An open letter to my family members

Lake City Reporter, February 11, 2000

To the Kampmeyer children living in Lake City: Since I am not able to reach you in any other way, this is an attempt to contact you. I am still sad and hurt that you have felt the need to separate us from your life for the last 12 years because of your "duty to serve the Lord" - or is it to serve "Charles Meade?"

We found out on Dec. 22 that our dad (Ed Kampmeyer) and his wife of the last 10-12 years (Dorothine Greaves) were no longer living. After some research into this, we found out that dad died Nov. 26, 1998, and Dorothine had died before him on March 11, 1997. I could not believe that no one even cared enough to contact any of us here. He does have three children, six grandchildren, a sister and many other family members - not just those in your group, even though you do not wish to acknowledge us as family. The fact that I could not turn all control over to you and follow you to Florida seems to have given you the freedom of thinking you can just disown me as a family member. The fact is, I am still your sister/aunt and that bond will never be broken, even though you seem to think it has been.

It seems your requirement for me to remain family was to leave everything (and everyone) behind here and move to Florida in order to maintain a relationship with my father, sisters and brother and all of the children there that we loved so much. I am thankful for God's grace in upholding me and in helping me get through the loneliness of loosing all of you and he has remained faithful to our family. I have a great husband and a wonderful family here. We have added two sons in love and one daughter in love to our family of three and now have been blessed with seven special grandchildren.

It does break my heart that they are not able to know any of you, as you have always been an important part of my life, both spiritually and as my family. I am sorry the feeling was not mutual like I had thought. My name, phone and address have stayed the same all of these years and despite the many calls and letters we sent - more at first than the last years, since we found it so futile and heart wrenching to never hear from you.

One of my biggest disappointments is that you could not see my true love for the Lord, my gratefulness for my salvation through Jesus Christ my Savior and my desire for Him to have control of my life. This discernment should be evident to fellow believers.

I have tried to be nonjudgmental about your group, privately and/or publicly but have tried to figure out what you really are believing and often tried to defend you as "living as you thought you should." My prayer is that Christ is still the center of your lives and that you could learn to accept our lives as we did try to accept yours. I want to keep Christ the center of my life, not "Meade Ministries" as it seems you feel is so important.

This last blow has been the very hardest of all. In spite of our many calls, messages left, etc., no one seemed to think they needed to respond to any of our messages. Now to find our dad died over a year before Gary, John or I heard about it is so heartbreaking. We can only imagine what happened and know we were not able to show him our comfort and love as we would have liked to.

I had talked with dad since he moved down there and he had told me that Jesus Christ was still his Savior and Lord and I assured him then that we would meet in eternity. I pray that this is true for then, even though he was not free to be with us here on this earth anymore, we will meet again. My love for him never changed but my heart ached knowing what he had to give up and go through to try to prove to you that he loved God enough to ignore half of his family for the "group."

You have always denied that your "group" is a cult. I had tried to deny that also, to many people, until I just had to face the reality that any group that thinks they have all the answers and that they are living "a perfect life with no sin" are not living as Jesus taught. According to the Bible in I John 1:8-9: "If we say that we have no sin, we are fooling ourselves, and the truth is not in us. But if we confess our sins, he will forgive our sins." Your relationship with Jesus is something I can not judge but I know that Jesus said, "Love one another," not only love those who are of every same thought and belief that you are.

Although my heart still aches for each of you, God is good. He has given healing and restoration. I would not feel worthy to ask to be his servant if I were to hold a grudge or harbor unforgiveness against you. Please know that I love each of you and you will continue to hold a special place in my heart.

June Van Liere lives at 25292 463rd Ave., Hartford, S.D. 57033-5701. Her e-mail address is This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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