On April 14th, 2001, Andreas P., a long time member of Bonn UBF, married with at that time five children, ran into severe difficulties with his UBF chapter. Peter Chang, the director of Bonn UBF and Andreas’ own wife who adhered loyally to the director, tried to “train” him, taking away his credit card and keys to his own apartment. He escaped to Dortmund UBF into “exile”, where he explained his problems. The director of Dortmund UBF asked him to write down all of his experiences and problems in a testimony. So Andreas sat down that Easter weekend to recover and write down in this testimony all that was on his heart about the problems of Bonn UBF, uninfluenced by any other opinions. In fact, at that time Andreas did not even know that a “reform movement” existed in UBF, nor did he know that a woman missionary who used to be a member of Bonn UBF and later left had already written about similar complaints the year before.
“To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, ‘If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.’” (John 8:31.32)
Dear Holy Father, I praise You for sending Jesus Christ, your only Son, into this world, that Jesus died for our sins on the cross and that he has risen from the dead on the third day. Father, I thank You that You have led me here to Dortmund to recognize the freedom of the Gospel. Give to me in this hour your Holy Spirit that I may not be led by my feelings or pride, but consider my previous life and my experiences in Bonn in the light of the truth and write a sincere testimony on that!
In July 1985, M. Maria Park invited me in the university cafeteria to visit a Bible study evening in UBF. She said that a lawyer would speak about the Bible. That “lawyer” was S. Werner K., who at that time was a freshman in law school and delivered his testimony of faith, how he used to be a drug-addicted hippie, but now believed that Jesus had forgiven him all his sins and given him eternal life. This testimony impressed me so deeply that I began studying the Bible with M. Maria Park. At that time I was suffering much under my sins, especially uncontrolled desires, because of which I never did anything I was supposed to do all day but only what came to my mind. Because of that I failed in my studies and expected God’s punishment for my failures. But through studying the Bible, especially through the message and announcements of M. Dr. Peter Chang, I could accept Jesus’ words in Mt 9:2 “Take heart, son; your sins are forgiven.” I rejoiced about the mercy of forgiveness of sins and testified about this to my fellow students, parents, siblings, even to my professors. M. Dr. Peter Chang cared for me in all things like a father by showing me how to actually study. He helped me to have faith in God’s word from Mt 6:33, and with this faith, resume my studies and graduate as an “A” student. Without the help of M. Dr. Peter Chang this would never have been possible.
Because of that I was willing to overlook a few things that deemed unbiblical to me and to obey M. Dr. Peter Chang unconditionally, thinking I was obeying God that way. I now only want to recall a few things which came to my attention at that time (around 1986) but which I later put out of my mind.
One day, I was to lay out a carpet in the center with M. Stephanus Park. M. Peter gave the direction that the carpet was to be rolled out and then cut off. The thought was that if we cut the remaining piece in the middle, it would be the right size to cover the rest of the room. However, to my surprise, the remaining piece was already the right size to fit perfectly. M. Stephanus Park, however, was outraged and ordered me to cut the remaining piece. I could not understand, but he said that this was God’s will. As I still did not understand, he explained to me that the servant of God, M. Peter had said such and that M. Peter was God for him. Under protest I had to cut the remaining carpet in “obedience by faith”.
Repeatedly, I witnessed M. Peter hitting M. Stephanus or S. Werner with a wooden stick on their extended fingers or with a baseball bat on the legs. At the time, I interpreted these events this way – that they learned the sufferings of Jesus in that way, and I was ready to be beaten myself. M. Peter practices such beatings to this day. He also went over to give “head knocks” or ordered coworkers to beat others as a way of testing their obedience or spiritual attitude. Those who were not willing to commit such acts of beating others on his orders were denounced as unbelieving humanists by M. Peter, including myself.
In my first years in UBF (until around 1993) M. Peter led a very strict regime, but because of his success I was proud of this strictness and was convinced that I had found a very special leader in M. Dr. Peter Chang, who surpassed all other UBF leaders by far and the only one who could possibly surpass him was M. Dr. Samuel Lee. At that time I acted, in a way, as M. Peter’s “right hand man.”
In the year 1993, a shepherd couple, S. Yaoyu and S. Qiuhuai, who had been sent out to the city of Siegen to pioneer, left UBF. M. Peter went there together with some shepherds to talk with them. Even though I was the shepherd of S. Yaoyu’s shepherd, M. Peter did not take me along because S. Yaoyu’s leaving UBF was allegedly my fault, and later I had to “repent” repeatedly even though I never found out what exactly had happened [to make S. Yaoyu want to leave]. Later he wrote in a letter to me that he had found true Christians. Since that time, I never heard from him anymore. His leaving was what prompted me to think deeper about Bonn UBF. At that time, I was studying the Bible with a few other students. One of them said after one of our conferences: “I am wondering why coworkers and shepherds in Cologne and other chapters are always beaming with joy while you in Bonn laugh only when M. Peter makes a joke or somebody makes a mistake.”
In the early 1990s, M. Peter decided to sacrifice his Ph.D. title in order to live as a full-time shepherd. Beforehand, every coworker had to declare in a written statement a monthly sum with which they would support M. Peter. On top of these monthly salary offerings, certain coworkers have to give large amounts of money or presents to him as “thanksgiving offering”, e.g. after a child’s birth or before a wedding. M. Peter says that if we do not thank men practically we do not know how to thank God. The amount of the thanksgiving offering he often decides for himself. For example, during the announcements after one meeting he publicly requested S. Warmherz (Stefan) E. to give a “thanksgiving offering” for his new job in the form of a new car for about DM 45,000 [about $20,000]. Before that, S. Jochen S. had to provide the cars for M. Peter, and M. Peter was claiming to own no car at all.
Because of the willingness of the coworkers to offer everything, M. Peter is living in comfort, eating only the best foods. He would not touch bread from the previous day or common foods, insulting coworkers who dared to offer such foods to him as being stingy. He invests a lot of time and work in the development of his house and his garden.
To finance the three houses, all coworkers had to take out large loans (up to DM 50,000), sometimes far exceeding their financial means and going into deep debt. S. Xenofon G. had to buy a piano at DM 26,000 [about $12,000]. At that time, M. Peter repeatedly emphasized that all offerings should be given of our own free will. But those who did not offer were pressured and denounced as unbelieving during the meetings until they would somehow bring the offering amount.
In the end of that year I heard from S. Andrea [my wife] that M. Peter had designated us and two other house churches [a “house church” means a marriage or a family in UBF] to give a thanksgiving offering of DM 10,000 [about $4,500] each for the renovation of the Bonn Center. Because I had to supply this money, I could not even buy juice for my children anymore and we always didn’t have money two weeks before payday even though we only ate the cheapest foods. As to how M. Peter used those monies, we had no control and no say in how it was used. He buys many things for himself, and he often does not even unwrap or touch these things after buying them, already having lost interest in them. Anyway, in Bonn UBF thanking God means giving a thanksgiving offering which M. Peter can freely use without restrictions.
Living under the law: M. Peter always emphasizes that we should live by grace. However, in reality the life in Bonn is regulated by a rigid program and a set of punishments in case of disobedience.
The Sunday Worship service including the coworker meeting lasts from 2:30pm until 8pm. During the coworker meeting there are various announcements, mission reports or the like. After that we bring the children home, and around 9pm or 10pm we can start writing the testimonies [also called “sogam” in UBF] based on the Sunday message, which have to be ready at the latest by 6:30am the next morning. At 7am we have the “leaders’ meeting”. Because everyone is either a group leader (3-6 persons per group), fellowship leader (2 people per fellowship) or house church leader, essentially all have to attend. In this way everyone is a leader and at the same time, no one. The coworkers who do not write testimonies on time or come too late must stand in the back with their arms raised, sometimes holding up a chair or books. A “gracious” testimony is a testimony that M. Peter does not correct or have further comments about. A “gracious” testimony has to contain:
- Praise for the servant of God [M. Dr. Peter Chang], his devotion, his shepherd’s heart and his hard spiritual battle;
- “Repentance” for a sin which M. Peter mentioned during the announcements (when M. Peter said last Sunday, 4/8/01, that Jesus had no “snail mentality”, most members “repented” of their “snail mentality”);
- Making a decision, e.g. coming to the center at 5am every morning or feeding 12 sheep every week.
Because of this there is no spiritual growth among the coworkers because each week they have to “repent” of the same sin or the sin mentioned in the last Sunday message so that testimonies could easily be exchanged for old testimonies written one or two years ago. [Another former member comments that this idea of filing away his old testimonies had even been recommended to him, so that he might have his testimonies ready when needed them at a later point in time.]
Those who did not write a “gracious” testimony had to expect M. Peter to curse them and even call them “children of the devil”. In this environment, forgiveness of sins [obtained by grace according to Eph 1:7] is not a sure thing, but salvation depends on the current “struggle of faith” and the condition of one’s testimony. The position as a “child of God” can be regained by writing a personal testimony which shows M. Peter that the writer has accepted his Sunday message.
One special form of training is the separation of families, which is justified by saying that the specific coworker being trained has to repent of his sin or reach a specific goal, for instance, pass the German language exam. On this occasion it is M. Peter who decides whether and how long a coworker has to live in the Center building. When I once left a conference early because of my anger over not being allowed to utter my own opinion (whether I was right is not the issue here, in this case maybe M. Peter was right), M. Peter decided that I had to repent of my wrong purpose of life and should therefore live two weeks separated from S. Andrea [my wife]. When I then said to S. Andrea that her life was not God-centered but M. Peter-centered, she prolonged this time of separation to one year. Even though I asked M. Peter many times to talk to S. Andrea about this matter since she would listen to him, he was not willing to do so and even supported her actions. S. Joachim D. once had to live in the center for two years in order to repent, and S. Werner K. was supposed to go to Moscow for one year immediately after his wedding in order to test his faith. That was one of the reasons why he left our ministry.
At the 1999 MSU Summer Bible Conference the rooms for the German mission journey team were arranged such that married couples would sleep in one room together. M. Peter immediately changed this so that two shepherds or two shepherdesses had to share one room, and only he and M. Sarah [his wife] stayed together in one room.
M. Peter uses families in many ways to control the coworkers. Having had some early negative experiences with arranging purely German marriages (i.e. the husband or wife became “difficult”), he only raised mixed house churches for that reason [i.e. he would arrange for a German coworker to marry a Korean missionary]. If then a shepherd would disobey him, he would threaten in front of the entire congregation that he could send that shepherd’s wife back to Korea at any time. During the wedding ceremony the couples would vow to “lay down their own necks [lives]” for M. Peter like Priscilla and Aquila did [Romans 16:4].
Lying as an acceptable means to an end: One more problem in Bonn UBF is that lying to the world is justified with the word of Jesus that we have to “be shrewd as snakes”. In the beginning, S. Michael C. had a tremendous conflict of conscience when he was deciding whether or not to get sick-leave in order to attend a conference from the beginning. Today this is no problem for him or most of the others any more. When S. Josef had to join the “disciple tour” to the Northcape and did not get vacation time from work, he, without further ado, made up a story about a sick sister in Norway who needed his help, and this lie was acknowledged as an act of faith.
Likewise, the number of one-to-one Bible studies in Bonn UBF is artificially inflated. We used to have a group Bible study, but in order to raise the number of one-to-one Bible studies in some way the coworkers study the Bible one-to-one with one another. In addition, each “Bible battle”, i.e. every single conversation with a sheep in which a word is passed on, is added to the number of one-to-one’s. In this way, 9 genuine Bible studies become 200, which is then reported to Chicago.
Bonn UBF, “Universität-Bibel-Freudschaft e.V.” is a registered association in Germany. As such, we are required by law to write reports on membership meetings and board meetings. None of these meetings ever took place; all the reports are imaginary, with the justification that all associations handle it that way.
Testing of faith: As God tested Abraham’s faith in Genesis, M. Peter also continually tests the faith of the coworkers, i.e. he specifically tests their absolute obedience by faith. Those who fail a “test of faith” are shamed in front of the whole congregation. Such tests of faith can include giving large amounts of monetary offerings or quitting one’s job according to M. Peter’s direction. Then when M. Peter for instance demands that someone give a large offering, they do not even think about whether M. Peter has the right to demand such things, but they are only busy finding a way to achieve a “victory by faith” by bringing what was demanded. In 1993, M. Peter asked me to quit my job in the hospital in order to be sent out as a missionary to Moscow. Through faith and gratitude that God had answered my prayer to be sent out as a missionary, I quit my job. But it was only a test to see if I was willing to “sacrifice my Isaac”, and I had to withdraw my resignation.
Changing of names: To set the prayer topics of coworkers, M. Peter frequently changes their names. Sometimes, in one evening he changed the names of several coworkers, because he was in the mood. Jesus did give Simon the new name Peter. However, we find that Peter is later still mentioned as Simon so that the new name was simply an additional name. But in UBF the old name may not be used any more, except on occasions such as weddings, when guests come from outside who shall not be taken aback by such a strange practice. M. Peter often gives names that are invalid according to German law, such as S. Danke (“S. Thank you”). Other such names are S. Warmherz (“Warmheart”), S. Ehrfurcht (“Awestruck”), S. Fels (“Rock”). Those name changes are enforced even against the will of the persons affected. I was named “Abraham” for half a year even though I beseeched M. Peter repeatedly to change my name. After all this, my repeated “rebellion” against this name led to his changing my name again with the official reasoning that my son was named Abraham and that there should be no confusion.
The names of newborn babies are decided by M. Peter alone. Some missionaries and also S. Andrea deviated from this principle, and because of that, they were rebuked strongly for their arbitrariness and their disobedience. I myself did not have the right to influence the naming of my children.
His own health vs. the health of the coworkers: In his messages and announcements, M. Peter continually rebuked the coworkers for wanting to stay home when they had a cold, even when they had high temperature above 104 degrees Fahrenheit. In the year 1991, when I had a severe viral infection so strong that I didn’t want to go home because of my newborn son, I was ordered to renovate a wall together with M. Paulus E. in the Center. I appealed to M. Peter that I should not do this because I did not want to infect M. Paulus who also had a newborn baby at home named Maria. Nonetheless, he forced me to work together with M. Paulus. Three days later baby Maria was dead, suffocated from an infection. When she died, none of her parents were at home. I never found out about the detailed circumstances of her death, but since that time I felt guilty because I was too weak to disobey M. Peter.
Using the daily program M. Peter makes sure that all coworkers lack sleep, and a main subject of the testimonies is the “sleeping spirit”, from which most of the coworkers suffer. From Tuesday to Thursday, men and women each have an evening prayer hour. This was instituted by M. Peter three years ago, saying he wanted to pray with us together in the evening. However, during the past three years, M. Peter only participated twice in this prayer hour and then rebuked our superficial prayer and sleeping spirit with harsh words. He simply rejected my objection that maybe the coworkers were sleeping because they did not get enough sleep. Altogether, coworkers in Bonn sleep a maximum of 4-5 hours daily. Of particular importance is the early morning prayer hour, the “Daily Bread”, which M. Peter never attended.
Then again, M. Peter is very concerned about his own health. He is eating only the best foods, has home fitness equipment all over his house, and goes swimming and to the sauna. If he himself is sick or feels sick, he simply stays in bed. If he still preaches on Sunday when he has a cold, he doesn’t do it without praising his devoting his live for the flock of God.
After a “mission” journey to the USA or Korea, which he frequently undertakes, all coworkers pray that M. Peter may overcome jet lag quickly. To overcome the jet lag, M. Peter then sleeps a lot. But the coworkers traveling with him are expected to return to the program without being able to adjust even one second. The mission journey is finished for M. Peter when he is in bed after the plane lands. For the coworkers it is finished only when they have written a “thorough mission report”.
When I think about what M. Peter demands from coworkers, and how he sees himself, I am often reminded of Jesus’ words in Mt 23:4, “They tie up heavy loads and put them on men’s shoulders, but they themselves are not willing to lift a finger to move them.”
Basis for following Christ is not the word of God, but the opinion of M. Peter: M. Peter likes to rebuke others by characterizing them in front of all coworkers as dogs and pigs and children of the devil and servants of Satan, as boneheads, as Gestapo candidates (S. Stefan E.), as cases fit for the insane asylum (S. Anja S., S. Oliver S.), and he loves to try out new swear-words as he does so. The coworkers mostly include these words in their testimonies, e.g. by saying that they are repenting of their Gestapo mentality. However, M. Peter himself is not willing to repent, not even in front of the word of God. When he says, for example in the message, that he repents of his lacking shepherd heart, this means that after the Sunday service all coworkers have to go fishing sheep for some hours while he himself goes home to dinner.
When he behaves like that he does not even try to characterize himself as being righteous. He sometimes even spontaneously confesses his sin somewhat frankly. When during an announcement he talked about a soccer match he had watched on TV, he at least said that he is a sinner because he watches TV while the coworkers are struggling with their testimonies in the night. He also mentioned three or four times that he feels queasy when the coworkers always praise him and his faith and his struggle of faith so much, but practically speaking he will not do without such praise.
Most of all, he is not willing to accept any reproach from a coworker, even if is justified with the word of God. Once I wrote down some points concerning leadership in a ministry based on God’s word and wanted to speak with him about these issues. He took the sheet from my hand without even looking at it, rebuking me, “You want to teach me?”, as the Pharisees spoke to the man born blind. In the end, it was not he who repented, but I had to repent for my haughtiness.
You have no right to make your own decision: Although all of the shepherds are adults, not one of them has the right to make a decision on his own, and also any decision or promise one makes can be canceled by M. Peter at any time. We don’t have any say concerning the education of our children either. Because Abraham [my son] attends the meeting on Friday, he usually goes to bed at 11pm at night. But the next morning, he has to be in the prayer house already at 8am for breakfast. Also, during the week he goes to bed late, e.g. because he has to deliver his testimony on Wednesday night, but he has to rise again at half past six to go to school. He is only 9 years old and actually needs more sleep. I see that he is extremely nervous because of his tiredness. But S. Andrea regards this as his sin, and I don’t have any right to demand more sleep for my son.
Here are some examples of how M. Peter overrode my decisions. When I moved into the Center building (presently the house of M. Peter) in the year 1986, I brought my stereo set and stowed it in the cellar because, up to then, it had been for me like an idol, and I particularly invested all my money for the loudspeaker system. When S. Andreas O. came for a visit from Cologne and told me that they still were looking for some good loudspeakers for the Cologne center, I suggested to him to take mine, and we packed them into the car, and he took them to Cologne. When M. Peter learned about that he was upset. He claimed that the loudspeakers were his private property since I had stored them in the center, and I had to fetch them back from Cologne.
In summer 1986, after the summer conference, I still lived in my own apartment and frequently made cycle tours on Saturdays. When I decided to visit the UBF center in Cologne on such a tour, and M. Peter learned about that, he rebuked me harshly and did not allow me to go there.
He also frequently forbade me to visit my parents so that I did not even try to do so in past years. I invited my mother to the 1986 Christmas Conference in Rehe, promising to visit her on Christmas Eve in return. M. Peter knew about that. When we said goodbye after the conference, M. Peter called me and forbade me to go to my mother. About 4 years ago, S. Andrea and I were invited to the blessing ceremony of the first son of my brother in an evangelical church in Bonn. Upon approval by M. Peter, we accepted the invitation. When I wanted to go there on Sunday after the worship service, I was rebuked fiercely by M. Peter and was not allowed to go.
At the 80th birthday of my Grandmother, S. Andreas told me that we have to visit her absolutely since she really wanted to see her great-grandchildren at least one time. Later, I was harshly rebuked by S. Andrea and M. Peter for wanting to visit her.
Voting: Sometimes for important decisions a vote is actually taken, but always as a matter of form only. When we had to vote whether we should purchase the prayer house (the house of M. Peter), the majority voted against it in the first voting. Thereupon, every coworker had to give an account for his decision personally. Through this, the votes against the purchase of the house became less and less, and the second vote turned out unanimously for the purchase.
When we had to vote whether we needed for our Center, like the Cologne coworkers, a grand piano for M. Gloria [she accompanied the singing in he worship service on a normal piano], the majority voted against it. Although most coworkers put forward clear arguments against the purchase, and it became clearer and clearer that it was only all about buying a grand piano for M. Peter, and he wanted to have the consent of the coworkers by all means, in the end, everybody voted for the purchase of the grand piano. It was not bought later because M. Gloria said that she did not need a grand piano at all.
Education of children: M. Peter very carefully takes care of all children of the coworkers in many respects. However, through this the children learn to obey him more than their parents. When I admonished [my son] Abraham not to beat his sister on the head, he only said M. Peter permitted him to give Elisabeth clouts over the head whenever she was disobedient to him. When I wanted to give my children some direction, sometimes they would threaten to tell it to “grandpa Peter”. Elisabeth, my oldest daughter, once strikingly described the prominence of M. Peter with her childlike words: “Grandpa Peter is the decision maker.”
Because M. Peter takes care for our children, the parents are supposed to be grateful to him in various ways. He actually helped some children, such as the son of M. Isaak Jeong, who was not able to move or express himself on his own at the age of three. If one placed him somewhere, he stayed there motionless for hours. If one then led him to another place, he went along, staying there motionless again. After M. Peter had invited him into the prayer house where he had fellowship with other children, his behavior disorder disappeared completely within a week. So, it is said that M. Peter very carefully takes care of the children. However, the question must be asked, whether M. Isaak Jeoung’s son’s apparent mental disorder would have existed at all if his parents had had enough time to care more for their children than merely feeding them, because the daily program that is set up by M. Peter allows parents no time to care for their own children. Because of the program, most children are often alone at home in the morning because of the “Daily Bread”, and in the evening from 5:30pm until about 11pm. Only in those cases where parents were visited by the police repeatedly due to charges of child neglect leveled against them by neighbors, one of the missionaries was allowed to stay with the children or had to bring the children to the Center, even if they were very young.
Writing testimony solely based on the message of M. Peter: All testimonies, with the exception of those of new sheep, have to be written based on the message of M. Peter, the aim being to find the crucial point of that message and to accept it, even if it isn’t covered at all in the underlying text of the Bible. The message about the preparation of the people for the covenant at mount Sinai may serve as an example. Exodus 19:4 says in this context: “You yourselves have seen what I did to Egypt, and how I carried you on eagles’ wings and brought you to myself.” M. Peter’s message describes how a mother eagle trains her young by ascending with them on her wings and then dropping them and then, at the last moment shortly before hitting the ground, catching them again. No biologist whom I asked knew about such behavior and also the shepherds clearly knew that it wasn’t exactly correct. Nevertheless all coworkers wrote their testimonies about the “eagle training”, willingly accepting God’s “eagle training” through the servant of God[M. Peter Chang]. Often there is even some truth in what is written in the message, but it cannot be derived from the passage of the Bible that the message is supposed to be based on. In the message on 1 Corinthians 15, verse 15 is quoted: “More than that, we are then found to be false witnesses about God, for we have testified about God that he raised Christ from the dead. But he did not raise him if in fact the dead are not raised.” In the message it is written that this verse means that we deny the omnipotence of God if we don’t believe in the resurrection. This statement is correct, however, I couldn’t derive it from this verse no matter how hard I tried. When I mentioned this at the group Bible study I wasn’t allowed to take part in any group Bible study any more from then on for several years, and I was accused of reluctance to learn and haughtiness because I questioned the interpretation of the servant of God and wanted to teach the servant of God.
Divide et impera – divide and conquer: In the past there had been two fellowships in Bonn, one of which was “lead” by S. Werner, the other one by me. But when the number of coworkers increased everybody was supposed assume the function of a “spiritual leader”, so that Bonn was divided up into many groups and fellowships and house churches using the example given by Chicago so that everybody is leader in some way. The aim was set that everybody should be able to take responsibility for a small group or a little domain. However, effectively the composition of the groups, the fellowships and the leaders changes all the time, so that I was supposed to cooperate with new coworkers already for the third time this year. In this way the development of deeper relationships between the coworkers is avoided. The relationship within the families is controlled by M. Peter by having particularly intensive fellowship with the woman coworkers by letting them cut his hair or giving him massages (S. Anja, M. Maria Jeong, M. Pauline, etc.). On the other hand, he restricts the fellowship in the family to a minimum. When I mentioned to M. Peter that I could not have any fellowship with S. Andrea [my wife] for weeks, though I lived at home with her in that time, he replied that being able to listen to her testimony should be enough fellowship for me. M. Peter’s aim for coworkers is to make them love him more than their respective spouse, especially that women coworkers confess publicly that they love M. Peter more than their husband. M. Peter justifies this by saying that love for God expresses itself primarily through love for the servants of God.
Preparation of the offerings: M. Peter presses us to prepare the Sunday offering and thanksgiving and prayer topics one day ahead if possible and, most of all, not to give from our leftovers. Against this nothing has to be said. Only he himself does not prepare any offering, but M. Sarah deposits an envelope for him with his offering before the service.
Training by endless reiteration: A method to “accept” the word of God is endless repetition. Sometimes M. Peter encourages the coworkers to shout a certain word several hundred times, “until blood comes from their vocal chords.” Often coworkers have to write a word several hundred times on a sheet of paper and hand it over to M. Peter. Before the evening prayer hour we had to yell together 50 times: “Have faith in God!”. When S. Joachim and S. Oliver refused to yell together, they were again and again condemned with bad words. For the preparation of the message for Bible schools or meetings, the shepherds now have to write a twenty-page testimony first, then memorize the passage of the Bible and then memorize the message. The memorizing of the text of the Bible is biblical, but the memorizing of the messages has no longer much to do with absorbing the word. The memorizing happens in this way: Those who have to deliver the messages meet in the prayer house from 8pm to midnight a month before their sermon is to be delivered and have to practice their message every evening for 4 hours. In this way they are supposed to accept the word of God. The problem with this is that this is mandatory, and M. Peter does not prepare for his message with even a quarter of the intensity that he demands from others, although his message, except for changes in some examples and idioms, is the basis of others’ messages. So the aim is not to accept God’s word, but M. Peter’s message.
As a rule, we hear the conference messages already on the Sundays before a conference, so that we can write testimonies on all messages and bring the prepared testimonies to the conference. The sheep are then always surprised how the shepherds can write such deep testimonies. At the 2000 European UBF summer conference all Bonn coworkers had printed out testimonies ready also.
If a message is repeated again and again, such as Mk 6.37, “You give them something to eat,” then it gets increasingly difficult to find new topics for repentance. Nevertheless, M. Peter repeats the message so long until he believes, judging from our testimonies, that we accepted the message. But often I had the impression that we only repeated the message because M. Peter had no time to prepare a new message because of his journeys or other businesses. When he went together with guests to places such as Italy, Bavaria, Holland, or Switzerland, he took his notebook computer along every time, asking us to pray for the preparation of his message. I don’t remember that he ever delivered a message after such a journey on Sunday.
Prayer before men: A sheep called something to my attention during the European summer Bible conference of 1992. At that time he asked me: “Why do M. Dr. Samuel Lee and other leaders permanently look up during the prayer or walk around, giving instructions?” I thought at that time that the relationship of the servants of God with God is just so deep that they were able to pray differently than we could. I could indeed frequently see M. Peter behaving that way, too. When we pray with all coworkers in a circle, this usually lasts a very long time. During these prayers, M. Peter does not usually keep his seat but stands up, walks around the center doing this and that, then comes back to dispense clouts over the heads of coworkers who are sleeping, saying “Amen” a few times. If he believes that our prayer wasn’t “sincere” enough, he stops the prayer and lets the coworkers start praying once more from the beginning with a “repentant heart”, i.e. as loud as possible and with tears. Then he leaves the room again. This can be repeated several times until he is satisfied with our “prayer spirit”. He very often takes part in the common prayer only as a spectator and “surveyor”. Often his prayers and also the prayers of M. Stephanus more closely resemble loud announcements and accusations against the coworkers.
Demonstrations of his power: M. Peter often gets up during the meeting to walk around the center, dealing with other things, apparently uninterested. The standing up and walking around while all others have to sit is also practiced by army officers, demonstrating their position in that way.
Makeup in the worship service: M. Peter particularly demands of the missionaries that they have permed hair and appear for the worship service with flashy makeup, preferably with glaring red lipstick and much makeup on the face. Although S. Andrea does not like this and although the Bible says that the beauty of a woman should not come from outward adornment, she and others obey what is demanded so that once a sheep asked me why the missionaries are made up like prostitutes. They are because M. Peter likes it and because they want to please him more than God.
These listed points are not complete or written down in proper order for the time being. However, I pray that through this the true nature of Bonn UBF is revealed. I consider M. Dr. Peter Chang a man who wants to do the work of God from his heart and to help other people, but he is also a man who is not aware of his own weakness any more due to his position of power which has lasted for years. And he thinks that nobody else apart from him could to the work of God in Bonn and also in Germany overall. The ones who bear the guilt for this development, besides M. Peter himself, are all Bonn coworkers including myself because of our idleness and our cowardice. I pray that God may forgive all my cowardice and that He will renew Bonn UBF, starting with me, and that He will also renew the director of the ministry, M. Dr. Peter Chang, according to God’s will and God’s word.