Ernest Angley is one of the TV evangelists who seem to have been around forever, raking in the money from the gullible while preaching against homosexuality and other ‘sins’. Now the Akron Beacon Journal has come out with an explosive series of stories about what he has been up to. He has been accused of touching other men ‘inappropriately’ and having them undress in front of him so that he could explain to them about the vasectomies that he strongly encourages them to have. He also apparently urged women in his congregations to have abortions.
The Beacon Journal spoke individually with 21 former members of the church who insist that Angley has been running a cult, not a church, and say he consistently threatens and intimidates his flock into following his instructions, bullying them into life-changing decisions that often split up families.
“This man is a monster,” said Pam Cable of Akron, who left the church in 1988. “He’s a monster. And I can’t understand why all these years have gone by and nobody’s ever really been able to do anything about him.
“The people in Akron, Ohio, have a Jim Jones sitting in their backyard. … These people in his congregation would drink the Kool-Aid if he told them to. They would.”
Why would the head of a church not want to have his congregation have children and thus increase the size? It is not clear. Angley has no children of his own and some suspect that he felt that children would take away some of the time and money that his congregation could devote to him.
But it never ceases to surprise me that people are so willing to let people like Angley control their lives to this extent.