A faith healer that Oprah largely promoted for his abilities is now wanted by the authorities, as over 250 women have come forward with accusations. João Teixeira de Faria, the man who calls himself “John of God,” is wanted by authorities after sex abuse allegations were recently revealed.
Oprah’s repeated promotions of Faria, who is a Brazilian faith healer, rocketed “John of God” to international fame. Oprah praised this man’s psychic healing methods as well as his spiritual healing center, which is located in central Brazil.
Back in 2010 Oprah Winfrey produced a profile on him and then in 2012, she visited Faria’s center in the small town of Abadiania. According to Daily Wire, Faria’s miraculous methods include performing surgery without using any anesthesia.
He is also said to channel the “spirits of the dead” when a patient suffers from a serious condition. These spirits reportedly help Faria to “heal” these patients.
The reported miraculous methods of this man became national news after Oprah sang his praises. According to the New York Times, Faria’s “global fame exploded” largely because of Oprah promoting his abilities.
The town of Abadiania has grown and the economy was booming due to Faria’s fame. Most tourism was due to the visitors who came to Faria’s now famous spiritual center. This is the same place Oprah visited a few years back.
Last week a woman appeared on Brazilian national television and accused Faria of sexually abusing her. Since the woman, Dutch choreographer Zahira Maus, made that allegation, over 250 women have come forward with similar accusations of their own.
With so many making these claims, the prosecutors in Brazil requested Faria’s arrest. Some of these women are foreigners, like his first accuser Maus. She was part of a three-month investigation by Rede Globo (TV Globo) in Brazil.
The TV station conducted a dozen interviews with alleged victims as well as Maus. Reports now put the number of women to come forward at 258. Faria made his first public appearance since the allegations surfaced, claiming he is not guilty and is ready to fully comply with the law of Brazil.
“Brothers and my dear sisters, I thank God for being here,” Faria said, Reuters reports. “I want to comply with Brazilian law. I am in the hands of the law. John of God is still alive.”
Oprah has responded to the allegations against Faria. She said, “I empathize with the women now coming forward and hope justice is served.”
Some of Faria’s followers are standing behind the man and have even taken to harassing the media covering this story. When Faria came out to make his statement last week his followers cheered him on loudly as he denied the allegations made against him.