Dec 27, 2017

Podcast: The cult of Gloriavale

Lilia at her baptism at Gloriavale. Photo / supplied
Lilia at her baptism at Gloriavale.
Megan McChesney
December 27, 2017


When Lilia Tarawa fled from the religious cult of Gloriavale, she turned her back on the only life she’d ever known.

The deeply moving story of a girl who grew up in this isolated community on the South Island’s West Coast … and what happened when her thirst for truth and knowledge became too great to ignore.

“Mum freaks out, like, ‘God has cursed us’. Dad’s like, ‘Don’t be silly, woman!’ and I’m sitting here thinking, ‘Are there people from Gloriavale coming to get us? Will they come and force us to go back? And I’m scared out of my wits.”

“We don’t want women who are independent. We don’t want to be raising women who are leaders. A woman’s job is to submit to the men.”

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