Cult News 101 – CultNEWS101 Library: US: RUSSIA’S JEHOVAH’S WITNESSES BAN SHOWS ‘PARANOIA’ OF VLADIMIR PUTIN’S GOVERNMENT

JASON LE MIERE

Newsweek

April 21, 2017

Russia’s decision to ban Jehovah’s Witnesses in the country shows the “paranoia” of Vladimir Putin’s government, according to the chair of the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF).

Russia’s Supreme Court issued a verdict Thursday upholding a claim from the country’s justice ministry last month that Jehovah’s Witnesses’ activity violated laws on extremism. The ruling liquidates the group’s headquarters in St. Petersburg and all 395 of its local religious organizations. Russia contains 175,000 members of the church, which first began operating in the country in 1991. Coming after six days of hearings, the decision means the Christian denomination is classified alongside terrorist groups such as the Islamic State group (ISIS).

“It’s very disappointing but frankly not very surprising,” Thomas J. Reese, chair of USCIRF told Newsweek Friday. “Russia has been cracking down on religious groups that are not supportive of the government and it’s just amazing to pick on a small group which is pacifist which doesn’t want to be involved in politics and to classify them as the same is ISIS just shows how absurd these extremism laws are in Russia.”

Reese, whose commission is charged with making recommendations to Congress, the president and the State Department, claimed that Russia’s decision was motivated by Putin’s desire for absolute control within the country, particularly at a time when his government is being attacked from the outside.

“They just look very suspiciously on any organization that they can’t control,” he said. “And Jehovah’s Witnesses just want to be left alone. It seems like there’s a lot of paranoia in the Russian government. They feel besieged from the outside because of economic sanctions and the reaction to their invasion of Crimea and other things they’ve been doing. And so they’re going after any NGOs that have any kind of outside funding.”

Jehovah’s Witnesses began in the United States at the end of the 19th century. They are known in part for their stance on refusing blood transfusions, something which was used by Russia’s justice ministry during the hearings to attack the group as extremist.

A spokesperson for the World Headquarters of Jehovah’s Witnesses told Newsweek Thursday the group was prevented from mounting any sort of defense in court or having any dialogue with authorities since they were first warned in March 2016. Still, said Robert Warren, none of the evidence presented offered a justification for the ban.

“[It was] obvious even from what was presented in court that Jehovah’s Witnesses are not extremist in any way and we’re no threat to anyone or any entity in Russia or any other country in the world,” he said. “We feel like the ruling flies in the face of all of the evidence that was presented in court. I think it’s really an embarrassment to Russia and it really sends a very negative message about the Russian authorities to the international community.”

Warren confirmed the church would be appealing to a three-person panel within the 30-day allotted timeframe. Interfax news agency quoted Sergei Cherepanov, a Jehovah’s Witnesses representative, as stating that the group would also appeal to the European Court of Human Rights.

Reese, though, conceded he had little hope of either avenue being successful.

“Granted the attitude of the government, so far I think the likelihood of this decision being reversed is pretty limited and the likelihood of the Putin government paying attention to any international courts is pretty limited also,” he said.

USCIRF, an independent bipartisan commission, will be releasing its annual report next week. Reese stated that the report will point out “the serious problems of the deterioration of religious freedom in Russia over the past year and that this has to be brought up in conversations with officials in the Russian government at the very highest level.”

But he admitted that he was unsure how those recommendations would be taken on board by President Donald Trump, whose administration’s position on Russia he described as being “in flux.”

Jehovah’s Witnesses currently in Russia, in which over 70 percent of the population identifies as Russian orthodox, a religion that the country declared in 1997 was part of its “historical heritage.” During the Supreme Court hearing, Russia’s justice ministry warned that individuals could also be persecuted under the extremism law, which was passed following the 9/11 attacks in the U.S. and Russia’s second war in Chechnya in 1999 and 2000.

“The fear is that you now have 175,000 Jehovah’s Witnesses, well, what are you going to do, create a new gulag for them? Put them in jail?” Reese said.

For Warren, the matter is one of real importance and one that goes far beyond the fate of Jehovah’s Witnesses in the country.

“To tell someone that you don’t have the right to worship God and follow Jesus Christ according to your understanding of the scriptures, which is clearly peaceful, law abiding, to us, that’s a clear violation of fundamental human rights,” he said. “And if that’s happening to us, it means that fundamental human rights are at stake throughout Russia.”

http://www.newsweek.com/jehovahs-witnesses-russia-ban-putin-587179

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Malawi – Republic of Malawi – Country Profile

Background:

Malawi’s predominantly rural population is comprised of various tribes that
migrated from other parts of Africa. According to its gross national income (GNI)
the Republic of Malawi is the poorest country in Africa, its economy is agro-based.
There is a small tourism sector which is being primed for growth.

The former British protectorate of Nyasaland became the independent nation of
Malawi in 1964. First democratic multi-party elections were held in 1994, after
three decades of one-party rule. A provisional constitution, took full effect
in 1995. In the 2004 elections the UDF party was voted in again for the third
time since 1994.

related countries: United Kingdom


Official Name:

Republic of Malawi
short form: Malawi

former: British Central African Protectorate, Nyasaland Protectorate, Nyasaland.

ISO Country Code: mw

Actual Time:

Fri-Dec-14 06:48

Local Time = UTC
+2h

Country Calling Code: +265

Capital City: Lilongwe (pop. 600 000)

Other Cities: Blantyre (the country’s commercial capital), Zomba, Mzuzu

Government:
Type: multi-party democracy.

Independence: July 6, 1964.
Constitution: May 18, 1995.

Geography:
Location: Southeastern Africa

Area: 118,484 sq. km. (45,747 sq. mi.)
Terrain: Plateaus, highlands, and valleys. Lake Malawi (formerly referred to as
Lake Nyasa) comprises about 20% of total area.

Climate: Predominately sub-tropical; two main seasons, cold-dry and hot-wet.
The hot-wet season is from November to April.

People:
Nationality: Malawian(s)

Population: 15.8 million (2014)
GNI per capita
PPP
: $ 596 (year)
Ethnic groups: Chewa, Nyanja, Tumbuka, Yao, Lomwe, Sena, Tonga, Ngoni, Ngonde,
Asian, European.
Religions: Protestant 55%, Roman Catholic 20%, Muslim 20%, indigenous beliefs
3%, other 2%.
Languages: English
(official), Chichewa (official), regional dialects, i.e., Chitumbuka, Chiyao,
Chilomwe.
Literacy: total population 58%.

Natural resources: Limestone, uranium (potential), coal, bauxite, phosphates,
graphite, granite, black granite, aquamarine, tourmaline, rubies,
sapphires, rare earths.

Agriculture products: Tobacco, sugarcane, cotton, tea, corn, potatoes,
cassava (tapioca), sorghum, pulses; groundnuts, Macadamia nuts; cattle, goats.

Industries: Tobacco, tea, sugar, sawmill products, cement, consumer goods.

Exports – commodities: tobacco 55%, dried legumes (8.8%), sugar (6.7%), tea (5.7%), cotton (2%), peanuts, coffee, and soy (2015 est.)

Exports – partners: Belgium 15.8%, Zimbabwe 12%, India 6.9%, South Africa 6.2%, USA 6%, Russia 5.6%, Germany 4.6% (2015)

Imports – commodities: food, petroleum products, semi-manufactures, consumer goods, transportation equipment

Imports – partners: South Africa 26.4%, China 16.7%, India 12%, Zambia 10.3%, Tanzania 6% (2015)

Currency: Kwacha (MWK)

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Prophet TB Joshua’s prophecy fulfilled as Malawi president dies



MALAWI president Professor Bingu wa Mutharika who suffered a cardiac arrest Thursday morning is reportedly dead. This is in fulfillment to Prophet TB Joshua’s prophect that an old african leader was going to die on the 6th of April. However there hasn’t been any official communication from the country’s government so far.

Former head of state Bakili Muluzi Friday morning held a press conference at his residence urging government to come out in the open about the president’s condition whilst calling for vice president Joyce Banda to assume leadership should Professor Mutharika be declared unfit to hold office.

Malawi Voice quoted Dr Muluzi urging Malawians to be patient as the country awaits official communication from government on the death rumour.

President Wa Mutharika was hospitalised at Kamuzu Central Hospital after suffering a cardiac arrest on Thursday and was later flown to South Africa for further treatment.

Doctors at the South African hospital say efforts to resuscitate President Mutharika failed and that an official announcement is being prepared. Reports from Malawi’s main city, Blantyre, say cabinet ministers met all night to discuss the situation.

According to the constitution, the Vice-President Joyce Banda takes over if the head of state is incapacitated or dies in office.

Dr Mutharika, a former World Bank economist was elected president in 2004 and unanimously re-elected in 2009.-Herald/zbc/Malawi voice

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Malawi suffers blackouts as drought exposes 98% reliance on hydro power | World news

Shire river, which generates almost all of the country’s power, has fallen to critical levels, leaving major cities struggling

Field of dying sunflowers beneath storm clouds in southern Malawi,

A drought in Malawi has exposed the country’s near-total reliance of hydroelectricity, meaning blackouts last up to 25 hours.
Photograph: Guido Dingemans/Alamy Stock Photo

Large parts of Malawi have been plunged into darkness as water levels at the country’s main hydro power plant fell to critical levels due to a severe drought, according to its electricity company.

The impoverished southern African country which relies on hydroelectricity has been hit by intermitted blackouts since last year, but the outages have recently worsened, lasting up to 25 hours.

The state-owned Electricity Supply Corporation of Malawi (Escom) said on Thursday that power output had been halved as water levels in the Shire river dropped to critical levels.

The water from the river normally generates a total of 300 megawatts of electricity, which is 98% of the country’s supply. “For the past three weeks, the available capacity was 160 megawatts,” said Escom said in a statement.

Affected areas include large parts of the capital Lilongwe and in the second city of Blantyre.

A number of businesses and hospitals in the country had been forced to use diesel-powered generators to keep the lights on.

According to the World Bank, only 8% of Malawi’s 17 million people have access to electricity.

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Prophet Bushiri Archives – Malawi Nyasa Times

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MENUMENU

  • Home
  • National

    • Exodus in Malawi Parliament: Opposition MPs walk out as DPP foils bank interest rate cap bill


      Zameer Karim case fails to take off: Malawi police food rations scandal


      Court shelves ruling on NGO Bill case


      Deploy army soldiers to patrol Lake Malawi, ask Mangochi fishing community

  • Politics

    • Mutharika meets PAC over peaceful 2019 polls


      Phase one of voters register verification ends Friday


      Malawi Parliament nods to pension scheme: PP’s Chikalimba moved the motion


      Opposition MP wants Malawi govt to kickstart Chilima’s benefits pay for the eldery

  • Sports

    • Nyasa BB back Pasuwa and have no plans to remove Zimbabwean coach


      Be Forward extend Wanderers sponsorship by another year


      Malawi Junior Queens win silver medal, lose to South Africa in finals


      Malawi Chess Association introduces membership fee for players

  • Business

    • More Chinese companies eye to buy Malawi products


      Expert touts local mining industry to be Malawi’s top forex earner


      Lilongwe Water Board hands over Likuni Road bus shelters to council


      Female prison warder wins K10 million grand Airtel BanduloBandulo prize

  • Columns

    • Constitutional engineering for a Deputy President for Malawi: The fallout between Chilima and Mutharika should be our last


      Speaking the unspeakable: MCP never wins general elections …just good enough for opposition!


      Hall of shame: Malawi leaders can occasion and thrive on pettiness


      Themba la Mathemba funeral: Minister Nankhumwa steps to the plate yet again

  • Education

    • Every district to have 7 new secondary schools with US aid


      Msaka praises Mutharika for fees abolition, quizzed by MPs


      Chilima commends US support for 200 secondary schools in Malawi: ‘Don’t claim dynamic leadership over this’


      Minister Mussa says govt promotes computer and business studies

  • Entertainment

    • KIM of Diamonds drops new December vibe: ‘Something new’


      Actor Eric Mabedi undergoes successful kidney transplant in India


      Wanderers star Kamwendo displays his love for fiancé Rose Hussein during send-off


      Malawi’s Lost History Foundation produces video documentary on 1964 Cabinet crisis

  • Health

    • Malawi will introduce Cervical Cancer Vaccine in January 2019


      Health workers ‘not attending to’ patients in NkhataBay at Liuzi Health Center


      Prison inmates in voluntary HIV and TB testing – Glohomo


      Tuberculosis hits hard Dowa

Mtawali invited to play in Bushiri organised charity match: South Africa Masters and Legends

Bushiri refuses South Africa police extortion, sues: ‘Cases were fabricated to soil prophet’s reputation’

Bushiri’s book launch dominates media in Southern Africa

Cracking the ‘Prophetic Codes’: Bushiri launches 6 books, now 33 published in 4 years

Bushiri to sponsor chess in Malawi at K10m: Biggest ever tournament

Bushiri touts his love for Malawi in Facebook chat: Sending his kids home for studies

Bushiri’s annual Salvation Festival brings thousands to Pretoria, boosts tourism

Bushiri’s Global Prophetic Tour bearing fruits: ECG Church says 2.7 million souls won so far

Bushiri in India for soul winning campaign

Bushiri sending back Malawians working for him in South Africa

Bushiri jets in Malawi for comfort service of worshipper James Nee, 2 other ECG members

Bushiri in Uganda with prophetic crusade to win thousands to Christ

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Madonna allowed to adopt four-year-old twin girls from Malawi who lost mother

Madonna tours the Mphandura orphanage near Lilongwe, Malawi in 2013
Madonna tours the Mphandura orphanage near Lilongwe, Malawi in 2013

Credit:
AP

Madonna has been granted permission to adopt four-year-old twins from Malawi, after she appeared in court to hear a judge rule in her favour.

The American pop star, who has already adopted two Malawian children and has a biological son and daughter, has seen her adoption request approved after attending court in person.

The children, previously reported to be twin girls named Stella and Esther, could leave Malawi with the singer shortly after spending the last two years in the Home of Hope in Mchinji.

Their father was in court to observe proceedings, while their mother is understood to have died a week after giving birth in 2012 from caesarian section complications.

The twins will join David and Mercy, the two children previously adopted into the US by Madonna amid some controversy.

Judiciary spokesman Mlenga Mvula has now confirmed that Madonna had been granted an adoption order by Justice Fiona Mwale.

Pop star Madonna sits with her adopted Malawian child Mercy James during a bricklaying ceremony at the site of her Raising Malawi Girls Academy, near the capital Lilongwe, Malawi in 2010

Credit:
Reuters

The singer had previously denied embarking on the adoption process again, telling US magazine People she was in Malawi to “check on the children’s hospital in Blantyre and my other work with Raising Malawi”

Mr Mvula confirmed that the Material Girl singer was in court yesterday as required by the adoption laws of the southern African nation, alongside her lawyer Titus Mvalo.

“She appeared in court and has been granted an adoption order by the court,” said Mr Mvula.

“We cannot give the names of children due to the adoption laws but we can confirm that the two children were born on 24 August 2012.”

Mr Mvalo, Madonna’s lawyer, said: “Madonna has demo​n​strated over the years that she has passion for Malawi and her children and therefore the court was satisfied and could not stop the adoption of the twins.”

Madonna photographed with David and Lourdes in 2007

Mr Mvula, who said the singer was smiling when the judge delivered her decision, added: “Within a year she should provide us with a home survey report which the court has ordered her to provide.”

Madonna, 58, adopted Malawian children David Banda and Mercy James in 2006 and 2009.

The latter adoption has been fraught with rumoured difficulty in recent years, with members of Mercy’s family alleging they had been “deceived” in the adoption process and pleading to see her during visits to Malawi.

Joyce Banda, the former president of Malawi, has previously issued an excoriating statement condemning the actions of Madonna and accusing her of exploiting her aid work and overplaying achievements.

Madonna has recently settled a custody dispute with Guy Ritchie over their son, Rocco

In 2013 ,she said: “Granted, Madonna has adopted two children from Malawi. According to the record, this gesture was humanitarian and of her accord.

“It, therefore, comes across as strange and depressing that for a humanitarian act, prompted only by her, Madonna wants Malawi to be forever chained to the obligation of gratitude.”

The pop singer has two other children, Lourdes and Rocco, from previous relationships.

Last year, she settled a custody battle with Rocco’s father, the director Guy Ritchie, to allow him to stay in London rather than be compelled to live with her in the States.

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Spiritual Gift of Prophecy | Spiritual Gifts Test

The spiritual gift of prophecy is an extraordinary and unique gift. Paul says in 1 Corinthians 14:1 to “Pursue love, and earnestly desire the spiritual gifts, especially that you may prophesy.” This gift is a blessing to the church and should not be quenched or despised (1 Thessalonians 5:20). Those who have the gift of prophecy differ from the Old Testament Prophets who spoke the authoritative Word of God directly. Their words were recorded as Scripture as they proclaimed, “Thus says The Lord,” whereas the messages from those with the spiritual gift of prophecy must be tested (1 Corinthians 14:29-33; 1 Thessalonians 5:20-21; 1 John 4:1-3). In the New Testament the Apostles, not the prophets, took over the role of Scriptural proclamation from the Old Testament Prophets.

The Greek word for the gift of prophecy is propheteia which is the ability to receive a divinely inspired message and deliver it to others in the church. These messages can take the form of exhortation, correction, disclosure of secret sins, prediction of future events, comfort, inspiration, or other revelations given to equip and edify the body of Christ (1 Corinthians 14:3-4, 24-25). Again, they do not constitute the authoritative Word of God, but are the human interpretation of the revelation that was received. They are spoken in human words through a human mind which is why they must be tested against the Scriptures (1 Thessalonians 5:20-21).

The Holy Spirit gives the gift of prophecy to some believers to make God’s heart known and to edify the church. This gift is for the benefit of both believers and unbelievers and is a sign that God is truly among His church (1 Corinthians 14:22-25). Those with this gift are sensitive to both the prompting of the Holy Spirit and the needs of the church body. They should be humble and continually study the Scriptures in order to test these revelations before speaking them. When they do speak, they should allow and even expect others to weigh what is said against the Scriptures and interpret the message accordingly. In this way the church may be continually built up together in unity (1 Corinthians 14:4, 26). See also Romans 12:6, 1 Corinthians 12:10, 14:1-5, Ephesians 4:11-12, 1 Peter 4:10-11.

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Using drones to save lives in Malawi

Media playback is unsupported on your device

Media captionA drone is being tested to see if it can carry blood samples to the laboratory

It started with an aeroplane journey back in 2014.

“I knew nothing about drones,” says Judith Sherman, the head of HIV for the UN children’s fund, Unicef, in Malawi. But as she leafed through an in-flight magazine about pizza deliveries by drone in Mumbai, she had a eureka moment.

“Drones could be used to solve the logistical challenge of swiftly delivering HIV/Aids care in rural Malawi,” she thought.

Two years later she is about to find out if she was right as important experiments get under way.

The government says 10,000 children died of HIV-related illnesses in Malawi in 2014, which is the “equivalent to a school bus full of youngsters dying every week,” according to Ms Sherman.

A young child may get the virus from an HIV-positive mother during pregnancy or birth, or when the mother is breastfeeding, but drugs can reduce the risk of transmission.

Only half of the young people with HIV have access to treatment, and their initial diagnosis is often delayed because of the poor state of the roads.

Image caption

A blood sample is taken to see if children are HIV positive

Image caption

Motorbikes have to travel along rough tracks to deliver the blood samples

Unlike adults, screening for the virus in children with HIV-positive mothers requires specialist laboratories that can do a sophisticated test.

There are only eight of them in the country and for many people they are hard to access.

With many Malawians living in remote villages, the blood samples from rural HIV clinics need to be transported by motorbike along what are little more than dirt tracks, and that is where drones could have a revolutionary effect – slashing the waiting time for the blood test result.

California-based company Matternet has designed a drone as part of an experiment being conducted in partnership with Unicef.

Image caption

The drone can carry a payload of up to 1kg

Image copyright
Unicef/2016/Khonje

Image caption

The drone is also fitted with a parachute in case of emergencies

Just like mobile phones transformed healthcare in Africa more than a decade ago, drones could do the same for programmes to deal with HIV, ultimately saving lives.

Instead of using motorbikes to transport blood samples, which often require a large batch to make the delivery costs worthwhile, Unicef and Matternet are testing whether deliveries could be more efficient by air.

“This is the power of things that are unexpected,” says Paola Santana from Matternet. “People didn’t see them coming and then they change everything.”

She is a technology evangelist, clearly on a mission to share the fruits of scientific advance to solve logistical problems.

Image copyright
Unicef/2016/Khonje

Image caption

The drone can be operated through a mobile phone app

The drone used in the test is less than a metre long and is programmed to travel along a designated route, passing predetermined way points, which are plotted using an app.

No pilot is necessary, instead it requires a health worker with a password and a GPS signal on their mobile phone. At the swipe of a button the vehicle is airborne.

It has already been certified as safe by Malawi’s defence ministry, which has approved an air corridor for the drone’s use.

But in the months ahead, the team from the Silicon Valley will run tests to measure the drone’s resilience, cost effectiveness and efficiency.

“You put a payload box and a fresh battery on the drone,” says Ms Santana, as she demonstrates how the device can carry up to 1kg (2.2lb) of dried blood samples in a compartment tucked under a battery. “You then open the app and select the location, you swipe and you hit take off.”

As the drone makes its maiden flight in Malawi in front of a group of invited guests, villagers lined the edge of a nearby maize field.

Image caption

Villagers turned out to watch the first launch of the drone

They direct their their gaze skywards to view the humming electrical beast making its first ascent. Then burst into peals of nervous laughter.

“I thought it was going to come crashing down onto my head,” giggles one woman.

They had already been told by village doctors that there was nothing to fear, and that no witchcraft was involved in levitating the drone.

“They were frightened at first,” medical assistant Joanna Mwale confesses. “These are traditional areas, they’ve seen aeroplanes but nothing like this.”

Malawi Health Minister Peter Kumpalume is an enthusiastic advocate, and he compares the launch to his days as a young boy flying toy planes fashioned from maize husks. He is not worried about safety, but does acknowledge that there are cost issues.

Overcoming the cost

The operating costs are minimal because electricity to recharge the battery is cheaper than diesel fuel for motorbikes, but each drone costs $7,000 (£4,900), so there needs to be a strong business case.

The minister though is convinced of the drone’s potential, and the logistical barriers can be overcome in a country where HIV rates among children remain stubbornly high, and one in 10 Malawians live with HIV.

“It’s specialist testing we do for youngsters. If you delay giving them treatment most of them don’t live beyond two years old,” Mr Kumpalume says.

“So the earlier the detection and the earlier the intervention, the longer they live and become productive citizens of the country.”

The experiment is still in its early phase.

The tests over the next week will measure the drone’s performance with differing winds speeds, humidity and distance, and if the results prove positive, the experiment will be expanded.

These so-called leapfrog technologies have a record of changing the way things are done, and in time, with enough financial commitment, drones could change the face of HIV programmes across Africa.

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God’s Messenger | Modern Prophet

Who is The Messenger?

In 1982, a series of profound revelations were received by Marshall Vian Summers in the deserts of the American Southwest. For over 36 years, this revelation has continued, growing ever wider in scope… Read More

Interview with Marshall Vian Summers

You claim to represent a New Message from God. How can you make such a claim?

“The New Message was given to me by the Angels of the Creator. It is a new revelation for humanity. I was instructed to make this claim.”
Read the full interview…

By what authority do you claim to present a new covenant, a new testament?

“I have been given this task and I, through Knowledge within me, have recognized it and accepted it. Yet the responsibility to bring the New Message into the world has been immense. It has been a great burden for me.”
Read the full interview…

Sayings of the Messenger

View All Sayings of the Messenger

These statements were recorded by those closest to the Messenger, across his life and in locations around the world.

Journeys of the Messenger

Messenger travels to Syria

Syria

The Messenger, Marshall Vian Summers, has traveled around the world to experience its various conditions, challenges, and to receive revelations.

Marshall’s travels have been documented by his son, Reed, and his wife, Patricia, in countries such as: Syria, Thailand, Costa Rica, and many more. See photos from his journeys….

The Story of the Messenger

Marshall Vian Summers has given the last 36 years of his life to receiving and quietly teaching the New Message from God. Marshall was ignited spiritually… Read More…

Revelations About the Messenger

Hear the original audio recordings of Revelations about the Messenger, Marshall Vian Summers.

Read more…

The Messenger’s Prayer

Marshall was ignited spiritually at an early age, especially through his experiences in nature. As a young man, his journeys through the wilderness of North America continued his mysterious education.
Read more…

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