Oprah-featured “psychic healer” to be arrested on sex abuse charges after an astonishing 258 women step forward with detailed accusations

Sunday, December 16, 2018
By Paul Martin

by: Vicki Batts
Sunday, December 16, 2018

A “psychic healer” from Brazil is now facing arrest, after over 200 women came forward with allegations of sexual abuse. The women say that João Teixeira de Faria, also known as “John of God,” abused them while they were seeking out spiritual guidance. Teixeira de Faria reached celebrity status after appearing on a television show hosted by Oprah Winfrey in 2013. Prosecutors are now calling for his arrest, according to reports.

This is not the first time a celebrity has been accused of taking advantage of women, but the victim toll here is astonishingly high. Many of Teixeira de Faria’s followers are choosing to reject the accusations, and are continuing to welcome him in their communities with open arms.

Accusations are piling up

Teixeira de Faria has his own spiritual center, nestled in the small town of Abadiania, located in the central Brazilian state of Goias. The Sydney Morning Herald reports since the first accusation hit the airwaves, a total of 258 women have contacted the Goias state prosecutors’ office, alleging that they too were victims of the self-proclaimed faith healer.

Teixeira de Faria first opened his “practice” in 1976. Thousands of people, from Brazil and abroad, traveled to his clinic — so much so that the town of Abadiania has become dependent on the sheer volume of tourism related to the spiritual center. Teixeira de Faria garnered a substantial amount of attention by claiming he’s able to perform “miracle” surgeries with nothing but his hands; no tools, no anesthetics.

But now, it’s all come crashing down, and rather quickly, too.

As the Herald reports, “The first accusation of sexual misconduct against Faria was made on Brazil’s Globo TV on Friday by Dutch choreographer Zahira Maus who said Faria sexually assaulted her. Globo TV spent three months investigating the story and interviewed a dozen other women who said they had been abused by the healer.” Now, there are hundreds of accusations, and “John of God” may soon be “John of Prison.”

Faith healer under fire
Oprah is feeling the heat, as well: After the accusations went viral, a Facebook campaign was born. The Facebook protesters demanded that Oprah delete Faria’s episode, and alleged that the TV personality shared responsibility in creating the predator’s fame. It’s hard to deny there’s been an uptick in popularity in the years since his Oprah appearance.

Unsurprisingly, all mentions of Oprah’s Teixeira de Faria episode and the “healer” himself have been scrubbed. “I empathize with the women now coming forward and hope justice is served,” Oprah said in a statement.

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