Jesus Fellowship Survivors Association response to the announcement that the Jesus Fellowship Church (also known as the Jesus Army) is disbanding.

The Jesus Fellowship Survivors Association (JFSA) was founded by a group of people, the majority of whom have spent all or some of their childhood in the Jesus Fellowship/Jesus Army.  Our lives have all been personally affected and we share common traumatic experiences and abuse as a result of growing up in a cult. 

The JFSA was set up in response to the Jesus Fellowship/Jesus Army asking for disclosures of abuse in 2013.  Many of us were contacted unexpectedly and without warning by Northamptonshire Police in the months following the disclosure request and it became apparent that the number of abuse victims was much greater than we could ever have imagined. 

We also recognise and acknowledge other survivors, outside of the JFSA, who have and continue to work tirelessly in seeking to expose the full extent of abuse that took place and obtain justice. 

Whilst we were pleased to hear the recent announcement and public apology from the Jesus Fellowship, and note that for the first time there appears to be an acknowledgement of the significant levels of abuse that we have been demanding they recognise for several years, we do have reservations as to what this means in reality. 

We have been trying to work with the Jesus Fellowship/Jesus Army which has not been an easy venture for any of the survivors. 

To date we have been involved in the following with them: 

1. Establishing a counselling scheme and supporting people to access this. 
2. Participating in the setting up of, and being a significant voice in the redress working party. 


Our aims as an Association are: 

 To give survivors a voice. 
 To publicly expose the full extent of the abuse that has happened in the Jesus         Fellowship/Jesus Army 
 To work with the appropriate authorities in ensuring they are aware of the levels of historic abuse                                                        
 To signpost survivors to get help and support. 
 To signpost survivors to report historic abuse to the police. 
 To obtain appropriate redress for survivors. 

We are concerned as to what disbanding of the Jesus Fellowship really means, as has been echoed in responses from the public.  We believe there is a legitimate concern over what happens to the assets and are rightfully wary of this being a guise to start over again under a different name. 

Although we have assurance from the Trustees that the recent disbanding does not affect delivering a redress scheme; as children growing up in the Jesus Fellowship/Jesus Army we were treated as invisible and our concern is that this attitude continues and the group most harmed will remain unseen.  We do not have any assurance as to how redress pay-outs will look, after the Jesus Fellowship has provided for the welfare of current members of the Community Trust.  These members have chosen to continue to live within the Jesus Fellowship, and some by their own account have benefitted from the organisation.  Many of those who are still members, by this very fact are reinforcing a damaging cult regime having ignored disclosures and complaints of abuse to members and children for over 40 years. 

As an Association we are determined to continue to fight for justice for all survivors. 

Please take a look at the rest of our website to see what information and work we have been involved in to date.

JSFA representatives