Here’s what I just posted at Pharyngula, in response to this story.
Isn’t this the same man who had a dream that Peter Costello would one day be Prime Minister of Australia in the fifth term of the Howard Government (which never happened)?
Actually, God told him so, and it was on the basis of that conversation that Nalliah could “boldly” declare” (in August 2007) that John Howard would be re-elected in November 2007. God told Nalliah to spend “personal time” with (former Prime Minister) Howard and to prepare (former Treasurer) Costello as the future Prime Minister.
The man is a charlatan. His followers are case studies in self-delusion. Theirs is a worldview, as PZ’s post demonstrates, that feeds off human misery and fear.
Via Sean, here’s the Australian Skeptics’ media release on Nalliah’s parasitism:
Christians Exploit Catastrophe
Australia has been in shock since the Victorian bushfires in early February, resulting in the destruction of almost one thousand homes and the deaths of hundreds of people.
While some offer practical relief in the form of food and clothing donations, others look for someone to blame.
Catch the Fire Ministries (CTFM) in Dandenong, Victoria, published a media release today, blaming a new Australian law for the devastating bushfires, and further claim that the fires were foretold in a spiritual vision.
The CTFM leader, Pastor Danny Nalliah, announced that he had predicted the bushfires in a dream he had in October 2008. In this dream, he had a prophesy that the fires would occur, as divine retribution for an abortion decriminalisation bill that passed in Victoria in 2008. Nalliah calls Victoria the “baby killing state of Australia.”
The Ministry’s response is to petition God for forgiveness, and to commence a seven day prayer and fasting campaign. “In our prayer and fasting campaign, we are particularly repenting for the passing of the “Decriminalization of Abortion Laws of Victoria” in addition to other unrighteous, ungodly, and unjust laws and practices which have seen a holocaust of some of the most helpless members of the human race, the unborn.”
“Can we stop the fires? Yes we can! But it will take God’s children to rally together and repent and cry unto Him as in 2 Chronicles 7:14 (The Holy Bible). We at CTFM have seen this happen several times in the past in Australia, which was also covered by many mainstream media outlets.”
The CTFM website calls upon the “Australian Bible-believing God-fearing Christians to repent and call upon the Lord Jesus Christ for His mercy and protection over Australia once again.”
Visitors to the CTFM website can comment on the media release. However, skeptical replies are immediately deleted.
Representatives of the Australian Skeptics condemn the Catch the Fire Ministry for their uncritical, discriminatory beliefs and exploitation of the tragic events to promote their ministry.