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| | |-+  Belover Apostate: A Novel by Josprel - Excerpt Four
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Author Topic: Belover Apostate: A Novel by Josprel - Excerpt Four  (Read 1148 times)
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« on: December 25, 2006, 11:45:07 PM »

                                                                                                                                Beloved Apostate

Multi-billionaire, George M. Jardinette, Highway Ministries CEO, was as complex as the organization he administered.  Trained as a corporate attorney, during a long and brilliant secular career, he had scrambled to the pinnacle of the business hierarchy.  Making his fortune, he ultimately retired as CEO of the world's major multinational, corporate conglomerate.  He had declined several Presidential posts, developing into a philanthropist, who confessed to being an agnostic.

Shortly into his retirement, highly recommended by his friend, Cardinal Prisal, Jardinette contacted Darnel.  In his first correspondence he wrote: "I believe that the only hope for world peace is a united world.  That's the reason I embraced the multinational business concept.  In my naiveté, I had hoped that multinationals would raise the world's living standards, and be a force for peace.  This has not happened; nor is it likely to do so.

"Multinational profit motives are the power behind the national governments; the only reason for their existence.  It is a cancer of greed that corrupts government officials and law officers, and caters to crime lords.  It fosters cruel, inhuman working conditions and its advocates do not blush at coupling the poor to the juggernaut of extreme profits.  They think nothing of sucking the youth from young children and then casting off their hollow shells.

"I blush that I was mired in that filth for so long.  What drove me to consult with our mutual friend, Cardinal Prisal (who is of the same faith as were my parents) is the profound guilt that I suffer for having exploited so many helpless lives, while hoping to be of benefit to them.  Though it's true I question the existence of a supreme being, I desire to assist in the advancement of the human race, not its exploitation.  If this is viewed as being religious, so be it.

"During the course of my international dealings, I have concluded that religion is the true prime mover of our race.  Few willingly forfeit their lives for an industrial base, yet countless multitudes gladly sacrifice themselves for their religious beliefs.  Truth or myth, religion motivates the human psyche.  I cannot explain this phenomenon, but I do recognize its existence.  While I do not accept religion, I confess to occasions when even I am captured by pious thoughts and feelings.

"I mentioned these things to Cardinal Prisal.  I said to him what I now say to you: I believe that no force but religion can unite humanity.  I have no idea how it can be accomplished.  I leave that to you theologians.  I can say, if it is not accomplished, humanity will feed on itself until it is finally destroyed.

"The Cardinal explained the beliefs of the Fresh Wine Movement and outlined for me the beliefs of your church and his; beliefs I consider impossible to accept.

"Yet, the ecumenical factor of the Fresh Wine Movement lures me.  If you promise to not attempt to convert me to religion (although I do enjoy friendly discussions on the subject) I will place my talents at your disposal and vow to remain loyal to your cause, either as a dollar-a-year executive or unpaid consultant.  In any task I perform for you, your decisions shall be my final authority and I shall endeavor to keep my public and personal affairs above reproach.

"I do not make this offer lightly.  We met last year, when I attended a few of your services with a friend of Cardinal Prisal's.  I do not expect you would recall that meeting, since it was very brief.

"Though Cardinal Prisal holds you in high esteem, I had you investigated.  His high regard for you is warranted.  I would be honored to place myself under your leadership.

"Thank you for giving your attention to this letter.  I shall await your response with great expectancy."

Soon after, Darnel named Jardinette to the CEO chair of Highway's swiftly expanding pursuits.  His record since his arrival was one of seven years of unswerving loyalty.  And, woe to any subordinate who did not toe that line!

Tapping into his contacts, the CEO developed a superb executive team.  Under his supervision, the Fresh Wine Movement was groomed into a multinational organization, accredited by most of the religious world as a revival of unity, with Highway Christian Center, its Mecca.  His name synonymous with religious unity, Darnel was hailed as the apostle of this revival; its spearhead for the new era.

Darnel was the spearhead of the Fresh Wine revival, but Jardinette's hand held the spear.  Uppermost in his priorities was the advancement of world unity and it was at this target he aimed the spear.  With Darnel's consent, he formed "Religious America United."  A tentacle of the Fresh Wine Movement, it embraced American religious leaders sympathetic to the goal of religious and world unity.  Its members and officers came from all faiths and worked closely with Darnel and Jardinette to achieve the common goal. 

Religious America United was totally financed by Jardinette.  He and Darnel held its purse strings.  Moreover, they jealously guarded its agenda by a veto power over all decisions and choice of officers.  Under their microscopic scrutiny, the organization mushroomed into an affiliation of 118 religious groups, allegedly representing a total membership of some 124,000,000 Americans; the prime movers for the role Jardinette envisioned for Darnel.
Darnel was proud of what he and Jardinette achieved.  In it he saw the hand of God, proof that his Movement truly was this generation's revival.  Nonetheless, some whom he loved and respected most, including his parents, stood among the Fresh Wine Movement's  severest critics.   

He wondered why!

                                                                                                                        End of Chapter One
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