As I mentioned, my sister used to be married to a guy whose mom joined a cult in Montana to protect the world from alien invasion by chanting.
For more crazy stories about this, go here, here, here, here or here.
Here is the final story I have to share (Yep, that's it. This is the last one):
My sister's ex-mother-in-law (we'll call her Ethel) decided to have a well dug on her property. Once it was finished, the well digger (is there a proper title for this job?) told her she had a good source of water and she wouldn't have to depend on city water anymore.
So, what do you do when you live on a compound and have a new well? You throw a party ... obviously.
Ethel invited all of her culty friends to come over and sample her freshly tapped water. Now, I'm not exactly sure what kind of things people do at a party when they spend 8 hours per day chanting, but I'm sure it was a blast.
The next morning, Ethel got a call from one of her friends who excitedly said, "Ethel, I'm healed! Your well water healed me!"
I sure hope Ethel gave that well digger a big fat tip for stumbling upon a healing well.
That set off a firestorm of activity with all kinds of cult members speculating about the well and its origins.
Through their deductive reasoning and scientific research, the cult determined that Ethel's well was connected through the center of the earth to a healing spring of water in Lourdes, France (Don't ask me how the water makes it through all the magma without vaporizing).
After that discovery, Ethel was rocketed into instant (cult) stardom. Members of her group came from all over the world to worship at her well. They set up a shrine. They chanted. It was ... OFF. THE. HOOK.
Do you remember when you were a kid and you first learned about dinosaurs? Do you remember taking a shovel out back to dig for fossils? No? Just me?
Well, finding healing water in your backyard is WAY cooler than that.
Unfortunately, this story doesn't have a happy ending. Ethel found out she had cancer and passed away several years ago.
And what did my irreverent brother say when he found out she was diagnosed with cancer?
"Well ... why doesn't she just drink some of her well water?"
***Even though the Cult Chronicles are over, I may have an encore. Stay tuned for: Office Outtakes.***
(You all owe Holly for the catchy title.)