Trinity Foundation Monitoring religious fraud for almost 30 years. Fri, 16 Sep 2016 21:04:27 +0000 en hourly 1 Trinity Foundation 32 32 70989709 Vatican scraps plans to rid itself of corruption Fri, 16 Sep 2016 21:04:27 +0000 […]
When cardinals elected Pope Francis in 2013, he was given a mandate to eliminate cronyism, inefficiency and corruption in the Vatican.
The Wall Street Journal reported Sept. 7 that Pope Francis has trimmed the powers of Cardinal George Pell, who was charged with cleaning up the city-state’s muddled accounts, in a setback for broader overhaul of Vatican bureaucracy.
Late last year, Pell hired PricewaterhouseCoopers to undertake a comprehensive audit of the Vatican’s finances.
Accounting at the Vatican has never followed unified policies, according to the WSJ article. Annual reports aren’t released, different departments use different accounting principles, data are inconsistent and not comparable. Before Cardinal Pell’s appointment, a panel of cardinals charged with economic oversight met just twice a year. Budgets didn’t exist, and expenditures weren’t itemized.
Already Pell had found about $1.6 billion “tucked away” off the books.
Other officials, led by Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Secretary of State, known as the pope’s prime minister, let Pell know the audit wouldn’t fly. In June, the Vatican announced it had been scrapped, and soon many of Cardinal Pell’s wide-ranging powers were handed to others.
The whole article is available to WSJ subscribers here:
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Money for Refugees ’blesses’ Pat Robertson’s Diamond Mining Operation Tue, 09 Aug 2016 02:12:57 +0000 […] New Documentary: Mission Congo

Television is an incredible medium for raising money and one that televangelist Pat Robertson has used to the fullest extent for decades. Graphic images of starving, sick and hungry refugees can open hearts and wallets. For instance, Robertson’s Operation Blessing took in more than $338 million in contributions (and endowments) in 2013.

Five years ago, producers Lara Zizic and David Turner came to Dallas to interview Ole Anthony and gather research for a documentary about Robertson and Operation Blessing.  Now, after years of attempts by lawyers for Robertson’s organization to quash the film, it has finally been released.

It’s one of the most complete exposures of the business of televangelism we’ve seen.  Visit the Mission Congo website (here) and rent or purchase Mission Congo to see how millions of dollars were donated to help Rwandan genocide refugees in the mid-’90s, yet were diverted to Pat Robertson’s diamond mining company.  Toward the end of the film, Ole suggests a simple way to curb this kind of fraud.

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Don’t be Conned by the Pay for Prayer Scam… Want your money back? Wed, 23 Mar 2016 19:59:19 +0000 […] Girl_praying_image
Hey YOU,  If you are one of the close to 125,000 people who PAID for the “Christian Prayer Center” to pray for you between 2011 and 2015, PLEASE READ ON.  This fraudulent organization has been directed by the Washington State attorney general to give you your money back! However, you have less than 3 months to apply to get your money back.

The trusted magazine, Christianity Today, reported that their whole website and Facebook page was a big fat FAKE, it was a LIE…  The sites creator, Benjamon Rogovy pocketed over $7 million dollars.   Rogovy also targeted the entire Spanish Speaking world as well with his pay for prayer scam website, Oracion Cristiana.

The testimonials of healings were fake.   The impression that they had several pastors on staff to pray for you was a lie.  They had none.  Please read the Christianity Today article here.

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Yonggi Cho Church to be Audited Wed, 23 Mar 2016 19:27:38 +0000 […] Cho image

On February 21st, 2014, Pastor Yonggi Cho was convicted of embezzling over $12M from his large Korean mega-church over a period of years. Now, the Korean authorities are set to audit the world’s largest church, the Yoido Full Gospel Church, based on suspicion that over $60 million dollars were embezzled by Pastor Cho and his associates. General account funds and money given for overseas missions were diverted as severance pay without approval from the church.  Read more about this from the Korea Times, here.

When Cho was convicted 2 and 1/2 year ago, journalist Lee Grady offered these important suggestions for church members and church leadership:

      1. Never build a cult of personality.
      2. Develop a culture of openness.
      3. Insist on financial transparency.
      4. Don’t build a family dynasty.
      5. Beware of creating a greed monster.
      6. Never tolerate a spirit of entitlement.”
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Ole Anthony Explains Why Televangelists Hop Aboard the Trump Shuttle Mon, 29 Feb 2016 17:00:19 +0000 […] donald-trump

Christian Post reporter Michael Gryboski recently asked Ole Anthony here at the Trinity Foundation what he thought about televangelist Mike Murdock’s endorsement of Republican Presidential candidate Donald Trump. Anthony told CP that “it’s not surprising that Murdock is drawn to Donald Trump, because both of them like making outrageous statements.”  Ole also said, “Mike Murdock’s endorsement of Trump – along with the whole spate of pastoral political endorsements – is an attempt to get credibility and to be ‘next to power.’ Spiritually, it’s the worst kind of heresy.”   Read the article here.

Forgive our tongue-in-cheek headline … Trump’s company, the “Trump Shuttle” went broke.   “The Trump Shuttle never turned a profit and collapsed within a year. Because he had taken out so much debt to finance the project, Trump was forced to default on his loans and lost the company to his creditors,” according to the National Review, which also reported that Trump praised China’s government for its handling of the Tiananmen Square Massacre in 1990.

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Helping the Fardettes (An Update) Fri, 11 Dec 2015 17:41:54 +0000 […] Katrina in the hospital


Larry and Darcy

(Update at bottom of post)
Katrina Fardette, 28, of Cocoa Beach, Fla., has Lupus, and her condition is worsening.
After giving to televangelists for many years, none would help.
Her parents, Larry and Darcy left their home in California to help their daughter, but her medical expenses (and their own physical disabilities) drained their finances. Darcy is plagued with Irritable Bowel Syndrome and Larry with severe arthritis, which has prevented both of them from working.
The couple ended up living week to week in a Motel 6.
Because they had sent various televangelists and ministries almost $20,000 over the years, the Fardettes sent requests to 18 different ministries, expecting someone to respond to their plight.
Incredibly, not one responded with any help.
A small Episcopal church in Jacksonville, Fla., is helping them. Trinity Foundation has contributed funds as we’ve been able. But their needs require more than a piecemeal solution.

Why are we involved? The Fardettes reached out to Trinity Foundation after we were mentioned as investigators of religious fraud in comedian John Oliver’s HBO program “Last Week Tonight.” (Their experience has only confirmed what we’ve discovered over the years – televangelists care more about expanding their own lavish lifestyles than the needs of their followers).
We hope this crowdfunding campaign will provide Katrina the real help she needs, lift the Fardettes out of their desperate situation and confirm their trust in God and human compassion.
Thank you to everyone that donated to the Fardettes. We raised slightly more than $2,000 for them, less than what we had hoped for, but enough to tide them over until they could get established in a new home.
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HBO’s John Oliver Mocks Money Hungry TV Preachers Thu, 20 Aug 2015 18:06:32 +0000 […] John Oliver broadcast

John Oliver and his staff created their own church to illustrate the absurdity of IRS enforcement of existing religious non-profit guidelines. As of this writing about 4.4 million people have viewed this blistering satire and critique of Robert Tilton, Mike Murdock, Gloria Copeland, and Creflo Dollar as well as giving honorable mention to TBN, Daystar TV, and Inspiration Ministries (a/k/a INSP, formerly, the Inspirational Network). Like a modern-day Elijah mocking the prophets of Baal, John Oliver calls out the televangelists. Great work John Oliver and your fine crew!

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CBS This Morning exposes Creflo Dollar’s self-indulgence… “Almighty Dollar” Fri, 22 May 2015 19:16:20 +0000 […]  

Creflo Dollar's Georgia mansion
Creflo Dollar’s Georgia mansion

Thank you CBS This Morning for helping expose Dollar’s madness.  Yesterday, CBS’ morning program, CBS This Morning, ran a piece about Creflo Dollar’s request for his donors to help him buy a $65 million dollar luxury jet. subtitled “Almighty Dollar”.

From CBS’ interview with Ole Anthony: “In Creflo’s church, there is no accountability. He runs it like a fiefdom,” said Anthony, president of the Trinity Foundation in Texas, a church fundraising watchdog group. “The chairman of the board of Texas Instruments or AT&T can have a whole fleet of jets, but they’re not begging for money from people and getting a tax write-off in order for them to establish such a lifestyle,” Anthony added.

CBS This Morning co-hosts Gayle King, Norah O’Donnell, and Charlie Rose each reacted with shock and/or sadness at the contrast between Dollar’s indulgent lifestyle and a supportive church member having to ride the bus to get herself to Dollar’s church.

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Atlanta metropolis sees Dollar’s wealth, self-justification Tue, 19 May 2015 21:15:20 +0000 […] DollarSelfJustifyingCBS Atlanta–Last night, Atlanta and surrounding communities watched an eyeful about Creflo Dollar’s mansions, jets, luxury cars, and self-vindication.  CBS Atlanta reporter Jeff Chirico interviewed Ole Anthony and used flight data information provided by the Trinity Foundation for the story (here).  Atlanta preacher Creflo Dollar responded to critics, whom he alleged were motivated by the devil, and spoke to his cheering congregation, “if they discover that there’s life on Mars, they’re going to need to hear the gospel I’m going to have to believe God for a billion dollar space shuttle…”

Flight data from Dollar’s private and ministry jets obtained by the Trinity Foundation and given to CBS shows multiple trips to the Bahamas and other Caribbean locations, trips to Las Vegas, trips to numerous  Hawaiian Islands, FIJI, and a number of other locations which seem dubious at best from a ministry standpoint.  Here are some excerpts from Ole’s comments in the story linked above, “It’s a spiritual Las Vegas, a heavenly lottery if you will, and the odds are always in favor of the House and Creflo Dollar is the House.” Ole added, “his role isn’t to make money off of the sheep or to ‘eat the sheep’, … in the first century church the pastor lived as the poorest of the poor, not the richest of the rich.”

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The Devil is trying to discredit Dollar! Fri, 24 Apr 2015 21:34:59 +0000 […]

This past Sunday, prosperity preacher Creflo Dollar went ballistic and lambasted his critics—note that the first few words out of his mouth attributed the entirety of the criticism to the devil.

Several weeks ago, Dollar removed his website’s princely request—“Project G650 Campaign” asking his supporters to pony up $300 each in order to help him buy a $65 million jet.

But, just when we thought that Dollar was either returning to earth or at least succumbing to pressure; he took the opportunity in front of his cheering church members to sharply criticize the many that thought this was an unreasonable request and justify his “dream” for the world’s most luxurious private jet. Dream on Mr. Dollar. The only problem with your dreams, Mr. Dollar, is that they impoverish the people who least can afford it.

We are tempted to publish our 2007 report to the US Senate Finance Committee about Creflo Dollar.  Should we?

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