Elbert Eugene Spriggs, aka “Yoneq”
Messianic Communities, Commonwealth of Israel, Community Apostolic Order, Northeast Kingdom Community Church, Light Brigade for Jesus Christ, The Vine Christian Community, The Church in Island Pond
Elbert Eugene Spriggs (1937-2021), aka "Yoneq"
Chattanooga, TN USA (1972)
include Yellow Deli (restaurants), Parchment Press, The Peacemaker (sailing ship)
include The Twelve Tribes Freepaper, The Voice from Outside the Camp of Organized Religion
Considered a “high-demand” group by many cult observers, Twelve Tribes is alleged to exercise great control over every aspect of its members’ lives and to require a high degree of unity and compliance with leaders’ directives. It has also had much-publicized conflicts with government authorities over the corporal discipline of its minor children (e.g., in Vermont in 1984, and in Germany in 2013). Critics claim that members are often alienated from their natural families outside the group.
The group is known for its distinctive proselytizing methods. One online article states that “In addition to following around [Bob] Dylan’s endless tour, the Twelve Tribe ‘Peacemaker’ bus has also dogged Phish, as well as Grateful Dead spin-off bands RatDog and Furthur” (including first-aid tents for concertgoers). Twelve Tribes representatives have been seen in the parking lots of evangelical music events (like the West Coast "Fishfest") and Greg Laurie’s Harvest Crusade. According to a statement attributed to Spriggs, “The Bible is not sufficient to lead someone to God. They must have a ‘sent one’ from the Twelve Tribes/Messianic Communities to proclaim the gospel to them. Also, there is no salvation outside the Messianic Communities.”
Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Spain, United Kingdom, United States
Afrikaans, Basque, Czech, English, Farsi, French, German, Hebrew, Hungarian, Japanese, Portuguese, Spanish, SlovenianCzech