Kingston, Ontario – Isaac Dawson/Owner, Yellow Deli: “We believe in love. We believe in care. We belive in being there for each other in every way. We believe in restoration.”
Isaac and Joy Dawson, originally from B.C came to Kingston in the fall of 2015 arriving in this bus.
The Dawsons are the owners of the Yellow Deli restaurant that opened in Kingston last month, and it’s attracting a lot of attention… not because of what’s on the menu because of the owners affiliation with a controversial group.
The Twelve Tribes — operates globally and claim to be the commonwealth of Israel.
It’s members devote their lives to passages in the biblical Book of Acts.
The religious sect has been at the centre of shocking allegations for more than two decades.
Since opening the ‘Yellow Deli’ – this warning has been circulating on facebook – alleging that the ‘Twelve Tribes’ has been linked to child abuse, and luring of vulnerable populations, like students.
A number of online articles also introduce allegations that the sect is -in fact.. a cult based on accounts from former members.
Word of the controversial group settling in Kingston has spread quickly.
“I don’t feel very comfortable because I’m a single mother and live with my daughter and we live so close that I hope it’s not true.”
According to the Dawson’s it isn’t.
They admit the 15 or so people who live on their farm on Abbey Dawn Road — willingly gave up their personal belongings to devote their lives to their beliefs, but they can leave at any time.
“We don’t believe in violence. There’s no fences in that sense around our properties. people are free to come and go.”
“The Dawson’s deny any form of child abuse within their community adding that there’s a big difference between abuse and discipline… they even quoted a bible verse that says ‘He who hates his son spares his rod. He who loves him, disciplines diligently.”
The Dawsons say they are not surprised by all the controversy.
Joy Dawson/Owner, Yellow Deli:
“I mean I’m sad I want people to see what our life really is. But I expect that there’s people that go in a certain direction and people that go in another direction. When Jesus Christ was on the earth there was people that were against him and people that were very much drawn to his love and his kindness so I kind of expect it.”
The Dawsons are hoping to grow their Kingston Twelve Tribes community and businesses and are hosting weekly open houses at their farm.