Dark Christianity
dark_christian
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May 2008
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The Salvation Army

LJ-SEC: (ORIGINALLY POSTED BY [info]gleef)

I originally posted this as a link in a comment, but the more I think about it, the more I think it deserves its own post.

As I've mentioned before, the Salvation Army is among the Dominionist Churches. Yes, many people's reactions are "What, that charity that helps the poor? I didn't even know they were a church group." They are not only a church group (set along strict Calvinist/Methodist lines), but a coercive church group. They also are a multi billion dollar international business masquerading as a charitable organization. I would also say that they represent the business model that many Dominionists would like to see as the standard for how business should be done.

Wealth & Power: Assets or Addictions? — Chapter 6: Religious Corporation

Some excerpts:

In chapel their forced prayer is followed by an ear-banging from the Warehouse Supervisor about working harder at their work therapy. After that there's the usual warning from the House Supervisor about some infraction that can result in being prohibited from leaving the facility. The service ends with a prayer that exhorts them to accept the things they cannot change.

After breakfast the beneficiaries must sign out at the TV-security booth. The cameras are not there to protect them but to monitor the donation boxes behind the warehouse. Homeless persons constantly lift donated goods from the boxes, and the Major is trying to prevent the immorality of theft.

Major signs "Memo to All Who Haven't Yet Enrolled in the Payroll Donation Plan." All beneficiaries and outside employees are required to make a contribution to the Army. It is deducted from their paychecks. Even the beneficiaries must pay ten percent of their $5-a-week spending allowance. The Memo concludes with a reminder of the spiritual value of charity.

Donated antiques and oriental rugs adorn the officers' paid-for homes. All utility bills are paid by the Army. If Mrs. Major wants a new patio, beneficiary (slave) masons and landscapers will gladly do it at no charge rather than work in the warehouse. Beneficiary roofers will create new roofs, electricians new wiring, carpenters new decks, plumbers new pipes, all for just the cost of materials.

Work therapy is the best business scheme since the company town. It enables the Army to be in the retail game big time because it can operate without the bother of salaries, health-insurance plans, pensions, workman's compensation insurance, union demands, and last but not least, taxes. Above all, the stuff it sells it gets for free.

Keep this in mind as you pass by the person in the red apron ringing a bell in front of your supermarket or mall this holiday season. This is what you are paying for if you toss a coin into the bucket, or give your old coat to their donation boxes.

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