TWW Turns Four Today!

"So teach us to number our days,
That we may present to You a heart of wisdom."

Psalm 90:12 (NASB)

Burning Candles in the Dark

Four years ago we launched The Wartburg Watch with both excitement and trepidation.  We had no idea what the future would hold, but we were passionate about discussing faith issues. 

As we ventured into the great unknown – the blogosphere – we began to see the dark side of Christendom.  Those who had been hurt by organized religion began sharing their tales of woe, and we were horrified!  By divine providence, Dee and I had come through our own church difficulties, and those experiences helped us have discernment regarding the problems that are riddling the faith community. 

We are grateful for this forum, which enables us to present our thoughts and concerns to a wide-ranging audience.  Perhaps the most surprising aspect of blogging has been the community that has been assembled here from around the world.  We are fairly certain that we have virtual friends on every continent, including Antarctica.  In fact, later this week we will be celebrating this milestone with someone who recently contacted us from the bottom of the world.  She is now on furlough, and we will be taking a little road trip to meet her for lunch.

Statistics seem to indicate that most blogs cease to exist after about nine months.  We suspect that some of the reasons why blogs fail are a lack of focus, inconsistent posting, and blogger discouragement.  We believe our faithful readers deserve much of the credit for TWW's wide appeal.  We are here for them – not to advance our own agenda. 

Thanks for your encouragement and for being willing to read what two middle-aged Christian 'babes' have to say.  We are happy to report that for the foreseeable future The Wartburg Watch will continue to press on… 


TWW Turns Four Today! — 122 Comments

  1. ** Tis time today – Harooh! Hooray! — for your Fourth Birthday Gift Rap, oh yay! **




    ** brad/futuristguy sends this message of blessage for an exceedingly yippity-skippity, pippity-zippity, shoo-bop doo-wow kind of a day. Hurray! **

    [Okay, we knew not everything could be super-dooper serious all the time! But seriously, happy fourth blogiversary, and thanks for all you’ve invested to help make the Church and the churches a safer and healthier place for all.]

  2. So we celebrate the day God gave us The Wartburg Watch. Happy Birthday to all of us! And thank you ladies, for your love for Him, for us, and for the truth–a love demonstrated with much hard work and sacrifice. Love you right back.

  3. "Thanks for your encouragement and for being willing to read what two middle-aged Christian 'babes' have to say. We are happy to report that for the foreseeable future The Wartburg Watch will continue to press on… "

    THANK YOU! 🙂

  4. I for one thank Dee and Deb for starting this blog and for pouring their spirit into this blog. I also thank the community of commenters to keep it alive and popping. God bless you all.

  5. Happy Birthday TWW!!! I’m so thankful for Dee, Deb, and all who contribute here. You have all blessed and enriched my life so much.

  6. Thanks for all the birthday wishes! Keep those comments, e-mails, phone calls, and blog post suggestions coming.

    Always remember, it's your forum, too!

  7. So very thankful for TWW – for Dee and Deb and for the wonderful commenters. I’ve learned so much from all of you, and I think we can probably all agree that this blog is making a huge difference in many people’s lives. Happy Birthday!

  8. Dee/Deb/GBTC:

    Congratulations. I believe that I was one of your early readers. I really appreciate your work on this forum. Well researched, well written, pulling no punches, willing to take criticism and respond appropriately, and only rarely and when appropriate, showing righteous anger. Keep protecting the children, the wounded and those stepped on by people in or seeking power, and keep defending the faith from false doctrine. You are a blessing.

  9. Happy Birthday Wartburg Watch. God has used this blog site to guide me back to church and to help to trust Him again. Thanks Dee, Deb, & all the bloggers.

  10. Arce,

    Yes, you were one of our first commenters, and we are so glad you are still here! You have been a tremendous resource, and we are grateful for you.

  11. Scooter's Mom,

    I am so thankful that our blog has helped you trust in the Lord again. What an incredible testimony. I hope it inspires others here who are discouraged.

  12. You both have done great work here and provided a Body of Christ for many of the nones. Many will not see it that way but I pray their eyes might be opened that PEOPLE are more important than positions, power, influence and buildings. May they stop treating the Good News as merchandise.

  13. Anon 1,

    Thank you for your invaluable input in this forum. Your vast knowledge has been a blessing to the many discussions we have had.

  14. Dee, Deb, GBTC (and spouses) –

    Congratulations! Thank you for being willing to expose what is in darkness so that the Church can be the Bride of Christ. I know many people don’t see what you do in this light and may judge uncharitably, but they also seem to want to print and speak whatever they desire (and often charge for it) and expect it to be swallowed without question.

  15. Dee & Deb,
    A blog’s longevity is due to its credibility. Credibility comes from attention to accuracy, transparency and openness to contrary opinions. Your stated policy of not removing challenging or or disagreeing comments is an important part of your success.

    Thanks for letting me be a small part of it.

  16. Happy Birthday!

    Jesus is the light of the world, you glorious women are candles, lighting up the dark for the wounded to find our/their way.
    I am thankful that I have found your blog, and the links that you have provided have helped me too.
    It does my heart good to know that I am not alone or crazy as I continue to unpack my ex church baggage. xo

    “The Lord bless you and keep you–the Lord make His face shine upon you, and be gracious unto you; the Lord lift up His countenance upon you, and give you peace.” Numb. 6:24-26.

  17. TWW: “Watching Da Proverbial Church Wall?”


    An appalling and horrible thing has happened in the churchland? The pastors leads falsely, and apparently rule on their own authority; for wicked men are found in the pulpit…they set a trap, they catch men?

    Dee & Deb,

    Thank you for being faithful in this fourth year of the TWW mission “to equip the priesthood of believers”.

    “Equipped, therefore, I am.” 


    Thanx Wartburg!

    Thank you for being the proverbial watch wo-man on da wall.

    All da best on Wartburg’s birthday… 

    tooooooooooot !



    Sopy ;~)
    P.S. wherez ma party hat? 

  18. Happy Birthday TWW!

    I rarely comment but have been reading nearly daily for about a year. The series last summer about pedophiles convinced me to look at our state’s registry, since the house church we were attending had several former inmates. One of them was listed and the host of the group knew and didn’t tell us. No wonder they weren’t having any families with kids stick around! We immediately stopped attending and haven’t heard from anyone there since. Nobody ever asked why we left.

  19. I was once told that “reading online” caused me to see problems in the church. Thank God for online communities! Here’s to four more years of healthy conversation at TWW and four more years of shining the light on problems in the church so that the true Light can shine!

  20. Deb and Dee, happy blog birthday and thank you for all you do. In a short time, I have learned so much from you and from all the commenters here. This site is a model of integrity.

  21. HoppyTheToad,

    I hope your testimony will encourage others to be wise as serpents! In the internet age, there is so much valuable information at our fingertips. You are to be applauded for checking the pedophile registry. I hope you have encouraged others to do the same. We can't be too careful these days…


  22. Heather said,

    "I was once told that “reading online” caused me to see problems in the church." There are definitely two ways of looking at that statement. 😉

    Ignorance is not bliss, and we are so glad you are here! Let the TWW conversation continue as long as God wills it…

  23. lilyrosemary,

    A commenter whom Dee and I have met, Sergius Martin George, sometimes remarks that although he enjoys our posts, he REALLY gets a lot out of the comment threads. He is a sharp guy, and it's quite commendable that we have gathered together such an astute group.

    Dee and I are so blessed!

  24. Happy Birthday ladies, may God continue to use you and this blog to expose the truths that continue to cause people so much pain.

  25. O Happy Day! Dee & Deb, it has been so much fun to get to know you. You’ve been encouragers to me — I’ve learned to think about and re-think many situations and positions. From the SBC to SGM to Harvest to pedophilia and more — I’ve learned much from you — thank God for gifting you in this special way, and providing the venue for you to do a work of ministry that is sorely needed in this old world.

    To quote General Johnson & Chairman of the Board, “Carolina girls — best in the world!”

  26. Eagle,

    I am very proud of your transformation! Several years ago you came onto our blog like a bull in a china shop, yet we embraced you because we could tell you had been deeply wounded. Now you are such an encourager to others who have been hurt.

    Looking back to 2007, I was content in my Southern Baptist church, and Dee kept saying "We need to start our blog". I wasn't sure it would ever happen, but somehow it did. We have forever been changed by getting to know wonderful people like you. This is the real deal!

  27. Celebrating with you regarding this intriguing milestone in your blogging history! Telling it ‘like it is’ and with conviction is so important to getting the word out. What an amazing opportunity.

    I, too, have enjoyed the super input of all the commenters. A huge learning experience for one and all!

    Opportunities for community to share, to examine, to ponder, and to grow together spiritually is a wonderful gift to everyone. Thanks for being part of the solution!

    Greetings from the Pacific Northwest!

  28. Barb,

    You have been an invaluable resource to the TWW community! I remember when Dee reviewed your book, Spiritual Abuse Recovery.

    I do hope our readers are making their way to your website. Blessings!

  29. Four years ago, on this day and in God’s majestic providence He hath given unto us a website whereby we might learn the truth about those who claim to be His servants, but who are “like unto whitewashed sepulchres”.

    Congrats to Dee and Deb from a a doctrinally conservative evangelical … may God richly bless y’all in your work and ministry here.

  30. Yes, Dee and Deb, I so appreciate your reviewing of my book: Spiritual Abuse Recovery. It was a whole new adventure for me too. 🙂

    I have continued to write and to post articles on my website. Yes, folks are welcome to pop in, send me an email, as well as share about my website as a resource for others.

    We have all been stretched in ways that we had never imagined–and here we are continuing to learn and grow and share with others!

  31. Congratulations on 4 years of blogging, Deb & Dee!

    I’m new, but have been overwhelmed by how it much it means to find like-minded people discovering the same things I have. Not feeling alone in the journey is so important.

    Might I add, that while I’ve read other blogs and appreciated them, I felt like I found a grow-up conversation here that I did not find elsewhere.

    Congrats and keep up the good work!

  32. TWW: “With a Dashes Of Simple Sense, And a bucket of Old Fasion’d Christian Kindness?”

    “slowly, I turned… inch by inch…”

    nuck, nuck, nuck…


    What in the world is dem critics saying about The Wartburg Watch?


    Wartburg witches
    O glorious wenches
    Minions of Satan
    Narcissistic zeroes
    Quite a gossip column
    How did we ever get along without you?
    Full of ****
    Bored housewives
    Yellow journalism
    Discernment Divas
    Feminist Heretic
    Discernamentalist Diva Mafia
    Poor reading comprehension
    In Need of ESL


    What will they think of next?


    Wartburg, looks like you’ve got theyz attention…


    Dr. Jon, is it time for a Mint Julep, sip’d slowly on the veranda?


    ha! ha!


  33. I am so thankful for you guys too, wizened Brides of Satan that you are, usurping the male-might-is-right brigade. May your Wartiness ever increase, & may all your spineless, intellectually challenged acolytes continue their vapid & dull commenting on topics that have nothing to do with them 😉

  34. Beaker, Thanks for reminding me to share my new word for dee and deb:


    It has an empress ring to it doesn’t it?

  35. Congratulations, Deb and Dee. I don’t often comment, but I read here everyday and always learn something about the beautiful love our kind and loving heavenly father has for us — you gals are fierce defenders of the truth and of His hurting ones. Every blessing for the next year — may He continue to use you to further His kingdom and speak truth into the world.

  36. Happy birthday to Wartburg Watch and the two minionettes of Satan. You are awesome! Also, happy to see everyone in this online community, I am whole because of all of you.

  37. On a scary day just over a year ago, I sent out a very nervous e-mail about a lawsuit to 3 people. I got a response back from 2 of those 3. The two were: Barb Orlowski whom I remain in contact with quite frequently and of course Dee and Deb at TWW. I love your passion for the hurting. I have personally experienced the depth of your love. Thank you, ladies. I can’t wait to meet you IRL some day. It will happen. I will bring the step ladder for my hug 🙂

    Happy birthday, TWW from the West Coast Blogger, aka Jezzy Belle

  38. Happy Birthday TWW

    We have enjoyed reading your blog everyday for the last four years. May God
    bless you ladies and everyone who contributes to the success of this blog.
    We have gained so much knowledge and know that the best is yet to come.

  39. Julie Anne,

    I'll never forget that e-mail you sent.  You wrote: "My pastor is suing me for $500,000."

    You've come a long way baby! Dee and I are so proud of you.

  40. Dee and Deb And GBTC,

    Thank you for all you do here. I started reading 2 1/2 or 3 years ago. I think it was at least a year before I actually commented.
    Thank you for always putting the victims front and center.
    Thank you for taking the hits from those you expose.
    Thank you for creating a place where the wounded can come and find haven.
    Thank you for CARING.

    This blog and the family the gathers here have encouraged me, challenged me accepted me…you have created a refuge where few exist. 🙂

  41. Thanks for all the wonderful comments! It is so good to hear from some of you who read faithfully but don't often chime in. It helps us get a better handle on our readership.

  42. Happy Birthday to our resident blog/cult goddesses! May the rest of the world come over to the dark side. Dark chocolate that is. 😀 And a big thank you to your families (and the Guy Behind the Curtain) who support the wonderful work you are doing.

  43. Happy anniversary to TWW and its two WMD (Wenches of Mahaney Deconstruction). May many more enlightening discussions take place around the castle and many more Calvinistas be skewered by your sharp minds and commentary.

  44. Dee and Deb – congrats on the 4-year mark! Many thanks for all of your encouragement and support shown to us – both publicly here on the blog and also privately in our many conversations. You are loved here in Jacksonville!

  45. Deb wrote:


    WMDs – Dee will have to add that one to our list of what the world is saying about us.

    Actually, I think that was something either Julie Anne’s former pastor used against her or something Bob Grenier said. Whichever it was, they meant Woman of Mass Destruction. I, however, came up with the alternate explanation of the acronym. You guys do a lot of CJ Mahaney deconstruction so it seemed to fit!

  46. Congratulations, and Happy Birthday!

    (of course, in Australia it was yesterday!) May our blog queens continue to use their x-ray sceptres to diagnose the sicknesses in the Body of Christ.

  47. I am late for the party…Happy Unbirthday!

    This is a blog I believe God led me to last year, as the egalitarian in me was in the process of being born. I was mad as hell at Mark Driscoll, and also in the middle of a spiritual crisis caused by the poisonous worm theology of Todd Friel and Ray Comfort. By reading here I discovered I was not alone, was finally able to make sense of what had happened, and was shown that there was a way out of the darkness. Now I visit almost every day. I consider myself a student of yours, Deb and Dee, and also of the many brilliant people who comment here. You all are my heroes, and have taught and continue to teach me many things.

    And even though I was not sexually abused in an actual church building or by church-goers, the atmosphere here at TWW is so supportive, validating and comforting to victims/survivors, that it was here where I first spoke in a public manner a little bit of what I went through…I will forever appreciate the love.

  48. Lynne T,

    You and your fellow Aussies who comment here have kept us apprised of what is going on in Christian circles down under. I have learned so much!

  49. Oasis,

    I just realized we haven't written about Mark Driscoll in so long. I am grateful you discovered TWW and have found freedom in Christ. He is the true liberator!

    A former pastor, who btw loves Driscoll, preached through Galatians not long before we started this blog. He stressed liberty, not legalism, and I learned the lessons well. Maybe too well… 😉

  50. A belated Happy Birthday from SW Florida! May your wisdom, compassion for victims, and influence in the world of blogs continue for many more years to come!

  51. Happy birthday from the Antipodes! May TWW remain around long enough to double the length of the list of names you’ve been called.

  52. Happy Birthday from the rest of us in the UK too 🙂 Your blog has been helpful to some of us over here as well.

  53. Thank you Dee and Deb for your tireless work on one of the best sites on the web covering very important Christian topics. So glad I found you. I love the participants here as well – I’ve learned so much from the postings and given the issues discussed, it’s amazing how it never degenerates into flame wars. Thank you one and all for what is a very enlightening place to come.

  54. Oasis

    Thank you for saying that you feel supported. That means more to us than exposing any of Mark Driscoll’s faux pas.

  55. Happy Anniversary, Dee & Deb! Prayers for God’s continued blessings, and best wishes from this regular reader!

  56. Anon 1 wrote:

    Beaker, Thanks for reminding me to share my new word for dee and deb:
    It has an empress ring to it doesn’t it?

    Usurpresses? That is a veritable triumph of a word! Beautiful work…

  57. Congratulations, ladies! Your hard work and love have had a beneficial impact on the world. Continue in God’s grace and power!

  58. I know I’m a day late – but better late to the party than not come at all! Happy Anniversary to both of you! I know I only comment, occasionally, however I do read regularly. Thank you for all of the work that you do.

  59. @ JeffT:

    What the church and affiliated school did, as well as what his wife said, are beyond belief:

    Lozano noted that in the aftermath of the scandal, the girl was expelled from Hammond Baptist High School and the family from the church.

    Schaap’s wife, Cindy, who describes her husband’s affair with the girl as “consensual,” said her husband was suffering from “a severe case of prostatitis” and complained of exhaustion during the time he now admits he was involved in a sexual relationship with the victim.

    “I feel compelled to ask once more for leniency in my husband’s sentencing,” she wrote.

    Chicago Tribune

  60. Oh wait…we DO share a birthday (just looked at the post date) – 3/19 –
    Do I get a present?

  61. Congratulations, Dee and Deb.
    Happy birthday, TWW! 🙂
    Such a great bunch of folks here.
    Such a blessing to be among you all.

  62. Happy Birthday, TWW!! And here’s to many more.

    May you have a fruitful, productive, and LOOOOOOOONNNNGGGGGG life!

    (Raises glass and says AMEN!)

  63. Hi Dee/Deb,

    Reading WW is the highlight of my day!!! I rarely comment though (haven’t got the gumption yet…working on it). I love how you both stand up for women in the church! Please keep doing what you do. Peace

  64. dee wrote:

    The ESV Bible-just tell me where to send it.  Happy Birthday.  🙂

    Dee, I’d be honored, and just because you’re my friend I’ll make whatever corrections are needed, annotate it, make a copy and share with the world 🙂

    1135-B Thomas (as in doubting) Ln,
    Hixson, TN 37343

    and congratulations on your B’day too!!

  65. Hi Dee and Deb,

    Happy Birthday! I am so glad to finally find a website that does not censor comments. I may have been a contributor for the last couple of years on The Go$pel Coalition website. It gets hard to always be right. I am happy that its your 4th birthday. Keep up the blogging. Of course if you wouldn’t mind not mentioning that I stopped by as it might cause me some problem$ with the TGG crowd.

  66. Dee and Deb,

    There’s going to be a conference in your area with the president of the Household of Faith Fellowship of churches speaking. I’m pretty sure you’ve blogged about that group before. The conference is sponsored by one of the several family-integrated churches in the area. This might be something worth blogging about.

  67. Estelle wrote:

    Imini emnandi kuwe! (Happy birthday! in isiXhosa)

    When you say that in Xhosa, are you tempted to “click” this button? Bwah hah ha ha!!!!! 😉

    Congratulations, glamorous blog queens! Indeed, the comment threads are like gold, but you two had to get the ball rolling, and you did–and still do! Here’s to 4 more years (at least).


  68. Thanks for starting this blog and for devoting so much time and effort to keeping it going. Happy birthday !

  69. Happy Birthday! I only found you recently, but have already come to appreciate you tremendously. Thank you.

  70. SMG,

    Four more years! Four more years! I guess we’ll do this as long as the Lord wills…

    Our blogging friends make this endeavor so worthwhile.

  71. HoppyTheToad,

    Thanks for letting us know about that conference. I’ll be looking into it.

    I guess you have heard about the disbanding of the Gresham Household of Faith on January 13, 2013.

    The website indicates that Gregg Harris will continue to work as an evangelist, conference speaker, and seminar instructor.

  72. It’s great to hear from some of our new readers! Welcome!!! We hope you will contribute to future discussions.

  73. Dee and Deb, thank you so much for TWW. There is no way I would ever be as informed without it. Two years ago I knew nothing about all the shenanigans going on in the American church. Now there’s a way to learn, and find out the truth.


  74. Congratulations on 4 years!

    I am so thankful for the resources and community that this space provides.

  75. Bridget wrote:

    Schaap’s wife, Cindy, who describes her husband’s affair with the girl as “consensual,” said her husband was suffering from “a severe case of prostatitis” and complained of exhaustion during the time he now admits he was involved in a sexual relationship with the victim.

    I’ve had prostatitis — I’m on a Doxycycline schedule for it right now and I’ve had BPH for years. It didn’t send me polishing my shaft inside some jail bait.

    And why’s the Wifey defending her ehebephile rapist-under-cover-of-authority Hubby? Woman, Submit? Better he’s screwing her so I can get some relief?

  76. Happy 4th birthday Deb, Dee & those who encourage them.
    The community you have nurtured here on the interweb is a real & living thing, even to those of us silently reading every thread for over two years without a word of comment – until now, at your request! While some things are different here in the UK, some things are sadly similar. Thank you for the hours poured out, the humour and especially your graciousness.