Those are God's hands but this ain't Allstate

Those are the hands of God but this is not Allstate

“Like Father, Like Son,” the axiom speaks. And I suppose it’s a destined-to-fill prophecy in a televangelism empire based in Tulsa, Okla.

In 1986, Oral Roberts exclaimed to his TV audience (and any other schlep that would listen) the following about what God told him in a candid conversation:

“I want you to use the ORU medical school to put my medical presence in the earth. I want you to get this going in one year or I will call you home. It will cost $8 million, and I want you to believe you can raise it.”

Yeah, about that. In the following two years, Oral Roberts raised $9.1 million for the lovely titled “City of Faith.” So, Oral wouldn’t be going home. Good times.

Well, that was April 1987 and in October 1987, the medical city was closed down, medical scholarships were discontinued and Oral Roberts wasn’t afraid of God any longer. Well, hey, at least he was $9 million richer, so he could afford the insurance plan.

Fast forward to this recent story about his son, president of ORU and legacy of the televangelism empire. Evidently, Richard Roberts has a propensity for redecorating his house monthly at the student’s endowment behest and his bethrothed, Lindsay, is really a cougar on the prowl for co-eds via text messaging.

In short, the school is $50 million in the hole, professors are being fired, students are leaving the leering press was waiting. And wait they did for the school to do something… it did.

Thanks to this interesting story in The Oklahoman, ORU fired the once-suspended televangelist wunderkind, gave him the rest of his $223,000 salary and rid themselves of the university’s namesake.

All this drama because of three scorned professors, and a former accountant at the university, Trent Huddleston, was fired for knowing too much, said something, canned and then called his lawyer. From there, God said it was time to send someone home.

“ORU appreciates the mission and spiritual heritage that we continue to maintain, which originated by the vision of Oral Roberts,” Ralph Fagin, ORU’s interim president, said in a statement Friday. “We value the years of investment Dr. Richard Roberts has made at ORU. We move forward with a heightened sense of duty and responsibility to the fruit of this great university — its students and alumni.”

This is PR-speak for “The jig is up for Mr. Sticky Fingers and his trollop wife. Now that he is out of here, let’s get back in the black, educate these kids and work on renaming this school to ‘Tulsa Jesus College’ later.”

Hey, stranger things have happened. Stay tuned, I’m sure this isn’t the last we will hear from ORU.

  1. […] Roberts University has been going through the ringer lately. You know, having a president with a case of self-entitlement the size of this hair gel account and him bringing along a wife who has a hankering for cute co-eds and some text messaging will do […]

  2. […] well. Looks like HiScrivener is flowing in the spirit of prophecy. Last we saw on the Wall about Oral Roberts University, namesakes were no longer in fashion as Richard Roberts got the peace […]

  3. Pamela says:

    Yesterday the judge tossed out some of the accountant’s lawsuit against RR and ORU:

  4. Pamela says:

    I forgot to include this link to the ORU site with updates:

  5. Pamela says:

    I am an ORU alum. I and many are glad that RR is gone. Just want to update this. A local businessman promised 70 million to ORU. The condition was that (1) they radically change the way the school was run and (2) the funds between the school and the ministry had to be separate. Right now the debt is down to $17 million. I do not remember if a condition of receiving the funds was that RR had to step down or not. The timing of the announcement makes me think that was a condition. He stepped down right before Thanksgiving 2007. A few days later ORU announced the gift from Mart Green. Everything that was promised under the helm is being done with the new administration. I have gone on the campus to see for myself a lot of the changes. Basically ORU is paying out the remaining portion of RR’s contract which is standard for businesses. Oral is an emeritus trustee of the school with no power at all other than for consultation. No other Roberts are a part of the school. The climate on the campus has changed dramatically. For that I’m grateful.

    The accountant mentioned in this article was not the initiation of this madness. It started with three professors being fired, one a tenured professor. When I heard that a tenured professor was fired I knew that this lawsuit would explode and that possibly RR would be forced out. All three have settled their claims. The tenured professor settled and went back to work at ORU within a few months. The other two just settled their lawsuits a couple of weeks ago after several attempts by the court to get them to provide real substantial evidence of what was going on. Evidently they did not come up with enough to warrant a suit. They were asked several times to do this. I believe the terms are being kept confidential. At least I have not read or heard anything in our local media. I have not heard anything about the status of the lawsuit of the former accountant nor the two students that sued.

    For once things appear to be on the up and up. God is not going to allow foolishness to continue in His name.

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