To what extent has religion been used for personal gain?

Many say that the care of minors depends completely on parents, but, my personal knowledge tells me otherwise. People tend to put their faith into religious leaders and they end up being manipulated as the leaders take advantage of people’s naivety. 

In some cases, the Catholic Church has not exercised the values that they preach. An evident example of this took place in Cali, Colombia, where eight years ago, priest Mazo Pérez raped four children. He utilized his official title for pleasure and personal gain, whilst affecting negatively the life of the minors and their families. He was condemned to thirty three years of prison. Nevertheless, the archdiocese of Cali stated that the guilt of the case lied on the parents’ lack of surveillance. This is a red herring fallacy, since he was the one who committed the act for a personal gain, without measuring his consequences. In other words, he used his Argumentum ad Verecundiam to convince catholics that he was innocent.


Another evident example of the intersection between corruption and religion is in South Africa, where a senior pastor, Shepherd Bushiri, provides ‘jobs’ for people in need to act like they had a tragic life which improved once he started praying for them. This creates an interpersonal intelligence, feeling of attachment and increased faith in the church. A woman called Margaret Hlatshwayo got paid to lie about a miracle occurring after getting convinced of the pastor’s offers.  This is  personal gain, because Bushiri gains integrants of his religion; with a higher number of people having more faith in him, he would feel powerful, using this at his advantage, and even asking them for things such as money.


Nonetheless, not all religious entities handle their power for negative purposes, some practice the Holy Books’ teachings.


To finalize, religion can be used for personal gain, but not in all circumstances. While some take advantage of their name for acts that are against their law and beliefs, there are others who are loyal to their religious ethics. Hence, it would be an illogical fallacy to generalize that religion is only used for personal gain.


Anon, (2017). [online] Available at: http://cura-getty-914×607.jpg [Accessed 16 Feb. 2017].

Anon, (2017). [online] Available at: http://IMAGEN-16817451-1.png [Accessed 16 Feb. 2017].

Anon, (2017). [online] Available at: http://img_20160617_235243.jpg [Accessed 16 Feb. 2017].

Anon, (2017). [online] Available at: http://giphy.gif [Accessed 16 Feb. 2017].

KienyKe. (2017). Arquidiócesis de Cali debe responder por violación de niños. [online] Available at: [Accessed 16 Feb. 2017].

Nehanda Radio. (2017). Bushiri paid me to fake miracles – South African woman reveals – Nehanda Radio. [online] Available at: [Accessed 16 Feb. 2017].


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