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    • Sad stories but maybe we can learn from them or even prevent future ones?

      "Televangelists are not as talked about today as they were in the 1980s and 1990s, when many rose to fame and fortune through mushrooming cable channels.

      But they have never gone away. Even after numerous press exposés, the rogue elements have often bounced back. Some have got even richer. Many have taken their appeals on to social media.

      A number of those making the most persistent pleas for money tap into something called the prosperity gospel, which hinges on a belief that your health and wealth are controlled by God, and God is willing you to be prosperous. Believers are encouraged to show their faith through payments, which they understand will be repaid - many times over - either in the form of wealth or healing."

      Sometimes the desperate donors know that the preachers are rich but they rationalize it that the preachers got rich because they have a connection with God. And if it worked for the preachers maybe it would work for them.

      There is a Texas-based group, the Trinity Foundation which has been struggling for years to stop the exploitation, but, unfortunately, they have had very little success. It seems to be easier to cause grief for the preachers by going after income tax fraud on their personal taxes than to get anything official to happen to stop the exploitation. No government agency seems to have enough interest to take action.

    • Here's an example that's been making the rounds:

      What an expert manipulator this pastor is, it's incredible. See how he cycles through the personas, second to second: authoritative, congenial, threatening, flattering, pondering, preaching... Trying to figure out which will work (hats off to the reporter, nothing did!)... No wonder he's so successful in separating the gullible from their money.

    • Thanks so much for that video link. Absolutely jaw dropping. To see that preacher call her "baby" "sweetheart" etc. to demean her was awful. And his fake smirky smile to show what a "nice" guy he is. Sickening. And trying to justify his luxurious life style with meaningless phrases. I don't know how folks fall for these preachers.