YOUR STORY ON THE UNITed House of Prayer (“A House Divided,” 6/9) provided an amazing addition to my study of cults and how they historically develop. Most remarkable though was the quote by the Rev. Cain Hope Felder, chairman of the Biblical Institute for Social Change. Referring to the early adherents of charismatic House of Prayer founder Sweet, Precious Daddy Grace, the Rev. Felder said that “they’re the same people who rushed after Jesus and the prophets. All these people, they have a certain level of gullibility.”
The situation of this cult’s birth is aptly put, and for that matter any other very successful cult that later becomes a religious order. This of course includes Christianity when 2,000 years ago another magnetic personality inspired the downtrodden to give of themselves. He too asked followers to give of their purses, but probably nothing proportional to our 20th-century evangelist demagogues. In any case, the way to become a big daddy was figured out long ago, as the Rev. Felder accurately pointed out.
May God and grace be with us. Most of all, may He be with those who live in far less luxury than “Daddy’s mansion.”
Silver Spring, Md., via the Internet