This is a paraphrased transcript from a San Antonio minister during a 2010 sermon:
“Sisters and Brothers. Praise God. Praise the Lord Almighty. I stand before you today with very special message, one of great importance to all Christians and believers. As you know, God has ordained the main mission of all his people to save the souls of non-believers, and to bring them to personally know the Lord Jesus Christ as their personal savior. As I stand before you today, I bring great news of a revelation, one that is spreading to hundreds of God’s churches across this great God given land of America. I, myself, have received this revelation and been instructed by God through diligent prayer and worship, and tell you this day, that our task as God fearing Christians is to build in His honor a great cross on a hill nearby, so that passerbys from everywhere may gaze upon this tribute, and immediately come to turn their souls and lives over to Jesus as personal savior and Lord. My personal and best friend is a metal artist and will build the cross. It will be over 100 feet tall so it can be seen from great distances as people travel the roads and freeways of San Antonio. It is our task as a dedicated congregation to raise the necessary money to purchase the land and build the cross.”
“Amen. Praise God. Praise the Lord Almighty.”
“God has said it will come to pass and so it shall. No matter what you have or think you have it is God’s will that all of us contribute to the upmost to fulfill this most sacred of tasks as true and dedicated Christians. The land will be $1,000,000 dollars, and the handcrafted cross (by my best friend) will be another $1,000,000. Remember, what so ever ye give, ye will receive 10 fold.”
San Antonio Newspaper, 2010
“A nearby San Antonio church has taken it entirely upon themselves to build a 100 foot cross in hopes of drawing attention and saving souls. The cost was two million dollars. This is a trend that is spreading through American churches, almost as a contest to see who can build the highest cross. Average expenses for building and erecting the crosses are about $1.5 million dollars each. At this point, over 100 churches have answered the call, with a combined cost of $150,000,000 dollars.”
Official report from OCHA (United Nations Office for the Coordination of Human Affairs), July 23, 2010. Report on the annual monsoons in Pakistan, the rains, and the floods, and humanitarian needs there. Note: None of this is published in American newspapers, some British papers carry the news
“OCHA daily reports show that an estimated $535 million was requested as needed for relief efforts on July 23, 2010. As of August 10, 2010, $154 million had been received. The floods are receding by September. There is immediate and emergency need for erecting emergency field hospitals to treat spreading AWD (Acute Watery Diarrhea), which almost always results in death from dehydration in children under five years old. The treatment is simple, re-hydration, a $3.00 bag of hydrating fluid like you get at your hospital, which needs only a trained volunteer to administer, and one supervising doctor per field hospital.
No volunteers are being called for. They have plenty of volunteers. What they don’t have is the needed money to purchase the seriously needed supplies for food, water, shelter, rescue. Helicopters are needed to rescue those who are in threat of drowning. OCHA reports on August 1, 2010, that 27,000 people were trapped in desperate need of rescue from helicopter, and 150,000 families where in emergency need of food, water, shelter, else the threat of water born disease will escalate. Please don’t fill boxes at your local churches with canned food. It will get to us too late, there are no can openers in the most flooded areas, and the scientifically proven treatment for malnutrition is a specially produced high nutrition bar, which we can purchase through a regular distributor. Do not send old cans of corn, beans, and beets. We need what money you can send. We know how to buy what we need better than you.
In August, near the end of the floods, the Pakistan Initial Floods Emergency Response Plan was still calling to complete the $535 million needed for humanitarian assistance. Pakistan is on the permanent list of the UN humanitarian relief list. It is seriously impoverished, and needs year round assistance, even without the floods. Twenty Three percent of Pakistan stays under-nourished, susceptible to disease, year round. It’s GHI (Global Hunger Index) is rated at “Alarming,” without the floods.
14 million people were affected by this flood. Almost 300,000 homes were destroyed, thousands of people died, over one third of Pakistan’s agriculture was destroyed for years to come, insuring an even greater food shortage for at least 3 – 5 years.
The OCHA reports have much integrity in also reporting what has been received and used to help in every province of the country on a daily basis. So Yes, help came in 2010, but only about one third of what was needed. The nearby United States military base in Afghanistan sent an honorable 26 helicopters about 300 miles to help the rescue efforts. It is estimated that the base has around 66 helicopters, that could have returned to Afghanistan within an hour if needed. The US has 11 Nimitz class aircraft carriers stationed at strategic locations around the world, that can be within striking range, or humanitarian assistance range, within 72 hours anywhere in the world. Not one was sent. They can stay at sea for seven years without refueling, and have an over stocked supply of medical supplies, mobile hospitals, food, water, fuel, helicopters.
Would not the $150,000,000 dollars used to erect the idol crosses for the 100 churches doubled that help?
Does God want $150,000,000 spent on tall crosses, or on saving children’s lives?
Did the minister have a real revelation from God, or was he tricked into listening to his own ignorance and ego?
The $150,000,000 cross money would have brought the assistance to over $300,000,000 dollars, within a very close $200,000,000 dollars that was needed, instead of leaving Pakistan $380,000,000 dollars short.
Where did the minister go to school, WallMart?
What kind of car does he drive?
What kind of house does he live in?
How many vacations does he take per year?
I believe in a Higher Source to this World, call it God if you want to, but it is certainly and vehemently not the same God the minister above, and his congregation, believes in. It is amazing what a congregation of hundreds of people will do without even scrutinizing it, or thinking for themselves.
It is amazing how many people do not want to know what happens in the world around them.
When I drive the freeways of San Antonio and see the 100 foot tall cross in the distance, I do not think of saving my soul, I think of how the minister and his congregation are possibly going to save their souls.