Jesus Freaks A True Story of Murder and Madness on the Evangelical Edge

ISBN-10: 0061118060

ISBN-13: 9780061118067

Edition: N/A

Authors: Don Lattin

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In the tradition of Jon Krakauer's Under the Banner of Heaven, Don Lattin's Jesus Freaks is the story of a shocking pilgrimage of revenge that left two people dead and shed new light on The Family International, one of the most controversial religious movements to emerge from the spiritual turmoil of the sixties and seventies. Some say The Family International-previously known as the Children of God-began with the best intentions. But their sexual and spiritual excesses soon forced them to go underground and follow a dark and dangerous path. Their charismatic leader, David "Moses" Berg, preached a radical critique of the piety and hypocrisy of mainstream Christianity. But Berg's message quickly devolved into its own web of lies. He lusted for power and unlimited access to female members of his flock-including young girls and teenagers-and became a drunken tyrant, setting up re-indoctrination camps around the world for rebellious teenagers under his control. Thousands of children raised in The Family would defect and try to live normal lives, but the prophet's heir apparent, Ricky "Davidito" Rodriguez, was unable to either bear the excesses of the cult or fit into normal society. Sexually and emotionally abused as a child, Ricky left the fold and began a crusade to destroy the only family he ever knew, including a plot to kill his own mother. Veteran journalist Don Lattin has written a powerful, engrossing book about this uniquely American tragedy. Jesus Freaks is a cautionary tale for those who fail to question the prophesies and proclamations of anyone who claims to speak for God.
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Book details

List price: $13.99
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 9/2/2008
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 256
Size: 5.31" wide x 8.00" long x 0.58" tall
Weight: 0.550
Language: English

Don Lattinis the author ofThe Harvard Psychedelic Club: How Timothy Leary, Ram Dass, Huston Smith and Andrew Weil Killed the Fifties and Ushered in a New Age for America,Jesus Freaks: A True Story of Murder and Madness on the Evangelical Edge,Following Our Bliss: How the Spiritual Ideals of the Sixties Shape our Lives TodayandShopping for Faith: American Religion in the New Millennium. For more information, please visit

Cast of Characters
Revenge of the Savior: Westbound on Interstate 10 near the Arizona/California border, January 8, 2005
Mama Berg: Casa Grande Valley Farms, Pima County, Arizona, December 1948
Jesus Freaks: Corner of Haight and Ashbury streets, San Francisco, California, May 1967
Gospel of Rebellion: Light Club, Huntington Beach, California, March 1968
Family Circus: Texas Soul Clinic Ranch, Erath County, Texas, March 1970
My Little Fish: Emergencia Maternidad, Tenerife, Canary Islands, January 1975
Teen Terror: Sunflower Street, Antipolo, Philippines, February 1987
Joy: King County District Court, Seattle, Washington, May 1993
Expert Witness: Church in the Marketplace, Sydney, Australia, January 1994
Elixcia: Family International Offices, Budapest, Hungary, August 1994
Loving Jesus: World Services Publication Unit, Vancouver, Canada, October 1996
Moving On: Family Care Foundation, Dulzura, California, March 2000
Into the Desert: Elderhaven Care Home, Tucson, Arizona, December 25, 2004
Last Date: Apartment of Alisia Arvizu, Scottsdale, Arizona, January 2, 2005
Lost: Tiago's house, Santa Fe, New Mexico, January 8, 2005
"Come Die With Me": Ricky's apartment, Tucson, Arizona, January 8, 2005
End of the Road: Palo Verde Irrigation District, Blythe, California, January 9, 2005 Cyberspace, March 2007 and beyond
Author's Note on the "Mo Letters"
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