A defence of Destiny

January 16th, 2012 at 2:00 pm by David Farrar

writes in Stuff in defence of Destiny:

Why is it that a Christian-based church that has never done anything legally wrong has raised the ire and suspicion of so many?

Because we expect better things of some, than merely not breaking the law. Lots of unethical scumbags never broke the law.

But the general population, and certainly the media, have an inherent distrust of the man and his church. In fact, he has been voted one of the least-trusted high-profile men in New Zealand on a couple of occasions.

How very sensible.

Let’s have a look at those accusations because, although his time as church leader has certainly been controversial and he stands for many things that are unpopular in modern times is certainly not alone with these views.

He has a big problem with homosexuality. He is outspoken and judgmental about the issue and has condemned the past Labour government for their civil union legislation which legitimises such relationships. Because of this, and other statements, he has been labelled a homophobe which implies he is frightened of homosexuals or homosexuality.

I don’t actually think he is any more frightened of gay people than the Pope is. Instead he has adopted a very puritanical and rigid interpretation of scripture which utterly condemns the idea of any sexual relationship that is not between a man and a woman. This is pretty consistent with other conservative church positions, including the official position of the Catholic Church. But, despite the proven Catholic clergy proclivity for moral indecency and the obvious hypocrisy of their stated position, the stated Destiny position is seen as more offensive than the Catholic one.

Potiki misses a huge point here.

The Catholic Church never formed a political party that stood for Parliament on a platform of forcing its religious beliefs on all New Zealanders.

The Catholic Church also never organised a march called “Enough is Enough” where a thousand or more identically clad black shirted followers marched in military like precision down the main street of Wellington, waving their pre-supplied signs to support the Church’s agenda.

Another criticism of Tamaki is that he is practically self-ordained and that he is the church. Followers pledge their allegiance to him as the “man of God” and not to the more depersonalised church itself. Religious and spiritual philosophy is a terribly complex subject but it is important to note that many of the large religions have a spiritual head who, although they are earthly and of real flesh and blood, are also a spiritual vessel on earth for their particular god.

Yes, but Catholics do not worship the Pope and Anglicans do not worship the Archbishop of Canterbury.

Most of us accept that this is simply part of the faith and do not lose sleep over such claims even though in general terms it would be considered pretty questionable. Despite that the Dalai Lama, the Pope and the Grand Ayatollah are followed both as corporeal individuals and spiritual representatives of God. But Tamaki’s claim to be a vessel of God’s power on Earth is treated with disdain by most.

Yes, party because he appointed himself God’s vessel. For all their faults, the other churches were not created just to benefit their current head. That is a huge difference.

Perhaps the most damning accusation of Tamaki is his wealth accumulation philosophy which apparently emerges from prosperity theology. This is the idea that personal empowerment is advocated as a core part of Christian doctrine and that part of empowerment is personal wealth. Not surprisingly this philosophy is very controversial and does not find favour with most mainstream Christian churches. But, as we know, most of the traditional Christian churches have also accumulated enormous wealth as a result of leveraging their position within their communities over the past couple of millennia, so assuming the moral high ground now that values and social mores have shifted dramatically is a little bit rich.

I think the Catholic Church is also obscenely rich. But again there are huge differences. Destiny mandates a 10% or more tithe, and aggressively pressure people to pay it. They actually pass EFTPOS terminals around their church. They visit you at home if you do not pay. And they come up with numerous other ways to fleece people into paying more money.

The Catholic Church doesn’t see Easter as a commercial opportunity. Destiny tends to see everything as a commercial opportunity. They are more akin to Scientology without the aliens.

So what is it that gets everyone’s goat when it comes to Brian Tamaki and Destiny Church? Is it more distasteful to us because his particular position is 100 per cent home-grown, or because we find it easier to accept such statements from geriatric Germans in golden robes and jewellery rather than a flashy toothed, Maori man wearing a tailor-made suit?

Nope, nothing to do with that. It is the combination of having formed a political party to force his religious views on us, having declared himself God’s vessel on earth and having an extremely aggressive approach to forcing believers to tithe that get’s my goat, and most people’s. Nothing to do with him being Maori.

Having said all that I acknowledge Destiny do some good with some of their community programmes in South Auckland. If they stayed out of politics, didn’t portray Tamaki as the Messiah, and were less aggressive in their fleecing of followers then most people would not care about them, or even mildly approve of what they do.

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119 Responses to “A defence of Destiny”

  1. immigant (950 comments) says:

    Meh.. whatever. As long as they are not killing babies or robbing people.

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  2. Jenna R (27 comments) says:

    Surely the fact they formed a political party and protested a government decision is not a legitimate reason to be suspicious of them. Those are fundamental rights people should be able to exercise without anyone’s ire being raised, even if the majority of people disagree with their views.

    [DPF: People have rights. Religions less so. And it is entirely legitimate to be suspicious of people exercising legitimate rights.

    If you formed a political movement that campaigned on neutering all men under 5'7" in height (on the basis of better genetic stock for the future) you'd be within your rights to do so, but I sure as hell would be raising ire so to speak]

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  3. mickrodge (27 comments) says:

    “Having said all that I acknowledge Destiny do some good with some of their community programmes in South Auckland. If they stayed out of politics, didn’t portray Tamaki as the Messiah, and were less aggressive in their fleecing of followers then most people would not care about them, or even mildly approve of what they do”.

    +1 Spot on DPF

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  4. Weihana (4,496 comments) says:

    Jenna R,

    What if a group of paedophiles get together to advocate for lowering the age of consent? Their advocacy would not be illegal but don’t you think it is legitimate to be suspicious of them nonetheless? People do have a fundamental right to advocate for whatever they like, but that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be judged against what they advocate as an indication of their character. What Tamaki advocates is bigotry and he is judged accordingly.

    Of course what’s notable is that the National Party politicians, for the most part, voted against civil unions pandering to the same type of bigotry as expressed by Tamaki. A good reason to be suspicious of National. :)

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  5. Mike Readman (361 comments) says:

    “The Catholic Church never formed a political party that stood for Parliament on a platform of forcing its religious beliefs on all New Zealanders.

    The Catholic Church also never organised a march called “Enough is Enough” where a thousand or more identically clad black shirted followers marched in military like precision down the main street of Wellington, waving their pre-supplied signs to support the Church’s agenda”

    First of all, they never forced to vote Destiny NZ. Second, you didn’t have to be a member of Destiny Church to be a member or even a candidate for Destiny NZ. I thought you would have agreed with a lot of their policies DPF, like reducing tax.

    Also, I agreed with that march. By that time, I’d had it up to here with Helen Clark. She really got my goat.

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  6. RRM (9,638 comments) says:

    I for one welcome the emergence of Tamaki and the Cuzzy Church of Homophobic Maori Nationalism. Even if the tithes are paid out of benefit money, at least it is not new Govt spending. Let them build their Cuzzy Compound in Sth Auckland. Let them put a big, high fence around it. As long as they pay for it themselves, I really can’t see a lot of downsides. Tena Koe, bro.

    All we need now, is for Kyle Chapman and his White Stoopremacists in Christchurch to adopt the same funding model, and in no time at all they will be building their land base in North Canterbury. And then there will be somewhere for the white bigots to go, and somewhere for the brown bigots to go… Leaving people in the real world to get on with things free from their shenanigans…

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  7. Richard29 (377 comments) says:

    I’d never heard of “Prosperity Theology” before…

    I find it interesting that ‘Bishop’ Tamaki sees fit to ignore certain bible verses like this one that is the spoken words of Jesus Christ according to several eye witness accounts.

    “It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God” Matthew 19:24

    But builds a whole hate campaign against gay people on a couple of obscure lines in the old testament book of Leviticus that nobody really knows who wrote them or how they came to be in the Bible…

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  8. MFC85B (2 comments) says:

    DPF, I think you show your bias against any religion which makes you feel uncomfortable. Destiny may not be my Christianity but as others have said, it doesn’t expect much of others outside the church but plenty from those who choose to join and remain. Your article, with the substitution of a few key words might have been describing unions like MUNZ.

    Destiny is a fun thing of the media on a slow day, the remainder of the population actually do accept them.

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  9. wilhelmus7 (15 comments) says:

    A friend of mine teaches in a low decile school in his area. She told me of a family where kids have no blankets to sleep under at night, but the tithe gets paid. Another mother has left the church so that she can spend the money on her family. Her son was subsequently visited by his uncle. The uncle told him (at eight years old) that his mum was going to hell because she left the church.

    Being an active Catholic I get to see the church’s faults up close, but tithing has always been optional and families have always been before giving.

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  10. BeaB (2,080 comments) says:

    I remember the Salvation Army on the steps of Parliament with their Nazi-like flags in the anti-homosexual law reform protests. I have never given to them since.

    Until the Destiny Church becomes compulsory I don’t think there’s so much for you to get excited about. It’s a church with all the crap that goes with churches, most of which are led by fairly repellent men. So what? Live and let live.

    As long as I don’t have to join any of them.

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  11. Put it away (2,888 comments) says:

    I don’t give a shit what the sweaty loon says, as long as he’s within the law. He should be able to like or dislike anyone or anything for any reason. People are free to decide whether they agree with him or not. No one is harmed by the existence of a different opinion.

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  12. Pauleastbay (5,035 comments) says:

    Why pick on Destiny for tithing, the Mormon Church has created many criminals because of pressure to tithe and feed the missionary’s who bludge off families every night.

    Being a very bad Catholic I can remember the look if the money never went in the plate when we were kids.

    Anyway I’d rather see all those ….where a thousand or more identically clad black shirted followers marched in military like precision down the main street of Wellington, waving their pre-supplied signs to support the Church’s agenda.
    wearing a gang patch- much better for us as a country.!!

    And unless I’ve really missed something I hav’nt heard of too many wanting assistance from the liberal Wellington insiders to escape the evil clutches. Clark was terrified of Destiny and its like because they were ‘her” constituents and they were “listening” to someone else. That was 1000 missing votes for labour walking down Lambton Quay- and good fucking job

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  13. SHG (369 comments) says:

    I think Destiny serves a valuable social function, a “stupidity valve” if you will. Destiny separates stupid people from their money, which is then returned to circulation through the purchase of Harley Davidsons, yachts, and waterfront properties.

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  14. Pete George (23,299 comments) says:

    The uncle told him (at eight years old) that his mum was going to hell because she left the church.

    That’s an insidious form of child abuse, and family abuse.

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  15. Pauleastbay (5,035 comments) says:

    That’s an insidious form of child abuse, and family abuse.

    Are you sure Pete?

    As child abuse it ranks up there with … if you don’t eat your carrots, your hair won’t go curly…

    We used to get the same shit when we were kids from the priests.

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  16. East Wellington Superhero (1,151 comments) says:

    WTF?

    “But, despite the proven Catholic clergy proclivity for moral indecency and the obvious hypocrisy of their stated position”

    I’d like to see the ‘proof’ that Catholic clery are any more indecent than the rest of humanity. Certainly in USA studies have shown the incidence of sexual crimes by Catholic clergy was lower than the rest of the popular. The vast majority of Catholics – and I’d wager Christians – don’t profess to be saints. Indeed most of the Saints often commented on how they were sinners.

    Blah blah blah, people will always retain their prejudices.

    Tamaki is a problematic character whose theological belief and practices are askew. But if DPF thinks there is no media bias against Christians, he’s in la la land.

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  17. mara (752 comments) says:

    I’ve heard they recruit in prisons. Each Destiny convert is one fewer for Islam. That’s good with me.

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  18. Pete George (23,299 comments) says:

    I’d rank it a lot worse, using children for spiritual extortion, and possibly attempting monetary extortion.

    Making dire threats to kids – most kids would be horrified to imagine their mother burning in hell – to try to pressure religious compliance and tithing compliance is nasty.

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  19. Dave A (61 comments) says:

    Me thinks dost thou protest too much.

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  20. plebe (271 comments) says:

    What is it with gays and destiny, are they(gays) special,brighter add value to NZ.Hell im a old fart white educated hetro, nothing is said about me other than being a white motherfucker but gays seem to be special like our first people, are the natural children of our gay rainbow people ie male-male better than my grown up married kids, so if the bishop has a worry,WHY WORRY??????gays other than aids.

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  21. Manolo (13,516 comments) says:

    We only need to quote P.T. Barnum to explain the existence of this and many other cults.
    A sucker is born every minute.

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  22. Bob R (1,357 comments) says:

    I remember a polynesian computer technician who mentioned that he had been going off the rails before he got involved in Destiny Church. He then got some qualifications and basically became a productive upstanding citizen. If the Church can have that impact, then all power to them.

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  23. SHG (369 comments) says:

    ^^^ heard the Hitler Youth did a lot of good work in the community too.

    PS: Godwinned!

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  24. Scott Chris (5,967 comments) says:

    Whatever. It’s a free market isn’t it?

    If people are going to buy bottled water then they’re gonna fall for this crap.

    Gives me an idea. Bottled holy water….. with Jesus and Mohammed tongue kissing on the label. I’d call it J-Mo.

    Reckon gays’d buy it.

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  25. ross (1,454 comments) says:

    “By that time, I’d had it up to here with Helen Clark. She really got my goat.”

    Hmmm many people had had enough of Helen but where’s the connection with Tamaki? “I don’t like Helen so I’ll vote for Brian”. You see I am struggling with that logic.

    It’s not very often I agree with DPF but on this occasion I do. Tamaki is a charlatan, like Ken Ring but with a more polished act.

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  26. Manolo (13,516 comments) says:

    Bottled holy water. with Jesus and Mohammed tongue kissing on the label. Reckon gays’d buy it.

    It would sell even better if you put a couple of well known Labour Party figures. :-)

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  27. cha (3,853 comments) says:

    Gives me an idea. Bottled holy water…..

    http://www.discountcatholicstore.com/holywater.htm

    Each Medal has a capsule on the back which contains water drawn from the Miraculous Spring of Our Lady Apparitions Grotto in Lourdes France

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  28. Scott (1,736 comments) says:

    I like Destiny. They do a lot of good among the poor and stick to the Bible including faithfully representing God’s view of homosexuality (it is a sin).

    Why do liberals like DPF get so upset? They threaten God denying liberal hegemony in a way the average Anglican never could. I think it is great they stick up for what is right. DPF is morally clueless on this issue as in many others. He is a better fit with the Rainbow faction of the Labour party and should stop representing himself as a centre right blogger.

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  29. ross (1,454 comments) says:

    Scott,

    Tamaki not only thinks that gays are sinful, he thinks they should spend 10 years behind bars. I am not aware of any right wing bloggers who agrees with that nonsense.

    If you have any homosexual feelings, Scott, don’t be embarrassed.

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  30. Daigotsu (451 comments) says:

    “Yes, but Catholics do not worship the Pope”

    They say they don’t but they also regard him as the infallible voice of God.

    Sounds pretty worshipful to me.

    [DPF: He is only infalliable on certain things, and it is the office not the person, which is a huge difference]

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  31. Fisiani (993 comments) says:

    @Richard29
    “It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God” Matthew 19:24

    This oft quoted line from Matthew is often used by Leftists to Biblically show that rich people cannot enter Heaven since there is no possibility of a camel going through the eye of a needle.
    It is actually due to a translation error which keeps being repeated.
    The word ‘a’ should in fact be ‘the’.

    “It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of the needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God” Matthew 19:24

    The ancient city of Jerusalem was entirely surrounded by a wall. It had several entranceways.The narrowest of these was called The Needle.
    A camel is laden with lateral paniers and a fully laden camel would struggle to eneter the city via The Needle.

    The quotation when properly translated infers that if ones focus is purely or mainly on wealth accumulation then then it will be difficult but not impossible to have enough spirituality to enter Heaven.This is simply a rejoinder to the wealthy to maintain a spiritual focus rather than a complete bar to the wealthy.

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  32. Fisiani (993 comments) says:

    Whilst on Biblical mistranslations you may be interested to know that Jesus and John the Baptist when eating locusts and wild honey did not consume winged insects.
    Locust in this sense means the fruit of the carob tree. The carob tree grows chiefly in the Middle East and is sometimes called Baptist tree.

    Fisiani TrivialPursuit champion 2012

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  33. grumpyoldhori (2,416 comments) says:

    Scott are you a self hating gay ?
    Destiny does a lot of good among the poor, hmm, are you saying destiny does not push its poor dumb hories to give 10% each week ?
    I know a destiny member and fuck he is dumb, he was saying how good the destiny university will be.
    What an utter joke, dumb destiny hories believing they have the ability or chance to do a four year degree at the destiny school of engineering.that any one rational would take seriously

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  34. mikenmild (11,246 comments) says:

    The ever-helpful wikipedia tells us that:
    ‘The “eye of a needle” has been interpreted as a gate in Jerusalem, which opened after the main gate was closed at night. A camel could only pass through this smaller gate if it was stooped and had its baggage removed. This story has been put forth since at least the 15th century, and possibly as far back as the 9th century. However, there is no evidence for the existence of such a gate.’

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  35. Peter (1,663 comments) says:

    It is good that idiocy is concentrated in one place.

    In Wellington, we call it parliament.

    Ba da Boom. Tish.

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  36. dave (986 comments) says:

    But…certainly the media, have an inherent distrust of the man and his church
    I would note that it is far easier to get a face to face interview with the Catholic cardinal ( as I have) – in fact an interview with any of the leaders of christian denominations – than have a request for a Brian Tamaki interview fulfilled.

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  37. SHG (369 comments) says:

    Fisiani said “The ancient city of Jerusalem was entirely surrounded by a wall. It had several entranceways.The narrowest of these was called The Needle.
    A camel is laden with lateral paniers and a fully laden camel would struggle to eneter the city via The Needle.”

    An entirely made-up story spread by people who like to call themselves Christians while avoiding anything that might actually involve personally following the teachings of Jesus Christ.

    Pathetic, really.

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  38. Richard29 (377 comments) says:

    Thanks Fisiani.

    I did come across the alternative explanation – although it still supports the same basic teaching in a general sense – A focus on wealth accumulation at the expense of other matters is wrong. Which incidentally is what upsets most people about Destiny (well that and the irrational gay hatred)

    It is also highly debatable apparently:
    http://www.biblicalhebrew.com/nt/camelneedle.htm
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eye_of_a_needle
    http://www.eyeoftheneedle.net/Church%20Traditions/eye_of_a_needle.htm

    Like most stuff in the bible it was committed to writing 2000 years ago by a variety of authors and translated and retranslated not to mention edited and re-edited by a variety of rulers and church authorities through the centuries. The bible is a fascinating text with a really interesting history but most sensible Christians recognise the limitations of trying to interpret literally word for word (others believe the world was LITERALLY created in 7 days at the time of Adam and the dinosaur bones were just put there by god to confuse us). This is just one line – we could have similar debates on the origin of almost every line in the book.

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  39. nasska (10,897 comments) says:

    Good grief…..we reside in a country where Catholics in churches sodomise altar boys & Muslims in mosques condone the mutilation of little girls. We write these antics off as religious or cultural practices yet worry about few dumb hories kissing a bishop’s ring & building a learning centre on their own freehold land.

    Maybe we should call out the Water Woman to check for a conspiracy.

    [DPF: Speak for yourself. I don't know anyone who condones pedophilia or female genital mutilation. In fact both are crimes that will get you prison terms]

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  40. Fisiani (993 comments) says:

    On the other hand
    fromWikipedia

    Polysemy Some[who?] treat “split words” as a distinctive subsection of mistranslations.[citation needed] Sometimes it appears that a word in Aramaic with two (or more) distinct and different meanings appears to have been interpreted in the wrong sense, or even translated both ways in different documents.[original research?] Perhaps the most well known example that advocates of an Aramaic urtext for the Gospels cite is the parable of the “camel (καμηλος) through the eye of a needle.” (Mark 10:25, Matthew 19:24, Luke 18:25) In Aramaic, the word for “camel” (גמלא) is spelled identically to the word for “rope” (גמלא), suggesting that the correct phrase was “rope through the eye of a needle,” making the hyperbole more symmetrical. The Aramaic word can also be translated as “beam”, making a connection between this passage and the passage on removing a beam from your eye — Matthew 7:5; Luke 6:41-42.

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  41. Yvette (2,743 comments) says:

    DPF, in your analysis of Destiny you entirely missed any comparison to televangelism – for example, the obvious similarity between Destiny and the bunch who appear on TV3 just before 6 am some weekdays.
    Their fundamentalist approach has a lot in common with the mass mind manipulation of all these groups from Billy Graham right through to now, which gives a distinct impression of snake-oil salesperson, plus Destiny seems to place a higher price on it.

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  42. B A W (98 comments) says:

    Eftpos in church how scandalous. Letting them give directly from their bank account to the church this is just not on.

    I call that convent much easier to carry around a EFTPOS card than cash. I have heard of other churches using this and do not see anything wrong with this at all. Somehow you have to pay the bills. EFTPOS also has the advantage that it is much easier to count and handle without the risk of fraud or having funds miss laid or having to send somebody to the bank to lodge it.

    Churches need money to operate, church buildings do not build themselves and even if they met in parks people would need a sound system to hear each other in a big group.

    As a Christian Destiny occupies a grey area in my view, I do not know what to think of them. There are many practices I like and others I am un-comfortable with. I will let God be the judge of them he is big enough to deal with any Christian who goes bad, and he has been managing human affairs for a very long time. He is far smarter than me.

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  43. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    “…where a thousand or more identically clad black shirted followers marched in military like precision…”

    So what? Is it the black bit or the precision that concerns you? I am an atheist and see them as no better or worse than many other religious groups.

    He encourages the poor and dispossessed to aspire to greater things, more successfully than tax payer funded social services, staffed by leftist social engineers. I say leave the man alone. All his followers are volunteers.
    However, if you want to ban religion and spiritual belief altogether, then you have my support.

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  44. tristanb (1,133 comments) says:

    People should be able to do what they want with their money. Unfortunately, I suspect a lot of this money is in fact our money.

    Religion’s just another addiction/vice that gets purchased with dole/DPB money, leaving “kids in poverty”. Yet another reason to introduce a “benefit card” to control spending.

    Tamaki’s a con-artist. But so are the Mormons, so are the Scientologists, and so are the Exclusive Brethren. So was property developer Dean Letfus, and there’s tons more of them. I don’t think it’s illegal to take advantage of stupid people unless it’s a blatant lie (I guess you can’t really argue once you’re dead and don’t actually get into heaven).

    He may help some into better lives, but every 10% of the family’s weekly dole he gets, is another 10% we pay as WINZ hardship grants – I’d prefer things to be more efficient. Plus he’s an evil greasy unlikeable fucker – he fits the caricature of sleazy greedy preacher pretty well.

    We also need to stop giving these “charities” tax-breaks. It’s a business, so should pay the same tax as any other business.

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  45. joana (1,983 comments) says:

    Pauleastbay.
    Good point re Helen Clark.
    The Catholic church may be obscenely rich but it has been around for centuries..Most of the other Christian groups have a very short history in comparison.
    Some time back there was an article in I think the SST re mega churches in NZ. There were 5 or 6 of them where the pastors..hubby and wife.. were earning well over a million a year. Possibly several in AK , I think the chubby blond guy on telly with the wife with a strange accent and the Elim guy in CHCh , the Tamakis etc. Before the quakes, the Elim guy was preaching up a storm wanting money for his planned ”Cathedral of Hope.” Every week , he harped on and on , give and you shall receive , give and you shall be blessed , give more and you will see God’s blessings..bla , bla , bla..It was ok but it got a bit boring..Bible students will know which quote he was referring to , but there is lot more to the Bible than one solitary quote.
    As someone else has said these churches are based on modern American style churches.I don’t know where the Elim guy is now but fairly sure he will somewhere where the dollar is rolling.
    On the other hand , rather Destiny than islam..also Brian Tamaki is talented and ambitious as are tis two brothers. He has reached out to people who no one else was bothering with. He saw a gap in the market so good for him.

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  46. scrubone (3,082 comments) says:

    The Catholic Church also never organised a march called “Enough is Enough” where a thousand or more identically clad black shirted followers marched in military like precision down the main street of Wellington, waving their pre-supplied signs to support the Church’s agenda”

    And neither did destiny.

    I know people who were on that march, and they tell me that the media version in no way tallies with what they saw.

    [DPF: I witnessed it first hand]

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  47. jims_whare (399 comments) says:

    Im still not sure what the big deal about the 10% tithing is anyway.

    Think of it – 10% to Destiny church and in return get good advice and support to work productive lives and look after your kids and family properly. End result 10% to church 90% on family and food.

    As has been pointed out most of his congregation are of the poor Maori & PI variety and the chances are that if they wern’t in church they would be tithing 30% to Mr Pokie, 25% to Mr Benson & Hedges, 30% to Mr Tinnie House, and the rest split between scraps for the kids and Mr Jack Daniels.

    I don’t agree with Destiny’s way of doing things but if the end result is less brown bums in Jail on a Friday night and less little brown kids dead then thats got to be a good thing.

    As some have pointed out DPF I think this post is more about your ingrained, irrational, dislike for anything resembling Christianity. You show a lot more constraint towards extremest Muslims who advocate suicide bombings, subjugation of women, and other barbaric teachings, than you do towards a self appointed Christian Preacher who despite a taste for the finer things of life is actually helping to change some of the most intransigent social problems in NZ.

    I mean when was the last time you were able to help destitute and hopeless families sort themselves out? Face the fact that you live in a social lifestyle far removed from the streets of South Auckland and should use a little more restraint when commenting about things you know little about.

    I know what would be a good challenge for you as one who runs a polling business. Go talk to Destiny families, listen to their stories about where they have come from, figure out whether their 10% tithe has been a good investment for the families and then comment. You would earn a little more respect on the subject.

    [DPF: Why do supporters of Destiny always feel a need to lie about my beliefs? I have no hostility to mainstream christian churches, and in fact in this post defend them as different to Destiny.

    I have written so many posts critical of Islamism (not Islam) and extremist Muslims that I have lost count.

    I don't like Destiny because of the way Tamaki behaves. Simple as that. If he didn't behave in such a way, then I wouldn't care about him]

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  48. Pauleastbay (5,035 comments) says:

    jims_whare (175) Says:
    January 16th, 2012 at 6:41 pm

    +1 Jim, top comment

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  49. joana (1,983 comments) says:

    Great post Jim.

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  50. Tautaioleua (291 comments) says:

    Interestingly, DPF makes an earlier post about the euthanasia activist that only just received death threats for his position. The Dunedin resident acquired a brand new brick through his window that read:

    “Leave Gods [sic] laws or be struck down dead”.

    What are the chances that this was the work of Destiny? NEXT TO NOTHING. So Christian death threats are okay but pubic protest ought to be discouraged?

    Interestingly, the destruction of Anglican billboards over the festive season at the hands of radical Catholics also failed to make mention of DPF’s disapproval.

    The heart bleeds.
    :D

    [DPF: And yes another idiot who lies or misrepresents me. I was obviously condemning the attack on Davison, as seen by my glee in the fact he can use his own DNA lab to track them down.

    And I am certain I have condemned the attacks on St Matthews billboards in the past - certainly at least the first time it happened]

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  51. orewa1 (428 comments) says:

    Every church plays with the minds of vulnerable people. That’s why I am suspicious of them all, despite having had a religious upbringing.

    The Catholics are the best marketers. Superb. They use fear tactics to lock their customers in, rote teaching to brainwash them; and avoidance of contraception to increase the size of the next generation through viral marketing. I’m amazed the Vatican doesn’t get given marketing awards.

    I concede that there are some good people in the churches. There are also bad ones. The ratio is no different to the local Lions club, Rotary, surf club, or listeners to a specific radio station.

    Whether they are overtly political or not, they have a dangerous side and are a force for normal, thinking people to be somewhat concerned about..

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  52. ant (3 comments) says:

    http://richielewis.com/are-you-concerned-about-destiny-churchs-influence/

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  53. Cactus Kate (549 comments) says:

    The Catholic Church don’t see Easter as a commercial opportunity?
    You are having us on DPF.

    I was in Rome last Easter. Not for the religious bit but when I booked because it bores me, I didn’t realize it was Easter so found myself stuck in the middle of it. It was nothing but commercial fleecing of tourists and locals.

    As a religion neutral (see all of them equally pointless including wasting effort rallying against it like atheism) I have to say there’s little difference between any old age Church and Destiny. Brian’s views on homosexuality are about as enlightened as the current Pope.

    As for the 10% tithe, very little difference to that than forced taxation by the IRD….only Destiny are good/clever enough to force it from people who are net beneficiaries.

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  54. MrTips (150 comments) says:

    Brian’s views on homosexuality are about as enlightened as the current Pope.

    BWHAHAHAHAHA……you wouldn’t have the first @#$%! clue what the Pope’s views on anything are CK.

    To be fair, I think DPF has written reasonably well here. I have issues with Destiny for different reasons, but can see the good his church does, compared with what might else happen. Its the adoration of him personally that bothers people most I think.

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  55. burt (8,019 comments) says:

    Destiny have been very good to the local Harley Davidson dealership and Tauranga real estate companies probably also thank the generous members of the cult.

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  56. Reg (544 comments) says:

    I have no great affection for Tamaki, but other posts have adequetly made the point that his parishioners are obviously ten times better off than before they embraced Chritianity. Even after a 10% tithe they would be financially in alot better position than feeding the addictions of their pre Destiny lives, although i see no basis to insist on a tithe in the New Testament.
    However I don’t believe it’s the tithing or the cult of personality or the Super Church aspirations that upset the liberal fraternity. Whats causes them to hate Tamaki, is his scriptual condemnation of the Gay lifestyle.
    Everything else they could tolerate on the principle of freedom of expression, but to suggest that the gay life style is an offence to the Creator based on the undeniable words of the Holy Scriptures unleashes the anger of those who would prefer not to have their carefully cauterised consciences awakened by the evocation of the Inspired Word.
    It’s the suggestion – and indeed the proof – in Chritianity -that person’s can avail themselves of a power that can not only forgive their offences but deliver them from a sinful life: that causes the pack of cards to fall in the liberal arguement that being gay is a genetically enforced condition from whcih there is no escape.
    Posts to follow will no doubt demonsrate the rationality and civility of our liberal protaganists.!

    [DPF: Wonderful assumptions. You assume all Deestiny followers were addicts before they joined Destiny. You also assume they were not Christians. You can be a Christian and not be in Destiny.

    Tamaki's views on gays are little different to some other churches. But again you miss the point. His is the only church in our recent history that formed a political party to try and force their religious views onto all New Zealanders.

    i believe in separation of church and state. I do not believe religions should contest elections as parties. Look at the Middle East to see the problems that causes]

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  57. adze (1,994 comments) says:

    Tautaioleua,
    “So Christian death threats are okay but pubic protest ought to be discouraged?”

    Where did you get the idea that DPF condoned the euthanasia attack?

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  58. nasska (10,897 comments) says:

    Reg

    Your faith, your New Testament, your interpretation, your problem.

    I doubt that most of us non believers care much about what Bishop Tamaki tells his flock to do. What we do believe is that if we are not to discriminate when it comes to a person’s religious beliefs or race then that there is no way to be consistent & discriminate against a person’s sexual orientation.

    To quote the late Trevor De Cleene…..”I don’t care what they do or where they do it so long as they don’t frighten the horses”.

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  59. Karen (17 comments) says:

    Jims_whare … very well put, I agree with everything you said.

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  60. Cactus Kate (549 comments) says:

    No Mr Tips…just that gays marrying is threatening “the future of humanity itself”. Pretty comprehensive to see what he thinks of them.

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  61. Reg (544 comments) says:

    Nasska
    Do you discriminate against kleptomaniacs?

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  62. nasska (10,897 comments) says:

    Reg

    Enlighten us all…what do a person’s beliefs, race or sexual orientation have to do with the status of their kleptomania?

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  63. Reg (544 comments) says:

    Nasska.
    Just that the socially liberal pleasently describe some deviant propensities as “orientations” and therefore should not be discriminated against and other like say kleptomania as a delinquency that deserves to be discriminated against.

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  64. Scott Chris (5,967 comments) says:

    I don’t know where people get this idea that Tamaki’s congregation would be off sniffing glue if it weren’t for the salvation of God. What a load of racist bunk.

    There are thousands of Pacific Islanders for instance who are deeply religious. Thing that worries me is some of the money they used to send home to the Islands now goes towards constructing Tamaki’s monumental tributes to his own ego.

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  65. nasska (10,897 comments) says:

    Reg

    You’ve got something there in that out of the four, a person’s race is the only factor totally impossible to alter. Sexual ‘orientation’ has been treated by psychologists with limited success, kleptomania is treatable if not curable & the delusions that are religious beliefs have been removed by sect deprogrammers.

    Still sounds easier for everyone just to get on with it & do their own thing as long as it doesn’t adversely affect anyone else.

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  66. Tautaioleua (291 comments) says:

    adze,

    I didn’t. I simply made a comparison between the two posts. He adds roughly one sentence to the euthanasia incident and more than a paragraph to the Destiny debacle.

    How much did he devote to the Anglican bill board incidents over Christmas? destruction of property is illegal last time I checked.

    It makes you wonder.

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  67. gump (1,548 comments) says:

    DPF said:

    Yes, but Catholics do not worship the Pope and Anglicans do not worship the Archbishop of Canterbury.

    —————————

    That’s debatable.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Papal_infallibility

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  68. East Wellington Superhero (1,151 comments) says:

    C’mon Cactus,

    He didn’t say that. Go read it. Take 10min to read the pope’s speech to the Vatican diplomatic core – link below. If you really think that a person who gets invited to speak to the German parliament, the British parliament, who the young people of the world travel to hear speak, who gets legitimate media attention (not stupid Brian Tamaki stories) – is not worth putting aside 10min for, it says a lot about your open mindedness, intellectual strength, and perhaps an insecurity in your liberal views.

    http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/benedict_xvi/speeches/2012/january/documents/hf_ben-xvi_spe_20120109_diplomatic-corps_en.html

    Go and read it, and reflect on it for 5min. I dare you. What are you scared of? That he might actually have something valuable to say?

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  69. Yvette (2,743 comments) says:

    Govt gave $860,000 funding to Destiny: Minister

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/5111665/Govt-gave-860-000-funding-to-Destiny-Minister

    Separate church and state?
    Interesting item and poll.
    In a recent ONE NEWS item Sharples said Destiny, with their plans, could be ‘entitled’ to millions [of taxpayers money]

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  70. East Wellington Superhero (1,151 comments) says:

    @ Gump

    So called ‘papal infallibility’ is not worship of the pope. If you took 10min to reach what the Church teaches you’ll see that. Also, I’d put $20 on a bet that you didn’t even read the Wikipedia article.

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  71. tristanb (1,133 comments) says:

    That’s debatable.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Papal_infallibility

    As a reformed-Catholic (atheist) my understanding is that the Pope is only infallible when he speaks ex cathedra, which he has only done a few times in recent history. (I could look it up, but don’t want to waste braincells on that crap!) The jist is that he’s only infallible at certain, well-declared times. Most of what he says is just opinion. That’s why most young NZ Catholics use condoms, are on the pill, and have premarital sex.

    Catholicism isn’t really extreme in this country, but it contains a few extremists. Like the weirdos who attack the Anglican’s billboard on Hobson Street.

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  72. Cactus Kate (549 comments) says:

    Yes this is what he said

    “Among these, pride of place goes to the family, based on the marriage of a man and a woman. This is not a simple social convention, but rather the fundamental cell of every society. Consequently, policies which undermine the family threaten human dignity and the future of humanity itself. The family unit is fundamental for the educational process and for the development both of individuals and States; hence there is a need for policies which promote the family and aid social cohesion and dialogue”

    It is very clear by its exclusiveness. Family is based on marriage between a man and a woman according to Popey. A family cannot be defined as two men or two women. Therefore gays can never be recognized as a family and any policy that does undermines humanity according to the speech. It was deliberately crafted as such.

    People travel to hear all sorts of religious leaders, sports stars and former political leaders. Even Tony Blair and Bill Clinton who command top dollar despite being tax hypocrites and liars. That the Pope has more fanboys and girls than others makes no difference, he should be treated with similar suspicion.

    It says more about your qualities EWS that you are digesting the bullshit he’s promoting left, right and centre without such examination.

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  73. adze (1,994 comments) says:

    Tautaioleua
    “I didn’t. I simply made a comparison between the two posts.”

    That may have been your implication, but what you actually said was “”So Christian death threats are okay [...] ?”
    I get that you think Destiny has had a relatively greater amount of scrutiny by our host, but I don’t think comparisons with other Christian denominations and sects are necessarily valid. Destiny simply isn’t like any other, at least in this country.

    I note that on the news tonight the victim of the euthanasia death threats believes that the person behind it isn’t a church goer at all (just his opinion of course, but a significant one).

    You may also be interested to see what DPF has previously blogged on the annual vandalism of the St-Matthew-tn-the-City Xmas billboard:

    http://www.kiwiblog.co.nz/2009/12/christian_intolerance.html

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  74. joana (1,983 comments) says:

    The point I was making earlier is that Destiny is only one of about 6 mega churches in NZ.. Why aren’t the others getting any scrutiny? The Elim guy was busy buying up buildings in inner city ChCh before the quakes creating a little city within a city..Bible college , language school , creche , cafe etc etc..claiming the nation for the Lord. Not very different to what Brian Tamaki wants to do in AK but I have never seen anything in the Press re the Cathedral of Hope. It was all happening very quietly.
    Brian Tamaki set out to create the biggest Polynesian church in the world..How many of us have ever set such a lofty goal? A long time ago I came to the same conclusion as Jim. These children will be growing up in drug and alcohol free houses with working parents so will have a better shot at life.

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  75. Gulag1917 (795 comments) says:

    What percentage of the population are Destiny? Amazingly why the interest.

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  76. East Wellington Superhero (1,151 comments) says:

    We gee Cactus. You’re not an idiot. Of course the pope is being exclusive. Of course he – and the Church – have a view of the world. But the pope DID NOT say “Gays are a threat to humanity”. Such language is almost a war cry against homosexual people and something a leader of Christians should never say. They are words that could lead to violence against homosexuals – and thus it could almost be immoral to say that as a leader.

    But the media are fuck-wits. They are stupid, or biased, or worse, social pawns, and these days they don’t even seem to think twice about misrepresenting what the Church says or does. They are a joke.

    With regards to the gay ‘parenting issue’. Do you have kids Cactus? Have you ever noticed how kids sometimes want dad, and sometimes want mum? I have a good friend whose sister is a lesbian, who has a 2-3 year old boy (to a gay ‘father’ that isn’t around anymore; it was some strange arrangement to get sperm). Both are lovely people – if not slightly confused about what’s appropriate. What is incredible is that the boy craves male attention. Loves watching sport, and clings to males that visit the house. He’s certainly not molded by social paradigms, and yet he’s quick to grab a fork or a stick to make a weapon and play ‘fighting games’. There are certain things hard-wired that no amount of ‘modern psychology’ can trick away.

    You’re a clever cynic Cactus. You can sense people’s faults in many areas – I suspect it’s probably part of what makes you good at your job. In my experience, the 10 or so homosexual friends that I have are quite selfish. They are generous and fun in certain areas – but quite selfish in areas of real long-term commitment. For them – it seems to me – the kid is just another accessory to their life, not about what’s good for the kid. And that’s just it, kids aren’t hand bags, they are people, and people that need a mother and father. Society can play this stupid game where we pretend gay families are just as normal, but it’s stupid. It’s not real. Its a construct. It’s a mascaraed played by people who demand control of everything and want things their way.

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  77. Gulag1917 (795 comments) says:

    Most Catholics do not take Papal infallibility that seriously.

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  78. Fletch (6,142 comments) says:

    Instead he has adopted a very puritanical and rigid interpretation of scripture which utterly condemns the idea of any sexual relationship that is not between a man and a woman. This is pretty consistent with other conservative church positions, including the official position of the Catholic Church

    A couple of points.

    1. The Catholic Church is not just opposed to homosexual sex. It is equally opposed to any sex out of marriage. It treats both these things the same.

    2. The ‘infallible pope’ thing is well misunderstood. The Pope as a human being is as sinful and fallible as anyone else, and goes to Confession at least once a week (maybe more). He is only considered infallible when he is speaking Ex Cathedra (literally ‘from the chair’) on issues of Faith and Morals. He must also state that he is speaking in this way. What usually happens is that something will come up, the issue will be put before all the bishops of the Church etc, and a decision will be made – but ultimately the Pope has the final say.

    Even protestants have to believe that humans are infallible some times (or were), because they believe the Bible is infallible even though it was written by fallible human men – so at some stage these authors (under the guidance of the Holy Spirit) must be considered infallible.

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  79. Fletch (6,142 comments) says:

    ps, is the Catholic Church “rich”? Not really. They do have art etc, but the assets are “public wealth”. It’s like a museum, or the art that at Buckingham Palace – it belongs to the people. And according to David MacDonald in his blog, he visited the restoration of the Sistine Chapel there and -

    I could not take photos in there because a Japanese company owned the copyright. The Vatican didn’t have enough money in the budget to restore the Sistine Chapel so a Japanese company did it in exchange for the copyright privileges. The Vatican itself has a yearly budget that is equivalent to the Archdiocese of Chicago, and frequently runs on a deficit.

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  80. Fletch (6,142 comments) says:

    ps, as for abuse in the Church, Carol Shakeshaft was commissioned by the U.S Department of Education to review the available literature on sexual misconduct with students by public school employees, and published her findings in 2004.

    In the report, Shakeshaft said that “… the physical sexual abuse of students in [public] schools is likely more than 100 times the abuse by [Catholic] priests.” Also –

    In 1994, Shakeshaft published a report based on a four-year study of 225 sexual abuse complaints—184 in New York State and 41 in other states—against teachers made to federal authorities from 1990 to 1994.[3] She found that “All of the accused admitted sexual abuse of a student, but none of the abusers was reported to the authorities, and only 1 percent lost their license to teach. Only 35 percent suffered negative consequences of any kind, and 39 percent chose to leave their school district, most with positive recommendations. Some were even given an early retirement package.”

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  81. Gulag1917 (795 comments) says:

    Taking photos in the Vatican is fraught with risk probably because of the lighting.

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  82. eszett (2,365 comments) says:

    1. The Catholic Church is not just opposed to homosexual sex. It is equally opposed to any sex out of marriage. It treats both these things the same.

    Only goes to show that Catholics who subscribe to this live on on different planet to the rest of humanity.
    Catholics oppose to anything that may cause pleasure and damn you if you dare enjoy it.

    Maybe if you’d enjoyed a bit more sex you wouldn’t be sooo uptight, Fletch.

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  83. gump (1,548 comments) says:

    Gulag1917 said:

    What percentage of the population are Destiny? Amazingly why the interest.

    ———————-

    People aren’t really interested in Destiny. They’re interested in ‘Bishop’ Tamaki.

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  84. eszett (2,365 comments) says:

    In the report, Shakeshaft said that “… the physical sexual abuse of students in [public] schools is likely more than 100 times the abuse by [Catholic] priests.”

    Don’t you think Shakeshaft is the most unfortunate name for someone to conduct such a report.

    And don’t you just love how the absolute moralist suddenly discover the benefits of relativity.

    Oh, the irony!

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  85. Reg (544 comments) says:

    CK Said: It is very clear by its exclusiveness. Family is based on marriage between a man and a woman according to Popey. A family cannot be defined as two men or two women. Therefore gays can never be recognized as a family….

    And a man and his dog can never be recognised as a family. Clear case of discrimination against dogs!

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  86. Brian Smaller (4,026 comments) says:

    The Catholic Church never formed a political party that stood for Parliament on a platform of forcing its religious beliefs on all New Zealanders.

    As opposed to the Greens who did.

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  87. MrTips (150 comments) says:

    God you can be incredibly thick sometimes CK.

    The Pope did not say gay marriage is the world most evil thing in his speech. ANYTHING that undermines the union of a man or woman in marriage (homosexual marriage, divorce, you shagging another woman’s husband yet again) is considered contrary to the Church’s belief.

    You don’t accept that? Fine, but you have no credibility in taking your own interpretation on his speech when he clearly didn’t say the magical spell you assumed he did.

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  88. eszett (2,365 comments) says:

    And a man and his dog can never be recognised as a family. Clear case of discrimination against dogs!

    Ah, dusting of the old dog argument. It never fails to astonish me that religous nutheads cannot seem to distinguish between consenting, loving adults and dogs. Go figure.

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  89. eszett (2,365 comments) says:

    ANYTHING that undermines the union of a man or woman in marriage (homosexual marriage, divorce, you shagging another woman’s husband yet again)

    Hmmm, wouldn’t it be great if someone finally explained how same-sex marriage will undermine a “union of a man or woman in marriage”?

    How does the fact that the two dudes at the end of your street get married undmine your marriage, MrTips? In the same manner that say your wife would divorce you or shag your neighbour?
    Hypothetically speaking, of course.

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  90. Pete George (23,299 comments) says:

    ANYTHING that undermines the union of a man or woman in marriage is considered contrary to the Church’s belief.

    Like vows of celibacy?

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  91. Yvette (2,743 comments) says:

    What percentage of the population are Destiny? Amazingly why the interest.

    So why were these MPs brown-hongi-ing the Destiny Church – well-known for its homophobic attitudes? Destiny attracts many working-class yet socially conservative Maori. And unlike Anglicans, Tamaki’s flock vote for who the bishop tells them. Eight thousand votes are not small kumara. That’s why Tau Henare, a fearless mako shark on Twitter, becomes a gentle tarakihi in front of Bishop Tamaki. Henare’s Taupapa was the same as the other MPs [when Pita Sharples, Hone Harawira, Tau Henare and Shane Jones meekly submitted to the charm of Bishop Brian Tamaki, the richest Maori in showbiz - in an odd laying on of hands incident] - in election year, there were votes to be had if Emperor Brian gave you the thumbs up.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/comment/columnists/dave-armstrong/5134724/Harley-lujah-for-Brian-Tamaki-the-richest-Maori-in-showbiz

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  92. Fletch (6,142 comments) says:

    ANYTHING that undermines the union of a man or woman in marriage is considered contrary to the Church’s belief.

    Like vows of celibacy?

    Pete, in a sense the clergy are “married” to God. That is why you’ll see religious and priests wearing wedding rings.
    Marriage and priesthood are both sacraments – both equal.

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  93. Fletch (6,142 comments) says:

    And don’t you just love how the absolute moralist suddenly discover the benefits of relativity.

    Oh, the irony!

    eszett, I’m not ignoring the wrong any priests have done, but it seems like you totally ignore the same wrong in the rest of society. You point at priests in particular – and yes, they should be more above that sort of thing and examples to everyone else – but you also choose to ignore the fact that teachers and other groups in society are as bad or worse.

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  94. polemic (427 comments) says:

    Hmm….

    The Pope has made a very important statement and I assume CK has copied it accurately .

    “Among these, pride of place goes to the family, based on the marriage of a man and a woman. This is not a simple social convention, but rather the fundamental cell of every society. Consequently, policies which undermine the family threaten human dignity and the future of humanity itself. The family unit is fundamental for the educational process and for the development both of individuals and States; hence there is a need for policies which promote the family and aid social cohesion and dialogue”

    That is the first time I have seen that statement and I would venture to suggest that marriage is the foundation of all moral order in the world.

    Reg is completely correct and what Tamaki is doing is keeping a lot of people within the bounds of that moral order.

    I do not agree with Tamaki making himself rich from the poor of his flock so he is misguided but he is probably helping more than he is hindering.

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  95. Pete George (23,299 comments) says:

    Marriage and priesthood are both sacraments – both equal.

    Only in some churches. Celibate priesthoods have been created by churches who have decided to give them equal status to marriage, but it hasn’t always been that way.

    Same sex relationships have existed for much longer than priesthoods, quite possibly since (or before) homo sapiens evolved into the creatures we have become.

    Homosexuality is a natural occurence and homosexual activity involves one of the most primal urges we have, unlike priesthood which is a much more recent, less universal construct that requires suppression of the primal sex drive.

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  96. Reg (544 comments) says:

    Actually Pete it was regarded as unnatural for about 4,980 of the last 5,000 years.
    But if something that occurs in nature is alright, I guess you a fine with infantcide, theft, pedophilia, and canabalism!

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  97. Fletch (6,142 comments) says:

    Pete, I’m sorry, but to say homosexuality is a natural occurrence is absurd. If it were, then mankind would have evolved apparatus for that express purpose. But it hasn’t. Man, by physical observation alone, is heterosexual. You can see by observing his sexual organs and by the natural grouping of the family unit. When man and woman get together, they produce offspring. Anyone with a non-politicised opinion can see that.

    If we were scientists talking about any other species – pollination of flowers etc, or any other life forms, and we attributed sexual characteristics to those life forms that belied what our eyes observed it would quickly be pointed out that we were wrong. It is only because human “homosexuality” is more political and motivated by small rights-driven groups that we are at this stage now.

    Plus, if other organs had evolved that allowed, say, two men to have sex, would they still be homosexual? Wouldn’t that be leading back to heterosexuality again?

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  98. polemic (427 comments) says:

    It is no more natural an occurrence than for a child to take a lollipop when the shop keeper is not watching.

    If a child’s parents (hetero because homo cannot procreate) taught that child that the primal urge to take something that is not its right to take and it is wrong then it would grow up thinking it was natural – like the right to get the dole!!!

    Fortunately most children have a father and mother and therefore learn that it is normal to suppress the primal urge to take something just because no one saw you.

    But if you want to kid yourself that your primal urges should be followed then try your luck in the Taleban.

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  99. Paulus (2,558 comments) says:

    What Destiny Church and its members wish to do with THEIR money is no concern of mine.
    They do not appear to “do harm” although there are always exceptions which will always surface from time to time, as the media love it.
    They have some excellent social programmes in South Auckland. Good Luck to them.

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  100. polemic (427 comments) says:

    So Pete George -you state morals being required in the case for capitalism thread

    That’s why you need some morals in capitalism, a system will only work well if those involved believe in fair play.

    Obviously to you, morals apply when it suits you and not when it doesnt suit your “primal urges” ?

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  101. Pete George (23,299 comments) says:


    It is only because human “homosexuality” is more political and motivated by small rights-driven groups that we are at this stage now.

    Homosexuality has been at “this stage” to varying degrees for a very long time, practised in most civilisations around the world, long before Christians and Muslims decided to kill people as punishment for it.

    The Spanish conquerors were horrified to discover sodomy openly practiced among native peoples, and attempted to crush it out by subjecting the berdaches under their rule to severe penalties, including public execution, burning and being torn to pieces by dogs.

    To try and describe it as modern politics is absurd. Ruthless suppression by supposedly sex deprived priests (some of whom will have dabbled themselves) has not been very successful.

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  102. Pete George (23,299 comments) says:

    polemic – using dogs to tear people to pieces doesn’t seem very moral, but I didn’t say it was.

    You seem to be confusing morals with the dictates of specific religious groups. Acceptance or attempted suppression varies substantially even within religions. Moral comes from mōrālis meaning usage, custom.

    “Thou shalt not enjoy, just obey” is a custom that is waning, thank goodness.

    I’ve never practised any form of homosexuality and have no inclination to do so, but that doesn’t give me a right to dictate to other consenting adults what they should or shouldn’t do when it doesn’t harm anyone else.

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  103. Pauleastbay (5,035 comments) says:

    I’ve never practised any form of homosexuality and have no inclination to do so, but that doesn’t give me a right to dictate to other consenting adults what they should or shouldn’t do when it doesn’t harm anyone else.

    Well said Pete,

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  104. Spoon (101 comments) says:

    Just want to pick two points from here to play the devil’s advocate on:

    1. Passing an EFTPOS machine around. Really DPF, what’s the issue here? I barely ever carry cash (in NZ). If the Cancer Society are collecting on the street for Daffodil Day it does annoy me that I can’t contribute a few bucks. I’d love it if they had EFTPOS, and I’d probably give them $5. The same for ANZAC poppies. And numerous other good causes that collect on the street each year. It’s 2012, churches and charities should be using technology. Do you find it just as scandalous that 600 years ago they used the printing press to print copies of the bible?

    2. This notion that the leader of a church should be poor. Why? Perhaps taking home millions per year is over the top, however it’s hard to argue that he doesn’t do his job anything short of fantastically. His church is growing with enthusiastic and involved followers, happy to donate their money. This is more than could be said of pretty much any Catholic, Presbyterian or Anglican congregation in NZ. While you may not agree with what he does, he does do it pretty well.

    Further to this there’s the general notion that exists that if a church leader is earning more than the minimum wage that they’re overpaid. Why? If someone chooses to devote their life to this career path, do they not deserve a nice car, a boat, a nice house and a comfortable retirement? The idea that [good] ministers should live in poverty just seems silly to me.

    Disclaimer: I’m related to a couple of ministers (through marriage). I’m not counting on a multi-million dollar inheritance ;).

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  105. Fletch (6,142 comments) says:

    I’ve never practised any form of homosexuality and have no inclination to do so, but that doesn’t give me a right to dictate to other consenting adults what they should or shouldn’t do when it doesn’t harm anyone else.

    Well said Pete,

    It doesn’t give me the right to dictate to anyone what they should do – fair enough – but does it give gays the right to push their agenda, have their behaviour normalised and made lawful so that now they (through the proxy of the Government) dictate to me what I should and should not think, or can and cannot use my private property for (for example, in the case of a motel owner who doesn’t want to rent a single room for an hour to a pair of gays whose use they will put the room to is obvious?).

    To repeat it again, far from me dictating to gays what they should do in their own private time (which doesn’t matter to me), gays want to dictate to the rest of society through law reform the acceptance and normalization of their behaviour. People who doesn’t agree with them has been arrested for hate speech – even in the U.K, just for expressing their view.
    And far from not hurting me, or hurting society, I believe it hurts both. It hurts the family unit, the building block of society; it hurts children in school who are taught this stuff is right and normal; and it hurts those who take up this lifestyle of disease and dysfunction.

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  106. tristanb (1,133 comments) says:

    It is no more natural an occurrence than for a child to take a lollipop when the shop keeper is not watching.

    If a child’s parents (hetero because homo cannot procreate) taught that child that the primal urge to take something that is not its right to take and it is wrong then it would grow up thinking it was natural – like the right to get the dole!!!

    I never remember having a primal urge for gay sex as a child! Just prior to puberty I remember realising that some women were attractive – it was not something I was taught. And I didn’t ever need to be dissuaded by my parents from dating guys! I’ve always been straight. Just like most women are naturally sexually attracted to men. How difficult is it to believe that sometimes men are innately attracted to other men?

    In normal people, sexuality is a natural thing. It’s not something that needs to be forced or taught – like learning not to steal. That’s why I don’t understand the gay-haters. It’s as if they’re saying “well, look at me, I control my gay urges and stay with my wife, aren’t I special in God’s eyes.” Forcing a gay person to be straight, is like forcing a straight person to be gay.

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  107. Ryan Sproull (7,059 comments) says:

    It doesn’t give me the right to dictate to anyone what they should do – fair enough – but does it give gays the right to push their agenda, have their behaviour normalised and made lawful so that now they (through the proxy of the Government) dictate to me what I should and should not think, or can and cannot use my private property for (for example, in the case of a motel owner who doesn’t want to rent a single room for an hour to a pair of gays whose use they will put the room to is obvious?).

    Presumably landlords should similarly be able to kick out tenants if they discover that the tenants are using the private property to host abhorrent Christian prayer meetings?

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  108. Pete George (23,299 comments) says:

    (for example, in the case of a motel owner who doesn’t want to rent a single room for an hour to a pair of gays whose use they will put the room to is obvious?)

    Fortunately we don’t have to go through the charade of booking into motels as Mr and Mrs Smith any more.

    A motelier that insisted on a pre-admission morality test would probably struggle to get much business. As would a stableier a couple of thousand years ago.

    Where would it end? Proof of marriage, proof of no contraception etc. DNA tests to make sure you weren’t with your cousin? That would be tricky, same family non-married motel sharing is common – I’ve stayed in a motel with my son. You’d have to resort to sexual contact detectors – and not just in the bed, especially for spa suites. And you’d have to continually check for visitors.

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  109. East Wellington Superhero (1,151 comments) says:

    Fletch has a point. The gay lobby is not asking everyone else to ‘tolerate’ them, they are asking everyone else to accept that their view is correct and must be normalised by society and accepted by all as normal – which in the modern age ties is state apparatus. There is subtle but important difference. The gay community is not asking for a detente between their view, and say for example the Catholic view, but for the erasing of the Catholic view; and that for Catholics to continue to teach their view is wrong and should be stopped. Is that not their goal? If you asked Grant Robertson, I’d be very surprised that if he could wave a wand to stop Catholics talking about their view of sexuality, that he wouldn’t do it.

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  110. Pete George (23,299 comments) says:

    I don’t see gay people trying to erase the Catholic view. All they want is the same rights as everyone else, to be as they feel or choose.

    Being homosexual is no less or more normal than being Catholic, being either (or both – homosexual Catholics don’t seem to be uncommon) should be the choice of individuals without prejudicial law restrictions.

    Freedom of sexuality should be as acceptable as freedom of religion.

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  111. Swampy (273 comments) says:

    Ahem. Yes. We have this somewhat odd thing where a blog called NZ Conservative turns out to be a weird mixture of undeclared ideologies, including pro-Catholic or Orthodox Church etc.

    Now I live in Earthquake City, where there is currently a debate over whether to take the $40 million in insurance money, for a replacement of their damaged cathedral, or spend another $60 million which does not actually exist and will have to be fundraised, to restore the building back the way it was before the earthquake. That this decision has still not been made, along with the fact that this building is a huge treasure house, speaks volumes. They have had stuff stolen from it, and recently they were wringing their hands because they thought they had lost a pair of doors worth $200,000. I think this shows a disconnection from the reality, which is that most of the Catholic Church’s parishioners are working class poor.

    Sound familiar? And I’ll bet Tamaki’s church building is far better heated and cooled in winter and summer than a typical Catholic church.

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  112. Swampy (273 comments) says:

    The main point of Mr Tamaki is that he has shamelessly exploited traditional Maori/PI beliefs and championed himself as the rangatira or chief of his flock, and in Maori culture they get a very high respect and are often very well paid and live a lavish “chiefly” lifestyle. Of course this is secular and doesn’t relate much to Christian beliefs so in that sense he is largely exploiting his right to be a chief or rangatira over his church flock and has reaped a great many material rewards through it. A lot of what we see in Destiny is based around melding these traditional Maori cultural beliefs into a Christian faith. However by Christian standards this also makes it something of a cult since these values are not accepted as part of the core of Christian belief.

    Whilst some of you may say the church ministers should be paid six figure salaries this kind of divide is generally only accepted in cults. in the Catholic church it is not money but power that their exalted priests and Bishops have over the flock, according to their own twisted teaching the hierarchy have special spiritual powers and abilities that ordinary people don’t. These teachings are very similar to Tamaki’s claims and those of most cult leaders, from which I will leave you to your own conclusions as to the view that some non-Catholic Christians have of the Catholic Church.

    When you go out to the majority of Protestant churches, of which Destiny is an odd reversion almost to pre-Reformation ideology with their ideas of an exalted leader who has exclusive special powers, then the ministers are not paid huge salaries, because they are not really (correctly) much higher in spiritual knowledge, experience or gifting than many of their senior congregation who are not being paid to lead them. In these churches most of the leadership are being paid largely for an administrative ability and their experience and pastoral skills, which any of their membership can also gain with years of experience and spiritual maturity, and perhaps a qualification from a local Bible college.

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  113. eszett (2,365 comments) says:

    It doesn’t give me the right to dictate to anyone what they should do – fair enough – but does it give gays the right to push their agenda, have their behaviour normalised

    Wow, what an outrageous “agenda” to be treated like “normal” else.

    and made lawful so that now they (through the proxy of the Government) dictate to me what I should and should not think, or can and cannot use my private property for (for example, in the case of a motel owner who doesn’t want to rent a single room for an hour to a pair of gays whose use they will put the room to is obvious?).

    Ah, the good ol’ days where you didn’t have to do business with niggers, faggots and other social undesirables.

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  114. eszett (2,365 comments) says:

    Pete, I’m sorry, but to say homosexuality is a natural occurrence is absurd.

    Well, it is a more natural occurrence than say commenting on blogs.

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  115. eszett (2,365 comments) says:

    eszett, I’m not ignoring the wrong any priests have done, but it seems like you totally ignore the same wrong in the rest of society. You point at priests in particular – and yes, they should be more above that sort of thing and examples to everyone else

    What you ignore is that the failings of many others than the offending priests, the systematic cover up of all the others in the heirarchy of the church and ignoring the victims all together.

    but you also choose to ignore the fact that teachers and other groups in society are as bad or worse.

    So is that the new measure for the moral foundation of the cathcolic church? Not worse than other parts of society.

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  116. chiz (1,131 comments) says:

    MrTips:God you can be incredibly thick sometimes CK.

    The Pope did not say gay marriage is the world most evil thing in his speech.

    CK never said that he said it. What she said was:

    just that gays marrying is threatening “the future of humanity itself

    Which is in fact what the Pope said:

    Consequently, policies which undermine the family threaten human dignity and the future of humanity itself

    Try learning to read.

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  117. chiz (1,131 comments) says:

    Fletch:I’m sorry, but to say homosexuality is a natural occurrence is absurd

    Homosexuality is natural. The scientific evidence is quite clear that it has a biological origin.

    If it were, then mankind would have evolved apparatus for that express purpose. But it hasn’t. Man, by physical observation alone, is heterosexual. You can see by observing his sexual organs and by the natural grouping of the family unit. When man and woman get together, they produce offspring.

    I’m not even sure what to make of this attempt at reasoning other than to observe that you aren’t very good at it. Non sequitir after non sequitir. Just because some men get together with woman and produce offspring it does not logically follow that all men are interested in doing so, nor is there any reason from biology why this shoulld automatically be so. If some men prefer to have sex with other men it does not logically or biologically follow that they would need organs for doing so that are different from the organs that heterosexual men use for sex.

    Plus, if other organs had evolved that allowed, say, two men to have sex, would they still be homosexual? Wouldn’t that be leading back to heterosexuality again?

    Good grief. Sexual orientation is about who you are sexually attracted to, not who you have sex with or how you have sex with them. Yes they would still be gay.

    And far from not hurting me, or hurting society, I believe it hurts both. It hurts the family unit, the building block of society; it hurts children in school who are taught this stuff is right and normal; and it hurts those who take up this lifestyle of disease and dysfunction.

    People don’t choose to be gay.

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  118. Swampy (273 comments) says:

    “Another criticism of Tamaki is that he is practically self-ordained and that he is the church. Followers pledge their allegiance to him as the “man of God” and not to the more depersonalised church itself. Religious and spiritual philosophy is a terribly complex subject but it is important to note that many of the large religions have a spiritual head who, although they are earthly and of real flesh and blood, are also a spiritual vessel on earth for their particular god.

    Yes, but Catholics do not worship the Pope and Anglicans do not worship the Archbishop of Canterbury.”

    Well I think you are a little bit misinformed here, not comparing apples with apples.

    The oath of allegience is no different than the one Parliamentarians take – it is not an act of worship. In effect Catholics do effectively grant allieagence to the Pope – therefore this oath that Tamaki’s followers have pledged to him is very much like the Catholics indeed.

    In fact it is very fair to say there are many similarites between the Catholic Church and Destiny.

    Tamaki started out with Lake City Church in Rotorua, long before he burst onto the scene in Auckland – so he has been at this game a good many years.

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  119. sapphira (2 comments) says:

    I am a christian, I was doing my usual bible study in the morning and the subject was “False Teachers”, the first name that entered my mind was Brian Tamaki who owns a business called Destiny church. He’s already got 7000 suckers following him and helping to build his business empire, now he wants the National Government to give him more money to build a haven for him and his suckers in South Auckland. I say to all those people in the Destiny church, get out of there, theres some amazing churches around that focus on GOD and Jesus Christ and the bottom line is GOD wouldn’t pressure anyone black, white, or red to give money they didnt have to give, He loves you for You, not whats in your wallet!! Did he not teach you, for “GOD IS LOVE”. Finally, What goes around, comes back around and Brian Tamaki’s day will come, i betcha he knows that too!!

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