Hello everyone! My name is BRUNA POLI. I'm 55 years old. I was born in northern Italy in 1965 and I've always lived here except one year in the United States when I was 15 years old!!
My parents were poor, my father studied a little bit but my mother did only until the 5th grade. At that time, school in Italy was not compulsory and only the children of the rich could study, not that school was expensive, because it was and is free, but because the children went to work as servants in the families of the rich or the boys in the country in the fields with their parents and the girls at home to look after their brothers, cook and clean. Gender equality is still not achieved here. Females have lower salaries than men and at certain levels of work there are only men.
So my parents got married. My mother was a housewife and my father worked as a clerk. I am the second of 3 siblings. My sister, Fanny, is 3 years older, she has always been very rebellious and my mother struggled hard to raise her, she didn't want to conform to the rules of family and society, she behaved like a "boy". We traditionally grew up CATTOLICH, and I don't know if you know this but for Catholics children are born with original sin and within the first 30 days they are baptized.
The INDISPENSIBLE sacraments to go to heaven are 5: baptism, confession, communion (at about 8 years of age) during which one assumes the host that literally represents the body of Jesus Christ, Confirmation (around 10 years of age) during which with a special blessing given by the bishop the child receives the Holy Spirit, and the sacrament of marriage which is UNBREAKABLE until death comes.
My sister was so rebellious that she refused to do Confirmation. She argued with the priest who came to our house to the great shame of my mother, saying that she could not force my sister to receive Confirmation. This was a big scandal and despite the sermons and punishments that my mother gave her, she did not change her mind. She never believed in God, priests, or any religion. This was very unusual both for her age and for our Italian Catholic traditions. Since my sister was constantly a disappointment to my mother, who felt that she was not a good mother since nothing she tried to teach her she learned, I was the candidate for "holiness" within my family.
My brother, as a male, was untouchable. My father took care of his education and my mother took care of our female education.
The more my sister disappointed my mother, the more she raised the target with me that I had to be good, good, religious, obedient, all this to be loved ...
My father was a good man but I didn't know him very well. We didn't see much of him because he was always away on business and in the evening EVERY NIGHT was with his soccer friends, his great and unique love, before his family ...
One day he decided to quit his job and set up his own business with some friends, who deceived him, burned down their shed, pocketed the insurance money and left us totally broke and bankrupt since my father had put signatures on it. They were dark years, we had no food, I was 4 years old, I remember almost nothing of my childhood, my subconscius has hidden the memories I think. I remember that the Jehovah's Witnesses brought us food and in return my mother and I went to their meetings on Sundays, then the Adventists came and my mother and I went with them to their church on Sundays to reciprocate. Mother had no faith. It was a form of gratitude because they brought us food.
The school, as I said, was free but we didn't even have the money for notebooks and pencils, so the school gave them to us, in an absurd way. The poor children were put in line and one at a time went to the teacher who gave them a notebook, a pencil, and an eraser. I remember the feeling of shame and humiliation of being in that line, while the other "normal or rich" children were looking and laughing ...
When our messenger tells us that the best way to raise children is in poverty, I believe him because I know that he knows the truth, and I think that probably I don't understand what he wants to say, but in my experience this poverty has brought nothing good. it didn't raise my humility, but on the contrary, it made me grow up with an inordinate desire for everything and growing up I always had to fight with it, everything I wanted I HAVE to buy immediately and I spent a lot of money trying to stop this BIG ANXIETY that has always followed me since childhood.
When I became a mother I bought EVERYTHING FOR MY DAUGHTER. I realize now that buying for her was like buying for that little girl who was me and who had always wanted everything because she had nothing.
Looking at the photos, we don't look poor. We have nice clothes. But everything we had was given to us by my aunt, my father's sister, who didn't have any children and so she spent money on us. My aunt had lost a twin sister so everything she bought for me and my sister was the same. We dressed like twins even though we were not twins in any way because those were the only clothes we had. My mother hated it because we were not twins but she had no choice. But this caused a lot of nervousness to my mother because she couldn't give us anything and my aunt tried to buy our affection with many material things. Being very intimately connected to my mother, I couldn't be happy with the toys or clothes my aunt brought us because I knew that if I did, I would hurt my mother.
Every time we went out, my mother would line us up at the door, look at us very seriously and say: don't ask me anything when we are out in the stores BECAUSE I CAN'T BUY ANYTHING. These words still resound in my head and when it happens, I go out and buy something right away!!!
In my childhood I was sexually harassed twice, not violently, but sneaky way. I was 5 and then 7 years old. I didn't know anything about sex but I understood that something was wrong and for fear that my mother would punish me I didn't say anything. But those experiences marked me and when I grew up I had problems with trust in men and with letting go, problems that I have TOTALLY overcome only with my second husband, Alberto, the love of my life at age of 44.
When I was about 12 years old my mother's brother became seriously ill with cancer and after many treatments he was admitted to a hospital for the terminally ill. I was young and I didn't understand exactly what was happening because we children were never told the truth about death. Only adults went to funerals. But I understood that my uncle was dying.
I remember the time that one day two beautiful boys in suits rang at my door. They were the missionaries and asked if they could enter. My mother came quickly and let them in because she was a polite person and the door never closed in anyone's face. When they started talking about God my mother interrupted them and said firmly, "My brother is dying. If God existed he would make people die worse than him."
One of the two missionaries answered, "Mrs. Poli, if we fast and your brother heals, will you listen to us?"
My unbelieving mother replied kindly, not thinking at all what she said, "Yes, you are fasting, and when my brother heals, I will listen to you and I will come with you to the end of the world!"
Well, I don't believe in miracles NOW, obviously, but what happened is still inexplicable to me. My uncle miraculously healed. Within a week the tumor was gone, his hair began to grow back and he was discharged from the hospital saying that he had healed and they could not explain why. My uncle is still alive and is 95 years old!
After a short time, the missionaries returned and asked my mother directly at the door, "Mrs. Poli, how is your brother doing? We have fasted for him!!!!"
My mother remained petrified at the door. Within a short time she was baptized and I, who was the daughter CANDIDATED TO HOLIHOLY, was of course always with her. My sister didn't want to know about it, my father specified that the male son should not be indoctrinated with nonsense like not drinking wine, not smoking and not having sex, but him gave permission to my mother and allowed her to be baptize , because those doctrines were fine for women!!!!!!
So from the age of 12 years I began to attend the Church. The Church in Italy at that time was very small, there were about 30 people in my city, few young people, very few males. The members were very fanatical as it happens in small communities, the rules were strictly respected. The missionaries attended my family, always trying to convert my sister, who was a beautiful girl, and she received many marriage proposals from the missionaries once their mission was over!
One of them was very taken with her and, being very kind, told him: "Finish the mission and then we will see."
Meanwhile, she was engaged to a much older man and when at the end of the mission he came back to invite her to his home in America, my sister's fiancé got very angry. So I went to Utah in exchange. The missionary was not in love with me, but he was very proud to invite me to his home. He married someone else within two months and I was a guest of his family for a whole year.
They were active members of the Church, very rich, with very important tasks. They showed me the best of the Church, only beautiful things, they made me sing several times inside the tabernacle with other boys, because the lady who hosted me played for the Church on great occasions.
I attended Taylorsville High School. I never integrated. The racism I perceived towards foreigners and Italians was great. They often told me: Italy, spaghetti and mafia!
Anyway, when I was 15 my father gave me permission to be baptized, so the missionary who entertained me celebrated my baptism and had a big party !!!!
I was very involved in the Church, but also very curious. I had met Lutherans and Baptists and I confronted them until the head of the family who was hosting me forbade it! My mother came to pick me up at the end of my year and stayed with us for 2 months. She was enthusiastic about the apparent perfection and greatness of the Church, compared to our small branch of 30 people. Her dream was that I would marry a handsome Mormon American, maybe rich, but I never fell in love with one of them. My Italian ego was strong. I perceived them as shallow and ignorant only in love with themselves.
However, I am very, very grateful for the experience in America. The confrontation with a very different culture and in many ways more advanced than one's own, and such an experience at 15 years of age when one is still very influential and receptive was definitely the first step towards MWAW.
For example, seeing that you can get divorced without becoming enemies and without fighting over your children was helpful when I chose to leave my first husband in the future. At that time, the law was totally on the side of women in Italy and in the case of divorce, the children were entrusted exclusively to the mother who had the right to stay in the marital home and has the right to a substantial maintenance. In this way, parents become enemies and fathers end up broke, unless they are very rich, and this was not our case.
I am happy to have studied the scriptures in detail and to have seen how the LDS doctrine slowly changes people's minds by teaching from an early age the apparently upright principles that make an individual prejudicial and arrogant. Although I firmly believed in the restored Church, my first 12 years I grew up free, as Catholic education had almost 0 affect on me, being my parents were not practicing.
I never stopped being curious and trying to understand why people believed what they believed. Even when I went on a mission, I never started a conversation looking for the other's weakness to impose Mormon doctrine. I often lost myself listening to their point of view and trying to understand what led them to believe so strongly in their Church or atheism. I often argued with my mission colleagues because they told me that I was LOSING TIME and that we had to LOOK FOR THE ELECTS.
When I was about 18 years old, I fell in love with what was then the branch president. He was older, more cultured, very narcissistic, and an excellent speaker. I followed him like a duck!!!! We had transgressed the law of chastity, but he didn't want to confess it at all, so I did. They excommunicated us instantly, and he lost his fame all at once, and there was a great scandal in our little branch of LDS. As I said, they were all very observant and almost fanatical. I was, however, firmly convinced of the truth of the Church so I never missed a single meeting and humbly both he and I were in the sympathizer class and could not take the Sacrament.
After 3 years we were baptized again and it was a great celebration. He got engaged to a very pious girl, but I fell madly in love with a man, a doctor 10 years older than me who was part of an organization called THE RENOVATION OF THE SPIRIT led by a bishop named EMANUEL MILINGO, who was later excommunicated by the Catholic Church because he married and joined the MOON religion, a very big movement that aims to bring together all religions in the world.
Ours was a passionate relationship but also a great religious lot. He took me to an exorcism. It was so much my religious ardor that he believed that I was possessed by an evil spirit. The leaders of my Church were strongly opposed to this union because they feared that he would lead me into perdition. I loved him but I chose to leave him because he did not want to convert. He was dedicated to alcohol and sometimes he became violent, he was certainly not the ideal father who would lead me to the Temple. I was already 23 years old and I was in a hurry to get married and have my eternal family. Mormon men were not there, not Italians, so I began to frequent what became my first husband. He was a man of integrity, a deeply cultured atheist who esteemed the things I told him about the Church, who promised not to hinder me if we had children and I would raise them in the Church.
Within 2 years, we got married. I was not happy, he was a good man but I was not in love. After 4 years, Laura was born, our only daughter. She was a beautiful, healthy baby girl but with a great big defect – NEVER SLEEPED. When I say never, I mean never. At the most 2 hours a day, or 20 minutes then 4 hours awake, 1 hour sleep and 6 awake …
This upset my whole existence. My husband could not stay awake. She did not cry, she just ate sleeping. She was fine and wanted to play. Not even my grandparents wanted her after 8 pm. I took her to many doctors. They said that she was healthy and that the problem was mine! Only when Laura was 22 years old and she had a very bad accident in which she lost her memory, after a cerebral magnetic resonance we discovered that she was born with a small cyst behind the hypothalamus that causes sleep disorders.
So I continued to work, study and stay awake. My brain went haywire. I got depressed but I didn't find out right away. I often thought that if I jumped off the balcony with her then I could rest.
When she was 4 years old I hated my husband who didn't help me at all and I wanted a divorce. This decision was very much opposed by the church leaders who put me on trial and excommunicated me again for apostasy and rebellion against the authority of the church when I told them that if my husband was such a perfect man they could sleep with him.
The sad thing was that the one who signed the excommunication was my first boyfriend, who had repented and made a new career in the Church. I was heartbroken because I believed that I had been irreparably removed from the heavenly kingdom without being able to make amends, with 2 excommunications not one!!!
But this divorce was my salvation.
3 days of the week, Laura was with her father, and obviously at night she was playing with my mother-in-law, and so slowly I began to take back some sleep, even if I never recovered at all.
When Laura was little, a very esteemed girl of our branch that had just got married with a very smart boy committed suicide, leaving everyone very upset. They were an ideal couple. She had graduated with full marks and he too. She did not even write two lines.
I attended the funeral and I realized that you can NOT leave such great pain to those who remain. Now, with the knowledge of the truth, I know that it is a right to commit suicide, but those who remain and do not believe in it sink into unspeakable pain.
I had thought so many times about suicide and also about killing my daughter because nobody wanted to look after her and I was the only one responsible for her. I decided to go to psychotherapy and started taking antidepressants. My life found a balance, I ate regularly, I slept, I was calm. In the meantime I had graduated and opened a physiotherapy studio that was going very well.
I didn't attend the Church anymore, Laura was never influenced with religion, but I lacked something, I needed a group, I felt alone and without a purpose. During a course of work, I came across the teachings of an Indian guru known as OSHO, a very revolutionary Indian who opened a community in Oregon in the 80s. They called him the sex guru because he was very open and transgressive. He taught that we are all repressed and that we will never be able to be in a meditative state if we do not get rid of our conditionings, many of which concern sex, especially in Italy, because the Catholic religion is based on the principle of original sin, suffering, and repentance. I believed in Jesus Christ but I attended Osho's groups for years. I saw free, open people. I could not be like them but I never felt judged. Everyone was fine as they were and could do what they wanted without having to conform to any doctrine. Osho's doctrine was born from Krinamurti's philosophy. I felt many truths in the things he was saying even though I often experienced the phenomenon of cognitive dissonance and it sometimes took weeks before I recovered.
Gradually I began to doubt Christian doctrines and came to believe that the Christian principle of one existence was impossible. It was incompatible with divine justice, so God existed but there was also the principle of reincarnation. Only in this way could a divine justice be expressed.
The time passed. Laura grew up and when she was about 9 years old I met ALBERTO. It was love at first sight, an incredible understanding on all aspects, but he was an engineer very framed, precise, moralistic, monogamous and I apparently too open that frequented strange people of Osho's world. This was a problem, he didn't like my friends, the fact that they slept at my house, and that we did meditation groups. He saw these things as too strange. So I challenged him to participate in a therapy group with Osho's therapists. It is called MEN LIBERATION and WOMEN LIBERATION.
10 days in isolation, in a beautiful farmhouse in the heart of Tuscany, 10 days in which we would be separated, him with only men, me with only woman to EXPLORE our sexual experience, to experience all our judgments and prejudices about the opposite sex, doing theater therapy, dressing as women and men playing various parts in order to immerse ourselves in the emotions of the character played in that moment. If Alberto survived a similar group we would save our relationship, otherwise we would lose it. I tested him in the hardest way. On the other hand, at 44 years old I had no time to waste with a jealous man!!!!
He, with his sense of humor and noting that no one was crazy or perverted, faced the test well. After that experience our relationship has improved 100%, especially on a sexual level. I was able to relax and rely on him, and he stopped his absurd jealousies and started to be a real alpha male, everything Christopher explained in that show about women's sexuality, I can CONFIRM!!!! I would like to add that the heights of pleasure depend not only on male performance but also on the TRUST THAT THE WOMAN GETS TO RETURN IN OUR PARTNER. In the absence of this, sex can be pleasant, but it is very mechanical. Before that moment, I tended to control in the sexual intercourse because my childhood wounds pushed me not to trust, nor to entrust myself.
Alberto and I have been together for 15 years; we lived together for many years and got married in 2014. My spiritual hunger did not stop. Even though I was hanging out with Osho and his meditations, a friend of mine told me that there was a site against Jehovah's Witnesses and that she had discovered terrible things, so I went looking for it and found a site against Mormons that I did not know existed.
I carefully read anything and everything they said to discredit the church and the endowment. I had never gone to the temple, but I was very curious. I also discovered that there were secretly recorded videos on the web in the temple so I went to listen to them and found it very strange everything that was done in the temple, the oaths, etc...
So I became more and more convinced that the Mormons were crazy. In the meantime, I had started to read the Koran in depth, and I was greatly surprised to read that the Muslims think that Jesus Christ will return to stop the battle of Harmagheddon, at the end of the world, that he is not the savior for them but the prophet in charge of stopping that battle!
All my free time was spent on the web comparing different religions, even though I was far from the Christian faith, I believed in reincarnation, and I had no more guilt.
One day, I saw the video of Ida Smith in which she talks about her excommunication and the sealed portion. I listened to it 4 times because of the English; I wanted to make sure I understood it well. She seemed totally sincere and genuine so I went looking for the sealed portion. I have never been a Mormon book fanatic; I liked more doctrines and covenant, so I ended up on the MWAW website and ordered three books online: The Sealed Portion, Without Disclosing My True Identity, and Sacred, not Secret. The books never arrived, so I downloaded them online.
The Sealed Portion was as boring as the Book of Mormon, so I discarded it. Instead, the book on the biography of Joseph Smith, being a passionate connoisseur of the story of the prophet, touched me deep inside. By now, I was captured. So I read Sacred, not Secret and it gave meaning to all those strange things I had read on the anti-Mormon site.
I went back to reading The Sealed Portion but at the chapter where Satan gets Eve pregnant, I had a very powerful cognitive dissonance. I even had nausea. I closed the books. I talked to Alberto and I said that Christopher was a pervert!
He, with his calm and scientificity, told me to take only what I liked and forget what was bothering me, and that the best way to know if one is a charlatan is to look him in the eye because everyone is capable of writing, then not everything written is reliable.
The days passed and the biography of Joseph Smith always came to my mind, he even confirmed his reincarnation ... So when I came back from vacation I started writing on FB and asked for friendship to all those who had the symbol of The Humanity Party.
As chance would have it, I wrote to Monica Smith, and discovered that she was the one who printed and sent the books. I told her that the shipping costs were very expensive in Italy; she sent me, for free, 666 and Human Reality, the two books that I had not yet ordered. I started to ask her 1000 questions and she told me she had little time but she gave me Lynnette's contact information and then it all STARTED!
My life was an evolution of events that allowed me to get to Christopher. My great love, Alberto, had the wonderful idea to come and look him into his eyes, to see if we could trust him, even if he was very surprised that the books were free and nobody asked for money!
My search for the truth is over. Not that I already know everything, in fact, the more time passes, the more I understand that I don't know anything at all. But the truth is irrefutable and I believe that from now on I will continue to listen passionately to anything and everything they believe as I have always done, but I believe that I will never hear anything that will make me doubt the MWAW and The Humanity party.