‘People Being Programmed’: Inside New Zealand’s Gloriavale Religious Cult
By Julie Fenwick | VICE |
“You’re reared in those thoughts where it’s like ‘I owe the system something’… ‘Actually: I owe them my life’.”
In Haupiri, on the West Coast of New Zealand’s South Island, live close to 600 people, crammed in bunk beds and shared living quarters with little to no contact with the outside world.
Outfitted modestly and in blue – the women in long dresses with handkerchiefs wrapped around their heads, the men in buttoned up shirts and long trousers – they wake each day to follow a doctrinal book called “What We Believe”. In its pages are scriptures cherry-picked from the bible. Their life revolves around a fundamentalist Christian mindset, where the only true salvation comes through a faith in Jesus Christ.
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