By Rick Hiebert. All Rights Reserved. Used by Permission.
A big thanks to reader Riles who brings it to our attention that Todd Bentley is not being allowed into Australia for a series of evangelistic meetings he had planned fot later this week in small chuirches in or near Melbourne, Sydney, and Canberra.
Says the announcement on the Fresh Fire website:
The Australian Tour is currently on hold until further Notice. Australian Immigration has denied Todd entry into the country at this time. We are however doing everything we can to get an answer for the denied entry. We have sent all the required documents and are awaiting approval from Australian Immigration to be allowed to come to Australia and Minister. Please continue to stand with us as we are not giving up.
I don’t know why either, but here are a couple guesses.
When he was ministering in Bellingham Washington, before Lakeland, Todd Bentley complained to his audiences of being held at the border because U.S. Customs considered preaching as working, and he’d need special paperwork–which Todd didn’t want to bother with if possible so he could be back and forth quickly. However, he related the customs officials as saying, if he was merely leading a Bible study, that would be okay.
The customs officials always let him across to preach, but the idea was no doubt planted in Bentley’s mind that he had to find a permanent solution to his problem of guaranteeing access to the U.S., his biggest audience.
Perhaps something similar is happening in Australia. “Hey mate, you’re coming into Australia to preach, and that means work and a special visa…”
Of course, it could also relate to the main reason that Todd Bentley was jailed as a teenager. That would set off an alarm in the mind of any on-the-ball customs official.
And that would have been something that Todd would have taken care of, as far as the US is concerned, by marrying the very American Jessa Bentley. It would be an undue hardship, Bentley would argue, to deny him access to his wife just because she lives in the US. And he’s got to be able to make a living…