Koran Burner: Creepier Than You Think
SEPTEMBER 8—The Florida pastor who is planning to burn a pile of Korans this weekend runs a church that has established a variety of cult-like rules for individuals studying to become ministers, according to the group’s “rulebook.”
The Dove World Outreach Center (DWOC), headed by Islam-hating Rev. Terry Jones, has been widely denounced for its September 11 bonfire plans. The tiny Gainesville church is headed by Jones and his wife Sylvia, a co-pastor.
The DWOC’s “Academy Rulebook,” a copy of which you’ll find here, was created in November 2007 by Sylvia Jones. The document, which details the standards to which a prospective DWOC minister must adhere, addresses topics such as behavior, study, and communication. It is also filled with the kind of creepy directions that are often associated with cults.
For instance, students are directed to cut off most contact with family members. “Family occasions like wedding, funerals or Birthdays are no exception to this rule,” the rulebook notes. “No phone calls. Exceptions can be made under certain circumstances but only after receiving permission.”
The Joneses also barred “Singles” from having “romantic relationships to the opposite sex…Except work things, there is no need to talk at all, or even flirt!” Students were barred from “eating out in restaurants” and warned that they would be weighed “once a week to follow the tendency,” an apparent reference to a weight goal established by the Joneses.
The rulebook—which is riddled with misspellings and grammatically challenged—notes that students must “wash or shower at least once a day but not more then 2 a day,” and make sure to cleanse “Mouth, sweat areas, hair, feet hands.” (6 pages)