Religion and cult news articles of note: Colonia Dignidad, Warren Jeffs, heresy.
Plus other highlights from Religion News Blog’s Twitter feed.
Handbooks published by the so-called ‘Islamic State’ call for exactly the type of attacks we just saw happen in Berlin. Such attacks may be hard to prevent.
Also inside: In March 1997, 39 members of the Heaven’s Gate UFO cult committed mass suicide. But the cult’s website is still online — maintained by two ex-members.
Plus: Not surprisingly, the dwindling Scientology cult reacts with its usual venom against Leah Remini and others who expose the cult for what it is.
Hundreds of British churches have been warned against possible infiltration by a group accused of being a “cult” promoting “control and deception”.
The Church of England has issued a formal alert to almost 500 parishes in London about the activities of the group known as Parachristo, which is linked to the South Korean cult Shincheonji.
The ‘cult wars’ of the 1980s and 1990’s have largely abated, but those who fight for the right of “New Religious Movements” seemingly continue to worry more about such groups than about the impact “cultic deviations” have on victims of cults ands sects.
A brief look at an overview and comments by religious historian Jean-François Mayer, the founder and chief editor of Religioscope.
Today’s edition includes stories about
a radicalisation prevention program
that may backfire.
A protest against Whole Foods
over its link to Marc Gafni.
Iglesia ni Cristo, a powerful cult of Christianity, endorses presidential candidates
Today: stories about the Palmarian Catholic Church, how easily people get radicalised, and what IS jihadists have in mind for Europe’s cities.
Also: tongue-in-cheek, How do Operating Thetans get in touch with eachother? And is Crossfit a religion?
Finally: Religion News Blog’s new design.
In 1981 Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh spent $5.75 million on a remote piece of property in Oregon and invested millions more to build Rajneeshpuram as a spiritual retreat for thousands of his red-frocked followers.
A few years later some of his followers were convicted of infecting salad bars with Salmonella, as well as other crimes: arson, wiretapping, immigration fraud, election fraud and attempted murder.
‘Sister Wives’ sugarcoats polygamy. ‘Escaping Polygamy’ shows what the lifestyle is really like.
Come to think of it, that’s also what Alex Gibney did in his Emmy-nominated documentary, “Going Clear,’ which exposes the Scientology cult to daylight.
Scientology quacks urged veto of Texas mental health bill.
Watch how dozens of Yazidi women and children escape from the clutches of ISIS barbarians.
Why a Wheaton chaplaincy staffer quit the evangelical college: same-sex celibacy and the church.
the US Bishops’ Sexual Abuse Charter faces challenges.
The people behind Facegloria — said to be a sin-free alternative to Facebook — want to take on Facebook, Twitter, and the world.
Aimed initially at Brazil’s booming ‘Evangelical’ movement, the service is patrolled by volunteers who prevent the posting of all-too-revealing selfies, 600 banned words, and anything related to homosexuality.
The International Cultic Studies Association (ICSA) is a global network of people concerned about psychological manipulation and abuse in cultic or high-demand groups, alternative movements, and other environments.
ICSA is unique in how it brings together former group members, families, helping professionals and researchers.
Here is a listing of upcoming events.
The Christian owners of a bakery in Oregon have been ordered to pay $135.000 to a lesbian couple they refused to bake a wedding cake for.
Aaron and Melissa Klein said their refusal to bake for the lesbian couple was prompted by their Christian beliefs. The case has been cited in the national debate over religious freedom and discrimination against gays.
The insular Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (FLDS) is building a “fortress-type” wall around its meeting house in Colorado City, Arizona.
Observers believe the wall is being erected on the orders of cult leader Warren Jeffs, who is serving a sentence of life plus 20 years in prison.
Cult leader Lia Eden claims that a UFO piloted by the archangel Gabriel wants to pick up her followers.
She has therefore requested that Indonesia’s President and Jakarata’s Governor grant the UFO permission to land at the country’s National Monument.
The coroner also ruled that the fact that Jeremiah Duggan had revealed himself to be Jewish while attending a conference of the extreme Larouche organisation may have had a bearing on how he died.
Scotland Yard describes LaRouche’s group as a ‘political cult with sinister and dangerous connections.’
A baseball club in Australia has cut ties with a ‘human rights group’ because its affiliation with the ‘Church’ of Scientology had not been disclosed.
It pays to check whether a particular organization is a Scientology front group.
Aracely Meza, a ‘prophet’ who operated the Iglesia Internacional Jesus es el Rey church at her home in the Dallas suburb of Balch Springs, has been arrested for allegedly helping starve to death a 2-year-old boy to rid him of a “demon,” then holding a resurrection ceremony shortly after he died to try to revive him, investigators say.
Most people already know enough about the ‘Church’ of Scientology to know that it is not a religion.
But the more we learn about this destructive cult, the clearer it becomes that this commercial hate group should not enjoy tax exempt status.
Watch what happened when a former FLDS cult member tried to pick up her children from the community.
Is Islam compatible with UK values? Sky News commissioned a survey to find out what Muslims and non-Muslims think about that and other issues.
And former Scientology top executive Marty Rathbun talks about Scientology, ‘auditing,’ and the cult’s harassment techniques.