I have been a part of the prayer and worship movement since I was 13 years old. I am 35 now. I wanted to share some of my experiences with IHOPKC that were troubling. I have known for years now that the experiences I had there were not okay but with everything coming to the light in recent days, I feel it's important to give some more glances into the dysfunction. I moved to KC to attend IHOPU and was there between 2007-2008. 18-year-old me arrived in KC with great anticipation and excitement. I remember thinking it was a dream come true. I met some amazing friends and not all memories are bad but many things were questionable, to say the least. Even my 18-year-old self had inklings that the way the community was handled was very odd but I was trusting and all in. Unless you were on staff, an intern, a student, or led worship/prayer, you had no real connections to others. I remember feeling grieved by this dynamic. So rewind to my first week at IHOPU, it's orientation week. I just finished taking my photo for my student ID, and they bring us to a room to be encouraged and prophesied over. I was encouraged but then we were told the men and women would be separated for a "talk." I was cattled into a small room with way too many people. Instinctually, I was like: "Oh, they're giving us the purity talk." Needless to say, the female leader proceeded to tell us that we need to strongly refrain from wearing t-shirts or clothing with letters across the chest to avoid bringing attention to our breasts, to instead be modest and avoid wearing tight or revealing clothing, and we were strongly encouraged to not dance, jump, bounce, or jiggle in the prayer room because we would cause the men to stumble into sin. I remember being so uncomfortable in that talk. Inappropriately, the leader even modeled to us with gestures and movements what we were and were not supposed to do with our bodies with particular emphasis again on NOT making the men in our community stumble. As one who grew up in the purity culture, this wasn’t wildly foreign. In addition to the expectations around clothing and other restraints, we were instructed to not date in the first 1-2 years of internship/university. Many interns and students did anyway. It was presented as a blessing to focus on the Lord and not be distracted but it was overboard, controlling, and I believe was a ploy to control. We were also required to download a monitoring accountability program on our computers and laptops and identify accountability partners to whom we were instructed to confess if we watched pornography or engaged in sexual sin. If any of us visited a site that was pornographic or in the slightest bit inappropriate, our identified accountability partner would get an alert in text or email with that disclosure and we were encouraged to have an honest conversation to confess the sin we committed. I am not against accountability, honesty, and confession but for years, I have been detangling from the mess of these experiences. I now know it was a saving grace that I had to return home to Florida to care for my family. I was saved from years of heartache if I had remained there in that unhealthy environment.

- IHOPU Student2007-2008