Wednesday, July 21, 2010

The Big Question ?

Many Calvarites will remember the infamous theatrical alabaster jar-breaking act of Senior Pastor Prince (PG) a few years ago on Easter Sunday at Stadium Putra.

That Sunday was the launch of a major fund-raising campaign for the Calvary Convention Centre (CCC) project and PG wanted to impress the congregation with his “sacrificial” pledge of 9 months of his salary towards the CCC building fund. In an unashamed display of haughtiness, he took an alabaster jar and broke it to symbolize his “sacrificial” giving, trying to replicate the sacrificial act of the woman in the Bible who broke her alabaster jar of expensive perfume and poured it on Jesus’ head.

Many in the crowd in the stadium applauded PG’s act of sacrifice but little did they realize that his sacrifice of 9 months of salary will not affect him much. His dear wife, Sis Petrina was still drawing a big monthly salary of RM10,000 which is more than what senior pastors in other similar-size churches earn. For two persons, this amount of salary is more than adequate to live on, considering that they have no financial commitments and their cars’ petrol and maintenance costs are all taken care of by the Church. There are many members who feed their families and pay their housing and car loans and everything else on much less income.

What the members also do not know was what took place subsequently in the Church office. Because PG sacrificed his salary for 9 months, the Church staff were encouraged to buy lunch for him as often as they could!

Towards the end of that year, the Board of Deacons, in “recognition of PG’s great sacrifice” took a special Christmas love offering from the congregation to bless him. And like a big hero, PG “humbly” accepted it and immediately announced that he is giving the entire love offering to CCC. The entire episode is worthy of a grammy award.

Now, with that background story and in the light of the latest fund-raising campaign, many Calvarites are watching to see what “sacrificial” advance PG will be giving this time.

Clip 1 : Ask and ask big

At the combined services in Sime Darby Convention Centre two Sundays ago, PG announced that his CCC committee members and the Deacons have made advances totaling RM3 million to the CCC. While this may appear to be a large amount, we must take cognizance of the fact that several of the committee members and deacons are millionaires with a few owning fairly large multi-million dollar businesses. Therefore, RM3 million advances from this group is commendable but nothing to shout about. However, the interesting thing to note about this announcement is that PG, himself a millionaire, did not state whether he made any advance and if he did, how much.

Clip 2 : Tremendous sacrifice (?)

The fact that PG is a millionaire is undeniable. His local properties alone are worth at least RM6 to 7 million. The value of his local assets can be easily quantified. His present 3-storey semi-detached house in Bangsar is worth RM4 to 5 million. His Taman Tun house where his daughter, Pam was living in, has just been sold for RM1.2 million. Another house in Bangsar where his son, Jim lives, also belongs to him and this is worth easily RM1.2 to 1.5 million. He is said to own other properties besides the above.

The value of his overseas properties is not known. The amount of money he has in his local as well as overseas bank accounts is also unknown. Since he has never declared to the Church the love offerings he has received, there is, therefore, no way to ascertain the amount of wealth he has amassed overseas.

When Pas Robert Lim of Singapore came to preach just two services in Calvary Church on one Sunday in 2003, the Church gave him a love gift of S$10,000 (read the CT article on 3 April 2009). If we use this as a benchmark, the amount of love offerings that PG would have received over the last 40 years from his overseas preaching engagements, can be fairly substantial.

The deacons have mentioned before that his personal ministry, Calvary International Ministries (CIM) also has bank accounts in Singapore and USA but we have no way of verifying the bank balances there. Nevertheless, it is safe to estimate PG’s total wealth to be in the region of at least RM10 million. Bearing in mind that he has no known borrowings, he is certainly a very rich man.

It is therefore, of great interest to members to know how much advance he has pledged or made to the CCC project this time. After all, he is the Senior Pastor and the CCC is his vision and it is only appropriate that he leads by example.

The amount of advance he commits to the CCC compared to his wealth will be a good yardstick for the ordinary members to follow if they believe in his vision and want to participate in this “Give an Advance” campaign.

The big question on everyone’s lips is how much is PG advancing to the CCC. Is it RM1 million, RM2 million, RM3 million or more?

So Prince Guneratnam, can you answer our BIG QUESTION, please?

We thank our reader who used the pseudonym "Discovery Channel" for these photos of the November-December 1993 issue of Calvary News. This article written back in 1993 welcoming Pam G and her husband and daughter back to Malaysia after being away for 7 to 8 years in the USA for studies is proof of PG's wealth even back then.

It takes a very rich man to be able to afford to support a daughter's overseas studies for 7 to 8 years. In PG's case, he not only need to finance his daughter's study and living expenses, he also had to finance the bringing up of a granddaughter, who spent the first 4 years of her life in the USA. To top this, his son Jim was also studying in the USA about the same time. 

As we recall, PG and wife also took one year sabbatical leave to be with his children and granddaughter in the USA. Of course, the members were told that he was there to do a Masters degree.  Now, this is indeed the lifestyle of the rich.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Audio Clips from CCC Fund-raising Services

In the previous posting, we published a summary submitted by a reader of what transpired on Sunday, 4 July’s Fund-raising at the Sime Darby Convention Centre. Those who attended that Sunday Service thinking that it was a usual Worship Service were in for a surprise. The entire sermon was tailored to make the people “feel good” about themselves. “We are a people with a destiny … We are on an assignment that God has given us…” Every sentence was carefully crafted with one purpose in mind, to persuade the members to give money to the building of the Calvary Convention Centre (CCC), the vision of PG.

Here are the sound clips of what Bro Han Joke Kwang and Senior Pastor Prince (PG) said at the services about the advances for the CCC. Almost the entire long-winded altar call by PG was to cajole the members to give to the CCC. Both offerings collected during the two services on that Sunday were also channeled to the CCC.

Clip 1 : Listen to what HJK and PG said about the members of Calvary Church

What Bro Han Joke Kwang said (with CT's comments in blue)

Bro Han explained that Bank Negara approval has been obtained to allow the Church to collect short term interest-free advances from members only for the construction of the CCC. All advances must be put in by 30 September 2010 and will be a fixed period of up to 5 years until 2015.

Advances will be repaid to members within 30 days of the maturity date or within 30 days in the event of death of the member. Upon maturity, members may choose to extend the advance subject to repayment by 30 September 2015 which is the final repayment date set by Bank Negara. Members may choose to convert their advances into a contribution at any time before or upon maturity. The terms of the Advances will be documented in a Statement of Understanding.

The Church expects to receive advances of between RM10,000 to RM100,000 from 60% of the members to achieve the target of RM35 million. This will save the Church at least RM8 million in interest saving. Of course, he did not elaborate that this means the burden of this RM8 million interest saving is indirectly passed on to the members either in the form of loss in potential investment income or loan interest to be paid to the bank by the member if he/she chooses the unwise route of taking a bank loan to advance to the Church.

Bro Han advised members to provide adequately for their own personal needs during their participating period of the advance. In other words, if the members get into financial difficulties during the tenure of the advance, the Church is unlikely to help them out or repay their advances early. Members should heed this warning seriously as the world economic outlook is not looking good at this moment and there are expectations and forecasts of an impending worldwide recession. As CT has stated earlier, if members wish to give an advance, give only what you can afford to lose.

The repayment of the RM35 million advances will be from cash flow surpluses of the Church or if need be, from the sale or refinance of the Church properties valued at RM52 million. As the surplus income over expenses is reducing drastically due to the falling attendances and members becoming wise, the possibility of the Church having to sell its properties is real.
 This is a deviation from the original plan when CCC was first mooted. Members were assured then that the main Damansara Heights church and possibly Damansara Perdana church will not be closed or sold even after the CCC is built. Sis Petrina, had in the past, also assured members that Damansara Heights building will continue to be used for Sunday services, small meetings and to hold wedding services.

The reality now is that, the CALVARY CHURCH that God has built in the last 48 years (and not 40 years as PG claimed in his sermon) may be gone for good. In its place, the iconic CCC (if completed) will stand to the glory of PG and the freemason architect and not to the glory of God as PG, Sis Petrina and the Deacons have always proclaimed. How can a building not even known as a church bring glory to God? How many non-Christians will actually know what the name “Calvary” means if it does not have the word “Church” attached to it?

In the presentation, Bro Han did not explain the costs and expenditure of the CCC project. He did not clarify what the RM35 million advances and the existing cash balance in the bank can achieve.

According to a reliable source, the Church needs RM70 to RM80 million just to construct the roof and walls on a shell and core basis. To be able to have a proper sanctuary (of less than 5,000 seats) to worship in, the Church needs a further RM30 million. Where this money will come from, no one has any idea. We can only assume by our calculation, the Church will have to draw down on the Alliance Bank loan facility of RM35 million. If this bank loan is taken up, then all the main properties will become encumbered as the bank loan is secured by the properties.

If this happens and the Church sells the properties later, the sale proceeds cannot be used to repay the members’ advances as the bank will have the first right over the sale proceeds. Our beloved Church is certainly in dire straits!

Clip 2 : HJK introduction of the "Advance To CCC"

What PG said during altar call (with CT's comments in blue)

During the long-winded altar call, PG psyched up the congregation into giving an advance as well as renewing their contribution pledge to the CCC building fund. He told the members it is a wonderful privilege to be able to give an advance to the CCC. He gave suggestions on the many ways the members can bring an advance in, namely from:

1) money that they have kept aside
2) money that they can have access to
3) money that they have that can pay up an existing personal loan
4) to take a loan

Members should exercise wisdom in this area of giving and financial stewardship. Money which you have kept aside for a rainy day or for your children’s education or for your retirement or for whatever purposes should remain kept by members for the purposes it was intended. Please remember that providing for your family’s welfare or for your future is biblical. It is not “hoarding up treasures on earth”.

We do not know what PG meant by “money that we can have access to”. If you are in a position of trust like a Fund Manager or the Treasury Officer or Accountant of your company, please do not touch the money which is entrusted to you or under your control. Do not entertain the thought that God has placed you where you are for a time such as this.

If you have money to pay off an existing loan, please do so. Please do not channel it to CCC and continue to be in debt. Lastly, do not take out a loan to give an advance to CCC. It is not a wise thing to do.

PG stated that “I don’t want to go on Facts….I want to go on the Truth…I want to move on the Word of God but God’s Word tells me. Do this out of a willing heart because the Bible says it is those who are willing and obedient, they will eat the fruit of the land…and if you’re not willing, you won’t be obedient…..”

He subtly put fear in the minds of the congregation that if they are not willing and obedient to give, they will not eat the fruit of the land. It is sad that he has taken the Word of God out of context to induce members to give.

Clip 3: PG giving a long winded altar call to get members to give the "Advance".  This clip is only a fraction of the actual length.

PG also shared the story of the Good Samaritan to justify the Church asking for advance from members. In the story as we know, the Good Samaritan left the wounded man into the care of the inn-keeper, gave him two denaris and told him that if he spends more than the two denaris, he (the Good Samaritan) will repay him (the inn-keeper) when he returns. PG likened this as the Good Samaritan asking the inn-keeper for an advance. Shocking interpretation, to say the least.

PG even puts additional words in the Good Samaritan’s mouth. He quoted the Good Samaritan as telling the inn-keeper “I can’t give this to you now but you give first” and proceeded to ask the members to give first!
We are lost for words!!!

PG then called on the members to “Seal what you are giving with Communion”.

Clip 4 : The Good Samaritan as interpreted  by PG

This short explanation on the story of the Good Samaritan was put in as a Comment by a reader. We do feel that all who are reading and listening to Clip 4, should have a right understanding of the Good Samaritan story in the Bible.


The Parable of the Good Samaritan tells the story of a man traveling from Jerusalem to Jericho and while on the way he is robbed of everything he had including his clothing, and is beaten to within an inch of his life.

That road was treacherously winding and was a favorite hideout of robbers and thieves.

The next character Jesus introduces into His story is a priest. He spends no time describing the priest and only tells of how he showed no love or compassion for the man by failing to help him and passing on the other side of the road so as not to get involved.

If there would have been anyone who would have known God’s law of love it would have been the priest. By nature of his position he was to be a person of compassion desiring to help others.
Unfortunately love was not a word for him that required action on the behalf of someone else.

The next person to pass by in the parable of the Good Samaritan was a Levite, and he does exactly the same thing that the priest did;
he passed by without showing any compassion. Again he would have known the law, but he also failed to show the injured man compassion.

The next person to come by was the Samaritan, the one least likely to have shown compassion for the man. Samaritans were considered a low class of people by the Jews since they had intermarried with non-Jews and did not keep all the law.

Therefore, Jews would have nothing to do with them. We do not know if the injured man was a Jew or Gentile, but it made no difference to the Samaritan, he did not consider the man’s race or religion.
The “Good Samaritan” saw only a person in dire need of assistance and assist him he did, above and beyond the minimum required.

He would dress the man’s wounds with wine (to disinfect) and oil (to sooth the pain). He put the man on his animal and took him to an inn for a time of healing and paid the innkeeper with his own money. He then went beyond common decency and told the innkeeper to take could care of the man and he would pay for any extra expenses on his return trip. The Samaritan saw his neighbor as anyone who was in need.

Because the good man was a Samaritan Jesus is drawing a strong contrast between those who knew the law and those who actually followed the law in their lifestyle and conduct. Jesus now asks the lawyer if he can apply the lesson to his own life with the question, “So which of these three do you think was neighbor to him who fell among the thieves?" (Luke 10:36). Once again the lawyer’s answer is telling of his personal hardness of heart. He cannot bring himself to say the word Samaritan, he refers to the “good man” as “he who showed mercy.” His hate for the Samaritans (his neighbor) was so strong that he couldn’t even address him in a proper way. Jesus then tells the lawyer to “go and do likewise,” meaning that he should start living what the law tells him to do.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Break free from PG's Spell

A reader who used the pseudonym  "Break free from PG's Spell" has submitted this Article as a Comment which aptly 
summarizes what transpired at the Combined Worship Services last Sunday.


I would sum-up what was "preached" at the Service on 4 July 2010 at Sime Convention Centre: as DESECRATION of God's WORD and the HOLY COMMUNION.

Every word that proceeded from their mouth were meant to deceive those present to part with $$$.

Every Bible reference cited by PG was twisted and taken out of context: from the story of the Good Samaritan( which has nothing to do with "giving") to his audacious association of 'Jesus finished Works on earth to God's glory' with that of CCC-- PG's own coveted desire of his flesh for pride & self glory that has to be finished. What Manipulator!

FACTs are Facts, but bravo, PG can twist to say "Facts are not Truth"! Indeed all his facts on CCC are anything but Truth.

May God have mercy! PG dared MISUSED Holy Communion to declared the "$ ADVANCE of those who 'pledged' are SEALED by the Holy Communion" !!! PG's underhanded fear tactics are simply horrific.

It was NOT a WORSHIP Service, but a Specific CASH ADVANCE Event for CCC. Even the Offerings were taken for CCC ( They would have spent no less than RM25,000 just to create a 'Feel good factor ' conducive to part with one's $$$)

1. PG & HAN said they needed to raise RM35 MILLION 'to complete' CCC, which of course is a lie.
They never dare revealed that this RM35Million is only meant to have the "Shell' of the main hall done. ( the Truth is at least another RM100 Million is needed to complete it )

2. So, finally PG said it: "the Properties in DH, now worth RM52M will be DISPOSED (Sold-off) i.e. everything over the last 42 years will be ground ZERO. ( So the Financial Catastrophe is now a fact)

3. PG ended in Desperation " GIVE YOUR CASH ADVANCE QUICKLY" no later than Sept 2010.

4. While it is meant to be an "ADVANCE" by those who wants to Pledge, throughout PG kept repeating-"you can Always CONVERT it to a CONTRIBUTION! ( God forbid, PG has no intention of
giving the Advance back. Whoever, pray you will read the FINE PRINT in the " Understanding Agreement' you are asked to sign)

5. Utter irresponsible creatures they are to encourage all & sundries to even take bank Loan to give $$$ as Cash Advance.

6. A chart was shown--to the almost exact science, the Percentage & Amount from the 'Congregation' to reach the RM35Million. ( they sure have it all Calculated and worked-out.)

will do well to recall at the AGM 2008 that they were warned :
" For which of you, intending to build a tower, does not sit down first and count the cost to see if he has enough money to complete it? lest, after he has laid the foundation and is not able to finish it, everyone who sees it will ridicule him, saying, 'This fellow began to build and was not able to finish.' (Jesus said in Luke 14: 28-30)

While PG dare challenge everyone to empty their all-including "money under the pillows", ask him:

Has PG himself sold ALL his POSSESSIONS to give to CCC?
or is he building more "Barns" for himself in M'sia to UK to USA?


8 July 2010. This is another thought put in as a Comment from one regular reader who uses the pseudonym "Woshipper of 25 years"

Worshiper of 25 years says...
(1) CCC can NEVER be a vision from God! From the very first day, when the land was recommended by Han to PG & others and viewed & sought for back then in 2003, it " WAS A TERRIBLE human MISTAKE ". 

(2) From the secular real estate realistic point of view, it was already an " ERROR buy decision "! 

(3) You " do not begged " from the landowners to sell to " you " ! 

(4) Now in 2010,we have the consequences of a bad business decision. DECISION that was not based on " FAITH in God "! 

(5) There was no " PEACE of Mind " from God at all on that day! It was a hasty decision, was more like chasing after the WIND! It was a blind decision alright as I perceived it then !

(6) No one dare to speak out against the buy decision in 2003 ! WHY ? A few disagreed but could not do anything to stop it, as it was "bulldozed through" in the EGM ! This was the beginning of PG downfall then in 2003? The rest henceforth that followed are merely history!

(7) It was the spirit of "ARROGANCE" that gave birth to more MISTAKES which in turn CHOKED CC ! I shaked PG hand in 2003 and I sensed PG's " Negative High Handed Attitudes "! I noticed a few left full time service instead of openly pointing out his Negativism ! 

(8) So now how to solve the CC and CCC saga? My answer is very simple ," be HUMBLE and Cut Loss or 'else' scale down 70% of CCC's building plan ". 

(9) Proceeding in its present Grand design, with enlarging run-offs , with various future variation orders, CC will definitely SELF-DESTRUCT in due time! 

(10) You should NEVER NEVER NEVER borrow money to build ! 
SDCC meeting on 4-7-2010 actually protrayed more Negative Consequences to come ! 

(11) As I see it PGs are illegal pastors ever since 2004 and 2006. How to Pray and get blessings from illegal pastors?

(12) All the NEGATIVE effects like bad publicity , CIM funding errors, Deacon removed, PG's deacons choice voted in, faithful servants removed, resolutions denied in EGM & AGM ,Court cases for injunctions to rectify on-goings , 400 members sacked for having faith in God,etc, etc are actually consequences forseen in a vision back in 2003! 

Many asked me how did I knew it ? I just SMILED back and replied " I only TRUST GOD " not man !