The Children of God (CoG) was a countercultural new religion founded by David Berg (1919–1994) in California in the late 1960s as part of the Jesus People Movement. It evolved into a communalist movement that spread throughout the world, becoming one of the most controversial of the new religious movements. It achieved particular notoriety through its sexually liberal doctrines and reports of child abuse. Following Berg’s death, the movement adopted a clear set of rules and developed a culture centred on prophecy. In 2004, it changed its name to The Family International. By 2018, membership numbers had fallen, and the movement no longer had the vibrant presence it had once enjoyed.

Starting from a small ministry in Huntington Beach, CA, by 1969 Berg and his family ...

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