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ReligionNewsBlog.com, Feb. 12-14, 2004

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  • Anton Hein
    ReligionNewsBlog.com, Feb. 12-14, 2004 Sat, Feb. 14, 2004 [The Body] Obedience to cruelty http://www.religionnewsblog.com/6071-The_Body.html Under the
    Message 1 of 1 , Feb 14, 2004
      ReligionNewsBlog.com, Feb. 12-14, 2004

      Sat, Feb. 14, 2004
      [The Body] Obedience to cruelty
      Under the circumstances, it is hard to imagine how Ms. Robidoux, now 28,
      ever developed much sense of self. The mother of two children by age 15, she
      was told then by her sect-member parents to either obey the group or move
      out. Former sect members testified that she was viewed as a "baby machine"
      and the "goat" of the group, even by her husband.

      [Polygamy] Family ripped apart
      The five daughters and five sons who loyally follow Warren Jeffs, the
      self-proclaimed prophet of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of
      Latter Day Saints, have pitted themselves against their apostate siblings,
      distancing their 40 children from the rest of the family.

      [Aum Shinrikyo] Report: One-fourth of doomsday cult followers returned to
      More than a quarter of the members of a doomsday cult arrested over a deadly
      gas attack on Tokyo's subways returned to the group after they were released
      or served their prison terms, a report said Friday.

      [Aum Shinrikyo] Asahara death would be 'loss for mankind,' says Russian
      The widely expected death sentence to be handed down on Shoko Asahara, the
      founder of the AUM Shinrikyo cult that is blamed for the 1995 subway gas
      attack in Tokyo, would result in ''a loss for mankind,'' an imprisoned
      Russian cult follower said Friday.

      [Aum Shinrikyo] Film set of Aum commune too real
      Yamanashi Prefecture-Residents of this village at the foot of Mount Fuji
      where Aum Shinrikyo committed foul deeds were spooked to see cult facilities
      resurrected. But it was only for show, as props for a docudrama. [...]
      Village authorities had no qualms about shooting. But residents got a jolt.
      "There was no warning, so it was a complete surprise,'' said Shigeru Arai,
      47, a dairy farmer who lives nearby. "It isn't as if Aum came back to build
      them. But (the set) brings back bad memories of a dark time.''

      [False Memory Syndrome] Psychiatric patient tells of ordeal in treatment
      When Elizabeth Gale sought psychiatric treatment in 1986, she suffered from
      depression, the most common of psychiatric illnesses. But Dr. Bennett Braun
      and his colleagues convinced her that her family indoctrinated her as a
      child so she would make babies for sacrifice in a satanic cult, Gale charged
      in a malpractice suit she settled Wednesday for $7.5 million. The
      therapists, she alleged, told her she needed their help to recover memories
      hidden beneath layers of rare multiple personalities that she had developed
      as a psychic guard against her childhood trauma.

      [Allen Harrod, et. al.] Couple faces federal charges
      Self-proclaimed religious prophet Allen Harrod has been indicted in federal
      court along with his wife on nine counts of transporting children across
      state lines to engage unlawful sexual conduct. Harrod, 56, has been accused
      of writing his own interpretations of Scripture to justify the molestation
      of children. He was convicted in state court last month on criminal charges
      related to the same group of children. Harrod could face life in prison
      when he returns to state court Feb. 23. His wife, Irene Hunt, 49, faces up
      to 18 years for her role in what prosecutors called a religious cult.

      [Gwen Shamblin] NewsChannel 5 Investigates: Firm Beliefs (Part 1)
      A religious movement based in Williamson County is now part of a murder
      investigation. The question: did the Remnant Fellowship's Firm Beliefs
      inadvertently lead to the beating death of a little boy. Now, evidence
      uncovered by NewsChannel 5 could help investigators answer that question.
      Gwen Shamblin developed a following of thousands with a Christian diet plan
      she called the Weigh Down Workshop. That message led to the formation of her
      own religious movement, the Remnant Fellowship. The church claims about
      1,000 members spread throughout some 130 cities. It's a movement that
      demands strict obedience -- even from its children.

      [Gwen Shamblin] NewsChannel 5 Investigates: Firm Beliefs (Part 2)
      [H]is parents, Joseph and Sonya Smith, are charged with beating him to
      death. Investigators say they had turned to the Remnant Fellowship with its
      message of strict discipline -- instead of seeking professional help. It
      seems to be thought by Remnant Fellowship leadership that these mental
      illnesses are more sort of fabrications of a poor spiritual life where you
      are not in obedience to God," says former Remnant recruit Adam Brooks.
      Brooks notes that, in Remnant's own videos, depression and anti-depressants
      are equated with sin.

      [Gwen Shamblin] NewsChannel 5 Investigates: Firm Beliefs (Part 3)
      An exclusive NewsChannel 5 investigation focused on a Williamson County
      church, and how its Firm Beliefs may have led to the child abuse death of a
      little boy. One of the questions: why are members so willing to let the
      group's founder tell them how to run their lives? In the Bible, there are
      the prophets, such as Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Malachi. In Remnant Fellowship,
      there's Gwen Shamblin. "She seems to be considered a prophet by all members
      of Remnant Fellowship," says former Remnant recruit Adam Brooks.

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      Fri, Feb. 13, 2004
      [Aum Shinrikyo] Day of Judgment: Matsumoto's decision to be 'big' followed
      by fraud, arrest
      This is the fifth installment of a series on Chizuo Matsumoto, the founder
      of the Aum Supreme Truth cult.

      [Cloning] Scientists clone 30 human embryos
      South Korean scientists have cloned 30 human embryos to obtain cells they
      hope could one day be used to treat disease. Seoul National University's
      Woo Suk Hwang, and colleagues, took the genetic material from normal cells
      in women donors and combined it with their eggs. The resulting embryos were
      then grown up to produce so-called stem cells that can divide into any
      tissue in the body. The aim is to use the cells to replace ones that have
      failed in patients with problems such as Alzheimer's disease.

      [Cloning] Cloning milestones since Dolly the sheep
      As the most advanced human embryo clones yet are produced, BBC News Online
      looks back as some of the landmark moments since 1997, when British
      scientists unveiled the first successful mammal clone.

      [Cloning] Q&A: Cloned human embryos
      South Korean scientists have created 30 human embryo clones. BBC News Online
      looks at the significance of the announcement.

      [Cloning] South Koreans call for baby clone ban
      The South Korean scientists who successfully cloned human embryos to extract
      stem cells have called for a global ban on cloning to make babies. Woo Suk
      Hwang, who led the research, said reproductive cloning was clearly wrong,
      and should be outlawed.

      [Polygamy] A State Run Hotline Offers Help To Polygamist Families
      The Utah Attorney General announced Thursday the expansion of the state's
      Domestic Violence Information Line to serve victims of abuse in polygamous
      communities. Attorney General Mark Shurtleff also said his office was
      working to erect a billboard advertising the anonymous and confidential
      service in Hildale, the polygamous stronghold 300 miles south of Salt Lake
      City on the Arizona border.

      [Polygamy] Plural wives defend lifestyle
      First came the book, Voices in Harmony: Contemporary Women Celebrate Plural
      Marriage. Then a short-lived and mostly overlooked magazine about polygamy:
      Mormon Focus. Now, women behind those efforts have organized Principle
      Voices for Polygamy to air positive information about living "the
      principle," as those engaged in plural marriage call it. [...] They
      describe plural marriage as a "wonderful experience" -- which sets them
      apart from the very vocal Tapestry Against Polygamy, which offers help to
      those who would leave polygamous relationships.

      [Benny Hinn] US Preacher's India Visit Sparks Controversy
      American faith-healer Benny Hinn's India visit beginning Friday has become a
      contentious issue, with the Indian Christian community divided on whether or
      not to welcome the popular Evangelist television star.

      [Jehovah's Witnesses] Silent Lambs conference to confront child abuse
      A support group for Jehovah's Witnesses who say they are victims of sexual
      abuse put a white stuffed toy lamb on the steps of a Kingdom Hall in west
      Nashville yesterday to call attention to its cause. It also announced plans
      for a conference next month to draw more attention to the problem of sexual
      abuse. The group, Silent Lambs, says it is the only support group for
      sexually abused Jehovah's Witnesses.

      [Reina y Señora de Todo lo Creado] Doomsday Cult Investigation
      An accused pedophile from San Antonio now serves as a spiritual advisor for
      a doomsday cult. News 4 WOAI Trouble Shooter Brian Collister traveled to
      Costa Rica to investigate and find if cult leader Juan Pablo Delgadois a
      visionary or a con artist. His name is Juan Pablo Delgado and he says the
      Virgin Mary speaks to him.

      [Reina y Señora de Todo lo Creado] Priest or Pedophile?
      The Catholic Church says he's a renegade priest. The Archdiocese recently
      warned followers to stay away from Father Alfredo Prado. He is accused of
      molesting young boys. Prado now belongs to a violent dooms day cult in Costa
      Rica. Trouble Shooter Brian Collister and his photographer risked their
      lives, traveling to Central America to track down and confront Prado about
      the allegations

      [Cloning] S. Korean cloning intensifies debate
      Politicians, philosophers, lawyers and scientists have argued about it for
      years, but therapeutic cloning - making a human embryo for medical research
      - is now a reality. And the debate over the procedure is growing more

      [Cloning] The Cloning Success in Korea
      The day scientists might be able to create a human baby through cloning
      moved closer this week, when South Korean scientists revealed that they had
      cloned some 30 human embryos, grown them for a week in a laboratory and
      extracted stem cells for more research. Although the experiments were not
      intended to produce a baby, and none of the embryos were implanted in a
      woman, the techniques described by the Koreans will probably make it easier
      for some scientist somewhere to clone a human. Clearly it is time for the
      United States and other nations to ban cloning for human reproduction. For
      now, the only legitimate use of cloning should be for research and medical

      [Cloning] S. Korea reports cloning of human embryo
      The achievement, to be published tomorrow in the journal Science, was hailed
      by many scientists because it brings closer the possibility that replacement
      tissues might one day be grown to treat medical conditions such as diabetes,
      spinal cord injuries and Parkinson's disease.

      [Polygamy] 2 in Kingston clan sue ex-member, attorneys
      Two members of the Kingston polygamy clan sued a former member and her
      attorneys Wednesday, claiming she defamed them at a news conference that
      announced a $110 million civil lawsuit against 242 Kingston family members
      and 97 businesses. Stephen Kingston, of Arizona, and Ted Kingston, Las
      Vegas, filed separate lawsuits in U.S. District Court, each seeking at least
      $2,000 for each news media report of the news conference and at least $1 for
      each person who saw the coverage. The suits list some 79 separate news
      organizations that published reports of the Aug. 28 news conference.

      Thu, Feb. 12, 2004
      [Raelians] Australia casts doubt on cloned baby claims
      Claims that a human baby had been cloned in Australia were dismissed as "the
      medical equivalent of a UFO story" by officals here. Biotechnology group
      Clonaid claimed late Wednesday that its sixth human clone had been born to a
      previously infertile Sydney couple last week at a local hospital. But the
      organisation, linked to the Raelian religious sect, declined to produce DNA
      evidence to back up its claims.

      [Raelians] Send in the clones
      They want us to believe that humans are descendants of aliens who arrived
      recently in UFOs. Now the cult known as the Raelian Movement claims its
      subsidiary company Clonaid has cloned a Sydney man at a cost of around
      $300,000. [...] One of Australia's leading reproductive experts, Professor
      Robert Jansen from Sydney IVF, said yesterday: "They claim life on Earth is
      of extraterrestrial origin. "I think it is about time someone applied the
      Trade Practices Act."

      [Aum Shinrikyo] Day of Judgment: Humble beginnings shed light on Aum cult
      This is the fourth installment of a series on Chizuo Matsumoto, the founder
      of the Aum Supreme Truth cult.

      [Tvind] Tvind sought troubled kids to employ
      Tvind leaders hit on a novel strategy to make the most of the bright green
      clothing-collection bins that dot Chicago-area streets: They attempted to
      enlist foster children and juvenile delinquents to help gather and sort the
      clothes. Since it gained a foothold in the U.S. in the 1980s, the Danish
      organization known as Tvind has tried without success to operate schools and
      residential treatment programs for troubled youth.

      [Tvind] The green bins of Gaia
      Gaia's clothing collection business flourishes in Chicago, but its promises
      to promote the environment are questionable. Meanwhile, the organization's
      leaders are under criminal indictment in Europe.

      [False Memory Syndrome] Not in cult: Woman gets $7.5 million
      Rush North Shore Medical Center psychiatrist Bennett Braun and psychologist
      Roberta Sachs paid a northwest suburban woman $7.5 million to settle her
      claim that they brainwashed her into believing she was a member of a cult
      and needed to be sterilized so she would not bear any more babies to be
      sacrificed for the cult. The truth is that Elizabeth Gale, 52, never had
      any children. She was just a woman with mild depression who surrendered
      herself to the care of Braun in 1986.

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