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Author Topic: Extreme Makeover: Squatter Edition  (Read 1390 times) Average Rating: 0
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Fr. David
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« on: October 23, 2004, 10:58:05 AM »

Vacation leads to home makeover by squatter

Stranger greets Georgia woman returning from trip

The Associated Press

Updated: 1:34 p.m. ET Oct. 22, 2004

DOUGLASVILLE, Ga. - A woman came home from vacation to find a stranger living there, wearing her clothes, changing utilities into her name and even ripping out carpet and repainting a room she didn’t like, authorities said.

Douglas County authorities say they can’t explain why Beverly Valentine, 54, broke into an empty home and started acting like it was her own.

During the 2-+ weeks the owner, Beverly Mitchell, was on vacation in Greece, Valentine allegedly redecorated the ranch home, ripping up carpet and taking down the owner’s pictures and replacing them with her own.

Mitchell was a complete unknown to Valentine, said Chief Sheriff’s Deputy Stan Copeland. He said he had no idea how Valentine knew Mitchell was gone.

“In 28 years, I’ve never seen something this strange,” Copeland said.

Valentine was being held in Douglas County Jail on a $25,000 bond, Copeland said. If convicted, she could face one to 20 years in prison. Copeland said Friday that he believed Valentine did not have a lawyer.

The case came to light when Mitchell, who lived alone, returned home Oct. 4 to find the lights on and a strange car parked in the driveway. Mitchell called police, who went in and found Valentine, who at first pretended she was renting the home.

Later, Copeland said, she admitted she broke into the house with a shovel and was squatting there. She was charged with burglary.

Authorities found a gun and $23,000 worth of Mitchell’s jewelry in Valentine’s car.

Valentine had the electricity switched over to her name and moved in a washer and dryer and her dog.

Copeland said she was even wearing some of Mitchell’s clothes.

“There’s a lot of people saying, ’What?”’ Copeland said.

Valentine was asked what to do with the washer and dryer she moved in, and Valentine said she didn’t care, so police will leave it up to Mitchell what to do with them, Copeland said.

-¬ 2004 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
« Last Edit: October 23, 2004, 10:58:49 AM by Pedro » Logged

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Shiloah
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« Reply #1 on: October 23, 2004, 10:10:55 PM »

Pedro, I heard this report on the radio and have to admit, it is hard to believe.  I do a lot of prison ministry (in one of our bigger cities in VA and it is a high security facility with about 700 inmates of which about 100 women) and have to deal with a good number of very disturbed persons.

I know the next thing I'm going to say will raise some eyebrows, but ...  we have a lot of people on the streets of America who are under the influence of some  evil spirits.  What psychology may call 'multiple personalities' is in reality one person with multiple demons (a good example was the Gadarene in the Bible).

If there is no evidence of drug addiction, such a person will be declared 'insane' to whatever degree. Jesus trained His Disciples not only to raise the dead but also to cast out demons. That means, the demons were to be cast out of people no matter what their belief was at that moment.

If anybody has experience with this as a practising Orthodox believer, please share with me.

The report about this lady taking over someone elses house reminds me of the story in Matth.12:43-45 and really got me to thinking.

Shiloah, giving God the glory
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« Reply #2 on: October 24, 2004, 01:41:25 AM »

I know the next thing I'm going to say will raise some eyebrows, but ...  we have a lot of people on the streets of America who are under the influence of some  evil spirits.  What psychology may call 'multiple personalities' is in reality one person with multiple demons (a good example was the Gadarene in the Bible).

I completely agree.  Demons influence us "normal" Orthodox as well!  Just not to the extant of the people you're mentioning.  But, it is an issue we need to handle carefully and tactfully both with the non-Orthodox (or should I say complete secular) and Orthodox as well.  Even your Orthodox brethren, you can't just tell someone they're posessed or whatever.
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« Reply #3 on: October 24, 2004, 09:32:58 AM »

If there are any clergy on this list I would like to ask if they could say a word or two in regard to this subject or could someone point to some helpful websites?

I found some interesting reports on the subject 'squatter', and I think where there are symptoms there is a root cause (Where there's smoke there's a fire Smiley)

Here are some quotes:
"The slow and fairly logical growth of slums differs from the spontaneous and explosive emergence of squatter settlements. Particularly dramatic is the speed at which the phenomenon of squatter settlements is growing, shifting towards the metropolitan area and other secondary cities, the result of a strategy of large segments of the population for securing a place to live."
http://www.ruaf.org/1-2/29-31.html

"The objective of the program is to control and channel the phenomenon of squatter occupancy and improve living standards for people in unregulated settlements within the city of Rosario, by assisting their physical and social integration into the formal city. This will be achieved through improvements to urban infrastructure, the provision of social services, and the regularization of ownership for the target population." http://216.239.39.104/search?q=cache:-VT-5yXOrvEJ:www.iadb.org/exr/doc98/apr/ar1307E.pdf+the+phenomenon+of+squatter&hl=en

"Squatter settlements are as much a reality as posh housing localities. If any single actor has to be blamed for their mushrooming, it is the concerned state institutions that could not keep abreast with the rising need of housing in the cities, leaving people to fend for themselves. The phenomenon of squatter settlements is a common factor of almost all the developing countries. Most countries have developed specific policies to address this issue." http://www.urckarachi.org/factsoct.htm#HOUSING

I'd also like to recommend the article "Living the outlaw life:
Squatter: Living in the woods like it was nobody’s business"
By Claire Wolfe  at http://www.backwoodshome.com/columns/wolfe0211.html

A subject we might have to deal with ourselves one of these days if persecution of Christians comes to this nation.

What a thought, but is it really so far fetched?

And then, here's another one: What is the spiritual equivalent of squatter? What is "spiritual squattering"?  Any takers?
« Last Edit: October 24, 2004, 09:34:55 AM by Shiloah » Logged

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« Reply #4 on: October 25, 2004, 04:44:55 PM »


A subject we might have to deal with ourselves one of these days if persecution of Christians comes to this nation.

What a thought, but is it really so far fetched?

And then, here's another one: What is the spiritual equivalent of squatter? What is "spiritual squattering"?  Any takers?

Martin Luther's toilet where he wrote his 95 theses?
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« Reply #5 on: October 25, 2004, 09:25:42 PM »

Probably because they found Luther's toilet recently...
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« Reply #6 on: October 25, 2004, 10:05:20 PM »

Should I read your comment to be your two cents on the state of my soul before God?  I thought we'd agreed to stop that...

Anyway, I wasn't kidding about the toilet:

http://www.suntimes.com/output/news/cst-nws-luther22.html
« Last Edit: October 25, 2004, 10:06:03 PM by Mor Ephrem » Logged

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« Reply #7 on: November 01, 2004, 10:58:10 AM »

Jesus had His version of extreme squatter edition, too, in Luke 11:23-28

 "He that is not with me is against me: and he that gathereth not with me scattereth.
 24.  When the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walketh through dry places, seeking rest; and finding none, he saith, I will return unto my house whence I came out.
 25.  And when he cometh, he findeth it swept and garnished.
 26.  Then goeth he, and taketh to him seven other spirits more wicked than himself; and they enter in, and dwell there: and the last state of that man is worse than the first.
 27.  And it came to pass, as he spake these things, a certain woman of the company lifted up her voice, and said unto him, Blessed is the womb that bare thee, and the paps which thou hast sucked.
 28.  But he said, Yea rather, blessed are they that hear the word of God, and keep it."

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« Reply #8 on: November 01, 2004, 01:02:19 PM »

I'm inclined to agree, that a lot of "mental illness" has a diabolical dimension.  This is not to say the person is not truly disturbed and in a bad way - but that this condition of bondage has been arrived at and/or is being maintained by bodiless intelligences of a "hostile" disposition.

Obviously our soul (which is spiritual and not physical) involves itself and expresses itself intimately in and through the body.  We should not be surprised then, if "squatting" souls (like those of demons) who've got their "foot in the door" of someone's life also become able to manifest themselves in ways which materialistic people may be wont to interpret as being purely physiological (since those are the only symptoms their world view will allow them to consider.)

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