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Ps Kong Hee and Ps Phil Pringle


 “… nor is anything secret that will not be known and come to light.” – Jesus, Luke 8:17

The context of the above scripture has Jesus explaining how we should listen. What I have been seeing at C3 church is a lack of the leaders hearing the words of Jesus and instead hide things in secret so they do not get caught. After reading various articles on this site, researching C3 church further on the web and attending C3 Conferences, I feel compelled to share some thoughts and information with you in this article. As a Christian attending a C3 church over some year, I believe what I have seen and heard in C3 needs to be examined further. After reading this article you will see why.


Before reading any further, please read my first article here:

“For nothing is hidden that will not be made manifest…” (Part 1)

The above heading is slightly altered from Tom Adam’s website that tackled the scandal his family was involved in at C3 Balmain. He has updated the information on his website. This section of his website should get everyone’s attention (emphasis mine):

The Mystery of the Disappearing Cash

When I had left C3 Church Balmain/C3 Church Rozelle, I was so disbelieving that the senior pastor Ward Lucas’s ‘love’ for us could have resulted in such an outcome that I kept asking questions about finances.  I only wanted to know what had happened to the large sums of money given into their control by my wife and I and others, just to make sure our expulsion hadn’t been some kind of grotesque cover-up.  At first I was met with fob offs, then silence.  So I went as far as to start court proceedings, thinking perhaps they were just being difficult because they could and they ‘loved’ us so.  They’d thrown me out for ‘pretending’ that they were not accountable, surely they’d have no problem providing proper financial accounts to me then?  On the contrary, they went on to prove during a four year court process that as well as making sure they’ve set themselves up to avoid any legal obligation to provide financial information to church goers, they’re also prepared to spend signficant time and money in litigation to avoid it.  They did all this with the energetic assistance of Mr Paul Macken Solicitor, of C3 Church Oxford Falls.

The actual reasons for this painful display only became clear at the death, after years of ducking and weaving.  C3 Church Balmain/C3 Church Rozelle had taken $20K I had given them specifically to be used for a building fund, that came from my late father’s estate, and tipped it into something else.  At one point according to my forensic accountant, the money seemed to spend some quality time in an C3 Church bank account called ‘pastoral account’, that was apparently used for pastor Lucas’s expenses.  This was written up by the church accountant as a mistake.  And although I clearly recall specifically telling pastor Lucas what the money was to be used for, he signed an affidavit sworn on the bible saying I did not give the money to be used for a building fund, I was making that up.  Odd, because when C3 Church Balmain/C3 Church Rozelle got the money they wrote on the cheque the words ‘building fund’, and put it into an account where it remained for years labelled ‘building fund’.  According to pastor Lucas, notwithstanding the church’s own records, the truth was that I had given it to them to use for a later fund that did not come into existence until years later, one that was used for things that included buying chairs, musical equipment, paying insurance and accountants fees.

But then, at the door of the court, after the years of ducking and weaving, faced with a judge who might actually consider things like the church’s own records, C3 Church Balmain/C3 Church Rozelle decided they didn’t want to roll the dice on that yarn, and paid all the money back to me.  Which reveals the truth of the matter more succintly than anything I can say.  So test the claims.  Jesus is not reported of speaking of an unforgivable sin of asking about money, questioning or disagreeing with religious leaders.  Instead, he blasted religious leaders who neglected justice and mercy and threw those making money out of the temple.  And then those same religious leaders killed him for it.

Senior pastor Ward Lucas worked diligently to remove my family and I in 2008, well aware of the issues with the cash that we had started asking about.  His assistant pastor Anthony Grant, who also often claimed to ‘love’ us, helped put it into effect.  The ‘love’ proclaimed by them so often before we asked about their use of other people’s money had become something else entirely.  I’ve had more genuine enemies, who at least didn’t pretend for years to ‘love’ me.  The C3 Church Oxford Falls overseers, Steve Janes and Mark Kelsey, who knew all about the circumstances backed pastor Lucas to the hilt.  They didn’t even speak to us before reportedly judging us to be liars based only on the say so of pastor Lucas, and recommending our forced removal.

No one protected us, or our kids.  So why would they protect you?

Source: Tom Adam, Important Information about C3 Church Balmain/C3 Church Rozelle, http://www.christianchurchbalmain.info/. (Accessed 02/09/2014.)

As Tom Adam explained on his website, it appears C3 settled with him on the Supreme court steps early this year. Being a solicitor with a strong family history of members involved in Law, he was a very brave person to threaten them and win.

Obviously, Phil Pringle didn’t want the scandal to be  made public. I believe very few people at C3 overseas and in Australia know anything about what happened to Tom Adams and other church members at C3 Balmain.


For more information on the C3 Balmain scandal, click on the link below and go right to the bottom of the page and click on the subpages to follow on.

C3 Church Balmain/C3 Church Rozelle Review Page

Below is a blog stating that the Attorney General’s Department was also involved in the Supreme Court action against C3 Balmain. It discloses some details on the structure of the C3 Church which their Lawyers uncovered. It appears the person who wrote on this blog as “Dave” is Dave Adams, Tom Adam’s Brother. I understand he and other family members were expelled from C3 Balmain. Here are the comments I thought were worth reporting from David Adams:

Hi, Specks,
What you say is right on the money.

Seven members of my family were expelled by force from C3 Balmain after asking to see properly kept accounts of the church’s Rise and Buile fund to which they had given more than $100,000.

The story is told on this web site:

It’s worth a look.

The church leaders are now in the Australian Supreme Court defending themselves against among others our Attorney General’s Department.

The money has vanished.

C3 Church Balmain is set up so that there is no independent oversight whatever of the use of funds donated to it.

What strikes me is that these guys convince you to give money to them by telling you if you give to God, you’ll prosper.

They are the ones who gain out of that arrangement.

The lawyers in my family’s case have found everywhere in the C3 movement dodgy private companies; dodgy incorporated associations; and church’s with massive assets that are not actually owned by the church community, but effectively by five or ten people–the Pringles of the world.

Keep protesting is all I can say!

Source: David, C3 ‘Vision Builders’ Pamphlet for ‘Rise & Build’, Signposts02, https://signposts02.wordpress.com/2010/06/23/c3-%E2%80%98vision-builders%E2%80%99-pamphlet-for-%E2%80%98rise-build%E2%80%99/, September 5, 2010 at 9:19 pm. (Accessed 20/06/2014.)

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G’day Specks.

The fault doesn’t lie in any particular company (as in say such and such company is alleged to be skimming money).

The problem lies in this (this is what has got the Attorney General interested).
If you’re a not-for-profit you’re supposed to be set up so that you have enough formal members to have an independent majority ensuring that you don’t misuse funds, and that you are looking after those regularly involved in your organisation.
C3 churches appear to set themselves up so that the legal entity behind them has a handful of members. In which case there is no independent majority overseeing the finances and protection of ordinary attendees as required under the Charitable Fundraising Act.

The short version!

At this stage white Horse hasn’t been mentioned, although I’ve read about it.
God speed one and all!

Source: David, C3 ‘Vision Builders’ Pamphlet for ‘Rise & Build’, Signposts02, https://signposts02.wordpress.com/2010/06/23/c3-%e2%80%98vision-builders%e2%80%99-pamphlet-for-%e2%80%98rise-build%e2%80%99/#comment-13214, September 5, 2010 at 11:33 pm. (Accessed 20/06/2014.)

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What this means of course is that unless you are a formal member of the association/company that is your C3 church’s legal entity, you in fact have no legal rights as an attendee of the church.

In addition it means that all the assets that look as though they’re owned by your church community (buildings/fittings/land) are effectively owned, not by the church community, but by the five or six formal members of the legal entity.
It also means that the handful of members of the legal entity have iron control of finances. If the majority of them gain financially from the spending of the church’s money (ie because they are employees of the legal entity as well as controlling it), then…?

Be it said significant breaches of the Charitable Fundraising Act make you liable to a jail sentence.


Source: David, C3 ‘Vision Builders’ Pamphlet for ‘Rise & Build’, Signposts02, https://signposts02.wordpress.com/2010/06/23/c3-%e2%80%98vision-builders%e2%80%99-pamphlet-for-%e2%80%98rise-build%e2%80%99/#comment-13215, September 5, 2010 at 11:47 pm. (Accessed 20/06/2014.)

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Cheers, all.

Re C3 Balmain–naturally I can’t go in to any detail that involves the court business.

What I’ve done on my site, and my brother has done on his, has been to confine ourselves to irrefutable facts.

The explicit information contained on those is supported by copious documentation.

That stuff I can chat about.

With respect to Kelsey’s involvement, no-one knows at all what it was. Lucas and Grant apparently said one thing at the time; but as my brother’s site indicates Kelsey, via his lawyer, is so vehement in denying any involvement the literal meaning of his denials seems to be that he has nothing to do at all with C3 Church Balmain, and that he isn’t even a leader in the C3 Church movement.

None of us can make head or tail of that!
Here is my brother’s take on things re Kelsey.


He is the senior lawyer involved in the case against the leaders of C3 Balmain.

Peace be with all!

Source: David, C3 ‘Vision Builders’ Pamphlet for ‘Rise & Build’, Signposts02, https://signposts02.wordpress.com/2010/06/23/c3-%e2%80%98vision-builders%e2%80%99-pamphlet-for-%e2%80%98rise-build%e2%80%99/#comment-13223, September 6, 2010 at 9:34 am. (Accessed 20/06/2014.)

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Hi, all,

Thank you for your kind thoughts. There is so much here, I can’t reply in detail to it; but I appreciate your remarks. I will try in later posts to come back to anything you’ve written, if it seems good to.

In the light of the posts that have followed mine I thought it most important to clarify my own position about a few things.

I co-led an independent church for ten years. I founded a not-for-profit organisation working with victims of domestic violence. I wrote its constitution so that it complied with our laws. So I know from that point of view what our laws require both in founding and administering this kind of group.

The following is ultimately my reason for writing my own web site, and for being on this page. As it happens, this is what Tom and I both really care about.
The failure to provide explicit constitutional protection to attendees of C3 churches is a profound evil. It is a massive scandal in waiting. Why deny them these rights?

These are rights that are supposed, under Australian law, to be extended by every social organisation formed here to every person who can fairly be said to belong to that organisation.

If you do not comply exactly with the relevant government department’s instructions in setting up a not-for-profit organisation, and if you do not comply exactly with its rules thereafter, you break the law. And you break it over and over in the ordinary running of your organisation.

As well, even if you do not allow church attendees to become members of your church’s legal entity, you are required to extend the basic principles of your association’s constitution to every person who comes under your care. If you do not—you break the law.

Serious breaches of the Charitable Fundraising Act make you liable to a lengthy prison sentence.

No rigorous scrutiny is presently carried out by the NSW Government, to check whether not-for-profits in practice set themselves up in compliance with instructions. Nor are the financial documents submitted to government departments by not-for-profits here rigorously scrutinised.

The idea that a not-for-profit is probably on the up and up because it is allowed to come into existence, and because it later submits the requisite financial documents to the relevant government department without trouble arising, is false.

This lack of scrutiny is in part where the problem lies.

It is the way C3 Balmain is set up that has led to a situation in which the only way Tom can learn where his inheritance from Grandad went is to through a Supreme Court decision. If the church were set up properly, there would be properly kept accounts. If there were no accounts there would be a procedure for handling the matter internally, that would involve trouble for anyone failing in their accounting measures. Tom wouldn’t be blamed for asking, and insisting; those who would not answer would have to face the music. There would be music to face. Should the internal procedures in place fail the minister for Liquor, Gaming and Racing could intervene.

Without these things…it’s as you see. Lucas and Grant face five years of nerve-racking court proceedings, with who knows what for them at the end.
With respect to the way not-for-profits are supposed to be set up and run, don’t ask your pastor, and don’t accept my views either. I suggest you call the relevant government department, and get the bundle of information that is given out to those who wish to start such an organisation. Then read it.
Or search the web. Here is a good place to begin.


It is plainly taken for granted by this document that not-for-profit organisations (a) will allow all people working in them to possess full membership of the organisation; (b) will have a properly written and binding constitution that applies to all these members; and (c) will be governed by a board voted into office by a body of members that extends to all workers in the charity.

It is also plainly the case that the rules applying to members of the organisation will automatically apply to anyone whatsoever who works in the charity.
It is plainly not expected that your not-for-profit with fifty people active in its running will have five legally recognised members.
It is plainly not expected that employees of the charity will be paying themselves from donations because they form the majority of the organisation’s membership.
It is plainly not expected that members of a not-for-profit which is set up bodgily are within their rights to apply the constitution only to themselves, and not to everyone else working in some capacity in it.
The whole purpose you’re allowed to form a legal entity of the kind talked about here is that you are thereby going to be able to give legal protections and standards of behaviour to all persons involved in your charitable work.
This document is obviously not written so that a religiously minded person who is a good salesmen can create an authoritarian system of religious government in a church, and thereby come into joint possession of large assets with five friends (or worse family members)—much of it bought by other workers in the charity.
C3 Balmain is definitely not set up in compliance with the expectations of the document in question. And how far in the C3 movement does the same thing run?
Eventually the Tax Commissioner and the Minister for Liquor, Gaming and Racing will work out what is going on, and then….

Source: David, C3 ‘Vision Builders’ Pamphlet for ‘Rise & Build’, Signposts02, https://signposts02.wordpress.com/2010/06/23/c3-%e2%80%98vision-builders%e2%80%99-pamphlet-for-%e2%80%98rise-build%e2%80%99/#comment-13264, September 7, 2010 at 6:32 pm. (Accessed 20/06/2014.)

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The burning questions are, do C3 churches as a matter of fact set themselves up with dummy constitutions to please the Department of Gaming and Racing, etc? (ie Constitutions whose content bears no resemblance to the church’s actual workings?) And do they then systematically operate in a manner that, if it had been revealed to the authorities from the beginning, would have meant that they would have never been allowed to exist in the first place?

If the answers to these questions is yes, then the C3 movement in NSW is apparently guilty of a widespread and deliberate fraud.

Source: David, C3 ‘Vision Builders’ Pamphlet for ‘Rise & Build’, Signposts02, https://signposts02.wordpress.com/2010/06/23/c3-%e2%80%98vision-builders%e2%80%99-pamphlet-for-%e2%80%98rise-build%e2%80%99/#comment-13339, September 9, 2010 at 12:34 pm. (Accessed 20/06/2014.)

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G’day, Teddy…just had a spare moment.

The money was donated to the Rise and Build Fund of C3 Balmain.

Lucas and Grant can’t or won’t produce a properly kept accounting of the use to which the money was put.

(As soon as they did, the court case as things stand would be at an end.)
So we have no idea where it has ended up. Apparently, it might take a forensic accountant to discover its whereabouts (ie whose account it is in, what is was spent on, whatever)–and even then there is uncertainty whether such a person would find it.

We have never heard that Grandad’s money might have gone to Oxford Falls. If that really is where it has gone, what motive could Lucas and Grant have for not saying straight out where is was? Most confusing….

Source: David, C3 ‘Vision Builders’ Pamphlet for ‘Rise & Build’, Signposts02, https://signposts02.wordpress.com/2010/06/23/c3-%e2%80%98vision-builders%e2%80%99-pamphlet-for-%e2%80%98rise-build%e2%80%99/#comment-13341, September 9, 2010 at 1:51 pm. (Accessed 20/06/2014.)

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Hi, all,

I’m enjoying following the conversation. Tom is, too, and I’m sure he’s finding the aspects relating to his stuff encouraging.

RP, thanks for your kind thoughts.

Teddy, this is my church background (thanks for asking)–Dad was a Prezzy minister; Mum was a missionary. I went to the Prezzies till my mid-twenties; then I went to a cell church for ten years. Then a C3 Balmain/other churches mix for eighteen months. Then the Anglicans for a few years; but its youth work collapsed (I have young kids). At present we go the the local Baptist Church, which has an excellent youth program.

With respect to C3 Balmain, (I noticed some confusion about this, so it’s good to clear it up), I went there occasionally over about 6 years, and fairly regularly for a while. However, I was never convinced, so I moved on. I wasn’t going there when Tom etc were thrown out.

The help I’m giving Tom, apart from fraternal support, is much more to do with my particular experiences and training than with my intimate knowledge of the church’s workings. (Apart from the things I’ve already mentioned, I worked as a social worker for a number of years. Another one of my areas of expertise both in and out of my current studies is the language-use of criminal tyrants–ie domestic violence perps, religious leaders in breach of the principle of natural justice etc..

If you’re good at that kind of thing, you can spot a criminal tyrant five or ten minutes after they start talking–and of course very quickly from their written work also.)

That being said, Tom was extremely wise in his dealings with Lucas and Grant. About a year before he was chuckled out, he noticed problems with the legal set up of the church.

He pointed them out to Lucas and Grant, thinking these problems had arisen by mistake.

He was not encouraged by their response. So from that time on he had (if memory is correct) one private conversation with Lucas about anything significant. And there were two witnesses present at that conversation.
Otherwise he conducted all meaningful communications with Lucas and his superiors in writing. In other words, there is a permanent record of basically all his actual behaviour in his treatment of Lucas over a long period–a period which began before he and Lucas were in dispute.

I’ve read all the documents available–apart from the most damning one with respect to Lucas’s own personal integrity, which Tom has never shown me, although I know its contents.

The speculations about Tom’s behaviour towards Lucas are understandable–but the worst he can possibly be accused of doing is writing him a moderately ill-mannered letter. And really, the tone of his communications is pretty good.
In my view, his greatest fault in Lucas and Grant’s eyes was that he kept quizzing them about whatever legal problems he perceived. Not long before he was thrown out, he pointed out to them that lawyers have to reveal legal problems, or they face being disbarred (of course what else could he do?) In my opinion this was as much of a problem as the issue of Grandad’s money. To me, it was that which broke the camel’s back–Lucas and Grant had a lawyer with a conscience in their midst, and a set up whose legality was…highly dubious.

Peace be on the heads of all!

Source: David, C3 ‘Vision Builders’ Pamphlet for ‘Rise & Build’, Signposts02, https://signposts02.wordpress.com/2010/06/23/c3-%e2%80%98vision-builders%e2%80%99-pamphlet-for-%e2%80%98rise-build%e2%80%99/#comment-13354, September 9, 2010 at 5:13 pm. (Accessed 20/06/2014.)

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Once again, I’ve enjoyed reading people’s remarks.

Re the exemption of religious organisations.

This is my view (and Tom’s).

(1) The Charitable Fundraising Act is a codification of already existing laws that apply to all groups existing for charitable purposes. It adds no new laws; it codifies what is already there. Its substance applies to all groups of this kind, regardless of the exemption.

(2) According to the Hansard documents, the exemption was only given to religious organisations because those with a good reputation–ie the mainstream churches–already complied fully in their running to these laws…so for instance the laws were already accommodated by the churches’ constitutions, and these churches were properly complying with their constitutions.

(3) The Charitable Fundraising Act empowers the minister to remove this exemption from any religious group deemed to be failing in its keeping of the laws codified by the Act. That is to say, despite the exemption it is expected that religious groups will nonetheless do what the Act says–seeing that if they don’t their conduct will be policed via the removal of the exemption in their case, and the application of the details of the Act to their actions.

(4) The upshot? The exemption doesn’t mean religious groups are exempt from the law–it is on the contrary a nod to the integrity of the mainstream churches, who don’t need the code provided by the Act because they were already complying with its substance, still do that and presumably always will.

The crucial point here is not exactly which act, and which minister, and so on, though.

The crucial point is, do C3 Church’s set themselves up in contradiction of NSW law by adopting a democratic etc constitution according to its requirements, with every intention thereafter of ramming in practice an authoritarian system of government down the throat of those laws?

It doesn’t really matter how many Acts of Parliament don’t apply to the C3 church. Ultimately the illegality of their behaviour (should it be illegal) will not be affected.

The question, ‘Which sentence of which Act?’ is not really relevant–other than in settling on the precise sentences, clauses etc of NSW law that may have been broken.

Source: David, C3 ‘Vision Builders’ Pamphlet for ‘Rise & Build’, Signposts02, https://signposts02.wordpress.com/2010/06/23/c3-%e2%80%98vision-builders%e2%80%99-pamphlet-for-%e2%80%98rise-build%e2%80%99/#comment-13381, September 10, 2010 at 9:45 am. (Accessed 20/06/2014.)

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On the question of the rights and wrongs of dealing with certain problems outside the church.

I agree with all of you who think that if it’s very serious, you give the church an opportunity to deal with it inside the church. If the church won’t deal with it, then you deal with it in the other places available.
And with many serious problems, you are required by law to report them; and lawyers face being disbarred if they do not report them.

In this situation, it is our opinion that we have no choice but to pursue the course we are following.
It’s worth pondering the fact that at any time C3 could solve the part of the dispute involving Grandad’s money, merely by showing (as is required by charitable laws) a properly kept accounting of the money’s use.
That C3 hasn’t implies, as far as I’m concerned, that the movement is quite happy to ride out financial scandals.

Source: David, C3 ‘Vision Builders’ Pamphlet for ‘Rise & Build’, Signposts02, https://signposts02.wordpress.com/2010/06/23/c3-%e2%80%98vision-builders%e2%80%99-pamphlet-for-%e2%80%98rise-build%e2%80%99/#comment-13420, September 11, 2010 at 7:29 am. (Accessed 20/06/2014.)

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Again, BB, throught the centre of the target.

TVD is the worst advocate for Lucas and Grant and the C3 movement imaginable.

In the short time I’ve been here he has (a) made up NSW law; (b) advocated a dictatorial system of church government that is contrary to charitable laws in NSW, and utterly contrary to the servant model exemplified and commanded by Christ; (c) shown by constant misunderstandings that he can’t read plain English, which means he is not qualified to fulfil one of a pastor’s duties, that being to teach the meaning of the Bible; (d) imputed acts of defamation to Tom and I, which is itself an act of defamation, seeing that he can’t possible prove it; (e)written that he thinks his obligation to uphold fundamental laws applying to him is a ‘vibe’ that he can ignore; shown no meaningful concern for any unjust treatment Tom etc might have received; and so on and so on.

This guy is living proof that our concerns are legitimate.
I’ve been thinking of taking snapshots of his comments, they’re so damaging.
He has basically admitted in writing on this blog that our take on C3 church is spot on.

His utterly dismissive attitude to our charitable law is in my view utterly gross.
The only reason I engage with any of his questions is because the more rope he has, the more enthusiastically he throws himself into the noose!
Does the C3 church know they have this loose cannon blasting wildly in every direction here?

Source: David, C3 ‘Vision Builders’ Pamphlet for ‘Rise & Build’, Signposts02, https://signposts02.wordpress.com/2010/06/23/c3-%e2%80%98vision-builders%e2%80%99-pamphlet-for-%e2%80%98rise-build%e2%80%99/#comment-13421, September 11, 2010 at 7:48 am. (Accessed 20/06/2014.)


Kong Hee copies Phil Pringle

We have all seen the corruption, deceit and cover-ups within governments, business corporations and religious institutions reported globally daily in the media. Unfortunately many people have experienced it personally. Usually over time the truth always comes to light in some way.

What I have generally noted over many years is that corruption, fraud, deceit and injustice seems to occur when transparency and governance are deficient within the institutions conducting such unacceptable behaviour.

As disclosed above, what has come to light in relation to C3’s treatment of Tom Adams, his family and other C3 Balmain members, was C3’s attempt to hide the scandal from its members and the general public.

The issues that CHC are facing has some similar issues Pringle is facing (which Tom and Dave exposed). This would possibly explain why C3 settled outside of court to hide this fact. It’s even more revealing C3 has “everywhere in the C3 movement dodgy private companies; dodgy incorporated associations; and church’s with massive assets that are not actually owned by the church community”.

This shows that C3 is totally deficient in transparency, governance, and accountability. Is it just a coincidence that it also seems to be the same situation in the other C3 / Phil Pringle associate institutions like Kong Hee’s CHC in Singapore and Yoido Full Gospel Church in South Korea?
You decide.
These issues are what needs to be disclosed, investigated and vigorously discussed in depth. This is to inform others of the deceit and corruption that is  going on within these churches out of sight from most honest church members.