TheCatSite.com › Forums › General Forums › IMO: In My Opinion › Church or Cult?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Church or Cult?

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 
We have a show here in Canada called W-Five and it has some rather interesting stories. Sort of like 60 Minutes I guess.

There is a "Church" in Hamilton, Ontario that many deem to be a Cult and parents are at their witts end to get their children back. One family went so far as to kidnap their daughter and take her to a remote area, fly in a "cult deprogrammer" in order to save their daughter. Their daughter pressed charges and is willing to send her parents to jail for what they did to her.

I don't know much about cults and I'm not what I would consider religious, but this "Church" sure sounds more like a cult than a church because it requires shunning and cutting off those who do not share the belief etc.

Here is the written article. You can read about it and also watch the episode via a 4 part video at this link

Here is a transcript of the show:

http://www.religionnewsblog.com/1639...igative-report


Here are some other links that talk about this "Church"

http://www.apologeticsindex.org/383-...ristian-centre
.
.
.
.
post #2 of 24
I don't even have to read the article. Just based on what you've said it's definitely a cult.

But, then, out of curiosity I read one of the articles anyway and found this:

Quote:
Peter Rigo, a self-styled pastor without any current credentials and without any covering or anyone to answer to
That person isn't a pastor of any recognized Christian denomination I can think of, or even non-denominational. Legitimate churches operate under accountability.

So, my opinion that it's a cult is confirmed.
post #3 of 24
Thread Starter 
If you have time you should watch the videos of the show. It really was interesting to watch.
post #4 of 24
cult. There is a lot of "false" preaching even in the established churches. Jesus warned about the false prophets in the New Testament.

What happens is someone mixes truth with lies - this leader is doing that - mixing up truth with lies and twisting it around. Something Satan loves to do. Remember the conversation with Satan and Jesus where he was tempting Jesus and twisting God's words.
post #5 of 24
They are not cultish in the typical sense though, and even the list of 'requirements' for a cult are not all matched in their case according to the coverage. They are actually quite near me and so are in the media quite a bit here.

There are established 'churches' that do, in some of the more local churches have more extreme tendencies and their congregation cut off ties, yet as part of an established religion are still seen as churches so I am torn on the issue.

From what I remember from the media, and one of the above links may clarify - he was an affiliate of some group and was accountable to them until the parents of the girl who was 'kidnapped' by her family were in the news when they distanced themselves from the church.

I remember seeing a complaint from a parent in the news where her daughter was obviously brainwashed because she asked the 'pastor' which of 3 hair colours would suit her, but people ask those questions to almost complete strangers here on TCS on a weekly basis.

The problem with the media is it is always going to be the two extremes being debated and no middle ground is covered so you never can tell.
post #6 of 24
it does sound alot like a cult to me.
post #7 of 24
It sounds like a bit of a cult to me as well.
post #8 of 24
I am leaning more toward cult.
At first, the rock and roll music before service, that's okay if that's how you express yourself. But the more I read, the more it seemed as if Rigo is a control freak and brainwashes the others. I am not convinced he's attempting to make a cult, I think he's on the extreme side of religion--he's been asked by a higher power "to establish a people" of same beliefs and make sure others know about the Lord.
But maybe he's soooo into his beliefs, he can't see any other view point, therefore no one else is right; almost as if he's been blessed with the light of the way, so to speak. So despite what his real motives may have been, I believe its turned into a cult following. When family doesn't matter anymore (for different beliefs), that isn't Christianity. When other churches who operate on the Wednesday & Sunday sermon rituals are wrong, that isn't Christianity. Christianity isn't about passing judgment.

I had a co-worker years ago who was such a Christian that she and her husband got pulled into a cult. Somehow she realized it after a couple of years and left. Her husband didn't--he remained for a couple more years and then somehow, snapped out of it and came back home. It was a weird situation to hear about!!
post #9 of 24
IMHO a "church" is someplace that allows you to learn about family, friends, your faith, and right from wrong. Once you are done with that lesson, you are allowed to return to your family.

A congregation that labels them selves as a "church" but isolates your from your family and friends is not really a church, but a cult. A true church of any kind will allow you to return to your family and "spread the word" that they're trying to teach.

If you're not allowed to talk about what you learned with others, then that tells me they have something to hide.
post #10 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by lunasmom View Post
IMHO a "church" is someplace that allows you to learn about family, friends, your faith, and right from wrong. Once you are done with that lesson, you are allowed to return to your family.

A congregation that labels them selves as a "church" but isolates your from your family and friends is not really a church, but a cult. A true church of any kind will allow you to return to your family and "spread the word" that they're trying to teach.

If you're not allowed to talk about what you learned with others, then that tells me they have something to hide.
I agree. Unfortunately there a many, many folks who are searching for a place to belong. When they are "welcomed" into a congregaton, "family" etc. they are so happy to feel that they have found a home, that I think they are willing to believe or do anything to continue to remain part of the group.
post #11 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Taurus77 View Post
But maybe he's soooo into his beliefs, he can't see any other view point, therefore no one else is right; almost as if he's been blessed with the light of the way, so to speak. So despite what his real motives may have been, I believe its turned into a cult following. When family doesn't matter anymore (for different beliefs), that isn't Christianity. When other churches who operate on the Wednesday & Sunday sermon rituals are wrong, that isn't Christianity. Christianity isn't about passing judgment.

I had a co-worker years ago who was such a Christian that she and her husband got pulled into a cult. Somehow she realized it after a couple of years and left. Her husband didn't--he remained for a couple more years and then somehow, snapped out of it and came back home. It was a weird situation to hear about!!
There are folks who are in recognized religions that can't see any other viewpoint and nobody else is right - that doesn't make them a cult.

Families have disowned thier children for marrying outside their faith, i.e., Protestant marries Catholic or vice versa - that doesn't make them a cult (it isn't very Christian either IMO).

Many so-called Christians pass judgment very quickly on others - that's not Christianity either IMO.

Who knows what kind of family life this woman had before joinint the "cult". Maybe her parents were some of those Christians that were intolerant of other people/cultures/religions. Who wouldn't want to get away from that type of mindset? There are always 2 sides to every story if we choose to listen.

Our daughter is dating a fellow right now who is Baptist and very involved with his church. Our daughter was raised Catholic but is very open to attending his church with him. His mother refuses to meet her, tells her son that our daughter doesn't believe in God if she is Catholic and other similar nonsense. Now is this church-going, self-proclaimed Christian woman really a Christian? I don't think so. Unfortunately we have a lot of these types of Christians out there and IMO they are more hypocrits than Christians.
post #12 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yosemite View Post
Our daughter is dating a fellow right now who is Baptist and very involved with his church. Our daughter was raised Catholic but is very open to attending his church with him. His mother refuses to meet her, tells her son that our daughter doesn't believe in God if she is Catholic and other similar nonsense. Now is this church-going, self-proclaimed Christian woman really a Christian? I don't think so. Unfortunately we have a lot of these types of Christians out there and IMO they are more hypocrits than Christians.
That's the funniest part about Christianity...we're told in CCD or Sunday school "Go forth and love everyone"...the part they leave out is "unless they believe differently then you".
post #13 of 24
Cult, Jesus did not teach 'separation', He taught unity.
post #14 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by lunasmom View Post
That's the funniest part about Christianity...we're told in CCD or Sunday school "Go forth and love everyone"...the part they leave out is "unless they believe differently then you".
They may leave it out, but some Christians are getting the message anyway.
post #15 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by ddcats View Post
Cult, Jesus did not teach 'separation', He taught unity.
not all of them are separate from their families, many lead normal lives, live at home and contribute monetarily to the Church through their jobs.

The media will only every concentrate on the extreme sides of the story - ignoring the middle ground because it is not newsworthy.

As Yosemite said, even established religions believe in separation, as the Protestants and Catholics in Ireland can attest to, as well as many other countries undergoing religious wars
post #16 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by icklemiss21 View Post
not all of them are separate from their families, many lead normal lives, live at home and contribute monetarily to the Church through their jobs.

The media will only every concentrate on the extreme sides of the story - ignoring the middle ground because it is not newsworthy.

As Yosemite said, even established religions believe in separation, as the Protestants and Catholics in Ireland can attest to, as well as many other countries undergoing religious wars
Ok, I still think it is a cult. Catholic and Protestant religious leaders do not go into a flying rage or throw chairs accross the room. There were things this leader said, which I cannot reprint here, you will have to read it.

...Cole remembers that as Rigo began to exercise more and more control over the lives of his congregation, the Pastor's own behavior was becoming increasingly bizarre.
"I've seen him pick up chairs in the sanctuary and whip them across the room in a rage, an angry rage, trying to stop someone from doing a certain thing." ...

http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNew...ive&pr=showAll


BTW, Catholic is defined as: universal, which means unity. True, some Catholics, Protestants and other religions don't practice what they should, hence, wars.
post #17 of 24
Never really seen the difference, all forms of religion seem to me to be divisive
and hypocritical.
post #18 of 24
I have read it, but as I said, they are local to me and the stories are not new, I have also seen all the good they have done, which is why I am torn on whether they are a cult or not
post #19 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by ddcats View Post
Ok, I still think it is a cult. Catholic and Protestant religious leaders do not go into a flying rage or throw chairs accross the room. There were things this leader said, which I cannot reprint here, you will have to read it.

...Cole remembers that as Rigo began to exercise more and more control over the lives of his congregation, the Pastor's own behavior was becoming increasingly bizarre.
"I've seen him pick up chairs in the sanctuary and whip them across the room in a rage, an angry rage, trying to stop someone from doing a certain thing." ...

http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNew...ive&pr=showAll


BTW, Catholic is defined as: universal, which means unity. True, some Catholics, Protestants and other religions don't practice what they should, hence, wars.
If they believe in something and are doing good, I don't have a problem. Who decides what a cult is? Is it the Catholics, Protestants, or other established religions? Is Christianity not a by-product of Judaism and could therefore be considered a cult? Who are we to judge, we're not God. And who decides that the God I worship is better or worse than the God you worship? It is man who decides these things and we all know how flawed man has and can be.

I've met very few "Christians" who lived by truly Christian values and found most to be hypocritical and I include myself in that statement. I'm a non-practicing Catholic and find that I sometimes have a difficult time finding that brotherly love I'm supposed to have.
post #20 of 24
Anyway you slice it, it's still a cult
post #21 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yosemite View Post
If they believe in something and are doing good, I don't have a problem. Who decides what a cult is? Is it the Catholics, Protestants, or other established religions? Is Christianity not a by-product of Judaism and could therefore be considered a cult? Who are we to judge, we're not God. And who decides that the God I worship is better or worse than the God you worship? It is man who decides these things and we all know how flawed man has and can be.

I've met very few "Christians" who lived by truly Christian values and found most to be hypocritical and I include myself in that statement. I'm a non-practicing Catholic and find that I sometimes have a difficult time finding that brotherly love I'm supposed to have.
So sorry you are so confused. Good luck in finding that brotherly love that your supposed to have, Yosemite.
post #22 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by ddcats View Post
So sorry you are so confused. Good luck in finding that brotherly love that your supposed to have, Yosemite.
Oh, but I'm not at all confused. I believe in God but I'm honest enough to admit that I don't make Him/Her proud of me everyday. I do however, try to be kind, generous and tolerant and that is what Christianity is to me, especially the tolerance part.

I also don't think that folks who pray to a different God are better or worse than me - just different and that's fine.
post #23 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by icklemiss21
As Yosemite said, even established religions believe in separation, as the Protestants and Catholics in Ireland can attest to, as well as many other countries undergoing religious wars
Exactly. The division between the christians in Western Europe and the Greek Orthodox christians in the East was the major underlying reason why Constantinople and the Byzantine Empire fell to the Ottoman Turks in 1453.

It sounds like a cult to me. I would have done the same thing as the parents.
post #24 of 24
The members aren't allowed to date, at all- not even each other. If you leave he says you are going to hell. He wants to separate you from your family if your family are not members of the church. I'm not sure how this isn't a cult. Sure there are communes like JPUSA in Chicago, but you can leave any time, you can marry and date, you have friends outside and can go to other churches. There are cults, like this where every aspect of your life is micromanaged by a guy who says if you do anything different you will burn in hell, who encourages members to divorce their spouses who leave (and Jesus was very clear that you are not to divorce a non-believing spouse). This is pretty scary.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: IMO: In My Opinion
TheCatSite.com › Forums › General Forums › IMO: In My Opinion › Church or Cult?