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A Washington Post article reported on July 25 that approximately 35 African-American clergy have been fired or threatened with dismissal after tagging along with the Rev. Sun Myung Moon on his recent "We Will Stand" U.S. tour.

The article alleges that the ministers, mostly from the South, "have been voted out of office by church boards that object to any affiliation with Moon." The article has been vehemently denied by a group of involved pastors (including Imani Temple archbishop George A. Stallings, who was married at a Moon mass wedding).

This situation may be the boiling point in a mounting unrest over the increasing close ties between Moon's Unification Church and African-American clergy and on on-going mission for Moon.

So what's the fuss over Christian leaders associating with Moon? For starters, he claims Jesus failed his earthly mission, and that Moon was commissioned to finish up. Jesus's real task, Moon maintains, was to form a perfect marriage in order to redeem humanity and reverse the damage that Adam and Eve created. Moon and his wife are held up in his church as the "True Parents" of humanity.

After reportedly seeing Jesus on a mountaintop in 1935, Moon organized his teachings into the Divine Principle ten years later and began his public ministry. The Holy Spirit Association for the Unification of World Christianity was organized in 1954 in Seoul, South Korea, and soon became a worldwide movement.

The San Francisco Chronicle found, in a study of alternative religions (part one | two | three | four), that the Moonies have battled for respect and to be categorized as a "religion" instead of a "cult." The group's image has been tarnished by frightening tales from ex-members, the unusual beliefs of Moon, and a tell-all ...

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