President Donald Trump’s “spiritual adviser” Paula White actually had the gall to tell her congregation that they should forego paying their electric bills and send her the money instead to gain God’s favor, a common con perpetrated by “prosperity gospel” preachers to make themselves wealthy.
White currently not only leads a church as a televangelist, she has a cushy position in the White House close to Trump, setting up all sorts of conflicts of interest that threaten the very fabric of separation of church and state that has existed since America’s birth.
Similar to Trump, White has multiple bankruptcies, is twice divorced, and has committed infidelities that should make any church congregation embarrassed to have her as their pastor. But instead of ousting her, the congregation gives her money on her command.
During a Friday sermon earlier this month, White fleeced her flock by telling them to spend their money primarily by donating it to the church instead of paying their electric bills to utility company Florida Power and Light (FPL).
“Instead of writing [that check] to the house of God as I’m instructed to, then what I’m saying spiritually is, ‘FPL, I have now established a spiritual law that put you first,’” White said. “So, FPL, save my family, FPL, deliver my drug-addicted son. FPL, kill this cancer that doctors say is in my body.”
It’s all part of a program she calls “First Fruits,” which mandates that parishioners give a lot of their money to God first before all else.
“The First Fruits sets the pattern and establishes the destiny for what is left,” she said. “Many of you need to bring a First Fruit offering right now!”
Of course, there’s a reason why White has a mansion and a private jet. The money her congregation donates clearly does not go toward church activities as much as it does her own bank account.
According to Mother Jones:
A Senate report found that White’s personal ministry and the church she ran with her now ex-husband used tax-exempt ministry funds to pay nearly $900,000 one year for the Whites’ waterfront mansion. It paid over a million dollars in salaries to family members and kept the Whites in the air with a private jet.”
Even the Southern Baptist Convention knows she’s a fraud.
“Paula White is a charlatan and recognized as a heretic by every orthodox Christian, of whatever tribe,” evangelical pastor and SBC president Russell Moore said.
That’s why the big worry right now is that White will use her position in the White House to help herself, especially when it comes to the IRS.
“For her, religion is a business, so you worry about how she’s trying to leverage the official White House position to advance her business interests and how her business interests might influence what she does in the White House,” Public Citizen president Robert Weissman says.
White could easily persuade Trump to kill IRS investigations against her that threaten her church’s tax-exempt status.
And that means she can continue fleecing people to enrich herself without fear that the government will step in to put a stop to the corruption.
Featured image via screen capture
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