How Did Manmin Church Leader, Lee Jae-Rock Brainwash His Followers? Where Is He Now?


Whenever we watch an episode of “In the Name of God: A Holy Betrayal,” we cannot fathom what would have been going on inside the mind of those fraudulent cult leaders when they were preaching nonsense and trying to fool the masses and coercing them to be loyal to them. Whatever these so-called leaders say is so absurd and bizarre that it is difficult to determine if they have already lost their minds or if they are just pretending to believe what they preach. Because if they are deceiving the public, making a mockery of words like faith, while knowing the harm they can cause if the people take them at their word, then we have to give them an Oscar because of their performance and, specifically, for their conviction which is unparalleled. One more thing that goes beyond our comprehension is how such a large number of people cumulatively start believing in the absurdity when it is blatantly evident that the godman is a complete sham, who is not an enlightened being but a con man of the highest order. Even the PR and marketing tactics of these frauds are so gimmicky that you can’t help laughing at the melodramatic approach taken by them. It didn’t take a lot of analysis, and any person who has eyes and ears can easily judge that the godman has no association whatsoever with God and is far from being spiritual.

How Jae-Rock’s Manmin Church Gained Popularity

Lee Jae-Rock’s story was no different from any other conman’s that was documented in the series “In the Name of God: A Holy Betrayal.” The flair, the audacity, and the execution were pretty much the same as those of the other cult leaders, with the exception that Jae Rock unabashedly called himself God from day one and had no doubts about his ability to heal the world. When Jae-Rock established the Manmin church in 1982, it was not that famous, and there were a small number of followers who came and attended his sermons. Jae-Rock had probably done the market research, and he knew what could attract the masses and make him popular. He started having these “healing rallies,” where he cured people suffering from a terminal illness, disability, or any other problem within seconds. All he had to do was tell God to cure the person, and miraculously, the problem vanished on its own.

More and more people started joining his Manmin church when they got to know that God had stepped down from heaven and decided to be among his followers and free them of all their difficulties. Now obviously, a few testimonies were made by people who were hired by him, and that is why they just spoke about how great he was, but still, it baffles us how he was able to pull his tricks amidst such a huge crowd. How could it happen that not even one person noticed that he was just selling a lie and trying to deceive them? When the producers of Munhwa Broadcasting Corporation (MBC) went to see whether what they were told was happening in real life or not, they were also shocked to see the kind of response and connection the crowd had with their Messiah. They actually bought his lies and believed in him unconditionally. When the gods said something was true, no matter how absurd it might sound, the flowers never questioned it, as it was a sin to doubt the Messiah.

Educated people from affluent backgrounds were blinded by their faith. They could do just about anything to get a blessing from him, and the kind of trust they had in his superpowers was unimaginable. MBC ran a program named “PD Note,” where they investigated people and certain controversial topics and looked at them with a very scientific and critical viewpoint. When they decided to run a program on the fraudulent practices of the Messiah, the members of the Manmin church attacked their headquarters and made sure that the program was not televised. The program, which was supposed to bring the corrupt practices of the conman to light, ironically united his followers even more. The Manmin church filed case after case against the MBC and made sure that they troubled them as much as they could. Jae-Rock’s healing sessions were televised in different nations also, and though the people there might not have been moved by him, he got to show in South Korea how the world accepted his authority and considered him the reincarnation of Jesus.

How Did Lee Jae-Rock Brainwash His Followers? Where Is He Now?

These cult leaders whom we witnessed in the series “In the Name of God: A Holy Betrayal” might not have been spiritual, but it cannot be denied that they were exceptional swindlers, who used faith, fear, and whatever else they could to create wealth from things one couldn’t even imagine. People had to pay a huge sum to get a picture of the celebrity godman, and the rate kept on increasing over the years. There were two kinds of payments that Jae-Rock accepted: the first was offerings, which were to be given in an offering envelope, and the second was the unofficial gifts that people gave him on a frequent basis. No other god, goddess, or Messiah had ever devised a way to represent a person’s faith through a numerical value, but Jae-Rock had an uncanny ability to do the unthinkable. He calculated the devotion and faith of a person in percentages, and the followers were kept in different categories based on it.

Now if you think that praying to God or being righteous and honest in life will increase your score, you are wrong. The Messiah had devised a shortcut through which a follower could skip levels and accelerate the process of reaching heaven. All they had to do was be generous in whatever they offered God, and the New Jerusalem opened its doors for them. Jae-Rock sold bottles of Muan Sweet Water, a special liquid that was the one-stop remedy for curing anything in life. He also sold merchandise that looked normal but, because his name was imprinted on it, was bought at ridiculously high prices.

Our Messiah had expensive hobbies like eloping to Las Vegas once in a while and spending extravagant amounts of money in casinos. As if these activities were not enough, Jae-Rock started claiming that things like climatic change, hurricanes, and floods were under his control. Once, a hurricane that was supposed to hit the United States of America didn’t hit it at the last moment, and Jae-Rock announced in front of the whole world that it had happened because he had prayed. His followers saw his face on the moon, and they were shown pictures of how, when he was photographed, there seemed to be a crown on his head and wings on his back, which otherwise was not visible to the normal eye.

Maybe Jae-Rock would have continued fooling people had the woman not come out in the open and told the world that in addition to being a fraud, he was also a sexual abuser who used his position of power to prey upon them. Jae-Rock was summoned for the first time in 2018 on charges of sexual assault, and his followers, instead of questioning his credibility, character assassinated the victims, calling them sinners. Jae-Rock was sent to prison when the legal authorities got their hands on a recording in which a woman was telling a victim how it was normal to be sexually abused by Jae-Rock. The woman said that because she was being touched by God, there was nothing wrong with it. These enablers, whether men or women, were equally to blame for making the lives of innocent people miserable.

To date, the followers of Jae-Rock believe that he has done no wrong and that one day the people behind his conviction will have to pay for their sins, and according to the correctional advisor, Lee Kwang-Oh, Jae-Rock enjoys a privileged life even inside the prison.

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Sushrut Gopesh
Sushrut Gopesh
I came to Mumbai to bring characters to life. I like to dwell in the cinematic world and ponder over philosophical thoughts. I believe in the kind of cinema that not necessarily makes you laugh or cry but moves something inside you.

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