Final Episodes in HBO’s Gwen Shamblin Docuseries Should be a Sober Reminder for All People

On April 28, HBO Max released the final two episodes in its docuseries “The Way Down: God, Greed, and the Cult of Gwen Shamblin.” One of the takeaways from the new episodes should be sobering for any believer: don’t assume that being ensnared by a cult couldn’t happen to you.

“A lot of people say, ‘I’m not stupid, I wouldn’t do that,’” said Megan Cox, who was a member of Gwen Shamblin Lara’s Remnant Fellowship Church from 1996 to 2006. “And that is so unfair because I’m not stupid either.”

“What people need to understand,” said clinical psychologist Adam Brooks, “is that everybody is vulnerable. At a certain point in your life when you’re a little bit low or you’re in a time of transition and the right leader comes along with the right message, catching you at the right moment, you could be vulnerable.”

Gwen Shamblin Lara: The Fallout Continues

Gwen Shamblin Lara was one of seven people who died tragically in a plane crash on May 29, 2021. Among the deceased was her husband, former “Tarzan” actor Joe Lara, as well as Remnant Fellowship church leaders David Martin and his wife Jennifer, Jonathan Walters and his wife Jessica, and Shamblin Lara’s son-in-law, Brandon Hannah. Gwen Shamblin Lara’s two children, Elizabeth Hannah and Michael Shamblin, were not in the crash.

Shamblin Lara became well-known in the 90s due to her Weigh Down Workshop, which was offered in many churches, and her book, “The Weigh Down Diet.” She founded Remnant Fellowship in 1999 with Weigh Down participants as core members and was the primary leader in the church. HBO Max’s docuseries lays out evidence for the church’s cultic and abusive qualities, allegations Remnant Fellowship categorically denies.

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SOURCE: Church Leaders, Jessica Lea

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