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Saturday, 6 January 2018

GOD DELUSION: Nigerian Mega-Rich Pastors Living In Million Pound Homes Prey On Believers With Claims Of Curing Deadly Diseases

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A Sun investigation reveals the lavish worlds of Britain's loaded pastors including plush mansions, a £120k birthday party and worshippers thrust thousands of direct debit forms a week
THESE are the mega-rich messengers of God whose churches are raking in millions from their worshippers in some of the poorest parts of Britain.
Richard Dawkins's The God Delusion gives it to believers with both barrels.
In the course of his work, the evolutionary theorist Richard Dawkins has long asserted that belief in God is both irrational and profoundly harmful to society. In his latest book, published by Bantam Press, he tackles the subject head-on, exposing both religion's faulty logic and the widespread suffering it causes. This extract is taken from the opening chapter. 

Pastors Matthew Ashimolowo and Alex Omokudu live in sprawling seven-figure mansions while their huge congregations are told to hand over money often straight from their salaries.
 Matthew Ashimolow's KICC makes £6.3million-a-year through worshippers donating from their salaries
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Matthew Ashimolow's KICC makes £6.3million-a-year through worshippers donating from their salaries
 Alex Omokudu's Victorious Pentecostal Assembly makes £1.1million-a-year in donations
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Alex Omokudu's Victorious Pentecostal Assembly makes £1.1million-a-year in donations
Meanwhile, the preachers lead services in which it is claimed people have been cured of life-threatening illnesses - some of them on the spot.
The Sun found Omokudu continues to promote videos such as one claiming a young boy has been cured of cancer while the pastor places his hands on him. His church has been warned by authorities about potentially exploiting people with serious illnesses.
We witnessed worshippers being told "God wants you to give all your money to him" and warned about showing "disobedience to God" before being handed direct debit forms.
The pastors claim to share their wealth with those who need it but we can reveal the financial dealings which have seen them acquire lavish lifestyles most worshippers can only dream of.
 Sun reporter Richard Wheatstone attended services at both churches
NICK OBANK - THE SUN
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Sun reporter Richard Wheatstone attended services at both churches

Pastor 'with healing powers from God' lives in £2m mansion as deprived worshippers told 'give your money to Him'

Pastor Alex Omokudu claims to be "heavily anointed with healing powers from God" and his church takes more than £1million a year in donations from his devoted following.
Omokudu moved to the UK from Nigeria in 2002 and launched Victorious Pentecostal Assembly (VPA) three years later.
Today, the 53-year-old - who is called Daddy by his flock - owns a lavish £2million nine-bedroom mansion in leafy Hornchurch, Essex.
The lavish gated mansion includes five reception rooms, a swimming pool, a sauna and a 250ft garden.
He also owns a second £600,000 property a short distance away.
Despite his luxurious lifestyle, his website states: "My wealth belongs to the people, whatever I have I give out. People are suffering and need help."
 Alex Omokudu claims to have been 'heavily anointed with healing powers from God'
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Alex Omokudu claims to have been 'heavily anointed with healing powers from God'
 The 53-year-old is called 'Daddy' by his congregation
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The 53-year-old is called 'Daddy' by his congregation
 He owns a £2million nine-bedroom mansion in Hornchurch, Essex
NICK OBANK - THE SUN
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He owns a £2million nine-bedroom mansion in Hornchurch, Essex
 The plush mansion boasts a swimming pool and a sauna
NICK OBANK - THE SUN
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The plush mansion boasts a swimming pool and a sauna
Meanwhile, worshippers are effectively leaned on to empty their pockets to 'the God of VPA'.
The main church in Barking, East London, is attended by around 5,000 worshippers every week and lies within one of the most deprived areas in the UK.
VPA also operates in run-down parts of Birmingham, Manchester, Bradford, and Luton.
Our reporter attended a service at VPA's Barking church and joined thousands of people repeatedly told: "Give your money to God to get ahead of others".
The service started with a number of testimonies of people claiming to have experienced miracles after praying to 'the God of VPA' and requests from those looking for help.
One teenager about to sit his A-level exams was told: "When you enter that exam hall, God will fill your head with the answers".
 The church is based at a converted office block in a deprived area of Barking, East London
NICK OBANK - THE SUN
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The church is based at a converted office block in a deprived area of Barking, East London
 The church packs in around 5,000 worshippers a week
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The church packs in around 5,000 worshippers a week
 Our reporter saw worshippers told 'God wants you to give all your money to him' before being handed direct debit forms
THE SUN - RICHARD WHEATSTONE
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Our reporter saw worshippers told 'God wants you to give all your money to him' before being handed direct debit forms
The congregation was then read a passage from 2 Kings 4 in which a woman finds herself in debt and is told to collect empty containers from her neighbours which God fills with oil to sell.
"Give your money to God to get ahead of others... give your money to God to get ahead of others" repeats the pastor.
A number of similar phrases were repeated as the volume of the music grew slowly in the converted office block.
The pastor added: "God wants you to give all your money to Him.. give all your money to Him.
"There is no excuse not to give your money to God... he sees any money you have coming. You cannot hide money from God.
"The church of VPA and Pastor Alex Omokudu will deliver you prosperity."
As the music built to a crescendo, direct debit forms emerged - and worshippers were told to come to the front and "pay your tithes".
But while vowing to serve the congregation who hand over £1m-a-year, Omokudu also personally takes an annual £102,000 in rent for the church they worship in.

Via  The Sun

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