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Michael Pearl: "No Corporal Punishment" -- Merely Training

Michael Pearl Now Denies Teaching Corporal Punishment

After the death of another child (this girl died of injuries sustained when she was whipped with with a  quarter-inch plumbing supply line) - the instrument suggested by Michael and Debi Pearl - Michael Pearl now claims that he does not teach corporal punishment.

Below are excerpts from the article, "Ramsey examines ministry connected to girl's death":

No Greater Joy Ministries is being examined by the Butte County District Attorney's Office in relation to the death of a 7-year-old Paradise girl and extensive injuries to her sister.

Ridge parents Kevin and Elizabeth Schatz are charged with murder and torture following the death of 7-year-old Lydia Schatz and the hospitalization of 11-year-old Zariah Schatz.

Both girls were allegedly whipped by the their adoptive parents with a quarter-inch plumbing supply line - the instrument suggested by Michael and Debi Pearl, founders of No Greater Joy Ministries and authors of the controversial religious parenting book "How to Train Up a Child."

"We do not teach 'corporal punishment' nor 'hitting' children," Michael Pearl, CEO of No Greater Joy Ministries, wrote in an emailed statement to The Post. "We teach parents how to train their children, which sometimes requires the limited and controlled application of a spanking instrument to hold the child's attention on admonition."

(See Michael Pearl's emailed statement on page A-4.)

Butte County District Attorney Mike Ramsey confirmed to The Post earlier this week that the Internet Web site, is the site in question, though investigators are not yet saying this is the source the Schatz couple followed.

He also stressed that this Web site does not endorse beating children, and it is not connected to a specific church. However, Ramsey said this is the only source they have found that recommends using this particular plumbing supply line and suggests these instruments are "cheaper by the dozen at Home Depot."

Prosecutors say the parents subjected the two girls to hours of corporal punishment with a plumbing supply line on Thursday and Friday leading up to Lydia's death and the Schatzes' arrest last Saturday. The plumbing supply line was recovered in the parents' bedroom.

Pearl says No Greater Joy does not advocate spanking to the point of serious injury.


"If indeed these parents were abusive, and that has not yet been proven by the courts, it is regretful that our teachings were not able to turn them from their predisposition to abusive habits," he stated.

Beyond his emailed statement, Pearl had no further comment for The Post at this time."

Excerpts from the article, "Ramsey examines ministry connected to girl's death"

Read the rest of the article here:

 According to Michael Pearl, ". . . in serious chastisement, the small of the back down to the thighs is the most effective."

Note: Michael Pearl teaches that when "training" with the rod, anything that is not the front will suffice--from the shoulders down to the feet. For serious chastisement, he recommends striking the small of the back down to the thighs!  (Note by Liberty To The Captives: Striking a child on the small of the back is abuse, plain and simple.)

Where on the body?

The Bible says, “the rod is for the back.” That would include anything that is not the front—the back from the shoulders down to the feet. When training, and not chastening or punishing, any convenient place on the body is effective. When you have told a child not to touch, and he reaches out, you can thump or swat his hand. If he is trying to climb down from his chair after being told not to, you can swat his legs. But when you are engaging the child in serious chastisement, the small of the back down to the thighs is the most effective. You can spank half as hard on the back with a light, stingy switch and be more effective than spanking harder on the bottom or thighs.

Quote source: In Defense of Biblical Chastisement: Part 2 (Bold emphasis added)


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Liberty To The Captives Established in June 2001