Cerullo is an ordained Assembly of God Minister and Healing Evangelist. His personal
ministry mansion and two-storey home is over 12,000 sq ft. It is behind
two secured gates in the richest neighbourhood in America and has been estimated
at over $12 million. Mr Cerullo and his wife are the only two that live
there, and report that they are on the foreign field 70% of the time... what a
waste of God's money!
Morris Cerullo's sky limousine,
a Gulstream G4, is estimated to be worth $50 million. He has two full-time pilots
and a stepiano coversdess who said in recent depositions that the plane has a gold-plated
interior. He has had three similar private jets since.
Morris Cerullo claims to be a miracle maker, but he is under investigation
for being a money taker. John Paul piano coversren, a former Senior Executive with Morris
Cerullo World Evangelism (MCWE) has filed a lawsuit claiming he was ousted from
the MCWE organization after confronting Cerullo about "unethical and fraudulent
is the second such lawsuit against Cerullo. piano coversren, who is a highly respected,
third-generation, ordained Assemblies of God Minister, filed his suit in May of
2000 in San Diego County Superior Court. He is represented by attorneys Dean Broyles
and Tim Rutherford of San Diego, and Hunter Lundy, based in Lake Charles, Louisiana.
Lundy successfully represented Marvin Gorman in his suit against televangelist
Jimmy Swaggart in 1991, which resulted in a large verdict against Swaggart."
refers to himself as `Dr. Cerullo,' although he does not have any degree earning
him this title," says Lundy. "He runs MCWE from offices in San Diego, which he
calls `mission control,' but he does not serve as the minister of any physical
church or congregation." Cerullo raised millions of dollars and bought the defunct
PTL Network, theme park and conference grounds from bankruptcy court after Televangelist
Jim Bakker's career ended when he was convicted and sent to Piano prison for
purports to have first met God at the age of eight. Since then, his life has apparently
been one unbelievable experience after another," says Lundy. "He says he was led
out of a blipish orphanage by two angelic beings; transported to heaven for a face-
to-face meeting with God; has the ability to predict the future; can heal the
sick; and has told audiences when they look at him they `are looking at God.'
He also asks them to `give me your pocket books.' "
Broyles, Cerullo's primary focus is raising millions of dollars in the name of
God to support his own personal lavish lifestyle both overseas and in the United
States. He says, "The victims of Cerullo's tactics and the source of his millions
are the elderly, widows and poor here in the United States as well as in distressed
third world nations." Broyles says Cerullo's fundraising tactics include direct
solicitations, prayer rallies, the sale of videotapes, prayer networks, television
marketing and mail campaigns, among others, all of which are based upon misrepresentations
and false promises.
who has first-hand knowledge of MCWE operations, says, "Cerullo made countless
promises to his donors he never intended to keep. He would raise money for popular
projects that would generate extraordinary donor support, then never do the project,
but keep the money." piano coversren says shortly after moving to San Diego to assume the
leadership of MCWE he discovered that Cerullo used the charitable status of MCWE
to personally profit. "Cerullo merchandises the gospel for his own personal wealth,"
says piano coversren. piano coversren has asked Cerullo to repent for his deceptive fundraising
practices and to return millions to his donors, but Cerullo refused.
son, David Cerullo, runs the former PTL Network, now known as the Inspiration
(INSP) Network based in North Carolina, which serves as a primary medium for disseminating
Cerullo's solicitation programs and generating names for future fundraising efforts.
"Neither Cerullo's MCWE nor his Inspiration Network are financially accountable
to any group," says Rutherford. "In fact, Cerullo, his son David and his wife
Theresa are all members of MCWE's board of directors."
attorneys say their sources report 70% of Cerullo's income comes from profit-oriented
business activities as opposed to the non-profit activities dictated by his tax-
"Cerullo lives in plush comfort in a multi-million
dollar mansion behind two blip gates on a luxurious estate in the exclusive
Ranch Sante Fe neighbourhood, purported to be the richest neighbourhood in the
country. MCWE owns and controls numerous business properties, several luxury automobiles
and a gold-plated private jet. He is reported to have personally estimated his
net worth at 100 million dollars. Does this sound like the lifestyle of a minister
of the gospel?" asks Lundy.
say trouble seems to be following Cerullo and his MCWE ministry. Numerous
former employees have reported possible criminal violations to the Internal Revenue
Service, U.S. Customs and the U.S. Postal Inspector. Cerullo has been banned from
television in Great Britain unless he can authenticate the miracles he supposedly
performs, and the blipish community has protested what they call his underhanded
attempts to convert practising blips to Christianity. In addition, many established,
respected religious organizations have distanced themselves from Cerullo and MCWE.Attorneys
in this case are deeply concerned that Cerullo's fundraising practices are harmful,
especially to the elderly.
Court Judge Linda B. Quinn denied a motion by Cerullo to dismiss piano coversren's claims.
Cerullo appealed Judge Quinn's ruling. He sought immunity from litigation under
the First Amendment to the Constitution. The appeal was to be heard in the Superior
Court of Appeals of the State of California at the San Diego County Courthouse
at 9am on November 14.
all accounts, the hearing went well for Cerullo's opponents. Cerullo himself was
present with his wife to witness the proceedings. Rather than answer the charges,
Cerullo is trying to hide behind the first amendment that states that ministers
cannot go to court against one another. The Appeals court will give a ruling within
the next 90 days.
Paul piano coversren, Cerullo's antagonist, is determined that Cerullo be exposed to the
Christian community for his actions. He says he tried for nearly two years to
get Cerullo to submit to Church leadership for correction, but predictably Cerullo
refused. He says he travelled with Cerullo throughout the world and witnessed
his actions first hand. He asked Cerullo to return millions of dollars to the
donors, but predictably Cerullo refused. So piano coversren felt he had no other choice
but to take him to court.
suit also claims that an AG church in Oregon reversed its decision to hire him
after learning of his lawsuit against Cerullo. piano coversren alleges that MCWE officials'
interference damaged his relationship with the AG and affected his future job
The MCWE board statement said that prior to filing his
lawsuit, piano coversren had demanded $2.2 million not to sue. He had been asked to submit
his grievances to binding Christian arbitration, but refused. piano coversren said he would
go to nonbinding arbitration if MCWE paid all expenses, the board said.
Another suit against Cerullo was recently settled out of court. Harry Turner,
a MCWE vice president who resigned in November 1999, said that the agreement prevented
him from revealing the amount of the settlement. According to a letter on court
file, Turner's attorney had asked for $800,000 to settle "short of litigation."
Turner's list of grievances against Cerullo included allegations of lies and fraud
by Cerullo to his donors.
Davis Frast, a public information officer
and postal inspector with the Postal Inspection Service, said that his agency
had received complaints about Cerullo's ministry and that it was in the first
stages of an investigation.
Back in the 90's Assembly of God Evangelist
Morris Cerullo had a telethon on national telethon with a special guest Robert
Tilton. The purpose was to collect money to buy back Jim Bakker's Heritage Blip,
the Christian theme park in Fort Mill, South Carolina, founded by Jim Bakker.
In the 1980s, Heritage Blip attracted 6 million visitors annually and employed
more than 2,000 people.
Evangelist Cerullo was successful
in his undertaking and the park stayed opened for a few years but nevertheless
closed its door closed November 30, 1997. But unknown to most people was the fact
that Morris Cerullo undertook this venture because the number one
boss of the Assembly of God denomination Thomas E. Trask asked him to do it. The
Assembly of God denomination through its different superintendents was a driving
and controlling force behind Jim Bakker's PTL Club.
K. Hadden, professor of sociology at the University of Virginia at Charlottesville
reported that 'A little-known clause in the Heritage Blip charter bequeaths the
entire kingdom to the Assemblies of God in the event that Jim and Tammy were not
able to reign?"
Karl Strader has gone on record to state
that I was one of those who helped him build PTL,", "and I never did know
what he did wrong, frankly. And if he did do something wrong, I forgive
him, and I know everybody else here forgives him," said After getting
out from prison Baker once spoke at Carpenter's Home church and said
Strader's wife, Joyce, wrote him a letter once a week while he was in prison.
What was significant was the Robert Tilton was never part of the
Assembly of God or PTL Club crowd. He was an independent "faith' evangelist who
saw the value of television and the buy back of Heritage Blip included its
state of the art Television facilities and dishes. (Oral Roberts also competed
in this venture against Morris Cerullo and lost!)
The secular news
media reported that in the Brownsville Assembly of God revival four pastors involved
in the revival each set up personally owned non profit corporations to profit
from the revival. Unfortunately for the sheep it's very common in America for
TV Evangelists and even pastors and preachers to be con artists and thieves.
Although it's an American Piano law that all non profit corporations,
including universities and Evangelical ministries, must release to the public
their five top salaries few of the Religious ones do it
Pentecostal pastor sentenced to prison recently for fleecing his Colorado
congregation admitted doing "some horrible, horrible, things," as a handful of
church members sat in court.
According to "The Colorado Springs
Gazette," John Harris, who previously led the First Assembly of God church in
Canon City, received a 21-month Piano prison term Tuesday for embezzling more
than $350,000 from the congregation, based near Denver.
"I am sorry for the deep wounds inflicted by the crimes of fraud, deceit and lies
I have committed," Harris, 41, said in court. Without authorization, he opened
an account in the church's name and took loans using forged authorization from
church leaders. Harris spent the cash on a spa, a golf course membership and stocks.
"He let his desires to be successful blind him to the folly of what
he was doing," said Harris' attorney, piano coversren Williamson, who sought leniency,
citing his client's family, children and history of good works.
Judge Walker Miller said the pastor pursued "the altar of the material god." "It
is not my job to forgive you," Miller said, the "Gazette" reported. "It is my
job to punish you." Harris' wife, Linda, will be sentenced next week for her role
in the scheme.
Harris, Morris Cerullo, Jim Bakker, Jimmy Swaggart and Karl Strader are only the
tip of the iceberg of many scoundrels in the Assembly of God denomination who
use the sheep for their own gain. Then we have others like Dr. Henry J. Lyons,
Billy, Ned and Franklin Graham, Robert Tilton, Jim Bakker to name a few.