The Tragedy of Faith

01.04.09 | 9 Comments

Benny Hinn – taking money from the sick, old, and poor
Swindler and thief, Benny Hinn. Taking money from the sick and the old and the poor.

Before reading this entry, invest 15 minutes to watch the two videos embedded at the bottom of this post, they are parts 1 & 2 of a Canadian Broadcasting Company story on Benny Hinn and Grace Brulot, seen at age 8 during a crusade in Calgary and later at age 11.

Assuming you’ve now made the time to watch the videos, it’s clear that Hinn is a charlatan fleecing the people left and right by taking their money. Often people who can afford it the least. It’s also clear that the label “non-profit” shouldn’t come within 1,000 miles of this character and his organization (a prime example of why we should revoke tax-exempt status from large churches and other “non-profit” enterprises.)

But to me, while annoying and criminal, the real tragedy of this story revolves around Grace. First, she’s been victimized, not only by Hinn, but more damaging, by her own Mother. She has been taught that she’s like she is because of some “grand plan” laid out by some deity and if she’s only good, and pious, and faithful enough, the deity will either “heal” her in this life or provide for her in the next life. If a child wants to have faith in unicorns, fairies, pixies, or elves, so be it. But for a parent to indoctrinate their child with this is beyond criminal and beyond evil.

In the second part of the story, we see that Grace is starting to figure it out in spite of her Mother, the religious community around her, and her indoctrination. Good for you Grace! She is embracing this life and working to discover her limits and bound past them due to her own will, intelligence, and dare I say, grace. Due to the continued presence of this fairy tale religion, she gets no credit for her own will to survive and thrive, it’s laid at the altar of the deity – it’s god’s will. Well, I think it’s pretty clear it’s Grace’s will and to take that away from her is worse than taking the hundreds of millions of dollars swindled by Hinn. And that her Mother and the rest of the community are taking it from her is about the deepest betrayal to be found in our world.

So, while Job #1 is to stop (or at least tax) Benny Hinn and his ilk. Job #2 has to be stopping parents from this form of child abuse. Religion should be the choice of each individual. Children raised in religious households have no chance to make that choice – it’s there from birth. And to make a different choice as a child or an adult, is seemingly impossible. It’s time to start rescuing these children from these situations and changing our laws to protect them from the very people they should be able to trust, their parents.

This whole situation makes me physically ill. I have to wonder why it doesn’t affect more people in this way.

CBC on Benny Hinn – Part 1

CBC on Benny Hinn – Part 2