Back in January, Kay Hagan attended the Martin Luther King Day service at King's Park International Church in Durham, North Carolina. Video of her speech here:
On paper, that church seems to be the fulfillment of Dr. King's dream--it's one of the most diverse churches in North Carolina and the South. Nothing wrong with that, right? Problem is that this church is a member of Every Nation, one of the more notorious outfits in the dominionist/Latter Rain movement. It was also once part of Maranatha Campus Ministries, a dangerous campus cult from the 1980s.
I have to confess to being particularly horrified to see this video, since I was suckered into joining a campus ministry connected with this church when I was a student at Carolina (class of '00).
For six months during my freshman year at Carolina, I was a member of this church's campus ministry there, Waymaker Christian Fellowship. I was led to believe this was a smaller version of Inter-Varsity Christian Fellowship, but was shocked to discover it was really a hypercharismatic outfit that hid a lot about who they really were so as not to scare anyone off. For instance, your butt was expected to be in church, weekly fellowship meetings or weekly Bible study--and everything else, including studying and exams, be hanged. However, the scales didn't start coming off my eyes until I discovered that they basically think you have to be a hyperconservative Republican to really be a Christian. In fact, one of them flat-out told me that I had to do a philosophical 180 without even thinking about it--or else my salvation was at risk. They also found it perfectly acceptable to dog people about becoming a Christian. I knew in my gut that nearly all of what they were saying was crapola, but part of me was afraid in case they were right. I finally got out in January '97--just after the start of the second semester of my freshman year.
Early in my sophomore year, I discovered by accident that KPIC appeared on a database of former Maranatha churches and ministries. KPIC claims to have been birthed out of a campus ministry at Carolina that started in 1981. Turns out that campus ministry was actually the Carolina chapter of Maranatha. When I mentioned this to my now-former friends in this bunch, their reaction was basically "So what?" I pretended to rejoin them back in December 1997, making them think I'd somehow been "convicted" and now thought just like them. In only two months, I learned, among other things, how they rationalize keeping after people. To their minds, deep down everyone wants to listen. But supposedly it's not the person cussing them out or blowing cigarette smoke in their faces. It's their spirit, which has been so screwed around with by the devil it doesn't know God's ways. They also think that you can't trust your mind at all, since the devil has screwed with it so much that it's totally unreliable. No action was taken against them, unfortunately--apparently it's acceptable for a student organization to intentionally deceive students, but not administrators. A year later, a bunch of girls in that bunch tried to frame me up for harassing them, since they didn't like how I was blasting Waymaker on campus and online. Fortunately, their scheme was so amateurish it fell apart.
KPIC's been tripping all over itself to hide its past. It claims to have been founded as a church back in 1990, but in truth, it was incorporated in 1986 as Maranatha Christian Church of the Triangle, changing its name to Triangle Christian Fellowship in 1990 and to KPIC in 1997. Moreover, these name changes were passed as mere amendments to the original bylaws. Despite KPIC's attempts to run from its past, it still operates under its original 1986 bylaws, as amended. It's all in the corporate records. And if you want to get a real picture of their dominionist roots, listen to a speech given by one of Every Nation's "prophets," Jim Laffoon, back in 2004 (part 1, part 2, part 3).
The sickening thing about these dominionists is that they frequently wrap themselves up in perfectly laudable causes like community empowerment and racial reconciliation, but it's all a sham to hide their real agenda. I can understand Hagan's staffers not delving into it more. After all, while it can be argued that North Carolina is more purple than red, it's still the Bible Belt. However, if Hagan knew even half of the truth, it's not likely she'd have touched this church with a 10-foot-pole.