6.       The Death of my oldest Son - 2008

7.       The Failure of My Business - 2014

Traumatic issues like these do not just simply go away. Going untreated, these ugly life events fester inside you and will eventually become so toxic that they destroy your self-worth, family, business and everything that you care about. I carried this pain for years as it nearly destroyed my life until I finally decided to STOP BEING A VICTIM. After the death of my oldest son Victor in 2008, I focused on harnessing all of this pain and suffering into changing my life and helping others walk out of their own personal Hell.

Upon my journey of redemption I met a man in the Catholic faith named Mike Drapeau that invited me to his weekly prayer meeting. I met this man of distinction by way of his young daughters selling me a cup of homemade lemonade. I joined him and several other Catholic men in their Friday morning Encounter Group. They welcomed me in as we discussed the hardships of people around the world and how we can do our part to help ease their pain.

 

Mike Drapeau: The Incredible man that helped me come home to the faith.

 

I must admit that I was apprehensive because I still secretly carried a grudge against all things Catholic because of the Wicked Man. In my youth I had thoughts of burning down every Catholic Church I could find. Thank God I never followed through with that but I released my contempt to Rome through a book I self-published in 2005 named “Ghost in the Room”. I crafted vitriolic page after page of an evil Pope and the Catholic Church were responsible for leading Satan’s Army on earth as millions of people died. Let’s just say that I wanted Rome to fall and pay for the sins of the priest that hurt children.

 

Fast forward my life a decade and I never would have thought that I would be hanging around a bunch of Catholic dudes as they embraced me after I told them my story. They were angry at the Wicked Man and some even vowed to help me hunt him down for justice. They did not care that he was a fellow catholic. They wanted to do all that was within their power to finally bring me peace.

I eventually introduced my six surviving children to them and their families. We have become a close knit society of men that actively fight to empower communities. My brothers pulled me out of the darkness and support my work to travel around the world led by Christ to change the lives of people that are suffering.

Me and my Catholic brothers Power Posing in front of our families.

 

I want to leave you with a final thought. My life has not been pretty and I carried around unforgiveness in my heart against the Catholic Church for over 30 years. What started with 1 wicked catholic man snatching away my self-worth and power when I was a child, has transcended into a life of unimaginable POWER as I am loved by a group of Catholics that helped me in more ways than I can count.

After joining this group, I was encouraged to reach out to my mother. In full transparency, we are taking it one day at a time. The love is still there between mother and son, but we have a lot of issues to work out. The fact is that we are both trying and doing our best. This brings me to saying something that has needed to be said for at least 20 years.

"I here by state that I forgive the Catholic Church of my brutal rape when I was a child and look forward to connecting to more positive soldiers of the faith to bring healing to millions of people that need it most!"

The Catholic Church has struggled for many years trying to fix its reputation and restore its image. I am in no way suggesting that everyone that has been hurt by the church follow my path, but I am hoping that we all can find strength through Christ as we try to forgive others. Holding on to pain does nothing but kill you from within and destroy your life. Get help for your sorrow and know that God will put people in your life to make you whole. I stepped out of the darkness of despair and pray that you do the same.

 

Regardless of my past; I have a bright future as my wife and I prepare to officially come into the Catholic Church to promote healing over hatred and be dedicated to our faith. Keep us in your prayers and God Bless!

YG Nyghtstorm

Family Leadership Authority

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