A fundamentalist Christian sect with close ties to the newest judge on the Supreme Court, Amy Coney Barrett, has hired law firms over claims it failed to properly investigate three claims of sex abuse against underage members.
People of Praise, which grew out of the charismatic Christian movement of the early 1970s and now claims to have 1,700 followers, has hired a former sex crimes prosecutor and second law firm to investigate the allegations made by the women.
One accuser, Katie Logan, claims she was sexually abused by a teacher at a People of Praise school in 2001, when she was 17. She says the school failed to follow-up her reports of the abuse until she went to police in December 2020. The other two say they were abused as children by members of a sect that later joined with People of Praise, and that PoP subsequently failed to investigate properly.
Logan, now 37, was just 17 when her high school physics teacher, Dave Beskar, sexually assaulted her in 2001, she alleges.
Beskar was a teacher at Trinity School at River Ridge, in Eagan, Minnesota.
She said she had a teenage crush on him; he was 35 at the time.
He would come round to the family home, in their tight-knit community, and had dinner with her and her parents – something she now sees as grooming.
One evening, when her parents were away, he came over to use the family’s computer, Logan alleges.
Teenagers pitted against each other during “fight nights” staged by a youth pastor running a Christian leadership training program.
“Boot camps” where the trainees learn the Way of the Cross by exercising until they vomit or soil themselves — and by hefting heavy logs on their shoulders through the sweltering summer heat.
Participants who are Black or suspected of being gay being taunted with racist and homophobic slurs, and female interns being fat-shamed.
Those are just some of the alleged abuses that were described for this article by more than a half-dozen people who took part in the “220i” leadership program that Bethany Church, based in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, ran from 2005 to 2013. The program promised to turn participants — referred to as interns — into minister material while providing them with marketable skills like media production.
Among those interviewed was a woman who felt the program was a cult from which she had to “rescue” her daughter.
NBC News reached out to them after the church’s current lead pastor, Jonathan Stockstill, posted an apology on his Facebook page on April 28 for the “painful experiences” many of the 500 or so young Christians endured in the program, the stated goal of which was to “train young leaders.”
“While there was some positive fruit that came from that ministry, there were also leadership and cultural flaws that led to painful experiences for many,” he wrote. “It’s obvious to me now and to the current leadership at Bethany Church that we significantly missed the mark in that program in many ways.”
The former interns — some of whom spoke on the record, while others used pseudonyms out of fear of retaliation from the powerful megachurch, which has thousands of members — said he was aware of what was going on and did nothing to stop it.
They said the ringleader was his older brother, Joel, who tormented the interns with the help of aides known as “second years,” as well as Joel’s late wife, Amy, and his current wife, Amie.
Founded by the Stockstill brothers’ grandfather Roy in 1963, the nondenominational Bethany Church grew from having Sunday services in the living room of the family home into one of the biggest megachurches in the country. It has more than 8,000 members spread across five campuses in Louisiana and is opening another in New Orleans, runs a television ministry and supports missions at home and abroad.
California ‘ethnic studies’ proposal teaches kids white Christians are evil, chant to Aztec gods
The California Department of Education is set to vote on a new ethnic studies curriculum aimed at the “decolonization” of American society and includes lessons teaching students to chant to Aztec gods.
If approved, what is being called the “Ethnic Studies Model Curriculum” will be implemented statewide in the Golden state’s primary and secondary public schools, which serve approximately 6 million students in some 10,000 schools, according to investigative journalist Christopher Rufo who wrote about the issue in City-Journal.
The co-chair of the curriculum, R. Tolteka Cuauhtin, developed much of the material cited throughout the proposed lessons in which Christians, specifically those of European ancestry, are viewed as the source of evil to be resisted and overthrown.
White Christians are guilty of “theocide” against indigenous tribes, the killing of their deities and replacing them with the Christian faith, Cuauhtin argues in a chart.
“White settlers thus established a regime of ‘coloniality, dehumanization, and genocide,’” Rufo wrote of the curriculum materials in a corresponding Twitter thread Wednesday, adding that what is billed as the “solution” to this is to “‘name, speak to, resist, and transform the hegemonic Eurocentric neocolonial condition’ in a posture of ‘transformational resistance.’”
The ultimate goal, according to Cuauhtin, is to engineer a “‘countergenocide” against whites.
The lessons also include an official “ethnics studies community chant,” and it’s recommended that teachers lead students in indigenous songs, chants, and affirmations, including the “In Lak Ech Affirmation,” which is a direct appeal to Aztec gods.
In that affirmation students are led to chant to an Aztec god named Tezkatlipoka, asking it for power to be “warriors” for “social justice.”
Aztecs traditionally worshiped this god through such practices as human sacrifice and cannibalism. The students are also taught to chant to other Aztec deities in pursuit of “healing epistemologies” and a “revolutionary spirit,” including Huitzilopochtli, the patron god of the Aztec empire’s capital city, a god of war and human sacrifice.
Pastor Andy Stanley of Atlanta’s North Point Community Church said he is “embarrassed” by churches that engaged in “spitting matches” with state and local governments over COVID-19 lockdown restrictions, lamenting that far too many churches “abandoned the mission for the sake of the model.”
Stanley, who made headlines last year when he announced that his Atlanta-area multisite church would not resume in-person worship services until 2021, said during Expoential’s Future of the Church event on Thursday that many churches across the country had the “exact wrong” approach to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The thing that has been concerning to me about the local church is how quickly so many local churches felt like, ‘We’ve got to get back in our building, shoulder to shoulder, doing what we’ve always done,’” Stanley said.
The Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) will host the leader of a ‘Scientology-like’ Japanese cult that claims to be able to cure coronavirus for $400 and whose founder has claimed that he is the reincarnation of an alien from Venus who created life on Earth.
The conference, an annual event hosted by the American Conservative Union, is scheduled to convene in Orlando for its three-day meeting beginning on Thursday.
One of its scheduled speakers is Hiroaki ‘Jay’ Aeba, a Japanese conservative who is scheduled to address the conference on Friday at the Hyatt Regency Orlando.
Aeba is scheduled to speak right after Donald Trump Jr.
DailyMail.com has reached out to Aeba and CPAC for comment.
‘Happy Science is a Japanese cult run by a man who claims to be the incarnation of multiple Gods while pretending to channel the psychic spirits of anyone from Quetzalcoatl to Bashar al-Assad to Natalie Portman,’ researcher Sarah Hightower told VICE News.
It was founded in 1986 by Ryuho Okawa, a former stockbroker who is regarded by his followers as the incarnation of El Cantare, a supreme being from Venus who created life on Earth millions of years ago.
Okawa, who never speaks to the press, has claimed to channel the spirits of famous people who are both dead and alive, including Natalie Portman, Barack Obama, Steve Jobs, Isaac Newton, Albert Einstein, and Freddie Mercury.
The Cancel Culture Buddhists
Well, they have done a typically vicious job in trying to repress my book, and attempting to cancel me as a person, and a whistle blower; these ‘compassionate’ Buddhists who claim to represent ‘enlightened feminism.”
Why would they do this, you say? Since I was the first, (despite what the authors of Sogyal abuse exposes say) to reveal in my book Sogyal’s decades of abuses and cover-ups by the same inner circle who is trying to shut me up, now. Before the proverbial hit the fan for Sogyal, for the third time, during the #MeToo Movement.
Before these Tibetan ‘Buddhists’ had permission from the Dalai Lama, their guru master, to publish their own books.
So why try to keep me quiet? Since they know, or should, that these same Lamas, when still in Tibet, would have cut out my tongue and thrown me in the river in a cloth sack to drown, to be able to say they ‘didn’t kill me, the river did.”
Instead, they have their inner circle devotees, like Finnegan and Company, try and kill me off, so their Lamas could seem innocent of the act. Tibetan Lamas, and their most fanatic devotees, pretending to be just ordinary Buddhists, have taken vows to obey their own Lamas in all things.
This house of God is run more like a corporation — or a sweatshop — than a place of worship.
So say former members of once-celebrity-beloved megachurch Hillsong, who continue to come forward with stories slamming the institution as more “slave labor” than sanctuary after the bombshell firing of adulterous pastor Carl Lentz.
“It’s like you work for a major company” — only worse, Nicole Herman, who helped found Hillsong LA in 2013, told The Post.
Herman alleges the “abuse of volunteers and real, amazing people” by Hillsong leadership to fulfill their “petty needs” (a practice called “honoring”) reminded her of instant Cup Noodles: Leaders think they can just add water, no emotional investment necessary, and get a flock of loyal, unpaid laborers.
A former service pastor — “I was beneath [the senior pastors] but I did everything” — Herman says that, in her seven years working for the Australia-born temple chain, she routinely watched its cult of personality enchant wide-eyed parishioners.
This weekend Herman made her Instagram public, so anyone could reach out with church-related complaints. “I’m here to help anyone with a broken heart as well as a million other amazing people who left this cult,” she wrote in an Insta Story on Saturday.
She says she has since been inundated with traumatic Hillsong stories.
Yolandi Bosch was so disturbed by her time at Hillsong that she and hundreds of other former staffers, students and volunteers are looking for representation so they can take a complaint of what they claim is “industrial slave labor” as defined by the Parliament of Australia.
About eighty years ago the Scopes Monkey trial seemed to become the driving force where evolutionary teachings were eventually put into our schools and prayer and Bible reading were taken out. At this time, the evolutionists claimed that Biblical Creationists were being intellectually bigoted by excluding evolutionary teachings. But now we actually have this premise in reverse. Evolutionists truly are being intellectually bigoted by excluding the scientific facts of Biblical Creationism.
Therefore, the stage is once again set to for the battle of our origins and our minds. Some are even calling it the modern day Scopes Monkey trial. It’s the battle over Intelligent Design. Therefore, this series, Intelligent Design takes a look at the hardcore scientific data that logically reveals how all of life was intelligently designed implying an Intelligent Designer, namely God. These logical evidences include the evidence of the Universe, the Solar System, the Earth, the Human Body, the Animal Kingdom, the Plant Kingdom, and the Bacteria Kingdom and much more. Intelligent Design clearly reveals that an Intelligent God created us for an intelligent purpose; to live a life beyond our wildest dreams in Him!