Hi everybody, and welcome to my YouTube channel. My name is Justin Woodbury, and the reason I started this channel is because I’m writing a book, and I want to let everyone know that. Even though the book’s not going to be ready for some time, until later on this year, probably towards the end of the year, I wanted to start talking about it.

There’s some different things related to this book that have been talked about in the news media lately, and some other circumstances of different people I know, that I wanted to start at least talking about this book, and getting some feedback from different people watching this video.

Let’s talk about what the book is about, and right before I do, just I want to encourage you to subscribe to this YouTube channel. I’m going to be sharing this on Facebook, but I’d love to hear your feedback. I’d love it if you would share this on Facebook, or if you would like it, and also feedback. I want feedback.

The direction of this YouTube channel is going to be based largely on the feedback I receive, and the different questions I receive. If you have a similar story to what my book is about, I would love to hear that as well. So let’s talk about what the book is about.

I grew up in the country in the Midwest on a small farm, and I was in church from as early as I can remember. I grew up in a church, and I can’t really remember a time that I wasn’t. We went to church Sunday morning, Sunday night, Wednesday night, Thursday night, Saturday morning, and sometimes even Saturday night.

Even though I believe that the people, the spiritual leaders at the church were sincere to begin with, they over time, the church in my opinion, became more cultish than a church. Again, the people starting the church were sincere, but we were told, “As long as you follow this set of rules, as long as you really pretty much do what we say, you’ll be protected.” They wanted to protect us from these bad things that were going to happen to us if we went out into the world.

We were very sheltered. I remember we were one of the only families in the church that had a TV, and we rarely watched it. We never listened to the radio unless it was classical music. The only other music we could listen to where the great hymns that were written a couple centuries ago, and so that was really our only exposure to music. We were very limited with the media that we were exposed to.

We as a church did not associate with any other churches. We were an independent church, so even other churches of like faith that were in the area, we didn’t have anything to do with. There were strict dress standards that applied mostly to women, but very strict dress standards.

In fact, when I left the church when I was 29 years old, as the music director, I was about to have to enforce a dress standard for my choir that included the length of women’s hair, whether it could be curly or straight, what size of a purse they could carry, what color nail polish that could wear, the kind of makeup they could wear.

So it was very, very strict. Again, we were told, “As long as you follow these different things, and as long as you obey those in authority, you’ll be protected.” They were trying to protect us from these different bad things that were in the world.

What wound up happening instead of us being protected, we were exposed to all sorts of different things that happened right within the body of the church. Any kind of form of abuse that you could think of; sexual abuse, physical abuse, mental abuse, psychological, all forms of abuse happened. It happened by those that we trusted, because they were in places of authority in our lives.

Those kinds of things happened, and a bunch of other things that the book is going to talk about. I don’t want to give the book away and talk about all that’s in it, but again, everything we were supposed to be protected from happened right within the church. Even though we were sheltered, we were not protected. So that’s the name of the book, Sheltered But Not Protected.

It’s about my life and the lives of others that grew up in the church, and we were greatly influenced and affected by these different things that happened. My own personal situation, when I was a junior in high school, something happened that changed the course of my life really, and there were events that were set in motion, circumstances that were set into motion that affected my lifestyle, and affected my life for 20 years.

20 years is 20 years too late, right? There should have been help right then and there, but these different things happen, and I didn’t get help for 20 years. There’s a saying, Edward Burke said, “The only thing necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing,” and I’m doing something. I’m writing a book about it. I’m exposing these different things that happened, and that’s what the book is about.

Again, not wanting to give it away, but I do want to hear feedback. There might be somebody out there that has experienced some kind of abuse within a religious organization. It doesn’t matter if it’s a Christian church, or another kind of a church. It doesn’t matter, it happens. I believe it happens all over the country.

In fact, I know it does, because when I got married and started talking to my wife about these things, she started sharing similar experiences. She said, “You should write a book about this,” which is the reason I’m writing it.

What really prompted me and encouraged me to really write this book, is I started traveling all over the country for my job. I sat in houses of people who I had never met before, and they went to other churches, different denominations. I mean, there’s so many different denominations out there, but it didn’t matter, is what I’m saying, because these different people that I talked to, they either had similar bad religious experience, or they knew somebody who had these bad religious experiences. I thought, “Man, this is prevalent.”

It’s just not just the … I know the Catholic Church has been in the news a lot lately about these different things of abuse, and the Southern Baptist Church has been under fire lately for a lot of different abuse that they’re responsible for. I just know it’s not in just those churches, it’s in churches all over.

If you have a story, I’d love to hear about it. You can contact me through my email, which I’m going to display on the screen. It’s [email protected]. I also have a phone number that I set up where you can call and leave a voicemail. It’s 702-295-5313, so you can contact me that way.

I’ll be starting a blog in a couple of weeks, and I can be contacted through there, but leave me your feedback, and subscribe to this channel if you would, and share this video on Facebook. I want this to go all over, because I do believe it’s prevalent, and I do have a story, and I believe that people need to hear it, and people could be helped by it.

In the next video I do in the next week or so, I’m going to talk about why I’m writing the book, and then I’m going to address the different feedback that I get. We’re going to break this down into videos maybe once a week, every other week. It all depends. But thank you for listening, and I will talk to you the next time I do a video.