Church press rejects Cerullo's adverts: Fund-raising tactics scandalise the evangelical mainstream

CHURCH newspapers are beginning to reject advertisements from Morris Cerullo, the controversial American evangelist, after revelations of his fund-raising tactics scandalised mainstream evangelicals.

Mr Cerullo has hired the 18,000-seat Earls Court Arena for a 'Mission to London' from 18 to 22 August. The campaign is being heavily advertised on billboards and in the Church press.

But the Baptist Times refused this week to carry a full-page advertisement from Mr Cerullo's organisation claiming that 2,250 people had been healed during his last visit to London. The Anglican Church of England Newspaper and Church Times carried the controversial advertisement after the figure of 2,250 had been changed to 'many'.

However, John Martin, the editor of the Church of England Newspaper, said yesterday that he was reconsidering his paper's policy and would probably carry no more of Mr Cerullo's lucrative advertisements.

Mr Cerullo's claims of miraculous healing remain controversial. But his fundraising letters have been condemned even by many evangelicals who are sympathetic to the idea of divine healing.

One letter, sent out at Easter this year to people who had given generously to previous campaigns, offers to save from hell selected family members of the donor's choice for pounds 5 a time.

The money is to be spent on pamphlets to convert Israeli Jews in preparation for the Second Coming.

'Partner, for only pounds 5.00 we can print, ship, and distribute one book. Our underground distribution network is on the alert - ready and waiting to deliver these books directly to 200,000 Jewish homes.

'God has shown me this will be the greatest outreach to the Jew in our history. More Jews will find the messiah through this outreach than any other we have ever conducted.

'Hear me on this. There will be a direct, one-on-one spiritual correlation between every seed you plant for the salvation of the Jew and . . . one of your unsaved loved ones finding Jesus. The devourer is trying to destroy your family by luring your unsaved loved ones to hell. Know that NOW, we can stop his destruction . . .

'Send me the names of your unsaved sons and daughters, your spouses, your cousins, aunts, uncles - anyone you care about and do not want to see spend eternity in hell.

'If you send in pounds 10 for the salvation of 2 Jews, then I believe God will return to you the salvation of 2 of your family members. God honors his spiritual laws. What you sow is what you harvest. This is what I am believing God for]'

A spokesman for the Chief Rabbi's Office said Dr Jonathan Sacks was 'deeply distressed by missionary tactics specifically targeted against Jews.' The letter has also been widely condemned by other evangelical Christians. The Rev Dr Chris Wright, Principal of All Nations Christian College, denounced it as 'spiritually perverted and pastorally disastrous' in this week's Church of England Newspaper.

The Rev Joel Edwards, of the Evangelical Alliance, described it as 'lacking in theological astuteness. Very very lacking.' The Evangelical Alliance has split deeply over Mr Cerullo's visit, largely on racial lines. A great part of his audience has come from the black-led churches.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Arts and Entertainment
Cassetteboy's latest video is called Emperor's New Clothes rap
videoThe political parody genius duo strike again with new video
Sport
Steven Fletcher scores the second goal for Scotland
cricketBut they have to bounce back to beat Gibraltar in Euro 2016 qualifier
News
news
Arts and Entertainment
Chris Evans is the favourite to replace Jeremy Clarkson on Top Gear
TV
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Junior Web Designer - Client Liaison

£6 per hour: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity to join a gro...

Recruitment Genius: Service Delivery Manager

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A Service Delivery Manager is required to join...

Recruitment Genius: Massage Therapist / Sports Therapist

£12000 - £24000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A opportunity has arisen for a ...

Ashdown Group: Practice Accountant - Bournemouth - £38,000

£32000 - £38000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A successful accountancy practice in...

Day In a Page

Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

The only direction Zayn could go

We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

Spells like teen spirit

A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

Licence to offend in the land of the free

Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

From farm to fork in Cornwall

One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
Robert Parker interview: The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes

Robert Parker interview

The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes
Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor
How to make your own Easter egg: Willie Harcourt-Cooze shares his chocolate recipes

How to make your own Easter egg

Willie Harcourt-Cooze talks about his love affair with 'cacao' - and creates an Easter egg especially for The Independent on Sunday
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef declares barbecue season open with his twist on a tradtional Easter Sunday lamb lunch

Bill Granger's twist on Easter Sunday lunch

Next weekend, our chef plans to return to his Aussie roots by firing up the barbecue
Joe Marler: 'It's the way I think the game should be played'

Joe Marler: 'It's the way I think the game should be played'

The England prop relives the highs and lows of last Saturday's remarkable afternoon of Six Nations rugby
Cricket World Cup 2015: Has the success of the tournament spelt the end for Test matches?

Cricket World Cup 2015

Has the success of the tournament spelt the end for Test matches?
The Last Word: Justin Gatlin knows the price of everything, the value of nothing

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Justin Gatlin knows the price of everything, the value of nothing