APOLOGY & REQUEST FOR FORGIVENESS
My name is Rose. I am the person who wrote the majority of posts on the Rick Ross Cultnews.com Blog about SHEILA VITALE and LIVING EPISTLES MINISTRIES, under the screen name lifeinhim61. This blog is published to the Internet as: Cult News from Rick Ross: Beware of Sheila Vitale and Living Epistles Ministries.
Since 2008 I have been unable to look at the messages I wrote without a lot of guilt and shame. Lately I feel God has been calling me to get it right with Him and LEM and to give a public apology, to do what I can to remove this curse my words have placed upon this ministry, as well as the private shame and harm I have done to individual members who have treated me kindly over the years and did not deserve anything but kindness and love in return.
I am ashamed of my past behavior, how I allowed myself to enter into a warfare that was not mine in the first place, to have gotten into ungodly relationships and allowed Satan to twist every one of my words and thoughts to bring destruction upon LEM. It is my prayer that I will be forgiven and make amends for this injustice, as well as restore to the ministry what my actions have taken away. I'm deeply ashamed. Looking back at the posts that I made, I can't even recognize that I made them.
Below are the emails I wrote to Pastor Sheila Vitale on November 12, 2013, and to Rick Ross on November 11, 2013, in an attempt to have Mr. Ross remove the offending posts and article, which he has refused to do. In addition, I tried three times to post my email of apology to Pastor Vitale to the Blog, but it was removed all three times.
Following the emails, is an account of the events and many lies that led up to my seduction:
MY EMAIL TO PASTOR VITALE
It has taken me a long time to get up enough courage to apologize to you for the way I treated not only you, but your ministry and your staff back in 2008 regarding the information posted on Rick Ross's website. As I look back in time over the messages (something I have not done in years), I felt broken, ashamed, and very sad to realize the person I had become. I have repented to the Lord and asked Rick Ross to remove the messages, but he gave me an emphatic NO and said that the policy states that you cannot delete posts after the first 30 minutes. I have the email I wrote to him with his response if you would like to see it.
I really don't know what to say. You blessed me with your time, your kindness on the telephone, your advice regarding my marriage, my children, etc. and I mistreated you, Aurelia, and not sure who else with my critical spirit. I cringe every time I think of how wrapped up I was (obsessed) with making a mockery out of your ministry, trying to prove that I sure could tell you. I had Michelle cheering me on, calling me often and giving me fuel for the fire. I also felt a need to protect Aurelia, but it was not my right to do so. I see everything so clearly now and I can't believe that was me. I know I was battling an addiction to anti-depressants at the time and was also ill frequently from fibroid issues and bladder problems, but that is not an excuse for what I did.
I take full responsibility for any kind of judgment that should be given to me. I realize now with perfect clarity how disgusting, immature, prideful, critical, rage-filled, etc. I was. After all was said and done, I went on my way without a thought of it.. and it has all come back to me like I was back in 2008. I can't take back those words ever, they are indelibly engraved on the website. I am deeply ashamed and I know an apology is hardly going to erase whatever feelings of humiliation and emotional turmoil that you and your ministry has gone through.
I ask for your forgiveness, I have asked the Lord for His. I have been so lost these last few years, there have been many temptations as I had fallen away from reading the Bible, attending church, etc. I won't go into detail here as the main purpose of this message was to apologize to you.
I am not sure what you think of me at this time, I can't imagine there's anything good you can find in me. I'm not sure I can find any either. I have been on my face before God every day since I came back to my senses this summer. I have cried out to Him for His mercy and I know He has heard me, but I am in no way cleared from the many sins I have committed in the last few years. My eyes are now opened and I pray He will allow me back into the fold, but I don't deserve it.
Lately I have been confessing and repenting of every sin, everything that has come up in my mind that the Lord brings to my memory. It's very humbling. Your new booklet on the website about corrective judgment has helped me so much to see how far I have fallen.
Thank you for your precious time. I don't deserve an answer back, but I do pray that you will forgive me.
MY EMAIL TO RICK ROSS AND HIS REPLIES BACK TO ME
ON NOVEMBER 14, 2013 (READ FROM THE BOTTOM UP).
Rick Ross wrote:
See the previous email.
On 11/19/2013 10:56 AM, Rose Herczeg wrote:
Do you believe in forgiveness, Mr. Ross. I am serious about making amends.
On Nov 19, 2013, at 10:50 AM, Rick Ross wrote:
The previous email covered this issue.
Nothing will be removed.
On 11/19/2013 10:46 AM, Rose Herczeg wrote:
Hello Mr. Ross,
I wrote to you last week asking if you could remove comments that I had entered back in 2008 in regards to Living Epistles Ministries, and you replied that you would not do it, stating the policy and conditions of the website that I agreed to when participating.
My question is, what WOULD it take for you to remove the article and comments? The article was originally created with the intent to emotionally harm this ministry when, in fact, it was a type of vengeance from a few people who were having family issues because of this ministry and wanting to punish the ministry for this. It's been 5 years and there is no longer an issue.
This ministry would like to be able to rest in peace and continue in study.
I know this sounds odd coming from someone who participated so viciously. I do, however, wish to make amends to this group, and I hope you will be fair and offer me a solution.
Thank you in advance and for the opportunity to make things right with this ministry. I need forgiveness for this and to move on in my life, but more importantly, I need to make this right for the ministry I have hurt through my words and actions.
On 11/12/2013 1:04 PM, Rose Herczeg wrote:
Thank you for the reply. I couldn't find that policy anywhere on the site, this is why I asked.
I appreciate your message.
On Nov 12, 2013, at 12:03 PM, Rick Ross wrote:
It is the stated policy of the board and the rules that you agreed to before posting.
Nothing can or will be deleted, edited or changed after 30 minutes.
On 11/12/2013 10:36 AM, Rose Herczeg wrote:
What is the reason for this?
On Nov 12, 2013, at 7:18 AM, Rick Ross wrote:
Once comments are posted they stay up.
Nothing is later deleted upon request.
On 11/11/2013 9:06 PM, Rose Herczeg wrote:
My name is Rose and my username on the site below is lifeinhim61. I am asking you if it was possible to remove my posts. It has really given me a lot of grief to have them there. I give you the permission to erase them. Too many people have this information and it's been a huge detriment in many areas of my life. I am hoping you can help me.
Thanks in advance,
THE LIES AND EVENTS THAT LED UP TO MY SEDUCTION
I will relate events as best as I remember them, since it is going back almost 6 years in time and many things have happened since then, including not having any previous emails regarding this situation due to getting a new computer and/or erasing many after a fallout with a team member of LEM.
I had been a follower of LEM since 1997 and studied pretty regularly for almost 10 years. I transcribed messages and also kept in touch with the staff and team members. One member, in particular, worked out of her home in South Carolina and we kept in touch nearly every day via email and also by telephone.
This member was the Team Leader and Transcriber for LEM and around 2006 she began to complain regularly about the ministry, how she had put in so much of her time and that Pastor Vitale was always correcting her.
Being her friend, I felt her sorrow, pain, and frustration and I often encouraged her to keep up the good work. I don't remember exactly the date, but sometime in 2007 an incident came up when this member had been corrected once again by Pastor Vitale, and the member told me of this and decided that the correction would not be something she would be willing to do. She couldn't believe she was being treated like an outcast and that there was a contract she was given, a list of her sins as well as the way she needed to be obedient in order to return to the group. This member and I corresponded about this and she felt very hurt and grieved about it, and did not know what she would/should do. I did not give any advice, but told her to do whatever she felt necessary, though I did feel like she was being mistreated at the time.
In this particular time period I learned of another member who lived in Minnesota and her husband and daughter were studying with Living Epistles Ministries. The team member that I corresponded with brought this knowledge to light and I wanted to help this person in Minnesota with her daughter. She told me that there were many fights with her and her husband and that she was looking to get an order of protection against him and also against Pastor Vitale for destroying her home life. She believed that the ministry was a cult and had captured her daughter and husband, as well as many of the people studying in the group in Minnesota. This woman and I had a conversation over the phone a few times and she asked if I would be willing to help her by speaking with her daughter's counselor, to which I agreed. In the succeeding weeks there was more and more problems between this woman and her family members, a lot of resistance and fear.
I believe it was around this time (mid-late 2007) that this woman contacted Rick Ross to set up an intervention meeting in order to get her daughter back even if she had to lose her husband. I'm not exactly sure when the intervention happened, but I learned not too long afterwards about Rick Ross's website and that someone in Minnesota had given the article to Rick Ross to publish, describing it as a cult. The reason why this was done (I believe) is that there was a lot of battling going on between the woman and her family, and she was desperate, as well as in fear. I fell into the trap of doing the battle for her, not only on the telephone and in emails to her, but on the Rick Ross website, even though the battle wasn't mine in the first place. I felt a need rise up in me to protect this woman and I believed all the lies, everything she was telling me about what was happening in Minnesota, even though it was hard for me to understand, since I had been studying with LEM for a long time and there was peace and calm within the group.
I stopped talking with the main team member at LEM after she was taken out of the group. She was told to not correspond with me anymore and I tried to not email her, even though it was hard. I also stopped corresponding with the lady from Minnesota after she got what she needed from me, it was the last I heard of her.
I had spent many hours on the Rick Ross website putting up messages, more for impressing the lady from Minnesota than for any real reason. I was raised up in pride and in my carnal mind, I was raging because of what happened to the team member, as well as what was happening to this other family in Minnesota. It became my purpose at that point to do all I could to do what I could to bring down this ministry. It was an all-consuming feeling and also a very lonely feeling as well, to have lost a friend whom I thought didn't deserve to be treated so badly (I thought) after her many years of faithful service to this ministry.
I felt like I could rescue M's daughter by bringing a message of destruction upon LEM. Little did I know, I was the one who would be brought down. I believed all the lies I was being told and, eventually, I realized that I was being used for a purpose for this woman and also for the team leader, who eventually stopped corresponding with me.
The article and the message on the Rick Ross website were written and arranged to destroy Sheila Vitale and Living Epistles Ministries before M’s daughter turned 18. In M’s mind, she was trying to stop the ministry from destroying her home life.
The team member who got put out of the ministry for disobedience has not spoken to me but a few times since 2006, and has decided to go back to studying with Living Epistles Ministries. I have not heard from the woman in Minnesota and don't know what happened with her and her family.
What I do know is that I raged on in a battle that was not mine, that I made very many defamatory accusations and remarks about ministers in Minnesota and at Living Epistles in Port Jefferson that were totally untrue. I did it because of pride. I did it because I was immature and I had two people cheering for me to write the messages.