Believing they were acting in her best interests, when Caroline was 14 years old, her parents enrolled her in the Peniel Academy run by the Peniel Pentecostal Church in Essex. For the next four years Caroline remained at this school, and for the fourteen after that she remained - effectively imprisoned - as part of the church. Over these formative years she was continually brainwashed.
A strong and feisty character, for many years Caroline refused to be cowed, but whenever she disobeyed - even in the smallest way - she was humiliated and ostracised by the rest of the group. Told what to do, what to think, where she could go, what she could wear and, as the years passed, how to raise her children, her spirit was gradually crushed.
At the age of eighteen she was married to Julian Green - the son of one of the cult's founders. In the years that followed she had three children in quick succession.
As the cult continued to control her life, she watched in increasing maternal agony as each of her children were beaten and force-fed by leaders in attempts to smash their will and instil early obedience. Torn between her fear of what God would do to her and her family if they left and her desperate attempts to protect her children, Caroline wanted to leave on many occasions.
Her growing sense of outrage reached its peak when, in 1997, Andrew, then nine, was brutally beaten by his father with a piece of wood, following a schoolboy prank. It took Caroline five years to build up the courage to leave, but after witnessing this she knew she had to get out. Later that year, with just £5 in her pocket, she fled with her children - leaving her husband, who refused to join them, behind.
The after effects, both financial and emotional, have been tough, but Caroline's defiant spirit is helping her win through. Now, in this incredible memoir, Caroline gives the full and devastating account of what she and her children endured, how they escaped and how they rebuilt their lives.
- Publication Date:
- 01 / 11 / 2010
- 197 x 130mm