Decades of Sally Struthers pushing people to donate just pennies a day filled American TV sets with despair and guilt over starving children in Africa. As images of malnourished children, some with starvation bloat flooded your TV screen, many couldn’t help but feel sorry for these children and open their wallets to pledge their hard-earned money. Now, in Kenya, apparently food has become so plentiful that they no longer need our money to fund food resource missions.
Instead, over 200 emaciated corpses were unearthed in mass graves that were reportedly all members of a mass cult that considered starvation a way of reaching salvation. This mass grave is found on a sprawling 800-acre estate in eastern Kenya in the Shakahola Forest owned by Good News International Church’s pastor, Paul Mackenzie Nthege.
When authorities were first alerted to the allegations back in April, they learned that Nthege had promised salvation to his followers if they starved themselves. With 201 found since the allegations were first reported, the hunt is on for the other 610 people that have been reported missing according to CBS News. So far, the survivors that local leaders have been lucky enough to discover have largely been incapable of walking due to malnourishment.
Cults like these have been synonymous with some of the worst brainwashing known to man.
From the Hale-Bopp comet cult to the Democratic party, these groups have served to do nothing but destroy their base under the guise of a great reward in the end. Unfortunately for them, when the end comes, there is no great reward, only death. This deception convinces them to sell their lives out for the whims of another, and it’s a horrible and torturous life to live for them.
Aside from discarding worldly possessions and being told to starve themselves, many in cults like these are being pushed to recruit other followers. To do so, they have to sell the illusion that what is on the other side is better than here and now. For many in Kenya, the bar is so low, it’s not hard to imagine paradise being better than life, so starving themselves isn’t a huge thing for their new God to be asking of them.
So far, autopsies have been conducted on over 100 of the bodies exhumed. Coroners have discovered signs of strangulation, suffocation, and blunt force trauma in addition to starvation per reports from CBS News. Despite being in custody since April, Nthege has refused to give up information about missing members, or the location of other mass graves. Given the complexity of covering the 18 acres to search, there is a high likelihood that bodies will be turning up for years to come.
As reported by Barron’s Coast Regional Commissioner, Rhoda Onyancha announced the numbers and the arrest of Nthege. He also announced the arrest of Nthege’s wife and 26 others who serve as his “enforcer gang.” These brutes serve to not only maintain the fasting of his cult members but also to ensure they were unable to escape the forest-covered hideouts alive. Their capture, much like his, has yet to yield any tangible evidence to help locate missing cult members according to authorities.
While the absence of evidence is not the evidence of absence, these cult members are likely in the area and most likely right under their noses (literally and figuratively).
These organizations don’t typically leave survivors, either. Given the condition in which the corpses have been discovered, it would seem incredibly likely that once the heat was on, any and all members of the cult who were alive were put to death to go be with Jesus.