Christian Evangelist Dies After Being Stabbed in Turkey

“grief among Turkey’s Christian community is strongly felt, along with great shock and fear,” following the killing.

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Korean Evangelist Jinwook with his wife and child. 

A Christian evangelist was murdered in southeast Turkey. Korean ministry worker Jinwook Kim was stabbed to death in the city of Diyarbakir on November 19.

According to International Christian Concern, Turkey’s Public Security Branch Directorate of Murder Bureau has arrested a 16-year-old on suspicion of murder.

The 41-year-old evangelist had arrived in Turkey earlier this year and was pastoring a small congregation of Christians. According to reports, he was stabbed three times — twice in the heart and once in the back, later succumbing to his injuries in a local hospital. Kim had a wife and a child.

Despite authorities insisting that the attack was a mugging, believers local to the area have urged the police to investigate the crime as an assassination.

Though Turkey has jailed and mistreated innumerable pastors over recent years, Kim is the first Christian leader to be murdered since 2007, when three believers were killed at the Zirve Publishing House in Malatya.“This is the first martyrdom since Malatya. The Turkish government has started a massive deportation of Protestant leaders who served in Turkey for many years,” one local church leader told ICC. “But deportation isn’t enough for evangelists. This kind of attack would scare [them]. I think this is the last level of a plan, being like China.”

Malatya
Malatya

Another Turkish evangelist, who was on the receiving end of a death threat just a day after the murder, insisted that the attack was religiously motivated..

“This wasn’t just a robbery; they came to kill him,” he said. “We always get threats. A brother prophesied a few days ago that they (the government) are going to kick out these foreigners, and probably kill a few Turkish brothers. They are going to cause chaos. They know that I am trying to spread the Gospel, so they may target me too. This may be a sign.”

Claire Evans, ICC’s Regional Manager for the Middle East, said that the “grief among Turkey’s Christian community is strongly felt, along with great shock and fear,” following the killing.

Christians in Turkey celebrating Christmas
Christians in Turkey celebrating Christmas

“Martyrdom is not normal in Turkey, and this incident sadly shows just how much the country has changed,” she added.

“Just this year, we have seen a significant increase in incidents proving how the environment has grown more hostile toward Christianity. ”

Nigerian Police Rescue People Chained in Prayer House

The 58 year old told police he had been running what he described as a healing ministry since 1986 and that the people had been chained to prevent them from escaping.

Nigerian policeNigerian police say they have rescued 15 people kept chained in an illegal so-called prayer house in the country’s biggest city, Lagos. The victims were men and women between 19 and 50 years old with some said they had spent five years in the facility.

They were brought there by relatives who believed spiritual treatment could help cure their mental illnesses, drug addictions and other conditions.

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“Police are working closely with other agencies of government to provide adequate medical attention and shelter to the victims,” police spokesman Bala Elkana said.

The police raided the house in the area of Ijegun after receiving a tip. The man who ran the facility, and called himself a prophet, was arrested.

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The 58 year old told police he had been running what he described as a healing ministry since 1986 and that the people had been chained to prevent them from escaping. This is the latest raid on such privately run facilities, where people are often kept in deplorable conditions, the BBC’s Mayeni Jones in Lagos reports.

Claims That Ancient Hindus Invented Stem Cell Research Instead of Einstein Causes An Uproar

A scientist from a university in southern Tamil Nadu state questioned both the general theory of relativity by Albert Einstein and the theory of gravity by Isaac Newton.

Organizers distance themselves from speakers who claimed Albert Einstein and Isaac Newton were wrong.

hindus
Comments claiming Albert Einstein and Isaac Newton were wrong were heavily criticized by scientists [Reuters] 

The organizers of a major Indian science conference have distanced themselves from speakers who made some unusual claims during the five-day event held in the northern city of Jalandhar.

The speakers, one of whom was the vice chancellor of a South Indian university, claimed Hindus invented stem cell research thousands of years ago and said Einstein’s general theory of relativity was wrong.

jalandhar 1
 Jalandhar, India 

“We had 100 Kauravas from one mother because of stem cell and test tube technology,” Andhra University Vice Chancellor G Nageshwar Rao said, referring to a story from the Hindu epic Mahabharata.

Rao also told the group of schoolchildren and scientists he was addressing that a demon king from another centuries-old Hindu epic had two dozen aircraft and a network of landing strips in modern-day Sri Lanka.

“Hindu Lord Vishnu used guided missiles known as ‘Vishnu Chakra’ and chased moving targets,” Rao, a professor of inorganic chemistry, told the crowd.

Rao was not the only scientist who made outlandish remarks.

A scientist from a university in southern Tamil Nadu state questioned both the general theory of relativity by Albert Einstein and the theory of gravity by Isaac Newton.

Following the comments, the organizers of the event, the Indian Scientific Congress Association, expressed “serious concern” and distanced themselves from the speakers.

“We don’t subscribe to their views and distance ourselves from their comments. This is unfortunate,” General Secretary of the Indian Scientific Congress Association Premendu P Mathur, told AFP news agency.

jalandhar2

 

‘Hindus capable of genetic engineering’

It is not the first time controversial remarks have been made during the annual congress.

In 2015, a paper was presented which said Hindus discovered the Pythagorean theorem but that Greek scientist Pythagoras had taken the credit for it.

A speaker at that year’s event also said aircraft were invented by Hindus in ancient times and that they had discovered the technology behind interplanetary travel.

A year earlier, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that Hindus in ancient times already possessed the capabilities of genetic engineering and cosmetic surgery.

prime minister
Prime Minister Narendra Modi

“We all read about Karna in the Mahabharata,” Modi said.

“If we think a little more, we realize that the Mahabharata says Karna was not born from his mother’s womb. This means that genetic science was present at that time,” he had said.

“That is why Karna could be born outside his mother’s womb.”

Modi also said cosmetic surgery must have been possible, as shown by the Hindu deity Ganesha.

hindu_god
 Hindu god Ganesha

“We worship Lord Ganesha. There must have been some plastic surgeon at that time who got an elephant’s head on the body of a human being and began the practice of plastic surgery.

In 2016, former chief minister of the state of Uttarakhand and member of parliament Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank called “astrology the biggest science” and that it “should be promoted”.

“There is a serious concern about such kind of utterances by responsible people.”

Nishank also said Hindus in ancient times had knowledge of nuclear science.

“We speak about nuclear science today. But Sage Kanad conducted nuclear test one lakh (100,000) years ago,” Nishank said during an interview with local media.

ramesh pokhriyai nishank
Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank

Those comments were all heavily criticized by scientists.

In 2017, thousands of scientists and their supporters marched across India to promote their work and demand that the government invest more in the field.

Not only did those marching call for more funding, but they also called for the end to “propagation of unscientific, obscurantist ideas and religious intolerance”, as well as better adherence to Article 51A of the Constitution, which states that it is the duty of every citizen to “develop the scientific temper, humanism and the spirit of inquiry and reform”.

Growing Fraud Sucks Billions From Churches Annually

Pastor Harris placed a permanent ban of membership against the church members…

Born Again Church
The Zion Missionary Baptist Church in East Palo California. In 2004, the organization changed its name to Born Again Christian Center- Photo taken July 22, 2014

If members of the Zion Missionary Baptist Church in East Palo Alto, California, hadn’t fought back, their one-time Pastor, Andre Harris, and his wife, Rhona Edgerton-Harris, would have fleeced them of their church building and a home valued at more than $1 million.

Church members explained that when they arrived for services one day in early May 2014, they found a real estate sign on the parsonage next door where the Christian leader and his family had been allowed to live rent free.

A curious church member did some sleuthing at the county recorder’s office and discovered that the deed to the home had been strangely transferred to the pastor and his wife. A for-sale sign also soon appeared on the church property which led alarmed members to demand an explanation from their pastor about a month later.

They protested the sale of the properties which the church’s bylaws prohibit without their consent. The original story can be read here

Pastor Harris, who had renamed the church Born Again Christian Center when he took over leadership of the congregation, responded by handing the protesting members notices of ex-communication — barring them from the church in the name of Jesus.

“Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Born Again Christian Center is informing you because of your inconsistent attendance over the months or years, we have therefore removed you as a member,” Harris wrote in the notice. “You therefore no longer have any rights or privileges to conduct any matter at the said Church. … We are informing you of your removal and permanent ban of membership at Born Again Christian Center.”

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The members replied to Harris with a lawsuit alleging several crimes, including attempts to defraud the church. About 10 months later, the church prevailed.

Harris returned the properties to them in a settlement, the terms of which were not disclosed. But Harris and his wife almost got away with it. Zion Missionary Baptist Church members called themselves “blessed” because most perpetrators of fraud in churches are usually never reported.

Research cited by Brotherhood Mutual Insurance Company, the second largest U.S. provider of property and casualty insurance to Christian churches and related ministries, says reported cases of church financial fraud has been rising by about 6 percent annually and is expected to reach the $60 billion mark by 2025.

The level of reported fraud in churches is dwarfed, however, by the 80 percent of church fraud cases that are estimated to go unreported.

John Montague, a corporate and nonprofit tax law expert and senior associate at leading global international law firm Hogan Lovells, explained in a recent interview with The Christian Post why he believes the best way to abate church fraud is to remove the IRS Form 990 exemption churches currently enjoy. Evidence suggests churches cannot be trusted to regulate themselves, he said.

Montague, who is a practicing Christian, also made his case several years ago when he penned a research paper for the Cardozo Law Review, titled The Law and Financial Transparency in Churches: Reconsidering the Form 990.

                                                   What is the IRS Form 990?

The IRS Form 990 is the reporting form that many federally tax-exempt organizations must file with the IRS each year. It allows the IRS and the general public to evaluate a nonprofit’s operations, including information on the nonprofit’s mission, programs, and finances. Depending on the filing year and the gross receipts of the organization, a nonprofit might be required to file Forms 990, 990-EZ or 990-N.

In his general assessment of what he is hearing from average churchgoers today, Montague said people are frustrated by not having access to the kind of transparency in churches that a Form 990 can give.

If, for example, the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability were a church, members could easily learn from its 2015 Form 990 disclosure, the latest 990 the organization makes available on their website, that it works to enhance trust in Christ-centered churches and ministries.

The public could also learn financial details such as how much ECFA President Dan Busby got paid from the organization that year — $193,218 in reported compensation and $42,032 in other income totaling just over $235,000.

“Nearly every conversation I’ve had with members of the laity, people have been interested in the concept of transparency, and frustrated by the general lack of transparency,” explained Montague, who served as a law clerk to The Honorable Thomas B. Wells of the U.S. Tax Court prior to joining Hogan Lovells.

“In churches, I’ve encouraged people to ask questions about the finances of their churches, but I’m not aware of any church that has actually made a move to voluntarily file a 990 or to provide the level of transparency that would result from having to file a 990,” Montague said.

He also explained that among the reasons why Christians aren’t pushing to hold churches more accountable and showing more concern about financial accountability through the IRS Form 990 is a lack of awareness.

“I don’t think most people are aware of the 990. … And even if they are aware of the 990, they are not aware of the exemption that churches have. I’m sure that 99 percent of Christians are totally unaware of that exemption,” Montague said.

“I think there are people, [who might say] ‘look, my responsibility is to give money to the Church and then I leave it up to God as to what happens to it after.’ I think there are those people. I would imagine that they’re probably in the minority but I have no idea.”

 

Church theivs

In January 2011, Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, released a report after a three-year investigation targeting six popular televangelists, including Paula White, Creflo Dollar and Kenneth Copeland

The report raised questions about their personal use of things such as church-owned airplanes, luxury homes and credit cards. It also expressed concern about the lack of oversight of finances by boards often filled by the televangelists’ relatives and friends.

Grassley, citing the concerns raised by the report, asked Busby in his role as leader of the ECFA to come up with a solution using legislation as a last resort.

“As you consider the issues my staff raised, please remember our discussion in my office when you visited me with other members of ECFA board on March 12, 2009. I stated then that I believe that legislation should be the last resort. However, ideas for reform often inspire informed and thoughtful discussions which, in turn, lead to self-correction and eliminate the need for legislation,” he wrote.

Benny Hinns house
 A house owned by Benny Hinn

In 1977, after similar concerns were raised about financial impropriety among certain televangelists at the time, then Republican Senator Mark Hatfield, who died in August 2011, warned that Congress would enact legislation if evangelical leaders could not develop a proposal to regulate themselves, according to Montague in The Law and Financial Transparency in Churches: Reconsidering the Form 990.

This resulted in the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association and the Christian relief organization World Vision partnering to found the ECFA in 1979 with 115 members. Only one televangelist was listed among that number.

In a March 1979 Washington Post report on the launch of the ECFA, organizers said more than 1,100 evangelical charitable organizations with a combined annual income approaching $1 billion would subscribe to the principles laid down by the organization.

Information from the ECFA’s 2015 990 shows that it currently reviews the data of more than 2,000 Christian charities and churches with more than $23 billion in annual revenue.

Grassley, in his letter to Busby, reminded him of the origin of the ECFA and its role as an alternative to legislated financial oversight for churches.

creflo
 Creflo Dollar with one of his many elaborate cars and aircraft 

“ECFA was founded because of a challenge then-Senator Hatfield made in 1977 to Christian groups to be more accountable. He apparently was responding to a scandal in the religious community at that time. The size and diversity of the religious community in the United States has grown tremendously since the ECFA was created. I hope that a discussion of the issues raised by my staff will similarly result in increased accountability while acknowledging this growth and diversity,” Grassley wrote to Busby.

This request led to the creation of the Commission on Accountability and Policy for Religious Organizations, which operated under the authority of the ECFA board of directors.

In a report released in December 2012, the commission, which is now inactive, encouraged churches and their leaders to act honorably and asked members of the public who donate money or their time to them to research religious organizations before investing in them.

“Churches and their leaders should not engage in abusive financial activities, nor should they improperly exploit the exemption from filing Form 990, because doing so undermines the credibility of their organizations and the religious community as a whole,” the commission advised.

The commission also recommended that Congress “never pass legislation requiring churches to file Form 990 or any similar information return or form with the federal government.”

“To require such a filing would not only place a substantial and unnecessary burden on churches and the government, it would also raise significant constitutional concerns. New churches should not have registration or notification requirements beyond those that already exist,” the commission said.

copeland20n
 Kenneth Copeland thanking his church for buying him a multi-million dollar private jet. 

 

                     Church transparency and the New Tax Cuts and Jobs Act

In May, however, the IRS appeared to take a step toward bucking that advice when it released guidance on the increased scope of what should be taxed as unrelated business income under the newly instituted Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.

While churches have long been subject to file IRS Form 990-T as long as they generated unrelated business income, the new law, the ECFA says, will now require many more churches and tax exempt organizations to file the form because the federal income tax is now applied to parking benefits.

“Because of this new tax, many tax‐exempt employers, including churches, hospitals, charities, and schools will be required to file federal Form 990‐T, and in many cases, state corporate income returns, every year regardless of whether they actually engage in any unrelated business activity. This new tax was purportedly added to the law to put tax‐exempt employers on the same footing as taxable employers with respect to employer‐provided parking,” the ECFA explained in a statement to CP.

While church and financial transparency experts agree that the 990-T would only add minimally to the broader push toward church transparency and accountability, Busby argued that it’s also likely to create various administrative and financial costs for many churches that do not have the means to meet them.

“Working in the church world most of my career, my guess is that prior to this provision, there’s probably only 1 [percent] or 2 percent of churches in America that file form 990-T so we’re really talking about two issues,” Busby said in a June interview with CP.

“We’re talking about a financial issue. We’re gonna have to pay a tax on providing employee parking and two, which may be more important, is the administrative piece of this — to file a return with which they are not familiar. If you can imagine, small churches across America have to file a form 990-T that they’ve never even heard of. And probably they’re gonna need to secure professional advice and pay a professional to file the return, even though the money may not be a significant amount, it’s just a ridiculous provision that was put in the law,” he said.

ethics

In July, the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention issued a policy brief in support of repealing the new parking tax and earlier this month, bills were introduced in both the House and Senate echoing that recommendation.

“In addition to the new federal requirements, many nonprofits will then be required to file state returns and possibly pay state income tax,” the ERLC stated. “The new regulations create tax liability and increase operations costs for these nonprofits, all because they simply have a parking lot. … 

“Taxing nonprofits on basic costs of operating an institution defeats the purpose of nonprofit status, an American tradition for over 100 years.” 

                                    The case for IRS oversight of churches

Pete Evans, lead investigator at the Dallas-based Trinity Foundation, which has been tracking religious fraud and helping victims of religious fraud for almost 30 years, told CP that the new requirement is a step in the right direction toward transparency and is a small price to pay compared to the billions being lost in church fraud annually.

“Even if it affects our own church, I would vote yes [to the 990-T provision],” Evans said.    You have all these churches now and ministries that are wealthy beyond wealth and some of which have thousands and thousands of acres in the counties that are not on the tax rolls because of various exemptions and they are living like Arabian princes,” Evans noted.

Evans also questioned Busby’s apparent concern for smaller churches in his criticism of the ECFA.

ecfa

“If you look at the majority of people that ECFA represents, they represent the larger churches because ECFA charges so much money that small churches can’t afford to be members of ECFA. And so I think there is hypocrisy there that on one hand they’re getting a lot of money from the larger ministries, churches and now all of a sudden they are defending the little churches?” he said.

In response to recent questions about the organization’s membership, a spokesperson for the ECFA revealed that only a minority of its currently registered members, 225, are churches.

That’s less than 1 percent of the 250,000 churches registered with the IRS’ Select Check program, according to Holly Ivel, director of Guidestar’s data services. Under this program, the IRS provides official recognition of an organization’s tax-exempt status which assures donors that their contributions are tax deductible.

“Based on how these organizations are coded there’s almost a quarter of a million churches that have chosen to do that (Select Check),” explained Ivel of the program. “So they’ve voluntarily registered, which is great.”

While Ivel, like the ECFA, does not recommend requiring churches to file a Form 990, she did notice from the data in their system that just over 2 percent of the 250,000 churches registered for the Select Check program also filed some variation of the form 990, even though they aren’t required to file it.

IRS_Form_990-800

“They are not required to file a return but even though they are not required to, about 5,300 have filed an annual return — either an EZ, which is kind of the short form, or a 990. And that’s between 2014 and 2017,” Ivel said.

Some of these filings could be easily searched and viewed on a database available on the IRS website as recently as late June. An update to that page on July 6 now only allows the public to determine deductibility of their contributions. It is unclear why this change was made.

Evans, who agrees with Montague that the evidence against churches show they cannot be trusted with self-regulation, argued that the 990 would be a more powerful safeguard against abuse because of the detailed information it requires. Many churches, he argued, as seen in the number of churches that file Form 990 even though they are not required, would be able to adhere to IRS oversight if there was a requirement to do so.

“Especially for the larger ministries and churches, there needs to be some transparency because they’re not going to do it on their own. Churches, if they are not required to, are typically not going to be transparent on their own and I think a lot of churches would be willing if there was a requirement,” Evans said.

“ECFA does not reveal salary information of their clients and that’s one of the key aspects of transparency that they’re hiding their own clients. They give everybody a seal of approval, this organization is good and above board and yet don’t reveal salary information? What’s up with that?” he asked.

getting paid

In response, Busby noted in a statement to CP: “There has never been a legal requirement for churches to disclose their salaries. ECFA’s standards start with legal requirements, and in some cases, go beyond the law.”

In 2013, shortly after the Commission on Accountability and Policy for Religious Organizations recommended that Congress not require churches to file Form 990, Montague argued against the advice in The Law and Financial Transparency in Churches: Reconsidering the Form 990.

“… Because of their opacity and the unique nature of religious authority, churches are more likely to foster and shelter malfeasance. Churchgoers are unlikely to challenge leaders because doing so can endanger their position in the religious community, making it imperative that transparency be mandated by outside authorities,” Montague argued.

“Ironically, increased transparency may actually be good for churches because, as studies suggest, it is likely to increase donations and because, by minimizing opportunities for financial improprieties, it may preserve the religious experience of churchgoers. In addition, transparency is consistent with the teaching of many Christian leaders and with the expressed preferences of a large portion of churchgoers.”

Montague said he sent copies of his research to Busby and Grassley.

In a response from Busby to Montague shared with CP, Busby noted in a 2013 letter: “ECFA’s position with respect to Form 990 coincides with the recommendations in the Commission report, i.e., that requiring such a form for churches would constitute unnecessary and constitutionally prohibited excessive entanglement by the government in the affairs of the church.”

                                     The Excessive Entanglement Problem

Some see potential religious freedom issues in additional filing requirements being placed upon churches.

In The Internal Revenue Service as a Monitor of Church Institutions: The Excessive Entanglement Problem, published in the Fordham Law Review in 1977, Sharon L. Worthing concluded that requiring church-related organizations to file IRS information returns was one example of excessive government entanglement with religion.

“Although the entanglement created by having church-related institutions file information returns does not seem terribly great, the requirement can be seen as a first step whose ultimate end is full government surveillance of religious institutions. The excessive entanglement test serves as a ‘warning signal’ regarding programs which may appear harmless, but whose ultimate expression would result in a clearly unconstitutional relationship between church and state,” Worthington wrote.In discussing the excessive entanglement concerns, Montague pointed in his study to a well-publicized congressional hearing in 1987 hearing with witnesses from the IRS and the Treasury, as well as notable televangelists including Jerry Falwell and Oral Roberts.

Then Congressman J.J. Pickle, chair of the Subcommittee on Oversight of the House Ways and Means Committee who convened the hearing, noted how Congress and the executive “historically have been reluctant to look very closely at tax issues involving religious organizations” because of their political sensitivity.

Roberts argued that the ECFA, which had been formed as an alternative to legislation, lacked teeth and that it would be better for all organizations to file the Form 990 and submit to external audits.

Gordon Loux, then chairman of the board of the ECFA, also noted that there are “inherent difficulties in self-regulation” as it is limited to those who consent to be regulated. He agreed that the Form 990 is a “minimal requirement that ought to be met by those that are operating in the public service.”

Then Commissioner of the IRS Lawrence Gibbs, who had previously agreed that churches had not been subject to the requirements of filing information returns because of concern about government intrusion into religion, was challenged during the hearing by former Congressman from New York Charles Rangel. An excerpt of their exchange is highlighted below:

Mr. Rangel: Do you see where filing an annual report by churches would be in violation of the constitutional right of separation of church and state?

Mr. Gibbs: I have assumed, perhaps erroneously, that that was the reason—or certainly one of the prominent reasons—for specifically excluding them by statute in 1969.

Mr. Rangel: Well, why did you reach that assumption? You know, it is only a congressional decision. Has any court said that you cannot put limitations on the privilege of tax exemption? We do it in unrelated taxes. We do it in lobbying. We do it in political affairs. We do it in FCC control. What in God’s name could be even remotely considered a violation of the constitutional rights of churches to say that they should file an annual report as to how much money they got and what they did with it?

Several pastors contacted by CP to discuss this story because their churches filed 990 returns referred questions to their treasurer or the individual who prepared them. None of these individuals responded to interview requests.

Montague suggested that some of the churches may have filed the returns in error, not realizing they are exempt from filing.

(Originally written by Leonardo Blair/ Edited by Babylon Today)

 

Catholic Church Guilty Of Covering Up Sexual Abuse of Over 1000 Children in Pennsylvania

…priests forced a victim to pose naked on the cross while they photographed him using a Polaroid camera.

Pedophile-Priests 4

  • More than 300 Catholic priests across Pennsylvania had been sexually abusing little boys and girls for over 70 years.
  • A thousand children were identified as victims in the investigation, but there are possibly thousands more.
  • The Vatican refrained from making any comments about the situation.

More than 300 “predator priests” across Pennsylvania were reportedly sexually abusing children for over 70 years, according to a new grand jury, who got internal documents from the state’s six Catholic dioceses dating back to 1947: Allentown, Erie, Greensburg, Harrisburg, Pittsburgh and Scranton.

The grand jury states, “Priests were raping little boys and girls, and the men of God who were responsible for them not only did nothing; they hid it all. For decades.”

On Tuesday, Attorney General Josh Shapiro said the cover-ups and abuse were reported by other state grand juries and they reviewed the information included in the “secret archives” — referring to the reports that hid the abuse that church leaders did for decades.

pedophile_priests_3

The jury report, consisting of 1,400 pages, described the gruesome details of some of the alleged abuse. A boy was raped repeatedly from age 13 to 15 and later suffered from severe spine injuries because of the priest who raped him. The boy later died of an overdose due to painkiller addiction.

In Pittsburgh, priests forced a victim to pose naked on the cross while they photographed him using a Polaroid camera. The report states that because of the cover-up, “almost every instance of abuse we found is too old to be prosecuted.”

In Pennsylvania, victims of child sex abuse have until they reach age 30 to file civil suits and until they are 50 to file criminal charges. The oldest victim who spoke to the grand jury was aged 83.

James VanSickle, 55, recounts the sexual abuse he suffered under the hands of a priest in Erie back in 1981, but because the statute of limitations had passed, the priest was not prosecuted for it.

As he testified before the grand jury, VanSickle said “This is the murder of a soul. We don’t have a statute of limitations on the crime of murder. We don’t go after victims . . . and question their ‘repressed memories’ or ‘recovered memories.”

priests-vvvvvvvvvvvvv

Many questions now arise about whether high-level church officials could still be covering up their criminal actions.

The grand jury called for a law allowing older victims to file a case against the church for the abuse they’ve suffered as children, in addition to ending such limitations for criminal cases.

The Vatican press office refrained from making any comments to the situation, as the attention is now focused on Pope Francis, with many Catholics waiting on how he would handle this situation of abuse to restore the Catholic Church’s integrity.

Across the country, Pennsylvania is believed to have steered the most number of investigations on child sex abuse.

The recent grand jury report was described by Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro as the “largest, most comprehensive report into child sexual abuse within the Catholic Church ever produced in the United States.”

Source: Fox News

Pro-Gay Church Plans to Build Worship Space/Brewery & Donate Profits to Planned Parenthood

“There’s nothing in the Bible that says you can’t drink alcohol in a responsible manner,” Pastor Chris VanHall told the station.

Pro Gay Church
 Church in Santa Cruz, Calif., plans to convert former bookstore into a worship space and public brewery.  (Google Street View)

A building in Santa Cruz, Calif., is being converted into a worship space and public brewery by a pro-gay church that plans to donate some of its beer proceeds to Planned Parenthood, according to reports.

Members of the Greater Purpose Community Church now meet on Sundays at a food lounge to pray, listen and drink beer, KNTV reports.

“There’s nothing in the Bible that says you can’t drink alcohol in a responsible manner,” Pastor Chris VanHall told the station.

Planned Parenthood has offices in the former bookstore VanHall plans to turn into a brewery by next summer, The Santa Cruz Good Times weekly newspaper reported.

“A church that serves beer and gives the profits away to places like Planned Parenthood is really exciting to me,” the pastor told the paper.

Santa Cruz’s recent Pride Parade included a contingent from Greater Purpose, the paper reported.

VanHall told KION-TV in a report Friday that on Sundays there will be church in the bar “but it’s going to be before we open to the public.”

The pastor told KNTV that holding services at the food lounge gave him the idea for the brewery.

“I thought to myself, ‘wouldn’t it be great if a church could figure out a way to make a product where they split the profits with local community service organizations?’ We were like ‘hey, we love beer, we love making beer, why not do a brewery?'” he said.

Anyway, he said, his sermons are always better after a couple of beers.

A White Maryland Priest Threw a Black Family Out Of Church At Their Mother’s Funeral Because Someone Accidentally Broke A “sacred chalice”

… his focus was on a stupid material item- a stupid chalice, an item that doesn’t even have life in it!

 

In Maryland, Rev. Michael Briese was caught on camera last week in an unbelievable confrontation with relatives of the late Agnes Hicks at Saint Mary’s Catholic Church in Charlotte Hallnews station WTTG reported.

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The feud began when someone accidentally knocked over the church’s sacred chalice before the start of the Wednesday morning service. The chalice looked something like the below photo.

chalice

“That’s when all hell broke loose,” Hicks’ daughter, Shanice Chisely said. “[Briese] literally got on the mic and said, ‘there will be no funeral, there will be no mass, no repass, everyone get the hell out of my church.”

Briese could be seen in a very disturbing cellphone video near the casket chastising loved ones over the incident. The family contacted police who escorted them to a funeral home willing to perform the service.

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Relatives, however, were devastated that Hicks’ service was not at the church where she was baptized as a young girl.

“This was uncalled for and it really hurt me,” her brother, Larry Hicks said. “It really did, to see your loved one come there to rest and to be shut down like that.”

The priest apologized for his actions Thursday in an open letter published in the Maryland Independent.

“I uttered words I never use, and treated people I have lived with and committed my life to serve in an unacceptable manner,” he said. “Instead of care and compassion for the grieving family and friends, my focus turned to anger.”

  • Editors Note: No, his focus was on a stupid material item- a stupid chalice, an item that doesn’t even have life in it! His true nature came out, he spoke to the black family as if they were animals because that’s what he really thinks of them and most likely of all people of color. I’m sure that his apology wasn’t volunteered but suggested by his overseer. Besides all of the children who have been and are most likely still being sexually molested in the Catholic church, this has to be one of the most disturbing things that I’ve ever heard. May the soul of  Ms. Agnes Hicks rest in peace, and I pray that her family will find solace- somehow.

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 Ms. Agnes Hicks

Former SC Baptist Convention Employee and Missionary Charged in Texas For Sex Assault Accusation From 1997

Mark Edwin Aderholt, of Columbia, has been charged by the Arlington, TX Police Department following an allegation from 1997 in Texas.

COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) –

A South Carolina man has been charged with the criminal sexual assault of a person younger than 17 that happened in a different state two decades ago – and before his arrest, he resigned from the South Carolina Baptist Convention, headquartered in Columbia. 

Mark Aderholt
 According to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Mark Edwin Aderholt has been charged by the Arlington, TX Police Department following an allegation from 1997 in Texas. (Source: Tarrant County Jail)

According to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Mark Edwin Aderholt, of Columbia, has been charged by the Arlington, TX Police Department following an allegation from 1997 in Texas. He was originally booked into the Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center on July 3, the newspaper says, and then booked into the Tarrant County, TX Jail on July 9. 

The newspaper did not expound on the details of the assault claim or what Aderholt is being accused of specifically. 

The newspaper says Aderholt, “prolific as an international missionary,” graduated from the Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth in 2000. 

According to the SCBC, he resigned as the associate executive director and chief strategist in June prior to his arrest. The SCBC released a statement on June 15 following Aderholt’s resignation, saying: 

Dr. Gary Hollingsworth, the Executive Director/Treasurer of the South Carolina Baptist Convention, has received and accepted a letter of resignation from Dr. Mark Aderholt who had been serving for the past year and [a] half as the Associate Executive Director and Chief Strategist for the Convention.

While accepting this with a heavy heart, Dr. Hollingsworth did so based on the importance of staying focused on the Convention’s Vision statement of “seeing every life saturated and transformed by the hope of the Gospel.”

Hollingsworth informed the Executive Board of the South Carolina Baptist Convention, the staff of the SCBC, all the Associational Directors of Missions and leaders of the Convention’s Institutional Ministry Partners and wanted to make sure all South Carolina Baptists were made aware of this staff change.

He and the SCBC staff are committed to continuing to see the Gospel advanced here in South Carolina and around the world by working to fulfill the Convention mandated priorities of evangelism, church strengthening/discipleship, missions mobilization and church planting.

 Aderholt is now out of jail on a $10,000 bond with conditions. The conditions of his bond are not known. 

 

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Pastor Charged With Sexually Assaulting Unconscious Parishioner

“Pastor” Freeman said “We insert things into people” and “you don’t ask what happens [during deliverance]…

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 “Pastor” Meally Morris Freeman 

A Minnesota opportunist who calls himself a pastor sexually assaulted a 28-year-old woman after she became unconscious during two “anointing sessions”  and has now been charged with two counts of third-degree criminal sexual conduct that could land him in prison for 15 years and a fine of $30,000.

A criminal complaint against Meally Morris Freeman, the 55-year-old “pastor” of Grace Mountaineer Tabernacle Church in Brooklyn Center, Minnesota said the woman accusing him of criminal behavior saw him as a “spiritual father” when she went to him for spiritual guidance starting on Sept. 20, 2017, according to Fox 9.

In January, however, she told police that Freeman sexually assaulted her at the church which led to his arrest on Tuesday.

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She explained that during an anointing session at the church, the pastor anointed her with oil and advised her that she was in need of “deliverance” that would require a one-on-one session with him.

Trusting the spiritual guidance, the woman said she attended a one-on-one session with Freeman and he gave her small cups of ‘oil’ to drink. Soon after they began to pray, the woman says she lost consciousness…

When she woke up, the woman explained that her underwear was wet and there was oil on her stomach and near her breasts. The pastor told her he had “anointed all places, but that he didn’t see all places,” and informed her she needed a second session that would take place after Bible study that night. The woman said in their second deliverance session she became unconscious again but when she woke up this time her pants and underwear were hanging ripped at her ankles and her shirt and bra were pulled up over her chest.

She said the pastor, who was spraying a water bottle filled with oil on her private areas, also inappropriately touched her genitals and anus.

It wasn’t until she shared what happened to a friend that the woman realized she was sexually assaulted. 

The woman eventually confronted Freeman and recorded their conversation without him knowing. Freeman did not deny touching her genitals, but instead discussed the “deliverance process.” He admitted he anointed her breasts with oil and told her, “We insert things into people” and “you don’t ask what happens [during deliverance], you don’t go into details and that deliverance can be very tempting.”

The woman said at another meeting a church elder, Freeman and his wife [who should be arrested too] told her not to report the incident to police.

This disgusting so-called pastor Meally Freeman was arrested by Brooklyn Center Minnesota  police Tuesday around 4 p.m. and is in custody at Hennepin County Jail.

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This is an absolute mockery of God and His Kingdom…. Psalms 118:8 says It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man; it’s funny how Christians seem to overlook that verse.  If you need “deliverance” from sexual sins make a decision to live above all evil and  JUST STOP DOING IT, then you’ll be delivered! James 4:7~ Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Many unfavorable “church” situations can be avoided if Christians would obey whats written in the bible instead of just reading it. 

 

California Episcopal Church Holds ‘Beyoncé Mass’ Where Hundreds ‘Worship’ With Her Songs!

“We have a community that is youthful and loving and looks to the world as a partner, not an enemy,” Reverend Jude Harmon said speaking to the crowd.

I guess Jude Harmon doesn’t care what God says about being “partners” with the world. “Ye adulterers and adulteresses, now ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God” James 4:4

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A “church” in San Francisco, California raised eyebrows with an event they called a “Beyoncé Mass.” With matters such as bibles being outlawed in California, this “church” has nothing better to do with it’s time than to pay homage to Beyonce. 
 
With hundreds in attendance, Grace Cathedral Church says the event is a chance for people to find God through secular music. Others calling it “evil,” saying they’re trying to substitute Jesus with Beyoncé.
 

“We have a community that is youthful and loving and looks to the world as a partner, not an enemy,” Reverend Jude Harmon said speaking to the crowd.
I guess Jude Harmon doesn’t care what God says about being “partners” with the world. “Ye adulterers and adulteresses, now ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God” James 4:4
 
Harmon says mostly in attendance are people of color and the LGBT community, including, “People on who other people’s narratives have been projected. Just to be honest, the church hasn’t been the best about lifting up those voices.”
 
To take things a step further, Rev. Harmon goes on to say that Beyoncé is “a better theologian than many of the pastors and priests in the church today.”
 
“That is not an exageration,” Harmon states.
 
The video includes examples of Beyoncé’s “religious symbolism” in her music and performances, from dressing as African deity’s, the Virgin Mary, and scenes in her videos that reference the Last Supper.
 
The event’s organizer, Rev. Yolanda Norton, told ABC7 News she uses Beyonce as a way to bring diverse groups together to talk about God.
 

 

Norton is an Assistant Professor of Old Testament at San Francisco Theological Seminary who teaches a class she calls, “Beyoncé and the Hebrew Bible.”
“People think we’re worshiping Beyoncé, none of that is true,” she said. “This is a way to have different kinds of conversation.”
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During the service, Norton said in a separate interview, they use lyric’s from Beyoncé’s songs as examples of what the crowd’s prayers to God could be. She said the service focuses on empowering women of color and other minority communities.
“I’ve been asked time and time again, ‘Why Beyoncé?'” Norton preached to the crowd during the mass. “I believe she reminds us that you have to do your thing your way, you don’t do it on demand, you don’t do it for your oppressor, you don’t sing when they want you to sing…you sing when God calls you to sing.” 
 
Many even pointing out parts of scripture that they say rebuke this type of gathering, including 2 Timothy 4:3-4 and Galatians 1:8.
 
2 Timothy 4:3-4 
“For the time will come when people will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths.”
 
Galatians 1:8 
“Let God’s curse fall on anyone, including us or even an angel from heaven, who preaches a different kind of Good News than the one we preached to you.”