Sundance 2018: Come Sunday, by David Bax

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  1. Mr. Bax, as a member of Bishop Carlton Pearson’s church since the early ’90s and still a very close personal friend of Bishop Pearson to this day, I can tell you that what you think are movie inventions are absolutely factual. Bishop Pearson’s entire theological shift began while he was home, watching the news as he still does every single day at 5:30p.m., watching Rwandan children dying and asking God, “How can you let these people suffer and die and then just suck them into hell?’ I walked through these events from the very beginning as they happened. As his television producer in those days, I had a front row seat to the entire ordeal. Likewise, Bishop J. D. Ellis is not a movie invention either. He really did call Bishop Pearson before his board of African American Pentecostal Bishops, ambushing Bishop Pearson and declaring him a heretic, after which, nearly all of Bishop Pearson’s speaking engagements dried up overnight. Bishop Ellis is a villain in the movie, because he was a villain in real life. Bishop Pearson’s conversations with Oral Roberts are absolutely true. I sat and watched as the white people of our congregation left first, and finally most of the African Americans along with them, until eventually the church went from a membership of 6,000 down to 200 and eventually to only about 30. I lived it and I watched it die. Your criticisms of the movie are based on the false assumption that these are movie inventions to create a dramatic narrative. I happen to know those “inventions” are absolutely true.

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