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I just read an article about fundy preachers infiltrating the Northeast by using marketing techniques to build up megachurches in this area of the country. Reading between the lines, it's obvious that the mob is in on this action. And why not? It used to be that union halls and the local political party clubhouse were the places where community power was weilded. But when manufacturing left the US, unions and local political machines didn't have jobs to offer in exchange for allegience and power. But megachurches... they are the new community. They have their own coffeehouses, daycare, schools, bowling alleys, skateboarding parks, etc. Some are buildig senior housing. Everything you need to draw a lot of people in and call yourself a community. Power is power whether it's from a union hall, a local party machine or a megachuch.

One of the guys in the story was interested in one thing only: numbers. Numbers of people in his church. He is using every marketing and bookeeping tactic he can think of to draw in followers. It makes sense the mob would move into the megachurch business, doesn't it?

by Anonymousreply 1611/29/2007

We had an evangelical church in our city that went mega and had to relocate to a neighboring city on a bigger parcel of land. And they were big before: they had an auditorium that must have seated at least a thousand people, a gym, etc. I'm glad they moved because if something bizarre happens it won't be HERE.

by Anonymousreply 111/28/2007

Interesting, OP. Do you have a link to the article or can you tell us where to find it?

by Anonymousreply 211/28/2007

"Reading between the lines, it's obvious that the mob is in on this action."

"Obvious" to whom?

I hate these outfits, but how is your assertion to be supported?

by Anonymousreply 311/28/2007

it's in this week's new yorker, but the article is not available online. there is a slide show, however...

by Anonymousreply 411/28/2007

I would believe the government is much more a part of the megachurch phenomenon than the mob. Although the government and organized religion are just like the mob, You pay them protection (taxes and tithes) and they save you from terrorists and hellfire.

by Anonymousreply 511/28/2007

The mob will go into it, but only after they sucked every last dime out of the Catholic church.

Anyway, the Pentagon and CIA probably created the whole "Christian Right" phenomenon. None of it was a grass roots explosion.

by Anonymousreply 611/28/2007

What I find ironic is how much the megachurches and their preachers borrowed from rock stars. The stadiums, the laser light shows, the big screen onstage, the audience participation (The ultra loud "Are you ready to rock and roll?" shouted from the stage has become "Are you ready to accept Jesus as your savior?" and the flicking of cigarette lighters has become the waving of arms). And the preachers get plenty of ass, just like the rock stars of the 60s and 70s.

Fundamentalist preachers denounced rock and roll as the devil's music but rock really worked out quite well for them, didn't it?

by Anonymousreply 711/28/2007

I think R6 is correct.

by Anonymousreply 811/28/2007

>>>Anyway, the Pentagon and CIA probably created the whole "Christian Right" phenomenon. None of it was a grass roots explosion.

They couldn't have done it without the Jesus freaks of the late 60s and 1970s. Hey, maybe the CIA was really trying to take over Jim Jones's church and his paranoia about needing to flee the US because the government was after him was real. Maybe he was being drugged or poisoned (enough to induce kidney failure, let's say) by them because his church was too socialist.

by Anonymousreply 911/28/2007

Re the Pentagon and the CIA setting up the Christian right: I know I've posted this many times before, but for those who have never read it, this link takes you to an article from Harpers magazine which was written by a guy wo infiltrated a secretive "Christian" organization called The Brotherhood in Washington DC. Many (if not most) of its members are politicians, businessmen and military men. They use Christianity to spread their "free market" capitalism around the world. You would think this is a movie plot, but it's real. It's called "Jesus Plus Nothing."

And the mob works hand and hand with the CIA and the Pentagon. They have done since the Second World War. They certainly did in Cuba and they did in Dallas in 1963.

by Anonymousreply 1011/28/2007

Talk about selling your soul.....these megachurches are all about 'financial success.'

by Anonymousreply 1111/28/2007

Guessing they don't pay a dime in taxes on their megachurch/mall operations.

Why don't we form a gay church so we can live tax-free too? What's that you say? It's already been done?

by Anonymousreply 1211/28/2007

"They use Christianity to spread their "free market" capitalism around the world. You would think this is a movie plot, but it's real."

It was founded as an antilabor organization, true, but now it is all about power. They support dictators anywhere anytime and have successfully managed America's foreign policy to enrich certain families in various countries like Indonesia.

by Anonymousreply 1311/28/2007

Religion is the opiate of the masses.

by Anonymousreply 1411/29/2007

We can now add religious to the military/industrial complex that Eisenhower warned us about - a truly hellborne conglomeration.

It's also why U.S.-based evangelical religions are giving the pope a run for his money in South America; they promise cash money success in this life if you pray (and give) their way (can you say pyramid scheme?) as opposed to the old-fashioned catholic reward in the afterlife BS.

by Anonymousreply 1511/29/2007

One of the marks of these mega"churches" is that they rarely mention Jesus and inculcate no Christian teachings.

by Anonymousreply 1611/29/2007
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