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Todd Bentley refused entry into Britain

24 August 2012

THE Canadian revivalist Todd Bentley has been banned from visiting the UK, the Home Office announced on Tuesday.

Mr Bentley, the founder of Fresh Fire Ministries, led the Lakeland Outpouring, in Florida, in 2008 ( Features, 27 February 2009). He had been scheduled to speak at Croydon Conference Centre from 30 August to 1 September, and at events in Ireland, Wales, and Liverpool.

Earlier this month, Malcolm Wicks, MP for Croydon North, wrote to the Home Secretary, Theresa May, saying that Mr Bentley "has been known to physically assault those who come to him for help. I urge you to do all in your power to ban this man from the UK" ( News, 17 August). Video clips, posted on YouTube, show Mr Bentley describing how he once kicked a woman in the face during a revival meeting, and claiming that a man was cured of cancer after he punched him in the chest.

On Tuesday, a spokeswoman for the Home Office said: "We can confirm that Mr Bentley has been excluded from the UK. The Government makes no apologies for refusing people access to the UK if we believe they are not conducive to the public good. Coming here is a privilege that we refuse to extend to those who might seek to undermine our society."

On Thursday of last week, Mr Bentley issued a statement defending his actions. He said that nobody had been injured when he prayed for them in an "unorthodox manner", and that he had been "operating" a "gift of faith". Such incidents were "generally not how I pray or minister to people", he said.

Mr Bentley said on Tuesday: "I am deeply saddened by the recent decision of the UK Government regarding my entry into the country. At this point, we are thankful to God for the support from our friends in the UK who truly love Jesus and embrace the supernatural, faith, and healing.

"We know and believe that the UK has a great destiny, and we are praying for the leaders and those in government."



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