Archive for April, 2017

Sexual Abuse Of A Minor Child At St. Patrick’s Parish In Lawrence, MA

MEDIA RELEASE – April 30, 2017

 

And the same old story goes on and on.

 

One Boston Archdiocesan priest from St. Patrick’s Parish, Lawrence, MA, and four Marist Brothers of the Schools from Lawrence, MA, Central Catholic High School are accused of sexual abuse of a minor child, “John Doe,” who is represented by Attorney Mitchell Garabedian of Boston, MA

The Boston Archdiocesan priest, Fr. Paul Rynne, has been publicly named before, and three of the Marist Brothers of the Schools, Br. Edward Michael, FMS, Br. Xavier Leonard Boulanger, FMS, and Br. Albert, FMS, have been publicly named before. The allegations include:

1) Sexual abuse of “John Doe” by Fr. Paul Rynne in approximately the mid 1960s in the rectory of St. Patrick’s Parish, when “John Doe was approximately 10-11 years of age;

2) Sexual abuse of “John Doe” by , FMS, an athletic trainer and teacher, in a room at Central Catholic High School in approximately the late 1960s when “John Doe” was approximately 14-15 years of age

3) Sexual abuse of “John Doe” by Br. Xavier Leonard Boulanger, FMS, teacher, in a room at Central Catholic High School and at least one other location in approximately the late 1960s when “John Doe” was approximately 15 years of age; and,

4) Sexual abuse of “John Doe” by Br. Albert, FMS, in a room at Central Catholic High School in approximately the late 1960s when “John Doe” was approximately 15 years of age.

A fourth Marist Brother of the Schools, not previously publicly named and not named herein, is accused of sexually abusing “John Doe” in a room at Central Catholic High School in approximately the late 1960s when “John Doe” was approximately 14 years of age.

IRS Raids Offices Of ‘Prosperity Gospel’ Preacher Benny Hinn

Benny Hinn, fleecing the flock to create prosperity – for himself.

 

April 29, 2017

 

IRS agents have been raiding the offices of famed televangelist and “prosperity gospel” preacher Benny Hinn for nearly two days, raising questions about whether a tax-evasion investigation is underway.
According to the Associated Press, anywhere from 40 to 50 federal agents descended on the offices of the popular televangelist on Wednesday morning in Grapevine, Texas, hauling boxes of evidence out of a building. As of Thursday morning, IRS officials and Postal Inspection Police were reportedly still continuing to work.
Agents at the scene would not detail the nature of the investigation, but told local ABC affiliate WFAA that their unit is tasked “primarily [with] investigating Title 26, which is tax evasion and general fraud against the government.”
Hinn was not present during the raid, as he is believed to be in Paris, France.
The pastor is widely known for his energetic preaching style and regular use of “faith healing,” an often dramatic spectacle where participants claim to be healed through touch. Hinn is also considered to be a preacher of “prosperity gospel” theology, a belief system that teaches devotees they can achieve personal, physical, and financial success through a combination of Christian faith and giving money to their church.
[An official] told local ABC affiliate WFAA that their unit is tasked “primarily [with] investigating Title 26, which is tax evasion and general fraud against the government.”
“[God] is the ultimate Giver!” Hinn declares on his website in a post insisting God will forgive the debts of believers (the post itself is flanked by “donate” buttons). “And as we imitate Him with obedient giving, the potential of the harvest from our seed is truly limitless.”
Prosperity preachers like Hinn often accumulate vast fortunes over time, which has made them the subject of harsh criticism from both conservative and progressive Christians who say individual riches are antithetical to Christian teaching. According to an ABC News report, Hinn’s ministry rakes in an estimated $100 million annually as of 2009, primarily from donations.
The extravagant wealth of Hinn and others like him — which often includes huge estates and private jets purchased with money provided by congregants — has caught the eye of the federal government in the past. Hinn was one of six televangelists and prosperity gospel preachers who were subject to a Senate investigation led by Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) in 2007. The probe was halted three years later, however, with only two of the six ministries instituting financial reforms recommended by investigators — one of which was Benny Hinn Ministries.
Hinn was also the subject of a separate IRS investigation in 2005, according to the Houston Chronicle.
Prosperity preachers have become increasingly popular in recent years, with pastors such as Joel Osteen boasting some of the largest congregations in the country. “Health and wealth” pastors have also emerged as a political force in recent months: President Donald Trump surrounded himself with prosperity preachers throughout his campaign, and Trump himself helped Osteen launch his Sirius XM radio ministry in 2014.
Hinn was invited to join a delegation of pastors to meet with Trump during the 2016 campaign, but sent an emissary instead. The Daily Beast speculated that his absence may have had something to do with the presence of Paula White, another prosperity preacher and Trump’s closest spiritual adviser, who was accused of having an affair with Hinn in 2010 (he refuted such accusations).
An IRS spokesperson declined to comment for this story, as did a representative for Benny Hinn ministries.

 

A spokesperson for Benny Hinn would only say that ‘his hair is perfect’.

Porn Star Angers Churchgoers

But then, pretty much everything angers churchgoers.

 

 

Kamilla Warneck, a good person at heart

 

April 28, 2017

 

A porn star has outraged churchgoers by declaring she is an Evangelical Christian who believes there’s nothing wrong with her work in the eyes of God.

Kamilla Warneck is one of the hottest adult movie stars in Brazil and has appeared in hundreds of erotic movies.

Kamilla Warneck says there is nothing wrong with her lifestyle in the eyes of God.

The 25-year-old grew up in a deeply religious household but has turned to a life of porn.

She has appeared in hundreds of XXX movies and says she loves people watching her have sex
Now the 25-year-old, who grew up in a deeply religious household, has caused controversy with her claims in an interview on X-rated TV show Pornolandia.

The hardcore actress declares she has an “Evangelical faith” and says she doesn’t believe it clashes with her career because she is a “good person at heart”.

Host Nicole Puzzi, who has interviewed dozens of sex industry stars, appeared surprised as she asked: “But how do you relate that to your work because people believe a porno actress cannot be Evangelical and cannot be religious.”

The curvaceous brunette insists: “People are very judgemental. They try to make you conform in a way they think an Evangelical should be because society says so.

“But I don’t agree with this. I think God sees inside our hearts. He judges the good and the bad things you do, and I do good things for people.

“I’m a good person at heart and that’s what matters.”

The clip went viral with some on social media condemning her to “burn in hell” while others said she has the right to do what she wants.

The late-night online magazine show included a risqué striptease by the sultry Rio model in which she wields a collection of dangerous weapons including a gun and knife while dancing suggestively as she undresses for the camera.

It’s a performance and a lifestyle her intensely religious family would disapprove of if they knew.

She said: “My family don’t have a clue about what I do for a living. I haven’t told them but to be honest I really don’t care if they find out.”

In fact, the blue movie actress has already upset her church-going family by divorcing her husband of three years and setting up home with a woman.

Kamilla says her religious family are shocked at how she makes a living

She says she was a teenager when she discovered the thrill of being watched having sex.

Porn star Kamilla Warneck says God sees nothing wrong with her work.

She reveals: “My family was really shocked when they found out. It took them a while to accept because their Evangelical beliefs and prejudice against gay relationships made it hard for them to come to terms with my decision.

“They think it’s just a phase I’m going through. That may well be the case, but one day I might shock them even more because I’m prepared to live with anyone so long as they make me happy, and that could include finding love with a transsexual.”

Kamilla left home at 15 to live on her own because of family issues. She doesn’t disclose the reasons for doing so.

She said: “As a child, I wanted to grow up to be a ballerina. But I discovered I loved having sex when I was a teen and especially when people were watching.

“One New Year’s Eve I was making out in a tent with a guy I’d just met, and people outside could see what was going on by the shadows cast from a light behind the tent.

“It made me really excited and horny to know they were watching what we were doing.”

Kamilla became a stripper aged 18 before moving into adult films out of ‘curiosity’.

She has already disgraced her family by divorcing her husband and setting up home with a woman.
The sexy star, who Nicole said looked too young to be “behaving badly” because of the braces her teeth and her “fresh face beauty”, got a job as a stripper and pole dancer when she turned 18.

Kamilla said: “I never thought about working in the adult movie industry until a friend invited me to do a raunchy sex show with her.

“Three months later I was invited to take part in an X-rated film and as I was curious about what it involved, I decided to accept the offer.

“I love my work and I want people to appreciate and respect what I do. It’s job where I make good money and I am successful.

“I still have a normal life outside and when I get the chance I go to church with a Bible in my hand.”

Russia Bans Jehovah’s Witnesses As ‘Extremist’ Group

April 21, 2017

 

Now if all the countries of the world would do the same with all the other religions the world would be a much better place.

 

Russia’s Supreme Court has designated the Jehovah’s Witnesses as an extremist organization and ordered the state to seize the religious group’s property.

In a Thursday ruling, the court upheld a government request to ban the group from operating on Russian territory. The decision could place more than 170,000 Russian adherents of the Jehovah’s Witnesses, a U.S.-founded Christian denomination that preaches non-violence, in the same category as militant groups Al Qaeda and the so-called Islamic State.

The decision came after six days of hearings spread over the last two weeks, during which the court reviewed a claim submitted by the Ministry of Justice in Moscow. The ministry sought to liquidate the Administrative Center of Jehovah’s Witnesses in Russia, as well as 395 local branches throughout the country.

The ministry was investigating the Jehovah’s Witnesses’ Russian headquarters near St. Petersburg over the last year and claimed it discovered violations of a Russian law banning extremism.

Like Mormons, Seventh-Day Adventists and other religious minorities in the country, Jehovah’s Witnesses have come under intense scrutiny under Russian anti-extremism laws that ban proselytizing and curtail the dissemination of religious literature.

The government has cracked down on the group in recent years, imposing fines on congregations and occasionally arresting leaders perceived to be stoking anti-government sentiment.

In its claim to the Russian Supreme Court, the ministry accused Jehovah’s Witnesses of disseminating “extremist” pamphlets and said the center and all regional facilities should be “liquidated.”

One pamphlet the ministry reportedly took issue with quoted the novelist Leo Tolstoy and described the beliefs of the Russian Orthodox Church as superstition and sorcery, according to the BBC.

Thursday’s ruling will go into effect immediately.

Yaroslav Sivulskiy, a spokesman for Jehovah’s Witnesses in Russia, said he was “greatly disappointed” by the court’s decision.

“We will appeal this decision, and we hope that our legal rights and protections as a peaceful religious group will be fully restored as soon as possible,” Sivulskiy said in a statement.

 

Russia’s Supreme Court has designated the Jehovah’s Witnesses as an extremist organization and ordered the state to seize the religious group’s property.

In a Thursday ruling, the court upheld a government request to ban the group from operating on Russian territory. The decision could place more than 170,000 Russian adherents of the Jehovah’s Witnesses, a U.S.-founded Christian denomination that preaches non-violence, in the same category as militant groups Al Qaeda and the so-called Islamic State.

The decision came after six days of hearings spread over the last two weeks, during which the court reviewed a claim submitted by the Ministry of Justice in Moscow. The ministry sought to liquidate the Administrative Center of Jehovah’s Witnesses in Russia, as well as 395 local branches throughout the country.

The ministry was investigating the Jehovah’s Witnesses’ Russian headquarters near St. Petersburg over the last year and claimed it discovered violations of a Russian law banning extremism.

Like Mormons, Seventh-Day Adventists and other religious minorities in the country, Jehovah’s Witnesses have come under intense scrutiny under Russian anti-extremism laws that ban proselytizing and curtail the dissemination of religious literature.

The government has cracked down on the group in recent years, imposing fines on congregations and occasionally arresting leaders perceived to be stoking anti-government sentiment.

In its claim to the Russian Supreme Court, the ministry accused Jehovah’s Witnesses of disseminating “extremist” pamphlets and said the center and all regional facilities should be “liquidated.”

One pamphlet the ministry reportedly took issue with quoted the novelist Leo Tolstoy and described the beliefs of the Russian Orthodox Church as superstition and sorcery, according to the BBC.

Thursday’s ruling will go into effect immediately.

Yaroslav Sivulskiy, a spokesman for Jehovah’s Witnesses in Russia, said he was “greatly disappointed” by the court’s decision.

“We will appeal this decision, and we hope that our legal rights and protections as a peaceful religious group will be fully restored as soon as possible,” Sivulskiy said in a statement.

Two Nuns And A Priest Arrested For Cover-up Of Baby Born To Minor Girl Raped By Another Priest

April 19, 2017

 

Lots of effort went into trying to protect the rapists and cover-up conspirators and no effort put into protecting the young victims of these terrible crimes. How typically Catholic.

 

Two nuns and a priest accused of covering up the birth of a baby born to a teenage girl who was allegedly raped by another priest have been arrested in India.
All three handed themselves in to police in the southern state of Kerala where they were being questioned over allegations they deliberately hid the birth at a hospital run by the Catholic church and took the baby to an orphanage.
Under Indian law, hospitals and orphanages must report all teenage pregnancies and births to authorities.
They surrendered two weeks after Robin Vadakkumchery was arrested on charges of raping the 16-year-old, who gave birth in February.
Six more people believed to have helped the victim give birth are still on the run.
The girl told investigators that the priest raped her at a church-run school last year.
She and her family said they were unaware of the pregnancy until she complained of stomach pain and was taken to hospital, where she gave birth.
A child rights organisation tipped off police about the secret delivery, triggering an investigation that revealed the alleged involvement of the priest, nuns and other officials.
It is not the first time the Catholic church in Kerala has faced accusations of sexual abuse.
Two autobiographies by former Catholic nuns have in recent years revealed the scale of sexual exploitation by priests and the prevalence of same-sex relations in convents.
Last year, a priest was sentenced to 40 years in prison by a Kerala court for raping a 12-year-old girl in 2014

 

 

New Study Suggests U.S. Has A Lot Of ‘Closet’ Atheists

 

April 18, 2017

 

Atheists may have been drastically undercounted because of reluctance to honestly answer poll questions.
U.S. surveys in recent years have calculated atheists make up between 3 percent and 10 percent of the population.

But the percentage may actually be much higher, because the stigma surrounding disbelief in God likely prevents people from honestly answering pollsters’ questions about their beliefs, according to a new report by University of Kentucky psychologists Will Gervais and Maxine Najle.

“There’s a lot of atheists in the closet,” Gervais said in a recent interview with Vox.

Gervais and Najle’s report, to be published in the next issue of the journal Social Psychological and Personality Science, concluded the true number of American atheists may be as high as 26 percent of the population.

There’s a lot of atheists in the closet.”
This stands in stark contrast to surveys conducted by Pew Research Center and Gallup — highly reputable polling operations. A 2014 Pew survey found the percentage of Americans who said they were atheists to be just over 3 percent, with 9 percent of adults reporting they didn’t believe in God, which is the definition of atheism.

A 2016 Gallup poll found that 10 percent of Americans reported they did not believe in God.

Gervais isn’t buying that data.

“We shouldn’t expect people to give a stranger over the phone an honest answer to that question,” Gervais told Vox.

The University of Kentucky study aimed for a more accurate analysis using what’s called “the unmatched count technique.” Gervais and Najle sent a poll to two nationally representative samples of 2,000 adults. Instead of asking respondents directly about their belief in God, the researchers asked participants to read through a list of statements, including things like, “I own a dog,” and “I enjoy modern art.” One group of respondents had the statement, “I believe in God,” included on their list.

The participants were asked to write down the number of statements that were true for them. Gervais and Najle operated on the assumption that the two groups should have roughly the same number of dog owners, art lovers, et cetera. Any major differences would account for those who don’t believe in God.

There are profound social pressures to be — or at least appear — religious.”
Gregory Smith, associate director of research at Pew Research Center, was skeptical of the new report. “I would be very reluctant to conclude that phone surveys like ours are underestimating the share the public who are atheists to that kind of magnitude,” Smith told Vox.

But there is social stigma surrounding atheism in the U.S., which Gervais argued may lead people to tell pollsters they believe in God even if they don’t. A January 2017 Pew survey asked respondents to rate different groups on a “feeling thermometer” ranging from 0 to 100. On average, atheists received a rating of 50, the second-lowest rating for a religious group, after Muslims.

An analysis of data from the 2014 Boundaries in the American Mosaic Survey found that 42 percent of U.S. adults say atheists don’t share their vision of American society.

“Given the centrality of religious belief to many societies, and the degree to which many equate religious belief with morality, there are profound social pressures to be ― or at least appear ― religious,” Gervais and Najle wrote in the report.

French Bishop Fired Over ‘Inappropriate Behavior’ With Youth

My shocked face

 

April 7, 2017

 

PARIS –  In an unusually swift move, the Vatican on Thursday decided to dismiss a French bishop days after Catholic officials in the country were informed of alleged “inappropriate” gestures and words from the prelate with young people.

The bishop’s superior, Cardinal Jean-Pierre Ricard, announced in a statement that the Holy See had asked Monsignor Herve Gaschignard “to submit his resignation.”

The French Conference of Bishops said in a separate statement that Pope Francis accepted the resignation of Gaschignard, bishop of Aire and Dax in southwest France, and that French bishops understand the “gravity” of the pontiff’s decision.

Cardinal Ricard, the archbishop for the region, said he reported the bishop’s alleged doings to the local prosecutor but that no complaints have been filed so far, making the pope’s decision even more notable.

The French bishops’ statement said concerns about Gaschignard made it difficult for him to continue in his duties and that the papal nuncio in France “suggested” that he resign.

Last month, Cardinal Ricard, archbishop of Bordeaux, received two pastoral representatives working with young people in the diocese of Aire and Dax. “They shared with him their questions and even the unease felt at the attitudes and words from Bishop Herve Gaschignard toward young people,” Ricard’s office said in a statement.

Gaschignard’s behavior caused “emotion and confusion in a number of these young people who have spoken to their families”, it added.

Father Jean Rouet, Ricard’s assistant in Bordeaux, told The Associated Press that some young people and their pastoral supervisors in the local diocese may have felt as inappropriate some “gestures”, “words” and “closeness” from Gaschignard.

Rouet said that while the papal decision was not a conviction of Gaschignard or a canonical trial, “the climate was such in the diocese that Bishop Gaschignard could no longer exercise his ministry as a bishop.”

Paul Perromat, in charge of press relations in the diocese of Aire and Dax, insisted in a phone interview that Gaschignard’s behavior is “not at all” a case of pedophilia or sexual abuse, and said “the bishop was in a state of shock when he heard of the rumors against him.”

A few months before he was promoted to bishop in 2012, Gaschignard fell under similar suspicions in the southern diocese of Toulouse, where he officiated as assistant bishop, said the Rev. Herve Gaignard, the general curate of the diocese.

The archbishop of Toulouse, Monsignor Robert Le Gall, had reported allegations about Gaschignard to the local prosecutor and police investigated, but the case was eventually dismissed for lack of evidence of any criminal offense, Gaignard told The AP.

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