officials have criticized an American television
evangelist for a series of advertisements they say suggest
people can be cured of HIV/AIDS by attending the
preacher's services in this South American nation.
The ministry of
the Reverend Ernest Angley, a Pentecostal preacher who
exhorts illness-causing demons to leave a person's body at
''crusade services,'' was involved in an ''obscene
exploitation of people's vulnerability'' by claiming
that people with HIV/AIDS could possibly be cured,
Guyana's Health Ministry said in a Saturday statement.
''We are unaware
of the existence to date of any cure anywhere in the
world for HIV infection,'' the statement said.
Ray Spangler, a
spokesman for the Ernest Angley Ministries, which is
hosting several services in Guyana and neighboring Suriname
this week, said the ads indicated that prayer and
faith can be the remedy for many afflictions. He said
Angley is ''well aware'' there is no medical cure for
''If a person
comes to the crusade and gets help through prayer, then
that's wonderful. If nothing happens, continue taking your
medicine,'' Spangler said. ''It does not hurt to have
prayer if you are sick.''
Angley is an
evangelist known for his televised services at the Grace
Cathedral in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio, where believers appear
onstage to receive a prayer and a healing touch from
His services are
regularly aired on Guyanese television, and the events
in the former British colony were expected to draw