John Mackay, the Australian creationist who exorcises cats and dogs is back in Britain and is due to speak in a Methodist Church near Lancaster on 19th October.
He was here in 2003 and 2006 and in 2003 I had the displeasure of debating him in Scorton near Lancaster. That was an odd experience. I was invited by a local supporter in Scorton. I went along to the village hall and was offered the chance to bat first.
I soon got used to the hisses and boos if I said anything remotely respectable whether as science or Christian Belief. Several of there found the atmosphere most unpleasant and one, a far better scientist than I ever could have been, described it as demonic and he meant it.
Well, then Mackay went to the crease. It was like a Gish gallop and untrue representations of science were delivered at great speed. I had the chance of replying and attempted to refute some of his more glaring whoppers. I was booed and hissed at again. I am still trying to reconcile the audience’s behaviour with any Christian or other ideas of moral behaviour. Mackay’s approach was slick and at great speed with the aim of not allowing any comeback of challenge by rapidly moving on to another topic.
Then I was challenged about my faith and not even my very orthodox understanding of the resurrection passed muster with them. Despite believing in an empty tomb and bodily resurrection I was still called a heretic.
It was not a pleasant evening and I tend to agree with my friend that the devil was present. One devout lady – a former missionary – left early as she could not take and one vicar’s wife was reduced to tears.
Three years later several vicars in my diocese asked him to speak in their churches. I put in a formal complaint to the bishop and sought to dissuade my colleagues. At least we saw him off from speaking in some schools.
I cannot understand how anyone, especially a Christian who is supposed to follow the love and truthfulness of Jesus can fall for this nasty nonsense. But then a lot do, cluding some Vice-presidents.
In the 80s Mackay fell out with Ken Ham even accusing one of his colleague’s widows of necrophilia. They fell out big time but are now best buddies again.
Here is his itinerary
but it only includes “church ” visits and I expect he has been invited to schools, having been told he is a scientist
And of course he has debated on Premier Radio with a real scientist Prof Keith Fox. Sadly debates don’t work and a strong rhetoric backed up by bullshit is often as successful
Why do some Christians listen to him?