Feb 13, 2020

CultNEWS101 Articles: 2/13/2020

Jehovah's Witnesses, NXIVM, Kingdom of Jesus Christ church, Hare Krishna Movement, China, Religious Freedom
"Emmanuel Onokpise is the father of the baby who was allegedly rescued by officials of the Lagos State Government and the Office of the Public Defender and given blood transfusion for jaundice, after he declined the medical procedure in line with his faith as a Jehovah's Witness."

BBC: Jehovah's Witnesses told to pay rape victim £62k
"Leaders of the Jehovah's Witnesses have been told to pay £62,000 in damages to a former member who was raped after door-to-door visits.

The woman was attacked 30 years ago by Mark Sewell after evangelising for the religious group near Cardiff.

A "judicial committee" of the group's elders found the allegations against Sewell "not proven" in an internal inquiry in 1991.

But High Court judge Mr Justice Chamberlain ruled in the her favour.

Sewell was jailed for 14 years after a trial at Merthyr Tydfil Crown Court in 2014 convicted him of raping the woman and indecently assaulting two other people."

"A federal lawsuit in New York accuses Nxivm founder Keith Raniere and 14 associates of conducting illegal psychological experiments on members of the self-help company and systematically abusing them physically, emotionally and financially.

The lawsuit was filed in federal court in Brooklyn on Tuesday by more than 80 alleged victims seeking financial relief and a jury trial. Nxivm and its entities are also listed in the lawsuit."

" ... The defendants allegedly committed "sex trafficking, peonage, forced labour and human trafficking offences" while enticing members to join a company that "functioned as both a Ponzi scheme and a coercive community," according to the lawsuit.

Nxivm touted itself as a coaching and educational business for corporations and individuals, but prosecutors say in the lawsuit that the company actually acted as a multilevel marketing pyramid scheme with a secret society involved in things like sex trafficking and "master-slave relationships."

"A California church leader was arrested by the FBI on immigration fraud charges because of a decadeslong scheme to trick followers into becoming fundraisers and arrange sham marriages to keep them in the U.S., according to reports.

The local leader of the Philippines-based Kingdom of Jesus Christ church in Los Angeles was arrested in the early morning bust along with a worker who confiscated passports of the victims of the scheme, the U.S. attorney's office said.

Fundraisers who managed to escape from the church told the FBI that they had been sent across the U.S. to solicit donations for the church's charity, The Children's Joy Foundation, and were beaten if they didn't make daily quotas, according to affidavit filed in support of the charges.

Some described having to live in cars at truck stops.

An FBI agent investigating the case documented 82 sham marriages over a 20-year period and tracked $20 million raised between 2014 and the middle of last year that was sent back to the church in the Philippines."

"Eleven Naked Emperors is quite masterful, and extremely important. The story is a long and complicated one, but Doktorski has done an outstanding job putting the entire drama into a very well documented and highly readable account. His tone is remarkably non-partisan, non-polemical and he has tried sincerely to be fair and impartial. I might add, for those who feel that dirty laundry should not be displayed in public, that there is nothing in Doktorski's work that seeks to undermine the faith of the devotees in Krishna or, for that matter, in the institution of ISKCON. Those assuming the role of gurus, most especially, should read this book carefully. And this is also a book for the tens of thousands of devotees driven away from ISKCON with their spiritual ideals in tatters; this is their story too. The author has risen to the dharma of the historian in documenting a defining period in the history of the Hare Krishna movement.Edwin BryantProfessor of Hindu Philosophy and Religion Rutgers University DURING A DISPUTATIOUS DECADE, after they had buried the saintly Founder of the institution, the Governing Body Commission of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON)—more commonly known as the Hare Krishna movement—appointed eleven men as successors to the Founder in what one disciple called "a bloodless coup." Each of the eleven ruled their own geographic regions (zones), where they were erroneously regarded as pure and perfect beings (acharyas). They were considered beyond criticism and worshiped "as good as God." The eleven, however, pretended to be something they were not (like the main character in Hans Christian Andersen's The Emperor's New Clothes), and within a few short years insurmountable problems afflicted some of the ISKCON "gurus," such as falling down into prohibited activities, like illicit sex and intoxication. Unfortunately, the astute and dedicated disciples who criticized the zonal "acharyas" were shunned, expelled, beaten, or (in one extreme case) assassinated. Hundreds, if not thousands of formerly-loyal members defected, were blacklisted, or (in two cases) committed suicide. This book chronicles the era of the ISKCON zonal "acharyas" from their first appearance in 1978, through their meteoric rise to power, their ten-year reign, their fall in 1987, and beyond.For fifteen years the author served as a faithful disciple of one of the zonal "acharyas," and lived through many of the events described in this book. Recently, he has interviewed major players in this drama, who have contributed important inside information so we can more fully understand this controversial and little-documented chapter in the history of ISKCON."

"On November 26, 2019, Bitter Winter reported about the Catholic church in Ji'an city in the southeastern province of Jiangxi, where the painting of the Virgin Mary with the Christ Child was removed on orders from local officials and was replaced with the portrait of President Xi Jinping. After the news circulated widely abroad, local government officials went to the church at night and removed the portrait and propaganda slogans next to it. A wooden signboard, "Minors are forbidden to participate in religious activities," displayed at the church entrance, was also removed.

The portrait of Xi Jinping and propaganda slogans were displayed on a wall in a Catholic church in Ji'an city.
A local government employee confirmed to Bitter Winter that the portrait and slogans were removed because the incident had been reported overseas, which has "smeared the CCP's image."

After our report about the Zhongyuan Yidianhong Temple in Henan Province's Ruzhou city, dedicated to the worshiping of China's leaders, has been widely shared abroad, the government hurriedly destroyed the temple the same month."
What does the totalitarian regime do when news about its mistreatment of citizens get out? It lies, hides or destroys evidence, adopts harsher suppression measures.

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