Wednesday, 29 April 2020

How Christians Lie To US - False Prophets are Still Right!

Pastor Jeremiah Johnson "The Holy Spirit spoke to me and said..."
Self-Described “Prophet”: Even When My Predictions Are Wrong, They’re Still True | Hemant Mehta | Friendly Atheist | Patheos

Q. When is a false prophet not a false prophet?

A. When he makes a false prophecy, obviously!

Pastor Jeremiah Johnson, of Behold the Man Ministries in Lakeland, Florida, is a Trump-supporting evangelical, preaching the 'prosperity gospel', and self-proclaimed prophet who recently declared that Dr Anthony Fauci had been sent by Satan to thwart Donald Trump.

He also prophesied that a businessman would become a millionaire based on what he said was a "sign from God".

The problem was, the man went bankrupt shortly afterwards.

Monday, 27 April 2020

Americans Losing Faith

Americans losing grip on most basic tenets of Christian faith: survey - The Christian Post

I wish could claim credit for it with my book, "Ten Reasons To Lose Faith: And Why You Are Better Off Without it" but Americans are rapidly losing faith in the Christian god, as the result of this recent survey shows. The survey was conducted by researcher George Barna for the recently-founded Cultural Research Center at Arizona Christian University.

The result must have come as a shock to them.

Covidiots - Pastor Tony Spell's Desire for Martyrdom

Pastor Tony Spell, "Wanna be a martyr!"
Despite House Arrest Order, the COVID-19-Defying Pastor Preached at Church Today | Hemant Mehta | Friendly Atheist | Patheos

Covid-19 is a godsend for disingenuous Pastor Tony Spell, in his desperate search for martyrdom. The social distancing measures needed to slow down the spread of the lethal virus to prevent health services from being overwhelmed, has provided him with just the excuse he needs to get himself arrested and imprisoned so he can play the victim card for all it's worth.

As reported yesterday, he is subject to a court order forbidding him to leave his own home because he refused to comply with Louisiana state orders banning gatherings of more than 10 people - including in places of worship. He has been fitted with an ankle monitor device to ensure his compliance.

Covidiots - Kenneth Copeland Has Killed Covid-19 - Again

Kenneth Copeland, "Coronavirus is over"
Scamvangelist, Taking Credit for California Heat Wave, Declares COVID-19 “OVER!” | Hemant Mehta | Friendly Atheist | Patheos

Earlier this month, while he was killing Covid-19 by blowing on it and casting magic spells at it, mega-rich Christian televangelist Kenneth Copeland also called on God to cause a heatwave at Easter to kill the Virus in New York (as though his magic wasn't going to be enough).

He declared:

All God needs to do to deliver us is a heatwave, a supernatural heatwave. You know, usually you get what they call the Easter spell. When you think everything is warming up and all of a sudden you get a cold front. Well now, this year it’s going to be a[n] Easter heatwave, It’s going to get so hot in New York City. It’s going to get so hot and muggy, glory to God! It’s going to hit that place and it’s going to burn that virus. It’s going to, you know what it’s like in New York City at 85 or 90 degrees. It’s going to get however hot it has to get there to kill that thing right now all over this nation and the rest of the world where it’s needed.

Sunday, 26 April 2020

Covidiots - Pastor Tony Spell under House Arrest

Pastor Tony Spell
"Give me your stimulus checks!"
COVID-19-Defying Pastor Tony Spell Placed Under House Arrest | Hemant Mehta | Friendly Atheist | Patheos

Readers may recall how pastor Tony Spell managed to exceed the normal abysmal standards of fundamentalist Christian evangelist greed by demanding that unemployed people should send him their stimulus checks. He has been placed under house arrest for refusing to assure a judge that he would not encourage people to gather together in his church by holding open services.

He had been arrested and charged “aggravated assault with a deadly weapon". He is now deemed to be too much of a threat to society to be allowed to leave his house.

Covidiots - Intelligent Design Creationists

Scientists Are Tired of Explaining Why The COVID-19 Virus Was Not Made in a Lab

News that scientists have established beyond reasonable doubt that the Covid-19 virus, also known as SARS-CoV-2 was the result of natural mutation in an animal host and not the result of a laboratory experiment that 'escaped' is terrible news for intelligent (sic) design creationists who now have to explain one simple thing:

Why is this evolutionary explanation the only explanation for Covod-19 that doesn't leave their putative creator god looking like a malevolent, genocidal, anthropophobic psychopath?

Covidiots - Kenneth Copeland's Credulous Dupes

Kenneth Copeland, Top televangelist scam artist
Scamvangelist Praises Donors for Buying Him the World’s “Finest” Private Jet | Hemant Mehta | Friendly Atheist | Patheos

Kenneth Copeland is the sort of American Christian televangelist whom Europeans look at and ask themselves, "What is wrong with these people?"

He is also obscenely rich because people give him lots of money, believing this will buy them special favour with God who wants them to help make Kenneth Copeland obscenely rich - because Kenneth Copeland says God told him he does.

For example, after his recent 'success' at ridding America of the Covid-19 virus with some magic spells, his followers gave him enough money to buy himself 'the world's finest jet' - the Gulfstream V - so he can travel in safety and not have to travel in as 'long tube full of demons'.

True to form, and as though to distance himself from the obvious greed he displays, he blamed his 'partners', i.e., the dupes he scammed for donating enough money.

According to this report in the Independent:

American televangelist Kenneth Copeland, recently claimed that the coronavirus pandemic will be “over much sooner you think” because “Christian people all over this country praying have overwhelmed it,” has summoned the “wind of God” to destroy the novel coronavirus during a recent sermon.

Before blowing at the camera, he said: ”I blow the wind of God on you. You are destroyed forever, and you’ll never be back. Thank you, God. Let it happen. Cause it to happen.”

Leading a chant surrounded by members of his church and preaching to an empty room, he called out: “Wind, almighty, strong, south wind, Heat: Burn this thing, in the name of Jesus. I say, you bow your knees. You fall on your face.”

According to the same report, after he had "executed judgment" on the virus he declared the virus ”finished” and “over” and made the US ”healed and well again.” and told his audience that they would be cured by touching their TV screens!

He also told Americans that it was "vital" they keep paying their tithes, even when out of work.

At the time of writing (26 April, 2020), there have been 959,000 cases of Covid-19 in the USA with 54,161 deaths. The USA is accounting for almost 32% of the 2.9 million cases worldwide. American evangelist are campaigning to have restrictions of social gatherings to be lifted so Christians can again crowd together in church to sing and shout and spread virus particles, 'safe' in the knowledge that their collective magic spells have driven the virus away.

According to Celebrity Net Worth Copeland is worth at least $300 million and maybe as much as $750 million or even over $1 billion. He lives in a $6.3 million lakefront mansion and has now appealed to his 'partners' to donate $17-$20 million so he can upgrade his private runway and hanger for his brand new Gulfstream V private jet.

Kenneth Copeland purports to follow Jesus, who, according to the Bible, told his followers to sell their possessions and give to the poor.

Saturday, 25 April 2020

Covidiot News - Christian Loon Feels Entitled to Infect Others

Mat Staver of Liberty Counsel
Mat Staver: Church Lockdowns Are “Targeting” Christians Like Nazis Targeted Jews | Beth Stoneburner | Friendly Atheist | Patheos

According to Mat Staver of Liberty Counsel, an extreme right-wing Christian libertarian organization, requiring Christians not to gather together in church, where the Covid-19 virus can be more easily spread, is equivalent to the Holocaust!

Liberty Counsel is representing Tampa, Florida-based evangelist Rodney Howard-Browne, ​who was arrested for defying a local stay-at-home order, and others who have run into that kind of trouble. In a hysterical reaction to the social distancing measures aimed at slowing the spread of the virus so health services can cope with the demand, Staver claimed:

Covidiot News - Israeli Health Minister Gets Covid-19

Yaakov Litzman, Israeli Health Minister
"I am sure that the messiah will come by Passover and save us..."
Israeli health minister's cure for COVID-19? The Messiah - Israel News - Haaretz.com

It's sometime tempting to believe in the wackadoodle notion of Karma!

The ultra-orthodox Israeli Health Minister, Yaakov Litzman, who reportedly claimed God would protect Israel from Covid-19, and who flouted his own Health Department's advice on social distancing, announced earlier this month that he and his unfortunate wife Chava, had both tested positive for the virus. Thankfully, according to this report in The Times of Israel, they have both since made full recoveries.

Friday, 24 April 2020

Human Evolution News - Icelanders' Neanderthal Ancestors


Models of male and female Neanderthals in the Neanderthal Museum, Mettmann, Germany.
Photo: UNiesert / Frank Vincentz (assembly: Abuk Sabuk) /
Wikimedia Commons / CC-BY-SA-3.0 / GFDL
Icelandic DNA puzzle gives new knowledge about Neanderthals

A new study into the Neanderthal component in the genomes of modern Icelanders has raised a couple of interesting questions:
  1. Did anatomically modern humans breed with Neanderthals and Denisovans when they first entered Eurasia from Africa?
  2. Or had Neanderthals and Denisovans interbred before hand so denisovan DNA was widespread in the Neanderthal population moderns interbred with.

This question is raised by the finding from examining the genomes of 27,566 Icelanders whose genome is in the deCODE database.

Monday, 20 April 2020

Covid-19 Stupidity and Magical Thinking

The late Bishop Gerald O. Glenn
Told packed church "God is larger than this dreaded virus"!
A COVID-Denying Pastor Died of COVID-19. Now His Family Has the Virus, Too. | Hemant Mehta | Friendly Atheist | Patheos

The sad death of Bishop Gerald O. Glenn of the New Deliverance Evangelistic Church of Richmond Virginia from the Covid-19 virus and news that his entire family have now caught the deadly virus is a reminder that these unfortunate people are victims as much of the religion virus as they are of the Covid-19 virus.

A week before he died, Bishop Gerald O. Glenn preached to a packed church and boasted that "God is larger than this dreaded virus", in defiance of public advice to limit the size of public gatherings and to cancel church services.

Covid-19 Scam - Not Just the Christians

Rabbi Chaim Kanievsky
Charity Run by Ultra-Orthodox Leader Promises Coronavirus Cure to Large Donors | Hemant Mehta | Friendly Atheist | Patheos.

It's not just the American fundamentalist Christians who have spotted a good money-making opportunity in the Covid-19 pandemic. An ultra-orthodox Jewish group in Israel has dipped its bread in the gravy bowl too. In return for a monthly payment of NIS 100 for 30 months, donors will receive a silver amulet which, it is claimed, will give protection to the household from all illnesses.

It is not clear at this time whether the protection only comes into effect after all 30 payments have been made or whether it strats with the first payment and is withdrawn if the donor defaults.

Run by Rabbi Chaim Kanievsky, a leading Haredi Rabbi, a charity called Kupat Ha’ir (City Fund), set up with the noble aim of bringing relief to families suffering from illness, and based in the Covid-19 hotspot of B’nei Brak, has promised:

Christian Scam Alert - Christians For Greed and Selfishness

Pastor Tony Spell "Give me your money!"
COVID-19-Defying Pastor Wants People to Send Him Their $1,200 Stimulus Checks | Hemant Mehta | Friendly Atheist | Patheos

Pastor Tony Spell, the head of Louisiana’s Life Tabernacle Church, always has one eye open for the main chance, and Covid-19 is it! He has his eyes on the stimulus money his target dupes are getting to help the USA out of the virus-induced recession.

Not only did he refuse to close his church to help prevent the spread of Covid-19 on the basis that real Christians don't mind dying (and he doesn't mind helping them so long as they bring money along to his church before they do) but he is now telling them they should give him their $1200 stimulus money rather than spend it on food, rent and essential bills!

Sunday, 19 April 2020

Another Cynical Christian Scam

con-artist Jim Humble, inventor of MMS
US halts sale of bleach product touted as 'miracle' virus cure | France24

Never slow to miss a get-rich-quick opportunity, a Christian church has been selling a phony 'cure' for multiple ills, including Covid-19 and claiming it as a 'sacrament'.

The quack cure is the invention of con-artist Jim Humble, who set of the Genesis II Church of Health and Healing as a vehicle for selling industrial bleach for around $50 a bottle under the brand-name "Miracle Mineral Solution" (MMS) with the claim that it will:

Cure, mitigate, treat, or prevent coronavirus, which includes COVID-19, as well as other diseases including Alzheimer’s, autism, brain cancer, HIV/AIDS, and multiple sclerosis.

Saturday, 18 April 2020

How Religion Damages Children.

It’s difficult for young children to differentiate between fact and fiction after they have been exposed to religion.
Study Shows Children Raised With Religion Find It Challenging To Judge Fact From Fiction.

A 2014 study published in Cognitive Science shows a marked difference in their ability to distinguish fact from fiction between children brought up in secular households and those brought up in a religious ones.

Children conditioned to accept the magical content of religious stories as factual, find it harder to understand that such stories are actually impossible, not true accounts of real events. For example, when asked to classify the story of Moses waving a magic wand and making a pathway open up through the sea, children subjected to a religious upbringing will be more likely to classify the story as factual rather than fictional, despite the express inclusion of a magical element in the story.

Thursday, 16 April 2020

Catholic Child Abuse - Pell Faces 26 More Allegations

Cardinal George Pell "Facing 26 more allegations"
George Pell’s Andrew Bolt interview: Cardinal facing fresh investigation.

There are persistent rumours that Cardinal Pell, former number 3 in the Vatican, who was recently cleared by the Australian High Court, after being convicted of the sexual abuse of two boys in the 1990s, is facing a further 26 allegations and is under investigation by the police.

Four Officers from the Auburn Police Area Command arrived at about 2.30 pm at The Good Shepherd Seminary in Abbotsford Road, Homebush, Sydney, NSW, where Pell is staying, for what was describes as a pre-arranged meeting to 'discuss security protocols".

Tuesday, 14 April 2020

Catholic Child Abuse - Baptism With Violence

Father Jacques Lacroix - Baptism with violence
Imagine! You're a devout Catholic family and you take your baby to the local church to be baptised into the faith - supposedly a joyous and happy occasion - only to have the priest lose his temper and launch a brutal assault on your child during the ceremony.

This was the experience of a French family in the Collegiate Church in Champeaux, near Melun, in the south-eastern suburbs of Paris, in June, 2018.

As this video shows, Father Jacques Lacroix (89), struggled to calm the child down and repeatedly told him to 'calm down' before squeezing his face, then staring him in the eyes before losing his temper and slapping his face with his left hand. There then followed a brief struggle as the horrified parents attempted to prise the distressed child out of the clutches of the priest, who eventually angrily pushed the child into the arms of its father.

Father Jacques later told France Info radio that it was more of a caress than a slap because the child wouldn't hold his head still while he poured water over it. He also announced that he wouldn't be conducting any more baptisms.

Saturday, 11 April 2020

Pope Francis Celebrates As Pell Acquitted

Pope Francis decries 'unjust sentences' after cardinal George Pell acquitted | Australia news | The Guardian

In an astonishing intervention in the internal affairs of Australia, Pope Francis, who professes to be determined to rid the Catholic Church of the routine, recreational abuse of children by his priests, has likened Cardinal Pell to Jesus. This followed Pell's acquittal by Australia's Supreme Court, for the child sex-abuse charges for which he had been convicted by lower courts.

Pell had been convicted of the sexual abuse of two choir boys and had further charges against him dropped because it was felt he would not receive a fair trial after his conviction had been leaked to the press, despite an injunction preventing any comment on his trial from appearing in the Australian press. He was the highest ranking Catholic cleric to be so convicted and sentenced to prison. His conviction had been upheld by the Court of Appeal but has now been reversed on a technicality by the Supreme Court - the highest court in the land. The court ruled that the jury in the original trial should have allowed for 'reasonable doubt'.

During the original court case, Pell's lawyer, Robert Richter, in attempting to minimise the offence, describe it as 'just vanilla sex' - penetration without ejaculation and without the boy's active participation!
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