- CHILDREN OF GOD
- a NEW RELIGIOUS MOVEMENT originating in the late 1960s and subsequently called "THE FAMILY OF LOVE." It began as part of the JESUS MOVEMENT in California and was founded by David BERG, who became known as Moses David, or 'Mo.' Developing charismatic gifts, the group then began to encourage "prophecy." This practice led to various OCCULT activities and a form of SPIRITUALISM through the invocation of spiritual guides such as "the Pied Piper" who Mo claimed communicated with him. Prophesying the imminent destruction of California, and the whole American system, Mo told his followers to disperse throughout the world. Espousing what it called "Godly socialism," the group's main theological reference became the Mo Letters. The Children of God were one of the first NEW RELIGIOUS MOVEMENTS to receive the attention of the ANTI-CULT MOVEMENT and its activities led directly to the development of deprogramming by Ted PATRICK. One of the most highly publicized practices of the group is the use of "flirty fishing' which involves prostitution as a CONVERSION technique. Today it is an essentially underground movement with an estimated ± 2,000 members worldwide.
Concise dictionary of Religion. 2012.
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