Monday, December 16, 2013

Corrupt clergy

To continue my dissertation on corrupt clergy, corrupt in more ways than one but what the hell they are only human after all even if God has singled them out to enjoy his special favours. We’ve mentioned greed now let’s go a bit further on that subject before we chat about sexual peccadilloes, 99% of human sexuality in the eyes of the religious is spelt s-i-n though why the Almighty with a whole universe and more in which to occupy Himself should be in the least interested as to who I’ve been to bed with or whether I masturbate or not is beyond me.
But back to money money money.  Ron.L.hubbard, the founder of Scientology said if you want to make money you won’t get very far writing science-fiction; you should start a new religion (which of course he did.) Capitalising on a religion that already exists amounts to the same thing I suppose. Let us take as just one example, the Televangelist couple, Paul and Jan Crouch and remember when you read these figures churches do not pay tax.
Their Christian television station TBN is said to be the third largest in America and around the world TBN is carried by stations and cable systems to millions of homes: 5000 television stations, 33 satellites, the Internet and cable systems around the world. What Goebbels wouldn’t have given to have all that for propaganda purposes?
TBN’s Annual income, the latest figures available being for 2006 was $200.7 million – Expenditure $141.1. stashing away the extra $59.6 million. Assets evidently are close to a billion.
In 1998 the Crouch’s combined income was $400000.
In 2008 it had risen (including Paul F. Crouch Jun. as Vice President) to $994637.
What it runs at currently I hate to think.
Apart from their own luxury house at Newport Beach the Crouches have the use of 30 TBN owned residences in California, Tennessee, and Ohio. In fact this good Christian family are worthy of a dozen blogs just to show how affluent they are and how the money goes. Mind you Joel Osteen has just had a mansion built at a cost over $71 million. He says it is a gift from the Lord.
But now let’s move on to sin. Catholic priests and choirboys is old hat. It’s been going on for centuries but it is only in the last few years that it has become a cause célèbre. A number of televangelists in America famous from coast to coast have tearfully admitted their sins to the world via their favourite medium, sometimes with brave little wife gazing at her man adoringly and inwardly humiliated and seething no doubt, as he asks the world for forgiveness, which isn’t always forthcoming (Judge not lest ye yourselves be judged.)Witness Jim Bakker after bedding a church secretary by the name of Jessica Hahn, Mind you he also went to jail for five years having been convicted of fraud. Jimmy Swaggart, preaching to more than a hundred nations around the world tearfully admitted in front of 70000 that he had sinned with a prostitute. Charles Fox Parham, the ‘Father of the Pentecostal Movement’ was indicted in Texas on a charge of sodomy. There are more of course including one whose name escapes me. This one was rabidly homophobic until it was revealed he was having it off with rent boys in seedy hotels. Could it have been the anti-gay Baptist George Rekers who it was discovered hired a rent- boy to go holiday with him for ten days? He said it was to carry his luggage. Do me a favour, pu-lease!
But all that is leading up to the main story which involves both money and sin and does not take place n America but in good old Blighty. This is the story of the Rev. Paul Flowers. He was Chairman of the Co-op Bank on a salary of £132000, not exactly a fortune but not too bad at over two grand a week, especially as there was another £60000 for acting as vice chairman.
 At various  times he was Trustee of investment funds and property of the Methodist church, Superintendant at Methodist church, Member of Labour’s Financial and Advisory Board, Chairman of the Lifeline Project, a charity which helps drug uses, Member of the board at Advertising Standards Authority.
He has been accused of claiming £75000 in false expenses which he denies maintaining they were all legitimate. Because of lack of evidence no action will be taken until there is a full investigation. No doubt, being ever so contrite and offering to pay back a percentage he would have received a mild slap on the wrist but he hasn’t waited for the outcome. It is believed he has fled to Thailand “since sordid revelations about his private life emerged last Sunday.” Yes, once more it was evidently rent boys so both greed and sin walked hand in hand to ensure his downfall. The first might elicit a certain sympathy by the faithful, the second never.

A Brazilian pastor has been arrested for convincing his followers his penis contained holy milk. Can you believe that? Sadly sadly yes I can.

1 comment:

Lewis said...

In my experience, if they preach against it, they're doing it.
You've got to hand it to the Brazilian, but many a lady with "needs" might have been easily persuaded that bread alone was not enough.