Chapter Twenty, a former witch
It was a rainy evening when Tyler and Pauline got into their Toyota and drove to the Lutheran church. There were eight cars in the lot, quite a good sign. As the two of them walked in Pauline saw Kassie. “Great,” she said. “Thanks so much for coming!”
“My pleasure!” Said Kassie. “OK if I talk about my book a little?”
“Yes, no problem. It’s certainly relevant to our topic, and I’m sure people will be interested to hear how you have become victorious over the evil demonic spirits.”
“Only through Christ’s grace,” said Kassie.
“Of course,” responded Pauline.
They went inside and Pauline introduced the Pastor Xavier John Blanc to Kassie. “Oh and this is my dear husband Tyler too,” she said to Kristin, smiling.
“Nice to meet you,” he said.
“Likewise,” she said.
When they got inside seven other people were there besides Pastor Xavier John Blanc. Pauline was a bit nervous but thought to herself she could let Kassie carry the meeting this time as she was more charismatic.
“Welcome everyone. I’m Pauline and this is my husband Tyler. I would also like to introduce Kassie. She has escaped from the very lifestyle we’ve been discussing. I’ll let her explain it to you and she can introduce her book. First though, would you all introduce yourselves? Some of you are new this week. Could you state your first name and why you came? If you’d prefer to be anonymous for now, just give any name.”
When they all were finished, their stories seemed quite similar. Several had tried reading Tarot cards or using Ouija boards like Pauline. Some had mixed results or nothing definitive, while others had had truly frightening experiences.
Kassie got up and began to relate stories of the horror that once was her life. “I began seeking out a way to change my life when I was 16,” she said. “Things were happening that I did not like and I desperately needed to find a way to fix my life. Well, I’ll just tell you. I had been assaulted by a boy in school and ended up pregnant.”
The attendees, all women, murmured sympathetically and sat forward in their chairs.
“My parents made me get an abortion. I hated to do it but I felt I had no choice. After it was done, I felt so empty. I started acting out, just doing anything to help me forget. I tried drugs, alcohol, and finally I found witchcraft. With witchcraft I had a recipe book if you will. Just find the recipe for what I wanted to accomplish, and follow the instructions. Finally, I had a measure of control. “
“As time passed, the small things I had learned were not enough to hold my interest. I craved more and more control. And before I knew what had happened I had completely given control of my life to the evil demonic forces and their desires. I was then under their control. I was not sleeping. I was not eating. I lost my friends and communicated only with other witches. My parents despaired and I ran away. They did not see me for two years and once I was 18 and my parents could no longer control me, I stopped by to pick up some things I had left behind.”
“There were books, candles, scented oils, trinkets, and pictures. I can see now they were just so many props. Nothing was just what it was or what it seemed. Seemingly benign objects had deeper meanings and forbidden occult or pagan uses. I hadn’t realized how much importance I had ascribed to these talismans and trinkets, but they were suddenly so important to me and I didn’t realize even these physical objects could be imbued with evil spirits.”
“As time went on, the wrong crowd I had associated myself with made greater and greater demands. Try this drug, they said. Let us move in with you and let us eat your food (and not help in any way). Sleep with me as part of a ritual, you’ll gain power through it. I became numb to my emotions as I became so ashamed of how I was living. I never saw my family or my former friends as that would mean sharing the story of my life and my situation with them. I was told old ties would hold me back anyway. Sometimes I yearned for those old ties, and for my mother.”
“Years went by, but all hell broke loose--so to speak-when I tried a spell I did not have sufficient power for. I was in an abandoned house trying to raise the dead-no joke-and a being attacked me. I was lifted by unseen forces to the ceiling and dropped to the floor. Shattering my cheekbone and other bones in my face and body, I fell into a coma for weeks. When I came to, my body had begun healing but my mind was a wreck. It was only through the prayers of Christians that I have recovered my mind and my soul. Won’t you heed my lesson and sell yourself out to Jesus Christ?”
The room was silent and eyes were huge. Some were weeping. Applause broke out. Some were not sure how to respond.
The pastor said, “That is a very interesting story, Kassie, and one that shows how powerful God is to remove us from our own disasters. Thank you for sharing. I see you have some books there that you wrote, if anyone wants to buy one. Does anyone have questions for Kassie?”
“Kassie, did you go to church during this time? With your parents or by yourself?”
“After you awoke from the coma, what did you do? Did you start going to church right away? Did you live with your parents again?”
“How did this all happen--when you came to your senses and back to God?”
“What did you do when you were actively involved in witchcraft--I mean what kind of spells did you do? Was it love spells, spells for money, spells to hurt people?”
“I would love to tell you to read the book,” said Kassie smiling.
Everyone laughed a little.
“But what I can tell you is this. That I felt very lost and separated from anyone who cared about me, including my parents, including my church and pastor. I started going back to a Lutheran church once I felt relatively stable, after coming out of the coma. I could not drive for a while so I did live with my parents at that time and they were more than happy to take me to their church. But after I was stronger I found a new Lutheran church of my own and that is where I met my dear husband who was looking for someone who needed guidance and direction. Not to sound sexist, but that is exactly what I needed.”
“But what about the spells you did? You did not answer that.”
“Well, you are a persistent one,” Kassie said, smiling again. “Keep in mind that since witchcraft is attractive mainly to give a person control over their life, think of what a 16 to 18 year old might want to control. That might include grades, parents, relationships, siblings, and that sort of thing. It is a time of great emotional turmoil for any teen, but for someone who is in witchcraft it can be very frightening, and teens do not have the inner resources to handle it. So I was doing love spells to try to get a boyfriend that I wanted, and trying to magically improve my grades. Of course this does not really work. You still have to study!” Everyone laughed again.
“If no one has further questions,” said Pauline , “I would like to hand out these sheets before we close. They are lists of resources you can access online including articles about paranormal topics and Christian responses to those articles.” She distributed the papers and asked if anyone had questions for her and whether she would see them next week.
“What do you think about games of chance,” one person asked. For instance someone is getting together a football pool at work. Do you think that is wrong?”
Laughter broke out again, but Kassie silenced them with a look.
“I think it’s wrong if the employer wants you to be working when you are at work,” Pauline said smiling. “Is that all, let’s close in prayer.”
“Father God we thank you that this group is learning ways to avoid paranormal and spiritual trouble. I pray that you watch over us tonight and always, to keep us out of danger and to lead others away from danger as well, in Jesus Christ’s name, Amen.”
“Next week,” said Pauline , “We can talk about Bible verses and events in the Bible that related to the forbidden occult and pagan practices. We can try to think about and discuss why Father God would not want us in that situation. I’ll give you a hint, it’s because we are not to control our own lives. Try to think of some reasons why that would be.”
“Pauline, would you speak with me for a moment?” Asked the Pastor. Pauline nodded as she gathered up the materials from the table and put them into her purple folder.
The others left one by one. “See you around, Kassie. Thanks for coming.”
“What can I do for you, Pastor?” She asked.
“I just wanted to let you know I like where this is going,” he said. “Your friend had quite an interesting story.”