Dear Friends,

This is the cry of a child’s heart to the judge who must now render righteous judgment. She is just ten years old, but is very perceptive as you will see. She has learned, to her sorrow, what the world is like — the world that her parents fled from many years ago to live in the Communities of the Twelve Tribes. Taken to that world against her will, she wants to go home. What child wouldn’t want to go home to such a wonderful place as she describes? Let’s turn to her little story, written in a letter to the judge. She has something important to say and thought a story the best way to tell it.

A Place Where People Love Each Other

Hello Mrs. Roser,

Once, someone brought a baby deer from the forest.

At that time it was just a few days old. When this person brought this little deer home, my sister and I received it into our room and took care of it. My sister provided a box with straw for the fawn.


Every morning we fed her with goat’s milk in a bottle and took her for a short walk. But then came the time that she had to go back to her natural environment, to the place which her Creator had created her for.

In the same way, I have not been born for this place, where girls dispute and have to scream at each other, but rather for a very special place, where people love each other. This is only in the community of the Twelve Tribes, where human beings love each other and take care of each other.

Now it has been already three months that I have been separated from my parents and I will never find a home in this world. My only, only desire will always remain the same, and that is: I want to go home.

From Chassidah Markeli (10 years old) Along with late-breaking news, the German original is at our blog: http://news.zwoelfstaemme.de/2013/12/12/ich-bin-nicht-fur-diesen-platz-geschaffen/.

The English blog has many of the same stories at http://news.twelvetribes.org.

Consider her words, and the heart behind them: “I will never find a home in this world.” Should she have to? Should a government on this earth have the power to tell a ten-year-old who loves her parents, and whose parents obviously love her, that she can not live with them? Is that what the world has come to?

Her fifteen-year-old brother is in captivity, too, but her eighteen-year-old brother, no longer under the thumb of the Jugendamt, “voted with his feet” where he would like to live: the Community of the Twelve Tribes in Klosterzimmern. His name is Chayah and this is his picture. Happier days indeed!


Her older sister is a personal friend of mine, as are her parents. Our family loves them all dearly and we ache at their suffering, their loss, their heartache. It is ours, too. While Germany and perhaps much of the world is against us, our lawyer asked a very pertinent question of the German Constitutional Court. It seems to have had an effect on the lower courts, because all of a sudden three of our youth were released. That makes eight children and youth, so far, who have been set free from captivity. This was his question:

“What this court has to decide is whether a youth, with nothing against her, can be taken from her parents, with nothing against them, simply because of their religious beliefs. Such a thing has not happened in this country since the dark days of the world war… and may it never happen again!”

This raises the legal issue of clan-guilt, known by the ugly German name of sippenhaft. And his question deals squarely with the gross illegality of the September 5, 2013 raid on our communities. Guilt is individual, not communal. We were all deemed guilty by association with one another. How tragic will be the consequences of this egregious (Egregious: conspicuously and outrageously bad or reprehensible.) violation of human rights remains to be seen. For now we rejoice at the children who have returned home. Many of them wrote cards that I hope you have viewed — touching cards and letters to their parents.

Here are the faces that go with them… (In German at http://news.zwoelfstaemme.de/2013/12/04/die-heimkehrer/.)

Besorah with her father

Besorah with her father.

It was a terrible experience for me to live without my parents and my friends. I love my life in the community and am very grateful that I did not have to spend more than three months in this children’s home. I would like to thank on this occasion also all those who have given assistance in our situation. I hope that my two younger sisters will also soon be allowed to go home. ~ Besorah, 14 years old

A friend, Sarah, and her mother.

A friend, Sarah, and her mother.


Three months ago I was separated by police force from my parents and friends and put in a foster home for maladjusted youths, along with another girl of the Twelve Tribes. What happened to me there, I never want to experience again. It was so terrible to be there without my parents and my friends. I’m sooo glad I’m back home, even though I found it hard to leave my little friend there in the foster home (she could not go back home). I hope that all the children may soon go back to their parents. ~ Sarah, 16 years old

(Look for the cards by Debeqah, Sarah’s Hebrew name in the Community at http://news.twelvetribes.org/)

Yedidiah looking on, the Day of the Raid

Yedidiah looking on, the Day of the Raid.

I’m one of the young people who were forcibly separated from their parents and placed in a children’s home. I spent three months in a children’s home and then I decided that I needed to do something radical myself, in order to change something. With me in in the foster home was another boy of the Twelve Tribes. I told him about my plans and was surprised when he said: “Yes, for me also everything istoo much. I’m going with you, no matter the cost!” I did not expect that. We had no other choice but to do what was in our hearts! At 3:00 clock in the morning we jumped out the window and managed miraculously to go home. I’m so glad to be back home. Now I can finally come to rest again. Your friend, Yedidiah, 15 years old


How it all began…

I made an assumption, which is generally a bad thing to do, that our readers would know of the Raid in Bavaria, the southernmost state of Germany. I could tell by the many letters that came in that I was mistaken. We are very thankful for the support and the sympathy. One reader asked what brought it all about. Here is a simple explanation that was first posted on our German website shortly after the Raid. It is now posted as well on our English blog in its entirety.

He who spares his rod hates his son, but if you love him, chasteneth him betimes. (Proverbs 13:24)

Times Change, and with Them the Values

One day someone came along and deceitfully crept into our homes, exploited our hospitality, took secret videos, manipulated them, and then played them to the public. Such a thing was once forbidden and frowned upon, but that was probably at that time when spanking was still allowed, not forbidden and frowned upon. Times change, and with them the values. The prophet Isaiah foresaw this long ago:

Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who exchange darkness for light and light for darkness, who call bitter sweet and sweet bitter! (Isaiah 5:20)


The campaign of estrangement and alienation against our parents continues — part of the “change of values,” for sure. Although the courts have only granted the Jugendamt (Youth Office) temporary custody of the children, you would never know it. Some parents only get to see their children for one hour every three to four weeks!

Now, against our wishes, some of our children are being fed pork: “Ah, just a little bit won’t hurt,” the foster parents say. Being December our children are being lured with the folly and deceit of Santa Claus. What are the children to do but make the best of a bad situation? The government has so much practice alienating the affections of children away from their parents. It’s the hidden purpose of compulsory schooling itself, let alone foster care.

Still we stand with our children and their parents before our Father, beseeching Him on their behalf. Like our children and their sincere faith, we trust in our Father, giving thanks in all things. Giving thanks is just the same as a little child reaching up to take his father’s hand at the least sign of trouble. It’s what he does because he knows his father will be there for him. That’s what giving thanks even in difficult – very difficult – circumstances mean: you trust Him.

Sincerely, Kevin Carlin (for the Communities of the Twelve Tribes)

Originally sent out as Newsletter 23 on December 15, 2013.