“God’s Gypsy Christian Church” doesn’t sound like the kind of place you find run-of-the-mill sermons, and in Glendale, California, the small, Trump-style “prosperity gospel” ministry is anything but.
They’re followers of the “Renewing Your Mind” brand of teaching, made popular by evangelical fundamentalist R.C. Sproul, and according to ABC News in Los Angeles, the suburban church was filled with drunken, rowdy, revelers.
In fact, some observers thought that the church’s pastor, Douglas Rivera, was threatening enough to frighten even congregants. One attendee who wanted to stay anonymous told the ABC 7,
The character of this pastor – I’ve never seen anyone like him. He seemed violent, he didn’t seem like a pastor…they seem more like gangsters, you know, than people of faith.”
So when news broke that Rivera was being sought by the police in connection with the rape of a minor, it may not have come as a surprise to those who have come in contact with him. Rivera released a grainy, dark cellphone video taken inside his truck refuting the charges — but the evidence is all against him.
As you can see, Rivera is tearfully adamant of his innocence, even asking “Los Angeles” to “keep him in prayer.” But despite his insistence that he was in “the wrong place at the wrong time,” there is extensive surveillance footage of him standing outside the window of a hotel room in Covina, a smaller suburb east of Glendale, masturbating as he watched two girls, ages 10 and 12, inside the room.
His vehicle was of course on the scene, which police identified and released a photo of:
Covina police even captured Rivera outside the vehicle in the parking lot, before he went into the hotel and forced his way into the room before assaulting one of the very young Chinese girls, in America on a tour.
Playing the victim seems to be the number one thing that these predators have in common, which may explain why so many of them support the policies and practices of a president who pretends to be a Christian just like they do.
Featured image via screen capture