Johnnie Moore’s Gospel for Asia Evasive Maneuvers

Yesterday, I posted a link to a CBC radio documentary about Gospel for Asia’s use of Canadian funds. In this program by Angela MacIvor, PR guru Johnnie Moore was interviewed and made some dubious claims. I take one of them up today. I’ll examine the others in future posts.

During the interview with Moore, MacIvor asked

Can you explain how it’s possible in a period between 2007-2014, GFA reported to the Canadian Revenue Agency that nearly $94-million left Canada and went to India during that time period but GFA reported to the Indian government that zero dollars went to India?

Moore gave a truly extraordinary answer:

I contest that those statistics are factual. The organization has always contested that that is a factual characterization of that and not to mention the organization doesn’t exclusively operate in India. They operate, their partner, they operate in 20 other countries around the world as well.

This issue was one of the earliest matters I researched regarding GFA. In June 2015, I asked former GFA COO David Carroll why funds listed in Canada as going to India didn’t show up as arriving from Canada in Indian documents. He told me:

The Canadian funds were combined with U.S. funds by our auditor in India for various accounting reasons. There is no requirement that they be reported separately.

However, in the Indian reports, funds were listed as originating from other nations, such as Australia, Germany and the UK. According to Indian regulations and contrary to Carroll’s claim, the national source of the funds has to be listed. As noted by MacIvor, for an 8 year period, it appeared Canada had not sent funds when in fact, almost $94-million had been donated specifically for India.

I want to make it clear that Moore’s mention of the other nations where GFA works is irrelevant. The Canadian branch of GFA specifically said in government reports (see this post for images of those reports) the money was being sent to India. This information must be reported accurately. If GFA Canada wanted to send it somewhere else, then some other nation would have been listed. Moore’s statement about other nations was a distraction.

In response to what appeared to be gaslighting from Moore, MacIvor followed up by asked if GFA wants the public to ignore those public reports. Moore’s answer was stunning:

I am not saying you shouldn’t look at those. People ought to have the humility to ask themselves a more important question which is: What is it that I might not know about this? What is the information that I might not have? Or the information that might not be available in the public domain? And I think there are vast gaps between the two pieces of information.

Humility? It is the height of arrogance for Johnnie Moore to accuse donors, former staff of GFA, and members of the public of lacking humility. Since 2015, hundreds of people have been asking GFA for answers to questions about their financial practices only to be met with silence or evasion. When I asked these exact questions (what don’t I know? what can make this make sense?), all I got was silence and name-calling. When a federal judge wanted answers to questions like this, all he got was stone-walling from GFA. I wish the reporter would have asked Johnnie Moore about the sanctions Judge Timothy Brooks imposed on GFA for failure to respond to questions about financial information during the fraud lawsuit brought by  Garland and Phyllis Murphy.

Then Moore dodged the last question posed by MacIvor when she rightfully asked for the information we mere mortals don’t have. Moore’s reply?

Yeah, first of all, that’s a question for the Believers Eastern Church in India and around the world. That’s a question that needs to be asked of them.

How convenient. K.P. Yohannan isn’t available, so they bring in Moore from D.C. to speak for Yohannan on GFA matters, but when Moore turns the attention to Believers’ Church, all of sudden he can’t speak for Yohannan.

Moore got away without answering the questions. So Moore chides the public for failure to understand something he refuses to disclose. The appeal to Believers Church is a disgusting dodge. Not only is Yohannan the head of the church, but GFA in Canada and the U.S. is responsible for how donor funds are spent. GFA needs to know why the funds they sent to India didn’t show up in records there. It is obvious GFA knows or else they would just as concerned about it (where is our money?).

There are two other issues I want to take up from this interview. First, what does it mean that all the funds given to “the field” went to the field? Second, what about those hospitals in India? Moore was asked about that and misrepresented the situation. More to come in future posts…

CBC Documentary on Gospel for Asia: The Spin Continues

Understandably, this CBC radio documentary, out today, focuses on the Canadian side of the Gospel for Asia story.  It is told via the perspective of Canadian pastor Bruce Morrison who once supported GFA. Bruce has been a relentless searcher of truth and has a great platform here to present his case.

A real plus of this program is the interview with public relations representative Johnnie Moore. K.P. Yohannan declined to meet with CBC despite months of requests but GFA found money to fly Moore in to Wills Point to meet with the CBC.

Moore’s answers shade the truth and are insulting and maddening. I intend to take them apart in future posts, perhaps starting tomorrow.

Eric Metaxas Finds His Moral Whisper About Harassment Claims Against Mike Bloomberg

Oh I see how it is. Mike Bloomberg’s past harassment allegations get some press and Eric Metaxas finds his moral concern.

I don’t think this was “whoa” as in “whoa, he is as much of a louse as Trump, maybe I should support him too.” I think this was “whoa” as in “whoa, that’s bad.” What do you think?

Metaxas and other Trump court evangelicals will be severely blasted if they try to play the morality card on Trump’s opponents during this election. They can’t really do it with a straight face. I suspect Metaxas only wrote a muted “whoa” because he knew he would be ridiculed unmercifully if he went for a stronger condemnation.

Recently CBN’s David Brody (a supporter of Trump) acknowledged that making an issue of Pete Buttigieg’s sexuality was not a winning play for Trump supporters since Trump has no moral high ground. Watch:

Brody just ruled out this out as a plausible strategy given Trump’s questionable behavior. I don’t think Bloomberg is going to prevail, but I can’t see how Republicans can make an issue of it if he does.

What is Going on at Acts 29?

By now, it is common knowledge that Acts 29’s CEO Steve Timmis was fired. According a report in Christianity Today, he was let go “amid accusations of abusive leadership.” The ripple effects are significant. His church in the UK is investigating and his publisher stopped selling his books. All of this is in the CT article.

The essence of the charges against Timmis involve micromanaging and defensiveness when challenged. According to the CT piece, Acts 29 staff members brought this to Acts 29 president Matt Chandler’s attention in 2015. However, Chandler led the dismissal of those staffers and required them to sign non-disclosure agreements in order to get their severance packages.

It is worth noting that Steve Timmis was on Acts 29’s board when Mark Driscoll and Mars Hill Church was removed from the Acts 29 Network in August 2014. Now we learn that within a year of that act, Timmis was accused of nearly the same actions and protected by Chandler and the Acts 29 board. What changed?

Another name on the list of board members who removed Driscoll was Darrin Patrick. In 2016, Patrick was removed from The Journey in St. Louis for “pastoral misconduct.” Steve Timmis was on Patrick’s restoration team. Now Patrick is back in business.

While none of this may influence how to plant a church, those who are in the market for such services should be aware of what they are getting into.

 

 

 

Don’t Stop Believing Awkward Style

You just never know what you are going to find on this blog.

I don’t really have a reason or words for this but this actually happened.

Jim Bakker, Lori Bakker, Paula White-Cain, Johnathan Cain from Journey, Mondo De La Vega and Tammy Sue Bakker (Jim Bakker’s daughter with Tammy Faye Bakker) make Don’t Stop Believing a sad shadow of its former self.

The shots of the audience at the end are great.

What a show.

Ecumenical National Prayer Breakfast Tribute to Jesus

At least that what Rep. Jody Hice (R-GA) says about it.

Rep. Hice remembered to say the gathering was bipartisan but he gave away the fact that the NPB isn’t an ecumenical meeting. It is not a multi-faith event. It is all about portraying a tribute to Christianity by Congress and the Executive branch.

Today, in a move that should shock no one, Trump used the event to tout his acquittal.

In essence, Trump and all of the politicians there get to use religion for political purposes. Trump has a very specific purpose but even the Democratic pols conflate political power with Christianity by their presence and support. I can’t see how either Christianity or government is served well.

This is a good time to point you to the Netflix documentary series on the organization who puts on the NPB – The Fellowship Foundation. While I do believe the organization does and has done good philanthropy, I think the NPB should be halted or modified to make it transparent that Congress doesn’t host it.

UPDATE: Part of Trump’s speech turned out to be a campaign rally of sorts.

Trump will use any opportunity to exalt himself and the Fellowship Foundation smiles and looks on. Everybody pretends to be unified in Jesus.

Jesus wept.