MAY 15/19, 2014
Preacher Joseph Louis masquerades as a Catholic
This ministry has exposed several preachers who were masquerading as Catholics:
ARMY OF JESUS PENTECOSTALS MASQUERADE AS CATHOLIC NUNS
ANTHONY SAMUEL-ADONAI’S BRIDE-CATHOLIC CHARISMATIC PREACHER TURNS PENTECOSTAL
BRO. ANDREW RICHARD, GRACE MINISTRIES, MANGALORE-CATHOLIC OR PROTESTANT?
and some others such as Johnson Sequeira who preach a prosperity gospel and word faith theology that are Protestant:
BRO. JOHNSON SEQUEIRA’S ‘WORD-FAITH’ THEOLOGY AND ‘PROSPERITY’ GOSPEL
The nuns of the Army of Jesus were supported by an Archbishop.
Anthony Samuel was allowed to preach in seminaries (St. John’s, Kondababa) and give retreats in parishes (Cathedral Basilica of St. Thomas, Santhome) and churches (Holy Cross, T. Nagar) in the archdiocese of Madras-Mylapore even though he was already a pastor of his own “church” in Secunderabad. He had the blessing and support of a few priests.
Earlier, one Cruz Divakaran gave Lenten retreats in Tamil to packed audiences in the Santhome Basilica and in churches all over South India before he openly broke with the Church and became Pentecostal. If one Google searches for information about him, one will find that he calls himself a pastor but also a Catholic.
Johnson Sequeira, while having been banned by several bishops both in India and overseas, has the backing of the Archbishop of Bangalore. And of the local charismatic leadership. That is not surprising since the charismatic renewal in Bangalore is being led by closet Pentecostals since over a decade now. In many cities, Johnson defies the ban of bishops by ministering in hired public halls and other secular venues.
In my city of Chennai, Darrel Tellis (one of Joseph Louis’ neighbours on Ballard Street, Perambur) founded The Rock Full Gospel Church in 1999 after being initiated into charismatic spirituality at Divine Retreat Centre, Muringoor. He had preached for a couple of years at his parish church of Our Lady of Lourdes Shrine, Perambur, before leaving Catholicism.
I have known virtually all of these men when they were Catholic. But when their teachings and practices became unmistakably Protestant and even anti-Catholic, it was not discerned by the local prayer group leaders and priests, and they eventually left the Church supported by Catholic laity who idolized them and followed them into heresy.
Rich and influential Catholics as well as ex-Catholics support the leaders of all these cults.
A genuine Catholic apologetics ministry like this one does not stand a chance of ministering to Catholics and teaching them the True Faith; why, our letters to the priests and bishops hardly elicit a response. It is no wonder that Catholics are leaving the Church in droves and running after individuals who exhibit concern for their material problems and spiritual needs.
“Brother” Louis Joseph (50) is only one of many before him who is using the Church to build up his own little flock.
Son of the late Antony Joseph, he lives with his mother Regina (70), wife Treesa (45) and three children at 27/6-a in Jaganathan Colony in the parish of Our Lady of Lourdes, Perambur.
I had been informed about him over a year ago. A well-catechised family had been to one of his Bible classes held at a hall in Egmore. They had not liked what they saw and heard. The Bible class was preceded by Holy Mass celebrated by Fr. James A.T., SDB, from Don Bosco Shrine, Ayanavaram. Before the preaching commenced, Louis went apart and prayed over himself, placing his right hand on his own head. The preacher simply quoted Bible verses and gave his personal interpretations of them. Since I am going to record Louis’ teachings at a meeting that I attended, I will skip them here.
Louis expects that everyone who comes to his meetings must be “prayed over” by him. He does not seek their permission for him to do so. What is the need for him to pray over those who come to his Bible classes? They are not prayer meetings. He went up to a member of the family and laid his hands on her head. She objected to it in full view of the gathering.
Humiliated by the refusal, Louis whispered to her that there were Hindus present and that she should submit for their sake.
For that reason alone, the lady reluctantly agreed. She reports that he exerted physical pressure on her, attempting to force her to fall backwards. When she resisted the pushing, he asked her not to.
Louis simply cannot tolerate any dissent, disagreement with his teachings, or independent thinking, as we will see.
The lady’s friend informed her that he had been requiring people to remove Catholic icons and images, for example the picture of St. Michael the Archangel that some Catholics have fixed outside the front doors of their homes.
Louis always provides lunch free of cost to the people who come to his meetings. But someone is footing the bill.
I was informed by the lady who attended the Bible class that Louis contacted one of her friends and said that he was “inspired by the Holy Spirit” to ask her to sponsor one such lunch. He was aware that she had a relative in the Gulf States and asked her to ensure that that individual should meet him when in India next because Louis “needed to pray over” that individual. Louis is not in the least embarrassed to be recognized as soliciting financial favours from his flock.
Till a few months ago, Louis had been preaching at St. Theresa’s Church in Nungambakkam along with a priest from out of station. A lay person closely involved with him from the start of his public “ministry” which was around three years ago, informs us that he was a very, very humble man for about the first three months. But he soon began to be proud and haughty and arrogant. That was also the experience of the lady at his Bible class as well as my own recent experience with the man. The lady who had provided the opportunity for him to preach at St. Theresa’s as well as the priest also found that Louis teachings were not Catholic and stopped him from preaching in the parish. By that time, there were a number of Catholics who had become his dedicated disciples.
Just a few days ago, I received a letter from a priest who is a nationally renowned retreat preacher. He writes that Joseph Louis does not give Catholic teaching and he does not recommend that Louis is used by anyone for Catholic ministry.
Below are the observations made by me at a “prayer meeting” held at the residence of Joseph Louis on May 3, 2014:
Holy Mass commenced at 10:00 am. The celebrant was Fr. James A.T., SDB, from Ayanavaram. During the homily, he asked the congregated people why they had come there. The replies were mainly in the order of “we want to know about Jesus” and “we want to learn the Word of God”. The way the prayer meeting ended revealed exactly why the fifty or so people had come to the place: to be pushed down to the floor by Louis when he laid hands on them, and to experience “deliverance” and “healing” from psychological and financial problems and physical diseases. Little else. The so-called healings may be attributed to the placebo effect. I deduce this also from my conversations with other followers of his. Healings may also take place naturally with the passage of time. A lay Catholic preacher who attended Louis’ meetings is of the opinion that God’s gifts are irrevocable and that Louis may have started off correctly but has lapsed into heresy now, as noted by him. He disagreed with some erroneous teachings of Louis and found that Louis was unwilling to discuss the problem with him. The “Word of God” was nothing but Louis’ personal interpretations of Scripture verses.
Susan Brinkmann of the Catholic ministry Women of Grace writes that Satan is a master of illusion and can counterfeit the miracles of God for his (Satan’s) own benefit. I refer to this again later.
One simply cannot accept that Jesus founded a Church to which He gave all authority and then authenticates the healings and deliverances of a Catholic who rejects the authority and teachings of that Church and Her representatives and whose own teachings are in opposition to those of the Church that He instituted. For Catholics, the Word of God is Scripture plus Tradition. Louis does not speak of Tradition, the Sacraments, Catholic pieties and devotions, etc. Ever. In fact he is very much against them and any Church authority as revealed in his arguments with me.
I did not want to receive Holy Communion at this Mass, but the family that took me to the meeting assured me that Fr. James had informed them that he had the permission of the local bishop to do so.
The altar was a table covered with a white cloth and a decrepit looking crucifix placed on it. There were no candles on the altar and no flower arrangements before the altar either. Readings were done not from a Missal or Lectionary but from the bibles that we carried. One reading was from Acts 6; the other, done by me, was from John 3.
The chalice, ciborium and paten were probably brought along by Fr. James who simply wore a stole over his cassock.
After the Mass, for the prayer meeting, the crucifix was removed and kept out of sight. I moved around the rooms of the house and found no sign of any Catholic icons or statues of any kind, no rosaries either.
There is one large framed picture of the face of Jesus on the wall in the main room where he preaches. He uses the Good News Bible (it is not a Catholic study Bible) for reference and so probably for his preparation.
Mother Mary was conspicuous by her total absence in that home and from Louis’ teachings.
It is my firm opinion, and the opinion expressed to me by a priest who knows Joseph Louis, that the Holy Mass before his meetings is a ploy of the preacher to lull into false security any one who might be suspicious of him.
Below, whenever I quote Louis verbatim from notes taken by me, I include his words within inverted commas.
“If you do it perfectly, you will get ANYTHING from God, whatever you ask.” Here, Louis was referring to a Scripture passage on forgiveness: “If you… then only…” (Matthew 6:15) While the theme is laudable, to categorically teach that one can get anything one desires from God if one scripture criterion such as forgiveness is met is neither scriptural nor Catholic.
A major part of Louis’ teaching was about getting, getting, getting from God. There was no taking into account the will of God in one’s life or the Catholic gospel of the acceptance of suffering in God’s will and plan for us. Any such inclusion would only serve to negate the theme of his preaching and turn away the clientele of Louis.
On Mark 12:30 (Love the Lord your God with all your heart…), “If you teach your children this, you will never go to the Home for the Aged.” He related the story of an uncle of his who ended up in the Home for the Aged. Why did that happen? Because “he never taught his children this verse.”
Remember that the preaching was not as concise as I am relating it, but greatly stressed on each of these invented “truths” over and over and over so that the listeners would imbibe them.
There was no apparent continuity in the selection of Bible verses and teachings. It appeared that he felt that he had the duty of transferring to his audience his personal convictions.
On Matthew 23:9 (You must not call anyone on earth here ‘father’), “Is anyone teaching their children this?”
He summoned one of his children up to the microphone and asked who their father is and the reply was “God”. Louis is only their guardian. Since God is our Father, he will not refuse us anything. He failed to add that a good father will, in love, not grant all prayers but refuse his child what is not good for him, more especially an omniscient Father God.
Equally important to be understood is that this literal interpretation of Matthew 23:9 is not Catholic but Protestant.
Within one hour after receiving the Eucharist, Louis taught, “You name it, you get it”.
I have heard the name-it claim-it prosperity gospel preached by so-called Catholics including Johnson Sequeira but I have never heard it applied to the Eucharist.
This is the only one single occasion in his almost four hours of preaching and “ministry” that Louis actually connected with anything Catholic, only to teach error. To me this teaching is superstitious and blasphemous.
When the person who took me along for the meeting asked Louis why the “one hour” stipulation, he impressed upon us that it is the time of “Full power”. In that period of time, God cannot refuse one anything. The person persisted, “What happens if one asks something of God within half an hour instead of one hour?” Louis replied, “Half blessing”.
It appears that not one person among his listeners noticed the ridiculousness and non-Catholicity of the teaching.
Also, scientifically speaking, if one hour = full power/blessing, half power/blessing = two hours! Not half an hour. The power/blessing decreases (in Louis’ uneducated estimation), not increases, with the length of time.
Louis associates the Eucharistic Lord in our hearts with magically meeting all our material needs.
The listeners had to be ignorant Catholics with little or no catechesis. I know this because I interacted with some of them. How could they be expected to realize that they were being taken for a ride?
“Don’t say long prayers and waste your time, long man-made prayers. Read the Bible instead.”
This erroneous teaching must be taken very seriously. It is avowedly Protestant. For Louis, the Bible is the sole rule of faith.
He preaches Sola Scriptura, a heretical doctrine.
I suppose that Louis would include the rosary, novenas, the Divine Mercy chaplet, etc. in his list of “long man-made prayers”. Will he eventually include the Holy Mass in that list? As with pastor Darrel Tellis mentioned earlier, it is quite possible for that to happen in due course, considering what he thinks about the authority of the Church over his ministry.
It would be interesting to know from the priests of Our Lady of Lourdes Shrine or from Fr. James of Don Bosco Shrine, whether Louis attends daily Mass and other services such as the Way of the Cross.
On 1 Thessalonians 5:16 (Pray without ceasing…), “So, don’t set a time for prayer”. He had forgotten that sometime earlier he mentioned that he wakes up daily at 3:30 am for prayer. The same person as earlier from the audience reminded him that he was disregarding his own teaching and setting himself a prayer time. Louis gave a vague, evasive response.
Since the Divine Mercy prayer is regarded as a 3 o’clock prayer, I guess it will automatically fall under Louis’ guillotine.
Louis then asked the assembly to imagine the words “Praise the Lord” in golden letters. The letters had to be visualized only in gold. Louis spent a lot of time on teaching this technique and enforcing its practice by the attendees.
The use of affirmations and visualizations in prayer is new-agey. See http://www.womenofgrace.com/blog/?p=238 and
Johnson Sequeira and other prosperity gospel preachers employ such techniques. It is not within the scope of this report to explain why they are wrong and dangerous.
While the people kept their eyes closed and visualized the golden “Praise the Lord”, Louis kept chanting loudly, “Concentrate, concentrate… Focus, focus, focus… Receive, receive, receive, receive…”
It was not made clear to us what it was that we were supposed to receive through Louis’ intervention.
From a “Catholic” who teaches Sola Scriptura and a rebellion against episcopal authority combined with false personal interpretations of the Bible, I would expect that only a deceiving spirit would manifest.
All healings are not from god.
The phenomenon of the gift of tongues both at this time as well as at the deliverance service at the end of the meeting were unlike its usual ‘Catholic’ expression. I found it very Pentecostal, if I may use that expression, discordant and unharmonious, to put it mildly. I happen to have over 32 years of Catholic exposure to these charismatic phenomena.
At this time, people were invited to give testimonies of healings and deliverances experienced at or after previous meetings of Joseph Louis attended by them. Four were financial and one was a physical healing. The testimonies unavoidably gave credit to Joseph Louis. Missing was the profuse thanks and praise to Jesus that normally accompanies testimony at charismatic meetings. Again, I appeal to my 32 years of charismatic ministry to support this.
I talked to a few people after the meeting and asked them why they were wasting their time attending these meetings only to be led astray from Catholic teaching. Their reply always was that “because of Br. Louis” this or that happened in their lives. When I asked if it was not Jesus who had delivered or healed them, not Louis, they smiled sheepishly.
I have experienced that when people are supposedly brought to the Lord by such ministries, they inevitably give the credit due to God to Johnson Sequeiras and Joseph Louises, and when they defend these preachers, they do so by appealing to the teachings of these preachers and to scripture verses; they never, ever cite Catholic doctrine. Put simply, they unwittingly become disciples of these preachers and not of Jesus Christ and His Church. This is the unavoidable result of the brainwashing that these preachers conduct on their ignorant listeners.
If God blesses anyone, “people should be coming to your house” to be in turn blessed by them.
Good point. Then why is he keeping them under his control and not directing people to the Church and her Sacraments?
Does that mean that — by his own logic — his followers are not blessed since they keep coming back?
Louis said that he is devoid of fear of any sort. He leaves his house open/unlocked, or people know where the key is kept so that they can open the door at anytime and enter in the absence of the family. I didn’t see anything of significant value lying around the house; I didn’t see a television set; I am informed that he doesn’t think it a Christian thing to own a TV set or watch TV. Whatever be the case, he challenges his disciples to live like he does, without attachment to material things.
I wonder if he “fearlessly” leaves his two-wheeler unlocked wherever he goes; and if he owned a four-wheeler if he would leave it unlocked too wherever he goes. I noted that he owns a keyboard and may have been donated another.
“God cannot speak to us except through Jesus. Jesus wrote the Old Testament.”
But Louis does not accept that Jesus speaks to us today through the Magisterium of the Church that he founded on Peter.
When questioned by me later about the licitness from a Catholic perspective of certain components of his prayer meetings, Louis was extremely agitated and kept loudly demanding to know “Who is the Archbishop? Who is the Archbishop? Much as to ask, “Who is the Archbishop for him to exercise any sort of jurisdiction over MY prayer meetings?”
Unfortunately there was at least one person, my host, who defended Louis rejection of episcopal authority, saying that the previous Archbishop Malayappan Chinnappa was so utterly corrupt, how could we be expected to obey him. I agree that he was correct about the previous Archbishop but reminded them that Jesus himself instructed us to “do everything that they tell you but do not do as they do” (Matthew 23:3). But I was the lone voice in defence of the Church.
“People who smoke and drink cannot enter my house.” The reason for that moral judgement as given by Louis is Isaiah 43: 18, 19 (Do not cling to events of the past…) And, he added “The Bible says to shake their dust off your feet.” But Louis visits the home of a benefactor who is a regular imbiber of strong spirits.
Louis was probably into smoking and consuming alcohol before embarking on his preaching career. It is commendable if he abjured those habits, but his attitude to alcohol and cigarettes is Protestant fundamentalist, not Catholic.
Nowhere does the Church teach that smoking and drinking are sins, except in excess, but then many things done in excess are sin. And we are to abide by what the Church teaches because She is the authentic interpreter of Scripture.
Sadly, there are many Catholic ministries that maintain that to smoke a cigarette or to have a peg of whiskey is mortal sin.
See DIVINE RETREAT CENTRE ERRORS-08 – CONDEMNATION OF DRINKING ALCOHOL AND SMOKING
Once again Louis returns to the problem of “fear”, fear of objects and creatures.
And once again, he teaches his disciples a technique with affirmations to overcome their fears.
With reference to 1 John 4:4 (…the Spirit that is in you is greater than he who is in the world), he asked us to place our right hands on our own heads and repeat ad nauseam, “I am not afraid, I am not afraid, enakku payam kedaiyathu…”
Why do we have to do all that? “God has told you so. That’s why you will do it. And it works. You need to read the verse, put your hands on your head, and declare what God has told you. You don’t have to go to any priest. You can do it yourself in your own house.”
So, subtly, the message is communicated: we don’t need the priests of the Catholic Church; we are self-sufficient, having received the Holy Spirit through the intervention of Bro. Louis. Recall that he has already taught us that man-made prayers do not need to be prayed since we have the Bible which is enough for us. Additionally, he holds that the local bishop has no authority over his “ministry”.
The teaching of his personal interpretations, personal convictions and self-invented techniques lasted for about three hours until around 2:00 pm after which he began to lay hands and pray over people, and this continued amidst great noise of “tongues speaking” — a lot of which sounded like howling — for about forty-five minutes. While those seated in the front row of chairs with me did not solicit his prayers, he laid hands anyway. When I felt his hands on my head, I gently removed them but they only moved lower to be placed on my shoulders. I firmly removed them again insisting to him that I did not want him to lay hands on me after which he moved on to the person seated next to me.
After he completed the front row, because he could not get to the back rows of his congregation, a queue formed in front of him. To the voice of Louis shouting “Receive”, “Receive”, “Receive”… and people being pushed by him to fall backwards on the floor, I fled from the spot and proceeded for lunch. To me, this was the real reason why people had come to Louis meeting (he was even delivering people from bondage to witchcraft), not the answers they had given Fr. James (“we want to know about Jesus” and “we want to learn the Word of God”) during the homily. If this session were to be omitted and if he were limited only to Scripture teaching, his clientele would stop coming; from a close scrutiny of the entire proceedings and my discussion with others, it was clear that everyone present was coming to this self-proclaimed minister only for “deliverance” (see analysis of one of his CDs below) and “healing”.
After having my lunch of white rice, sambar and vegetables, I went to Louis to explain to him why I did not want him to lay hands on me and pray. He was at once most hostile and accused me of not having faith and not wanting to be blessed.
I told him that I was in Catholic ministry and believed — after four hours of observation — that he is not Catholic.
I asked him if he had the Archbishop’s permission to have Mass said at his meetings. As recorded earlier, he repeatedly shouted “Who is the Archbishop? Who is the Archbishop?” meaning “who — or of what concern — is the Archbishop to me?”
Several people gathered around us to hear our arguments and this perturbed Louis. I replied that the Archbishop is the local voice of the authority of the Church of Rome and we are bound to obey him. Again, “Who is the Archbishop? When we appear for the judgement, God will not ask us if we obeyed the Archbishop. We will only have to answer God.”
I will not go into the details of my entire defense of the Church and Louis’ replies. Suffice it to say that no one came to my aid and defense.
I submitted that if the Archbishop were to order me to stop preaching and teaching like Louis was doing, I would obey him. Louis answered in full view and hearing of many people, including my hosts, that he would definitely NOT obey the Archbishop. He was answerable only to God and would obey only God, he said. He evidently does not accept that God speaks through the priests and bishops of the Catholic Church to the faithful.
Incensed by my challenge of his control over the docile listeners, he wanted to know who I was. I offered him my address card but he rejected it. He said that he had met many like me who opposed him but none could do anything to him.
Who was I, he asked, one man with one web site, challenging me to do my worst. He boastfully pointed his many followers to me and wanted to know how many souls I had saved, how many Hindus I had brought to Christ. When I attempted to answer, he ridiculed me of boasting. I finally said that part of my ministry was to expose false Catholic preachers like him.
He expressed anger that I came into his house of prayer to investigate him. I fear to think what may have happened to me if I had interrupted and challenged Louis’ errors publicly during his preaching.
When I asked him about the absence of any Catholic material in his home, including the Catechism, the Compendium, the YouCat, Church Documents, etc., he expectedly retorted that he found no need of anything but the Bible.
Finding that I would not give up defending the Church even though I was alone, Louis asked me in a loud voice, “Tell me, why are you a hunchback”. (I suffer from an auto-immune disease that has fused my spine into a curve. I am not a hunchback which is something altogether different.) He time and again called me a hunchback (I have NEVER in my life witnessed a Catholic ‘preacher’ behave so inhumanely) and he said that I have many diseases and needed deliverance.
I then challenged him not once but twice to deliver me / heal me of any one of those diseases then and there. His answer was that I do not have faith, to which I replied that I have faith in Jesus and in His Sacraments but not in him (Louis).
I added that his (Louis’) Jesus was a Jesus of his own invention and not the Jesus of the Catholic Church.
Preachers like Louis suggest that if one is not healed through their interventions, it is only because the person lacks faith.
They hold that God wills prosperity, abundance and wholeness for all with no exceptions.
When I appealed to the Catholic gospel of suffering and the sovereign will of God that may desire that someone should not be healed, Louis rejected that objection because Jesus, he explained, is no more on the Cross, He is the Risen Lord.
That makes me wonder how many Catholic doctrines this man rejects, most definitely those of purgatory and the Communion of Saints. It amazes me as to how Catholics have been listening to and funding with money, sponsorship and material gifts this heretic (for that’s what he is) for three years without seeing through his deceit and reporting him to the respective parish priests and the Archbishop of our city.
Or how he continues to be promoted by his Salesian spiritual director Fr. A.T. James. See the CD notes further below.
Several Catholics who were first introduced to Louis’ preaching at St. Theresa’s Church now attend the meetings that he conducts elsewhere. They have become his benefactors and one family recently donated a keyboard to him. My interactions with them reveal that they are quite ignorant of — and unconcerned about learning — the Catholic faith and its apologetics.
It is my fervent hope and prayer that those of Louis’ followers who read this report will realize that they have been discipled by a man who is leading their souls astray (he is guilty of what is called ‘formal heresy’) and that they will reject him, abjure his teachings and practices, and return to the fold of the Church.
This exchange between us continued for about twenty minutes. He revealed that he was opening a retreat centre and had the support of four priests. He added that his retreat centre would be inaugurated by the Archbishop of Madras-Mylapore himself! He said that he would invite me to the inauguration to show how powerless I was to do anything about him.
There is every chance that if the Archbishop of Madras-Mylapore were to attempt to exercise juridical control over Louis, that he would not submit to Church authority but would move to become an independent operator with his own church.
For everyone’s sake, I would be pleased to be proved wrong in my assumption.
A Catholic family who recognised Louis’ teachings as heretical at one of his “Bible and Success” meetings on May 25, 2013 informs me that he taught that God wills that man should live for 120 years according to the Book of Genesis. When they cited Psalm 90:10 which says differently, he asked them to read from the beginning of the Bible and not its middle. While they did not record any of his false interpretations of Scripture, they as faithful Catholics decided that they were being misled by the preacher and never went back. The same thing happened with the lay Catholic preacher who I mentioned earlier. In this case, Louis was preaching at the Divine Mercy Shrine, Annanagar East, just three or four months ago.
I now present notes made by me after studying a video CD sold for Rs 100 by Joseph Louis. As earlier, whenever I quote Louis verbatim from notes taken by me, I mark his words within inverted commas.
The CD recorded the events of a meeting held on January 19, 2013.
On the jacket of the CD, Fr. A.T. James SDB is stated to be the spiritual director of Joseph Louis. He says, “It is a great joy for me to be in collaboration with our dear brother Joseph Louis who the Lord has called to be an apostle
especially in preaching the Word of God, conducting Praise and Worship, and the healing ministry for which the Lord has specially called him… The presence of the Lord is with him and the Lord is leading him day by day.”
May I remind Fr. James that for a Catholic the Word of God is not just the Bible/Scripture which Louis uses in his preaching.
For the Catholic, the Word of God is Scripture plus Tradition/magisterial teaching.
I wonder if Fr James, who appears to have a long association with this so-called Catholic preacher and endorses him as an apostle, has paid attention to the details and nuances of Louis’ teachings. My host who regularly attends Louis meetings has argued with me on why we must obey our Bishops who are wicked themselves, and questioned me about false Popes and the Catholic “worship” of idols (statues)! Since these are very senior Catholics, one can appreciate how Louis’ preaching is undermining the faith of these people (if it was not already malformed) and of many others in this archdiocese.
For the celebration of Holy Mass, Fr. James wore a stole over his cassock, without the alb and chasuble.
The altar was a table covered with a white cloth. On the table there was no crucifix, no candles, no chalice, no ciborium, no paten, no purificator, no lectionary or missal. The large host appeared to have been placed on a cloth and the smaller hosts in a sort of basket or tray. It was not clear in the video. The wine was contained in a glass tumbler about 2″ tall. There was a plastic bottle containing water, prominently placed on the altar.
Scripture readings were done from Good News bibles. It does not seem that the readings of these Masses follow the liturgical calendar. For example, the prescribed readings for May 3, the day on which I attended a meeting, are 1 Corinthians 15:1-8, John 14: 6-14, but what were used was Acts 6 and John 3. Are the readings pre-selected by Joseph Louis? Only Fr. James can answer that question.
What is noticeable is that more women veil their hair and there is greater reverence and attention to the priest and the preacher than at most of our Sunday Masses. Give the devil his due (pun intended).
Fr. James pronounced the blessing after which he wished the gathering “Good morning”, something that is not included in the rubrics of the Mass. He added “I welcome you all to this Eucharist”. Citing Proverbs 28:13, he concluded that we all “want blessings of prosperity” which is what Louis’ underlying theme always is. True to that form, after the Holy Communion service and before the Final Blessing, Fr. James conducted a healing service of his own.
After the Mass, one Dominic from Tambaram gave a testimony of his physical healing.
The preaching of Louis commences:
On Mark 12:30, the First Commandment, loving God with our whole heart, soul, mind and body, “Can we love our wife/husband/any thing and still love God?” he says, “When I read this and obeyed this, I cut my TV at home.”
“How and by what should we live? The Word of God… walking in the Scripture. When I’m in fear, some priest or brother says ‘Read Psalm 91 and your fear will go.’ Is this correct, only when there is a problem, to read Scripture? Let us see what Jesus says.”
Matthew 4:4, “Every, ovvoru Word of God is a full Bible, so there is no need to get advice and counseling. (Simply) read the Bible. If I obey this word (Matthew 4:4), it is enough for me.”
I am recording all of this to show how shallow and repetitive the teachings are, yet subtly leading Catholics into learning, believing and accepting error of a more insidious kind. Anything taught by Louis must be seen from his Sola Scriptura worldview and his belief in individual interpretation of Scripture verses supposedly guided by the Holy Spirit.
Louis takes the conditional word “if” from a verse in the Bible and spends a lot of time pontificating on it. “If the word ‘if’ has such big power, then how big power is the entire Word of God in the Bible. I swept (?) the Bible fully complete just like that like cutting butter tak tak tak, full Bible I read. Now I am reading it once again for different types of understanding given by God. If you obey this Matthew 4:4 see what will happen to your life.”
So, according to Louis the verses of Scripture have some intrinsic magical power that can be manipulated by us, and he has a hot line to God who gives him the interpretation of the verses that he reads. How very Protestant.
Now, he continues to programme his hearers into never forgetting that God is speaking to them through his lips.
“Can we speak God’s Word? (Louis ‘proves’ from the Bible that it is possible.) See Jeremiah 1:9. So every word that comes from the mouth of God he can give to us also. When I talk what happens?” What he conveys is that God is putting His words in the prophet Joseph Louis’ lips for him to proclaim. “What happens when God put his word on my lips? I will have authority over nations and kingdoms to uproot, to pull down, to destroy, to overthrow, to build, and to plant.”
He relates that while he was thanking God for touching his lips, before he could finish thanking, “my tongue started to roll, roll, roll… (Words kept flowing from his mouth, he says)… I don’t know what the words was. You too should try that.”
He then tells of his own experience of employing that technique. He managed to get rupees one lakh out of a Marwari moneylender without any collateral from who one cannot otherwise get even a paisa, because God put the words on his lips for him to speak to the man. He concludes that every Word of God from the Bible can come from his (Louis’) lips too.
A simplistic interpretation of Matthew 28: 18-20 (The Great Commission) omitting the most important parts: “Do not fear anything. Why do you fear? Simple. You proclaim what Jesus told you to proclaim and see what happens.”
On 1 John 4:15, “If you confess ‘Jesus is the Son of God’, what happens? Jesus comes into you and you go into God. Then where is there any problem. God will abide in you and you will abide in God. Jesus comes in this way and dwells in me.”
He desires that children should be taught to say only ‘Jesus is the Son of God’ ten times a day each in the morning, noon and night. He makes everyone repeat ‘Jesus is the Son of God’ ten times… “Can you feel the difference in you now?”
“Let us not live by a few Bible verses but every, ovvoru Word of God. So if we read the Bible and love the Father and obey, what happens? ‘We will come to them and make our home with them’.” John 14:23
“When God comes into a woman what happens?”
He invites a woman to come forward and demonstrates the practice of claiming a healing because God is now in her. She commands her barren womb to open up. The ignorant listeners absorb this erroneous teaching for their future use.
Using 1 Peter 2:24 he makes the woman repeat “By your stripes my ovary problem has been healed. Thank you for making me to conceive. I am the mother of many children. Jesus has opened my womb.”
Louis prays over himself as is customary for him to do so.
A young woman wearing a rosary around her neck comes to the front and Louis places his hands over her and conducts deliverance over her. I would even venture to say that he attempts an exorcism.
The session extends for something like ten to fifteen minutes. During all that time, the woman closes her ears with her hands, shakes her head as if to exclude his voice and walks about swaying and staggering slightly. Louis follows her around saying repeatedly, “Get out in the name of Jesus. Out. Out. You have to get out…” She finally collapses to the floor.
Louis does not use any sacramentals or crucifix for the deliverance-exorcism.
I consulted a very good lay Catholic who is knowledgeable about these things and he opines that Louis could never have delivered or exorcised an evil spirit from that woman. He believes that the evil spirit only fooled Louis into believing it had left and that eventually Louis would suffer a strong backlash and other consequences. He has never met Louis but shared that when he and another person had once prayed about the “ministry” of Louis, they received a strong unmistakable vision and message that his “ministry” is not of God but demonic, and decided not to go anywhere hear it.
Making available such a performance on CD to the public is only bound to have people flock to this ministry since most priests do not appear to have any time for the needy sheep (see below), and Louis is always there to welcome them.
Again quoting Matthew 4:4 (man does not live by bread alone but by every Word that comes from the mouth of God) and waving his Bible in the air, he concludes “Jesus tells us to read the Bible, obey the Bible, and live the Bible everyday.”
But as I have repeatedly said, it is a subtle lie that none of his listeners are able to perceive. There was no Bible for almost 400 years. The Gospel was orally preached till the Church canonized the books of the Holy Bible. Jesus left behind a Church to preach and interpret his Word. Nowhere in the Bible does it say that the Bible is the sole rule of faith. We must obey the Church that interprets the Bible for us. Does Louis know all that? Louis rejects that Church and never ever directs his followers to that Church, to her Sacraments and sacramentals, to her pieties and devotions, to her priests and Bishops.
On the other hand, he is using the Church to reach and contact Catholics and subvert their fidelity to Her. And in that he is ably assisted by priests like Fr. James whom he identifies as his spiritual director at the end of the CD, and by priests in other parishes who provide him the platform to preach and “minister”.
We must take into account the spiritual lethargy of others who contribute to this situation by evasiveness and dereliction of duty. Louis has been given support by several Catholic laity and priests who initially guaranteed his Catholicity but later realised their error. All of them have nothing to do with Louis’ activities now. I cannot reveal their names in this report but if the Church wants the information I can share it privately with the concerned authority. It is the same about those who have been influenced by Louis. One must remember that since he now and then surfaces in parish churches in the Ayanavaram-Perambur-Annanagar belt, the concerned parish priests must be sought for their opinions.
The main priest-supporter of Louis is of course Fr. James A.T., the parish priest of Don Bosco Shrine, Ayanavaram.
It is mainly because of Fr. James that Louis is able to continue to influence Catholics with his erroneous teachings.
I have been trying the parish landline no. 2626 2108 since over a week, until today, May 15. I got through once only to be informed that he was on retreat. I have not been able to obtain his mobile telephone number. I contacted his cousin who is a Bishop through email thrice and even telephoned the bishop twice yesterday asking for Fr. James’ email id and telephone number. The Bishop has been promising to furnish them to me but hasn’t done so. I had wanted to take an appointment with Fr. James and discuss the issue with him before releasing this report. But that hasn’t happened.
When I contacted Our Lady of Lourdes Shrine, Perambur, to find out Louis’ Catholic status as per their opinion, I was told that Fr. Joe Andrew was in the Holy Land. On my third attempt, I got through to Fr. John Peter, the assistant parish priest.
He would not listen to my concerns about Louis, would not answer any of my questions, and asked me to wait till the 17th till Fr. Joe Andrew returns.
From my past experience with Fr. Joe Andrew, I doubt that he would have been of any help either. Fr. John Peter was brusque and almost rude. Louis “ministry” thrives because of priests like these who hurt and turn people away. All these priests are from the Salesian order under who I studied. On Sunday I had a long discussion with a Salesian priest from Andhra Pradesh who I met at a function; when I expressed my concern about the manner that Fr. A.T. James (who he doesn’t know) celebrates Mass in private settings and without fulfilling liturgical requirements, he found nothing wrong with that; about the need to get permission to celebrate such Masses, this priest felt that I was more concerned with the letter of the law than its spirit. I wonder why I am Catholic when the priests and the bishops themselves don’t care, when it is they who should set an example to us in defending the faith and safeguarding its purity and fidelity to the magisterium.
A little while ago, I spoke to a member of a family who are disciples, benefactors and donors of/to Louis. They are highly educated but know precious little of Catholic apologetics. I was told quite specifically that though they don’t agree with everything Louis teaches, they believe in him and his ministry. They also believe that Louis is very Catholic and that his teachings are Catholic and that he is serving people better than the priests. At the same time, the person said that they reject prayers like the Divine Mercy chaplet! They also entertain many serious doubts about basic Catholic doctrines.
I wonder what Louis would say if he knew that one of his major benefactors drinks regularly? Would he then insist (like I recorded on page 4) “People who smoke and drink cannot enter my house” and risk losing the largesse of that family, or would he compromise? (I was informed that Louis “plays the sympathy card” to get people to donate money to him.)
That family and Louis will both receive copies of this report by email and I apprehend some trouble for me. He has already been making enquiries about me through others and I have had to answer questions which I know originate from him. But I too have used my resources to elicit information from Louis himself to help make this report.
Louis’ website www.jesusinyou.org is presently down. A new web site is being organised by him.
His email id is firstname.lastname@example.org. His mobile telephone number is 90943 33111.
He conducts a prayer program at his home at 6:30 pm every day. Every first Saturday from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm there is Mass with “fasting prayer” (like the one that I attended) at his home. On all government holidays he leads “intercessory prayers” from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm.
When Mass is celebrated, as witnessed by me on May 3, he collects money twice, once before the start of Mass (he stood right there in front of me and everyone else including Fr. James counting out several hundred rupee notes) and once during the Offertory. When I asked him about this (using Mass to collect two offerings) he replied that one collection was for Fr. James and the other was towards his own expenses for conducting the meetings.
The next immediate programme of Louis is on Saturday, May 17, 2014 in Don Bosco Shrine Ayanavaram from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm in Tamil and from 2:00 to 5:00 pm in English. It will be held under the auspices of Fr. A.T. James SDB. See the flyer below:
Copy of my letter to the Archbishop of Madras-Mylapore on May 15, 2014, with this report attached:
George Antonysamy ; archdiocese ; George Antonysamy
Sent: Thursday, May 15, 2014 4:23 PM
Subject: PREACHER JOSEPH LOUIS MASQUERADES AS A CATHOLIC
Dear Archbishop George
Please find attached a report on a Perambur-based preacher named Joseph Louis.
He purports to be a Catholic but rejects all Catholic teaching and authority, including yours.
He subtly foments dissent against priests and Catholic pieties, and teaches heresy.
He uses Sola Scriptura to disseminate his personal interpretations of Bible verses.
He claims to have a hot line to God through the assurance of certain Bible verses.
He teaches his disciples questionable affirmatory and visualization techniques.
He conducts what appears to be deliverance-exorcisms of spirits from people.
He has destroyed or damaged the already flimsy faith of many Catholics who flock to him.
He preaches at some parish churches.
He has boasted to me and others that he is building a retreat centre which will be inaugurated by you, thus vindicating him and his “ministry”.
His spiritual director is Fr. A.T. James, SDB, who celebrates Mass for him at his home and at private halls and is paid by Louis for his services. In that connection, see my email to you of May 9 and especially the one of May 13, both reproduced below*.
The next meetings of Joseph Louis and Fr A.T. James are on May 17, 2014, at Don Bosco Shrine, Ayanavaram.
Do you consider the contents of my report as serious enough for you to put a stop to the programme on the 17th until you arrange to conduct a full investigation?
Sent: Friday, May 09, 2014 7:39 AM Subject: Re: Re:
Dear Archbishop George Antonysamy,
Good morning. I thank you for your kind response of yesterday.
I still have the report on the Perambur-based preacher to complete and send to you after meeting a particular priest and some other people this evening. I have emailed/distributed a draft of it to a few people for perusal and comments before it comes to you.
There is also the final email that I have yet to send you to tie up with the earlier emails that you received from me and that should reach you later today.
After those two issues are emailed to you and you have examined them, I will approach Fr. Joe Bala and request him for an appointment with you. When we meet, I do not have anything significant to add to all that I have written to you.
You are welcome to ask or instruct me anything on the basis of what you know about me or my ministry from our correspondence which has been one-sided so far.
George Antonysamy; archdiocese; George Antonysamy
Sent: Tuesday, May 13, 2014 8:52 AM
Subject: PRIEST CELEBRATING MASS WITHOUT PROPER VESTMENTS AND ALTAR REQUIREMENTS
Dear Archbishop George Antonysamy,
A parish priest in this archdiocese is regularly celebrating Holy Mass in private halls and homes.
A collection is made and given to him for his services.
He wears a stole over his cassock, without the alb and chasuble.
The altar is a table covered with a white cloth. On the table there is no crucifix, candles, chalice, ciborium, paten, purificator, lectionary or missal. The large host is placed on a cloth and the smaller hosts in a sort of basket or tray. The wine is contained in a glass tumbler about 2″ tall. Scripture readings are done from Bibles.
Is all this liturgically permissible?
I am still waiting your response to our question (sent by Mr. Mathias**) about whether a priest needs the permission of the bishop or concerned parish priest to celebrate Mass outside the jurisdiction of his own parish.
**From: Prem Mathias
Date: Mon, 5 May 2014 19:26:08 +0530 To: George Antonysamy Subject:
Your Lordship, archbishop George Antonysamy,
We would like to know what does the Catholic church say about having Masses privately in people’s homes or in public halls for lay preachers’ prayer meetings, as our families have been doing very regularly with one Catholic lay man preacher who is practising healing and deliverance. There are two or three priests who are coming there and a collection is also taken during the Offertory and if we enquire, the preacher says that the money is being given to the priests for coming and saying Mass.
In Chennai, is prior permission required to be taken from the local bishop to celebrate such Masses or can we freely invite priests to say Mass in our homes and in hired halls?
We are not able to agree with one another about what is correct.
With prayers to you,
Sent: Thursday, May 15, 2014 4:51 PM Subject: PERAMBUR PREACHER JOSEPH LOUIS MASQUERADES AS A CATHOLIC
BCC: HG, FR. JA, AI, BR, FR. ML, JD, L&JP, BISHOP G, FR. JV, CH
Dear all in the BCC,
Please find attached a report on a Perambur-based preacher named Joseph Louis.
If there is anything to be corrected or added on before I place this report on my web site, please let me know.
Subject: FOLLOW UP: PREACHER JOSEPH LOUIS MASQUERADES AS A CATHOLIC
BCC: HG, AI, BR, FR. ML, JD, BISHOP G, FR. JV, CH
RESPONSE FROM THE ARCHBISHOP WITHIN TWO HOURS OF MY EMAIL…
RESPONSE FROM THE ARCHBISHOP WITHIN TWO HOURS OF MY EMAIL:
Sent: Thursday, May 15, 2014 6:15 PM
Subject: Re: PREACHER JOSEPH LOUIS MASQUERADES AS A CATHOLIC
Thanks for the concrete information and let me handle the matter.
+ George Antonysamy
Archbishop of Madras-Mylapore
George Antonysamy; George Antonysamy
Sent: Monday, May 19, 2014 7:18 AM
Subject: Re: PREACHER JOSEPH LOUIS MASQUERADES AS A CATHOLIC
Thank you for your prompt response.
I hope that you repose enough confidence in my ministry to let me know what the outcome of your enquiry and action is in the matter so that I can communicate the same to our Catholic friends who are under the evil influence of Joseph Louis.
In my report on that “preacher”, I inadvertently missed the inclusion of the links to my reports on another apostate group that I investigated in 2010. They are included here:
EMPEROR EMMANUEL-DANGEROUS DOOMSDAY CULT
EMPEROR EMMANUEL-DANGEROUS DOOMSDAY CULT-SUMMARY 4 pages
Name Withheld To:
Sent: Thursday, May 15, 2014 10:50 PM
Subject: Re: FOLLOW: UP PREACHER JOSEPH LOUIS MASQUERADES AS A CATHOLIC
Good. I have noted the content of your trailing mail and the previous one. God bless you. Lay Catholic in ministry
Sent: Thursday, May 15, 2014 11:01 PM
Subject: Re: PERAMBUR PREACHER JOSEPH LOUIS MASQUERADES AS A CATHOLIC
Michael thanks. I have not read the article fully but appreciate all that I have read so far. You are bang on! I intend to read it dose by dose as this truly opens my eyes to a lot of stuff happening around, most of which I’m ignorant of. I will certainly complete my reading in the next few days. Thanks much for taking time to keep us informed. God bless you! Regards, Retreat preacher
Sent: Monday, May 19, 2014 5:59 AM
Subject: Re: PERAMBUR PREACHER JOSEPH LOUIS MASQUERADES AS A CATHOLIC
My dear Michael, thanks for your sharing. This helps me so much to learn and understand and be cautious. As the bible says there are many deceiving spirits going out into the world, and we must have the discernment. I almost took this route, but for the mercy of God. I understand that most of this is because we do not want to submit to authority. In the process we run ahead of the Church, God and all and then we believe we ourselves are gods. This is really what happened to Lucifer, isn’t it? Thanks much. Regards, Retreat preacher
THIS REPORT WILL BE UPDATED