This is Christian Gospel Mission’s (CGM) position regarding the social repercussions since the release of Netflix’s “In the Name of God” in March 2023 and the associated media coverage.
First of all, we would like to express our sincere regret for the social scandal that has occurred in the Republic of Korea. In particular, we offer our deepest sympathies to those who are suffering due to the misunderstandings surrounding CGM as well as to those who have family members or acquaintances in CGM.
The allegations surrounding CGM are currently handled as legal issues in court, where different arguments and perspectives are being presented. These allegations were released as manipulated videos, falsely portraying them to be true, and a series of media reports are fueling hate crimes as a result. In light of this, CGM will put its religious conscience on the line and strive to uncover the truth.
We request the following from the producers of Netflix’s “In the Name of God” and platforms who have used the series commercially:
1. To prove the authenticity of the file, please provide the original file that the key witness, M, has said to have recorded.
Otherwise, you will be accused of deceiving the entire nation and putting both an organization and individual at risk due to fabrication.
2. The so-called Hong Kong mosquito net video was edited to be different from what had actually happened at that time. Despite there being no illegal activity at all, the video was edited to make it resemble a sex crime.
We urge you to provide the original video.
3. Disseminating nude images of people who have personal rights is a criminal act equivalent to public murder. It could never be classified as justice. The video had nothing to do with sexual crime but was used for sexuality and profiteering, and is clear evidence of the irresponsible violation of an individuals’ inherent rights.
4. Netflix’s “In the Name of God” does not even state whether it is a re-enactment by actors/actresses or the actual footage, deliberately causing confusion. It is an irresponsible and fake documentary. Furthermore, it is a drama that manipulates facts and context with the purpose of deeming CGM as a criminal organization and using public opinion to destroy CGM.
We hereby communicate the following to the broadcasters and media agencies that engage in content expansion and reproduction of Netflix’s “In the Name of God” without verification and fairness:
1. In light of the ongoing trial that is currently taking place, stop any dissemination of public opinion that has the potential to violate the essential rights to a fair trial, as per Article 27 of the Constitution.
2. The media agencies claim that they have provided CGM with the opportunity to present our side. However, most of these instances were traps disguised as coverage, aimed at manipulating the speaker’s intentions and fabricating sources according to their own agenda. It was an unethical act of profiteering.
3. The occurrences presented by the media during this time, which are difficult to believe, disclose members’ identities, identify company details that are related to CGM, abet material and psychological harm, and even degrade artistic creations. We strongly urge you to cease being the focal point of these acts of hate crimes.
4. We urge you to remove all the contents of the articles and broadcasts, that are clearly illegal as described above, from various portals, social media, and video platforms.
5. Given the social significance of this matter, we respectfully request a fair opportunity to verify the facts and vindicate us.
We, CGM, will continue to endeavor to disclose the truth through diverse channels, thereby fulfilling our responsibility as members of society.
1. The doctrine and culture of CGM does not condone sexual misconduct. Rather, based on biblical teachings, we have been restoring the intrinsic value of sexuality, promoting its importance and protecting human rights.
2. In this day and age, where everything is open and global communications are made without limitations, it is hardly possible that there is “inability to resist due to brainwashing.” We hereby state that the culture of CGM, led by young people, is far from “brainwashing” and “irresistibility.”
3. CGM, which began in 1978, is a Christian organization centered on practical faith. CGM does not simply follow the core doctrines of Christianity, such as unrealistic elements of eschatology and literal judgment of fire, the physical return of the Messiah, and physical rapture into the air.
4. Labeled as a cult due to doctrinal differences, CGM was subjected to all kinds of slander and hardship. However, through innovation in services and the Word, we have grown into a global organization today.
5. CGM’s doctrines of gender equality and a healthy culture guide all our female CGM leaders. The patriarchal perspective of “objectified sexuality of stupid and weak women” portrayed via Netflix series and media reports has nothing to do with us. If such framing continues, it would be a serious anti-social act that would harm all women, not only those in CGM.
The hatred and violence that CGM is currently facing is similar to hate crimes that have happened countless times throughout history. The damage caused by hate crime is irreparable. Remember that anyone can be a target.
Until now, even when we have been intervened by public authorities to carry out a search of the Holy Temple (Wolmyeongdong) and unusual confiscations, we have not resisted or caused physical conflict. We believe that one day the truth will be revealed and aim to achieve religious victory as a religious organization.
This belief is reflected by Pastor Jeong Myeong-Seok’s 45 years of teachings, shown through his never-changing life and word, “Love the Lord God only and love others like that.”
We have learned God’s truth and His love. To make it a conviction, not just a blind faith, we have lived practicing the Word of the Bible.
If a mouth remains shut even when lies overshadow the truth, it would be an injustice. Moreover, in order to safeguard the dignity and pride God has bestowed upon everyone, we will spread our culture and doctrine.
Family, friends, and neighbors who have been closely observing us for the past 45 years, have in the end recognized our true values and righteous lives. We firmly believe that no matter how much we are pushed to the extreme, if we have the wings of truth, we will not fall but soar high.
2023. 4. 26.
Christian Gospel Mission