KC STAR — In a town named Blue Eye near Branson, Mo., disgraced televangelist Jim Bakker continues his comeback, prepping souls for a nuclear apocalypse, one bucket of “Staying Alive” freeze-dried food at a time.
On Monday The Daily Mail published a behind-the-scenes look at Bakker’s ministry, which set up in Missouri 14 years ago. (Bakker himself did not speak to The Daily Mail for the story.)
Bakker’s ministry is getting buzz as of late. In May Buzzfeed published its own lengthy recounting of the Jim Bakker saga, detailing his current ministry in Missouri.
The Daily Mail, a British publication, equated Bakker’s Christian community, called Morningside, with a theme park, complete with a movie-set indoor town square guarded by a 15-foot statue of Jesus.
That’s where Bakker and his wife, Lori, film “The Jim Bakker Show,” a TV ministry with an end-of-days theme that sells “survival buckets.”
A bucket of freeze-dried buttermilk pancakes will set you back $70. (Sorry, it can’t be shipped to Canada.)
“It is astonishing that Bakker – forced out of his last ministry and imprisoned for defrauding his flock of $158 million – has managed to reinvent himself as a doomsday prophet,” the Daily Mail writes.
“Yet the Bible – something he confessed he’d only bothered to fully read during his five-year incarceration – teaches forgiveness. And his followers appear to have forgiven him – not only for his greed but also for the sex scandals that wrecked his holier-than-thou image carefully crafted by Bakker and then wife Tammy Faye via their vast Christian TV empire.”
It’s an alluring comeback story – televangelist brought down by a sex scandal pitches tent in the Ozarks with a younger wife with help from a deep-pocketed Missouri supporter and begins preaching end of the days.