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Parents Fear Daughter is Being Held Against Her Will by 'Church of Wells'

FAYETTEVILLE, AR -- A Fayetteville family is now living in Wells, Texas as they try to reunite with their daughter who they believe is being held against her will.
FAYETTEVILLE, AR -- A Fayetteville family is now living in Wells, Texas as they try to reunite with their daughter who they believe is being held against her will.

The only thing Patty and Andy Grove hear when they try to reach their daughter on her cell phone is a message that says, "We're sorry the number you are trying to call is not reachable."

26-year-old nursing student, Catherine Grove disappeared from her home in Fayetteville on July 2, 2013.

After endless attempts to reach their daughter finally almost a week later, they hear her voice. Patty Grove said, "When she first called us on July 7, it was 11:30 at night, she said I'm in Wells, Texas, I'm with a group of people that are taking good care of me, but Mom and Dad I can't listen to you any more, I have to keep my hands over my ears and I can only listen to my 'elders,' and that was alarming to us."

That alarming phone call prompted Patty and Andy Grove to travel to Wells and figure out what was going on with their daughter. Catherine's father, Andy Grove said, "We've been here over 8 weeks, and every day is the same task, we go around town interviewing people looking for any information if anyone would know where our daughter Catherine might be living." Now living out of in an R.V. Patty and Andy Grove say the only people who know where Catherine is, are the members of "The Church of Wells"

They believe Catherine found this church on the internet, and went to Texas to become a member of the church. In their endless attempts to contact Catherine they landed on the church doorstep. They said a young man answered the door. "He steps out and we say we're Mr. and Mrs. Grove, we're looking for our daughter Catherine Grove, do you know where she is? And this man came out and brought another man with him and they both stood in front of us and their very first words to us were, 'Mr. and Mrs. Grove, we have reason to believe that you're going to kidnap your daughter subvert her from our teachings, that we care for her soul and you don't.'"

The 57 member Evangelical church is run by three "elders," Ryan Ringnald, Jacob Gardner, and Sean Morris. They said Catherine's salvation to the Lord is fueling her decision to not see her family, not them.

Elder Jacob Gardner said, "When Christ calls a man, if he has his allegiance to his family first of all, or to his job first of all, or to his earthly possessions or riches first of all, that allegiance needs to be cut, if must be severed, or that man cannot truly bow the knee and worship in admiration in true service to the Lord Jesus Christ."

The only contact the Groves have had with their daughter has been limited and on the Church's terms.

"When she says she doesn't want to see her family we say okay, amen, we're not going to force you, but when she says I do want to see my family we say okay, praise God. Just the other morning she said she wanted to see her family so we said okay," said Gardner.

Patty Grove said visits with her daughter are supervised and determined by the church. "We've met with her two times, with the Elders present, and they spoke for her, qualified her statements, the other two times was with a deputy, we have not been able to talk to Catherine by herself openly."

After seeking help from local law enforcement, the Grove's were told there is nothing more they can do since Catherine is an adult. Patty and Andy were recently in Fayetteville. They said someone took over Catherine's phone line on June 21st, so they are asking friends and family for help.

"Over the past nine weeks, none of Catherine's family or even lifelong friends have been able to make any communication with her," said Andy.

"Maybe under pressure, maybe these men might reactivate her phone and maybe some people might be able to start calling her," said Patty.

They asked us to share her number. (479) 871-3218 and are encouraging friends and family to keep calling. The Groves have not lost hope, they believe their daughter will come home soon. We will continue to follow this story and update you as we get new information.

-KETK News-

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