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To The Followers of Christ, Oregon City

Posted in JREF by Skepdude on February 4, 2010

READ THE FULL ENTRY AT RANDI.ORG

Oregon City teenager Neil Beagley died in June 2008 following complications from an untreated congenital urinary tract blockage that flooded his system with urea, causing renal failure, heart attack, and death.beagleys

Neil Beagley didn’t die in a hospital. He didn’t die surrounded by doctors who were stumped regarding his next stage of treatment. Sixteen-year-old Neil Beagley didn’t die peacefully with an IV in his arm pumping in morphine to lessen what must have been excruciating pain. He died in his grandmother’s bed, without having received any medical treatment of any kind. Doctors say that Neil’s illness was treatable right up until the day he died.

Jeff and Marci Beagley, Neil’s parents, are members of Followers of Christ Church of Oregon City – a fundamentalist organization that teaches a literalist interpretation of scripture, and relies heavily on faith healing. The cemetery behind the church contains graves belonging to seventy-eight minors. It is estimated that at least twenty-one of these children’s lives could have been saved with medical treatment.

However, Followers of Christ Church shuns medical treatment – and the devout followers of the church refuse all medications and treatments, and visits to medical professionals of any kind.

Jeff and Marci Beagley have been found guilty of criminally negligent homicide in Neil’s death, and they are scheduled for sentencing on February 18th of this year. Of the twelve jurors deciding the case, ten found the couple guilty. Two found them innocent.

Oregon, prior to 1999, viewed faith healing as a Get Out Of Jail Free card. An individual could not be convicted of homicide in a case where religion was used instead of medical care. Then an act was passed that allowed for a compromise – faith healing could still be used as a treatment, but could not be the only treatment in cases involving children. Parents were thereafter required to (and it seems this should be obvious) take care of their children, despite their beliefs in deities, the laying on of hands, or the efficacy of anointing someone’s body with oil.

READ THE FULL ENTRY AT RANDI.ORG

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News Recap: Fundamentalist Edition

Posted in Skepchick by Skepdude on October 6, 2008

CLICK HERE TO GO TO THE ORIGINAL ENTRY AT “SKEPCHICK”

The Followers of Christ church is a fundamentalist Christian cult renowned for killing children, and sadly they’ve added another to the death toll: 16-year old Neil Beagley died in June of a urinary tract blockage that can be fixed with a simple procedure. Neil’s parents murdered him by knowingly withholding the life-saving medical treatment because they believed that prayer would convince a god to save him. Often in cases of faith healing not working, the death is attributed to the god teaching the family a lesson, or punishing the deceased for not having strong enough convictions.

To summarize: a boy died because of his parents’ uncritical acceptance of religious doctrine.

The parents have just pled not guilty and will face trial in January 2009. Read more about the FoC on Rick Ross’ comprehensive site.

In other news, gangs of ultra-orthodox Jews in Israel are beating, kidnapping, and hospitalizing people who do not meet their standards of modesty. Though not all the fundamentalists say they approve of the violence, few have the temerity to speak up.

Also, last month fundamentalist Muslims fire-bombed the house of a publisherbecause he plans to print The Jewel of Medina, a book about the prophet Mohammud that no one has read yet.

Finally, somewhere, some time in the past week or so, a fundamentalist atheist was told that without religion we’d have no moral compunction to be good. The fundamentalist then shrugged and went back to his book.

Happy Sunday everyone!

CLICK HERE TO GO TO THE ORIGINAL ENTRY AT “SKEPCHICK”