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Ignorant Rick Warren’s Ugandan BFF is Dangerously Crazy

In a pre-election video, Rick Warren,who says he would never endorse a candidate but on moral issues makes it really clear whom he prefers–once again fondles a favorite rotting corpse of lies, that "for 5,000 years in every religion marriage has been one man and one woman." Then in an astounding leap of linguistic faith Pastor Rick says that:

There are about 2% of Americans who are homosexual or gay and lesbian people. We should not let 2% of the population change the definition of marriage.

This is not even just a Christian issue. It’s a humanitarian and human issue.

WTF?!  You wanna talk humanitarian issues, Pastor Rick? Let’s talk about your BFF  and partner in the fight on AIDS in Africa, Martin Ssempa who has appeared on stage at Saddleback Church twice and who moved your wife to tears as she declared

You are my brother, Martin, and I love you. 

Ssempa has burned condoms in the name of Jesus, called on newspapers to publish the names of known homosexuals and urged the imprisonment of gays.  And Ssempa is hugely crazy, one of the many evangelized African pastors dangerously obsessed with witchcraft.

As Max Blumenthal writes, Ssempa, who has a room set aside for exorcisms–when interviewed by  Dr. Helen Epstein, author of The Invisible Cure: Why We’re Losing The Fight Against AIDS In Africa–told the public health expert

that Satan worshipers hold meetings under Lake Victoria, where they are promised riches in exchange for human blood, which they collect by staging car accidents and kidnappings.

Blumenthal reports that Ssempe is a close friend with Uganda’s First Lady Janet Museveni, who on New Year’s Eve 1999 rededicated the country to the "lordship" of Jesus Christ during a stadium revival meeting. She was joined on stage by a pastor who announced:

We renounce idolatry, witchcraft, and Satanism in our land! 

Sounds a bit like Kenyan pastor Thomas Muthee who cast out witchcraft for Sarah Palin in her Wasilla church.

Last May in Kissii Kenya, 11 elderly people were killed and 50 houses torched as a mob went looking for witches. Residents accused the witches of causing their children to perform poorly in school.  Njoroge Ndirangu, the commissioner in charge of Kisii Central district said:

These people identified who is to be killed by accusing their victims of bewitching their sons and daughters.

Both a part of the continent’s history, traditionally "witchcraft" in Africa differed from sorcery. Witchcraft was an accidental inability to control magical powers, an involuntarily wandering evil eye, while sorcery was directed magic.  There were–and still are–also "witch doctors," sorcerers who cure people of both bewitchments and provide cures for illnesses using local herbs–and yes sometimes these are the same thing. And of course there are charlatans who claim magical powers and like many pastors, will take a fee for removing curses and witchery.

Since the 19th century, evangelical Christianity, which has grown more frantic and fanatic since the influx of billions of dollars in HIV funding, has muddied the difference and witches are seen everywhere.  Pastors tell parents that their children, some as young as nine months, who have fevers or cry are possessed and need to be delivered from witchcraft at a price.

Often pastors promise that children and women afflicted with witchery can be "delivered,"  that exorcised of the ability to bewitch, for  a price. But many times the children are abused and abandoned.

Helen Ukpabio, a wealthy Nigerian evangelist filmmaker and president of Liberty Gospel Church, claims to have done 20,000  "deliverances"  in Nigeria and America.

If you don’t deliver a witch, the family can never be at peace. Let us deliver the people who are witches. We should not allow sentiments to come in here, because witchcraft is real…Witchcraft in not only practised in Nigeria. When I went to North Carolina in the United States, there were very many witches. They came to me asking, "Please can you deliver me? Can you deliver me? Please deliver me."

Ukpabio made a popular video showing children allegedly eating corpse and being inducted into a coven.  She told AllAfrica that the film

warns parents to beware of the greed in their children as greedy children who receive everything they see from other children at school or the playground can easily be contaminated.

"Contaminated" by witchcraft. And how does witchcraft tie into HIV/AIDS education and prevention? Pastor Joe Ita, the preacher at Ukpabio’s Liberty Gospel Church explains:

But we cannot attribute all things to witches, they work on inclinations too, so they don’t create HIV, but if you are promiscuous then the witch will give you HIV.

HIV/AIDS activist Reggie Jerrison of Nata Botswana claims he was resurrected from death by Bishop Dr. Barnabas Lekganyane. Jerrison–who takes antiretrovirals after being diagnosed with HIV and works as a peer counsellor advocating condoms and testing–refuses to admit that he got HIV through sexual intercourse, blood transfusion and needle sharing. He says he got HIV through witchcraft.

"I have not been infected by this virus because I had an affair. It is all witchcraft. It is not because I slept with an HIV positive person."

Even after intense questioning on why he blames his infection on witchcraft, he is adamant that someone has bewitched him.

Western church groups need to continue educating people about the real causes of HIV/AIDS–and those causes aren’t witchcraft. European and and American churches working on African HIV/AIDS education–hello, Pastor Rick!–need to turn African evangelicals away from the insanity of riculous accustations which lead to the repulsive abuse of children and the elderly, often at a profit by pastors. To use Rick Warren’s words:

 This is not even just a Christian issue. It’s a humanitarian and human issue.

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Lisa Derrick

Lisa Derrick

Los Angeles native, attended UC Berkeley and Loyola Marymount University before punk rock and logophilia overtook her life. Worked as nightclub columnist, pop culture journalist and was a Hollywood housewife before writing for and editing Sacred History Magazine. Then she discovered the thrill of politics. She also appears frequently on the Dave Fanning Show, one of Ireland's most popular radio broadcasts.

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