Another Day, Another Apocalypse… *sigh*
I began blogging on February 4th, 2007. I like to imagine that in the future it will be sort of a worldwide holiday, and I will be celebrated like Bill and Ted (be excellent to each other!).
Anyways, on that first day of blogging I wrote a post concerning Jose de Luis de Jesus: Jesus Part II: This Time It’s Personal. The article I linked to at msnbc.com has since been taken off their site, but the long and short of it: this crazy dude has been on my radar for a long time.
Jose de Luis de Jesus calls himself Jesus Christ returned after having a ‘vision’ [delusional episode] in 1973 while living in Massachusetts of two angels coming to him, and the body of Christ apparently manifested in de Jesus, and all of a sudden, that’s when he knew. Here’s the even crazier/better part: he also thinks he’s the Antichrist, and exhibits a “666″ tattoo on his forearm.
So, certifiable nutjob, but, he has a group of followers who believe this crap and give him gobs of money. Like I always say: stupid and desperate people are always easy targets to separate from their money.
De Jesus’s lunacy has reached a crescendo of incomparable lunacy:
The group, which they say has branches in five Canadian cities and members in more than 130 countries, believes that on June 30 (or July 1 across the international dateline), their Texas-based leader and his followers will be transformed, said Alex Poessy, the group’s bishop in Canada.
To spread the word, Growing in Grace put up billboards in Toronto this week featuring Mr. de Jesus.
Aaron Lynett / National Post
“That day, the body of Jose de Luis de Jesus, who is a human like you and me, his flesh is going to be immortal…. He’s going to be living forever. And that will happen to him, but also his followers.”
But, said Mr. Poessy: “All those that are not believers are going to be destroyed.”
Growing in Grace International is not the first to prognosticate that the so-called end of the world will come this year. The Mayan calendar famously picks Dec. 21, 2012.
Courtesy of The Government of God
Jose Luis De Jesus, leader of Growing in Grace International
But Mr. de Jesus also predicts that the “transformation” will endow him, and his loyal followers, with superpowers, such as the ability to fly and walk through walls, said Axel Cooley, the bishop’s daughter.
“[We can] run and not get tired. Go through fire and not get burned…. I could be talking to you right now, and then I could go through that wall. So, you’ll know there is a difference,” Cooley said.
The global economy will collapse as currency markets “fail” and governments around the world will be forced to resign. These predictions are based on biblical passages, she adds.
“The world’s not going to end. What is going to end is the system…. All the governments and the currencies will fall. The new government of the 666 will take over,” she said.
The group’s billboards feature a picture of Mr. de Jesus, with such messages as “666, number of wisdom” or “Countdown to the transformation June 30, 2012.” The group is eyeing billboard locations in Ottawa and Kitchener as well, she said. Growing in Grace has also put up billboards in at least 10 countries, including the U.S., Brazil and Puerto Rico, Ms. Cooley said.
Hmmmm… “the “transformation” will endow him, and his loyal followers, with superpowers, such as the ability to fly and walk through walls.” Anyone want to bet me that on July 1 they won’t be able to demonstrate these ‘superpowers’?
Damn, some people are stupid… if ignorance is bliss then these must be the happiest people alive!
I mean that negatively, but…
Canadian member Ana Guevara, 20, brushes the cult claims off.
“All our lives have been enriched with this…. If we were a cult, then I guess we’re a pretty awesome cult. Because it’s teaching you how to live happy. How to live in a good mood,” says Ms. Guevara, whose family is also part of Growing in Grace.
The stupid, it burns!
Not only has de Jesus set a date for the rapture, claimed ridiculous ‘transformations’ for him and his followers, in addition, he is also predicting that all world governments will collapse and he will be the world’s president. Extravagant claims much? Much too much!
In a video posted on YouTube and on their website, cegenglish.com, Mr. de Jesus called for his followers to enter into the final countdown until, he says, their government will come into power. “A government where we will govern everything with a perfect order. This is my last farewell for you. The time is finished… We will see each other soon in Armageddon.”
Damn, some people are stupid… some people actually believe this; they give him money and worship him! They believe they will have superpowers like a freakin’ X-Men or something. How ignorant do you have to be of physical reality to fall for this? It’s stunning stupidity. Carl Sagan once famously said, “Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.” Any chance, whatsoever, in any tangible way, these idiots will be able to provide a modicum of evidence? Methinks probably not… though being open-minded, and a skeptic, I am willing to change my mind: if you can show me!
The story in the National Post goes on to relate the practices of these ignoramuses.
Doris Rosado watches her teenage daughters, Ninette and Kiara Mongrut, get the numbers “666” tattooed on their wrists, beaming with pride. The number typically conjures up biblical symbolism tied to the Antichrist, but this St. Catharines, Ont., family belongs to a obscure Christian sect for which “666” is a positive symbol of their group’s messianic leader.
“They wanted to do it,” Ms. Rosado, 45, said at the St. Catharines tattoo parlour where her daughters were inked. “But now it’s more important because we’re counting down… I’m so proud.”
For this family, and other members of Growing in Grace International, these tattoos are a way of demonstrating their faith as true believers of Jose de Luis de Jesus — who they fervently believe is the second coming of Jesus Christ — before a day of reckoning they believe will wipe out most of humanity.
Armina Ligaya for National Post
Armina Ligaya for National Post
Those poor girls; inculcated and socialized into insanity and stupidity; lacking any good categories to work their way out of the insanity; lacking any real criteria by which to judge physical reality. This is a form of child abuse for me. Parents and adults are supposed to be raising children and giving them the skill sets to be successful adults and parents themselves, not giving them terrible categories to interpret natural phenomena, ‘believing’ someone is Jesus incarnated and the Anti-Christ, ‘believing’ that the world is going to end, and ‘believing’ they will have super-powers. It’s ridiculous!
*SIGH*… well, as usual, the only interesting thing left will be reviewing the excuses on July 2nd after the Rapture doesn’t happen and none of the members can demonstrate any super-powers…
Dr. Lorne Dawson, a University of Waterloo sociologist and religious studies professor who specializes in new religious movements, says that when a religious group sets a deadline, it is a sign that the “movement is starting to run into trouble.”
“It’s a strong indicator that their authority is slipping, they’re losing followers, not acquiring followers at a level that they used to … and nothing galvanizes a group and galvanizes attention like a new mention of an apocalypse.”
Last year, California preacher and evangelical broadcaster Harold Camping infamously said that the world would end on May 21, 2011. When the day passed without incident — after many of his followers sold off all their belongings — Mr. Camping apologized for the faulty predictions, and subsequently retired.
Jehovah’s Witnesses have prophesied that the world would end eight times, as recently as 1975. The Church Universal and Triumphant, a new age religious group from the U.S., forecast that nuclear war would strike in 1990, says Dr. Dawson.
Even after their prophecies failed, such groups continued to survive at a similar level, or become even stronger, he said. “The leader will quickly come up with an explanation, rationalize, and that rationalization will be spread quickly to all of the membership … and gear them up for another prophecy down the line,” Dr. Dawson said.
Common explanations include blaming the members who doubted, or that the prophecy happened on another spiritual plane, he added.
Damn, some people are stupid…