Miss Indonesia’s link to religious cult The Family International

Kereninan Sunny Halim, Miss Indonesia Miss Gibraltar Kaiane Aldorino was crowned Miss World 2009 on Saturday, outshining 111 other hopefuls, including Miss Indonesia.

Before the contest a local, South African newspaper had highlight the latter’s connection to a religious cult. The Miss World organization lost its legal attempt to prevent the paper from publishing the article.

Once dismissed as ‘sex cult,’ Family International launches image makeover

Family International / The Children of God Family International, the cult formerly known as The Children of God, is gearing up for a massive come-back.

Known for anything from sex scandals to offbeat doctrines that are far removed from the teachings of Biblical Christianity, the cult announced its plans for the future at the recent conference of CESNUR — and organization known for its defense of religious cults.

Children of God: Haunted By a Dark Past

Following last week’s story about The Family International’s controversial sexual and religious practices, Gideon Scott, of the Family liaision office in South Africa, talked to Esther Namugoji. He said that the Family apologised for the sexual abuse and such mistakes will not be repeated … [video]

Sex cult claims it is living by the law of love

Because of its liberal attitude to sex, the Family International, has been baptised ‘the sex cult’ by the Western media. But the group insists it is a religious movement living according to the law of love. [videos]

Young man’s suicide blamed on mother’s cult

Also disturbing, former members who spoke to CNN say they witnessed Ricky Rodriguez having sex with his mother, Karen Zerby, the leader of the sect now known as “The Family International.”

New book calls cult practices madness

Jesus Freaks: A True Story of Murder and Madness on the Evangelical Edge, by Don Lattin, chronicles the abuses that took place in the Children of God cult.

The Tragic Legacy of the Children of God

In the late 1960s David Berg — the self-proclaimed prophet and Children of God founder — began preaching a bizarre brew of sex and scripture. In writings and preaching, Berg advocated free love among his disciples, including adult-child sex.

Coming to terms with an abusive cult upbringing

In an attempt to process what happened to him, to his siblings and to the many former Family members he has tracked down and interviewed, filmmaker Noah Thomson has created the chilling documentary Children of God: Lost and Found.

Review: Fear, sex are driving forces within Children of God cult

You couldn’t beat it for tabloid fodder: Anointed prophet of a secretive evangelical mission-cum-sex cult slits the throat of an ex-nanny, and then kills himself, in protest against the cult leaders, his parents, for years of sex abuse he says he and many other children suffered. And he made a video first.

Underside of cult life emerges

Almost three years after Children of God cult member Richard Rodriguez murdered Angela Smith and then committed suicide, a San Francisco journalist and a cult escapee are publishing books to spread awareness about the dark side of cult life.

Former cult member assesses damage in ‘Children of God’

Rodriguez was the stepson of the late Children of God cult leader David Berg, and his murder of another former “Family member” and subsequent suicide brought renewed media attention to the 40-year-old California-based religious group that had been accused in the past of abusing its children.

Violent sexual abuse, brainwashing and neglect: What it’s like to grow up in a religious sect

The women’s father remains in the Children of God cult and, as a result of her experiences and those of her sisters, Kristina is currently setting up the charity Rise International to help cult victims and raise awareness of cult damage.

Irish village in cult claim

Leading figures in Castleconnell were puzzled this week at claims that a religious cult, which allegedly organised sex between children and adults, operated from the area for a period in the mid 1990s.

Castleconnell, Ireland, area was base for child sex cult, claims victim

The Children of God Cult, in which orgies and sex between adults and children was considered the highest expression of love, had one of its communes in county Limerick, Ireland, in the late 1990’s, it has been claimed in a new book.

Enslaved by the cult of sex…for 25 years

Born into an evil cult, called the Children of God, sisters Celeste, Kristina and Juliana Jones were abused from the age of three. Torn from their parents, their childhood was dominated by the warped cult leader David Berg.

Mother leaves with children for Sydney after reunion

Brisbane mother Philippa Yelland has flown out of Tasmania bound for Sydney with her two daughters and son, along with a cult-busting journalist, after her husband surrendered the children to police.

Sect ties revealed as children recovered

The mother of three missing children had a cult expert on hand as she reclaimed them last night from their fugitive father, who has admitted his ties to the fringe religious sect The Family.

Revenge Against Religious Sect

Two decades after the Children of God cult officially renounced adult-child sex in response to allegations of sexual misconduct, a new British documentary, Cult Killer, is reviving questions.

Students, experts mixed over teacher

Barry Gerard-Prendergast acknowledged this week he was a member of The Family International, a controversial group formerly known as the Children of God. Some ex-members say it’s a cult.
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