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August 21, 2006

Inclusion roadshow coming to Atlanta

Charisma Magazine's Senior Editor, Lee Grady sounds the alarm on false prophet Carlton Pearson who's bringing his inclusion roadshow to Atlanta October 2-4. Not only is he going to be in Atlanta, but at one of the area's most controversial churches, Cathedral of the Holy Spirit. Writes Grady:
Since he became a Universalist in the late 1990s, Carlton Pearson has lost almost all the support he once enjoyed among charismatics and Pentecostals in this country. His 5,000-member church in Tulsa, Okla., has shrunk to a few hundred, forcing his building into foreclosure. But that hasn’t stopped the discredited preacher from spreading his quirky “everybody is saved” doctrine on secular television programs, including National Public Radio, Fox News and the National Geographic Channel.

And now Pearson has announced that his next major theological summit—called Inclusion 2006—will be held in October at Cathedral of the Holy Spirit, a charismatic church founded by Bishop Earl Paulk in the Atlanta suburb of Decatur. It was one thing for Pearson to preach his heresies to a small and dwindling crowd at his Higher Dimensions Family Church in Tulsa, which meets in a borrowed Episcopal sanctuary. It is another thing for him to take his message on the road and preach it at Paulk’s church, which was at one time the most prominent charismatic congregation in the Southeast.

Today most of the Cathedral’s seats are empty. The congregation has been losing members steadily, especially in the last year after former church employees Bobby and Mona Brewer filed a lawsuit alleging that Paulk lured Mona into an ongoing adulterous affair.

Why is Paulk allowing Pearson in his pulpit? Why is he going so far as to host this heretical gathering in his neo-Gothic cathedral? It’s no secret that Pearson has already preached in the Cathedral of the Holy Spirit at least twice since he was officially labeled a heretic by a group of African-American bishops in 2004. It appears that Paulk has thrown his hat in the ring with his Universalist friend. Deception has spread its web.

What a sad day for our movement. I’m originally from Atlanta, and I remember the glory days in the mid-1970s when crowds discovered lively worship and spiritual renewal at Paulk’s church—then known as Chapel Hill Harvester. Today, after a long series of public scandals, the crowds have vanished, many staff members have fled and hundreds of once-dedicated church members are disillusioned and hurt. A church that was once known for spreading the message of the Holy Spirit’s power is now aligning itself with the most blatant form of blasphemy. Let’s pray that the infection will be contained rather than spreading to other parts of the body of Christ.

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