Executive News Svc. UPn 09/08 1314 Texas evangelist organizes San Francisco Halloween ...

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Executive News Svc. UPn 09/08 1314 Texas evangelist organizes San Francisco Halloween ... Texas evangelist organizes San Francisco Halloween orgy prayer fest DALLAS (UPI) -- Texas evangelist Larry Lea is trying to organize an onslaught of 10,000 "prayer warriors" to descend on San Francisco this Halloween to counteract what some pastors say is an orgy. "It's the darkest night of any night in San Francisco," said Dick Bernal, a San Francisco-area pastor coordinating the effort with Lea. "There's the Hooker's Ball and the Erotic Exotic, where the homosexuals dress up in Mardi Gras costumes. Basically, an orgy takes place in San Francisco on that night." A three-day "Prayer Breakthrough" rally, starting Oct. 31, to ask for God's mercy on the city, is not being welcomed with open arms in San Francisco, where it was the subject of last Sunday's "God Talk" call- in show on ABC Radio affiliate KGO-AM. "And I'm sure that's all we're going to talk about this Sunday," said host Bernie Ward, a former theology professor who is soliciting listeners to consider a "Jihad Jubilee" as a counterattack to Lea's rally. "I'd really like to get both camps in Candlestick Park to fight it out and then the winner gets dinner at the nearest gay bar," said Ward, who boasts of "hosting the only religious show in the country where you can't quote the Bible." "This is a good example of short-handed stereotyping, where these guys are comparing Sodom and Gomorrah to San Francisco. They're the New Pharisees. I think they'd be the first to condemn Jesus Christ." But Lea and Bernal, both leaders in what they call the non-denominational Pentecostal/charismatic church, emphasize they do not condemn those who participate in traditional San Francisco Halloween events, the Dallas Times Herald reported Saturday.. "We believe these people are bound by evil impulses and the territorial demon that prevails over San Francisco and that's where the prayers are aimed," said Lea, who with Bernal met this week in Dallas with 58 other Pentecostal/charismatic preachers. San Francisco's demon is the spirit of perversion, said Lea and Bernal. Because Satan is not omnipresent he must delegate evil-mongering to territorial demons, who in turn cast prevailing evils over specific regions, they said. Lea, 39, is best known in the Dallas area for founding the Church on the Rock, in nearby Rockwall, which in almost 11 years has grown to 40,000 members internationally. He also hosts a television show, "Change Your Life," that is broadcast daily on 40 independent stations nationwide. Lea, no longer a parish minister, now directs Larry Lea Ministries, acting as a "bishop" to Church on the Rock ministers and continuing to preach once a month at the church he founded. The theory of territorial demons and prayer warriors concerns mainstream Pentecostals, said Dr. Ron Enroth, a specialist in religious cults and a sociology professor at Westmont College, a Roman Catholic school in Santa Barbara. "There simply is not a sound biblical base," Enroth said. "There's always been military imagery but not the attention-getting tactics of what I call these 'Green Berets for God.' "This approach to battling evil very conveniently shifts the responsibility of so-called sins of the flesh to demonic influence, and I just don't believe Jesus of Nazareth would use this kind of methodology." Enroth said the litmus test of Lea's rally would be to "go back to San Francisco in two or three months to see if there's really been any kind of impact and if it has really helped in any way." Lea and Bernal, however, said the San Francisco rally is the fifth one nationwide since 1989 and that 10 percent of money collected from participants will be donated to the host city for care of the needy.


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