I am so starting a church and calling it that.
To add to your list of self-aggrandizing con-men, add this scheister:
MIAMI, Florida (CNN) — The minister has the number 666 tattooed on his arm.
But Jose Luis de Jesus Miranda is not your typical minister. De Jesus, or “Daddy” as his thousands of followers call him, does not merely pray to God: He says he is God.
“The spirit that is in me is the same spirit that was in Jesus of Nazareth,” de Jesus says.
De Jesus’ claims of divinity have angered Christian leaders, who say he is a fake. Religious experts say he may be something much more dangerous, a cult leader who really believes he is God. [snip – video link]
“He’s in their heads, he’s inside the heads of those people,” says Prof. Daniel Alvarez, a religion expert at Florida International University who has debated some of de Jesus’ followers.
De Jesus, 61, grew up poor in Puerto Rico. He says he served stints in prison there for petty theft and says he was a heroin addict.
De Jesus says he learned he was Jesus reincarnate when he was visited in a dream by angels.
“The prophets, they spoke about me. It took me time to learn that, but I am what they were expecting, what they have been expecting for 2,000 years,” de Jesus says.
The church that he began building 20 years ago in Miami resembles no other:
Followers have protested Christian churches in Miami and Latin America, disrupting services and smashing crosses and statues of Jesus. De Jesus preaches there is no devil and no sin. His followers, he says, literally can do no wrong in God’s eyes. The church calls itself the “Government of God on Earth” and uses a seal similar to the United States.
I think this is a job for Matt’s poo cannon.
If people are actually dumb enough to give this guy money, surely I can clean up.
Coming soon – The Church of the Kneeling Virgin offering plate. Please give a love offering to help us build our church, and receive a coupon for one free communion.