12 Out-Of-Control Faith Healers
3. Dr. Hobart Freeman
In 1951, Freeman survived a heart attack at age 31. This event sparked his change from professor of theology to Faith Assembly founder church leader. Controversy followed the Assembly right off the bat, mainly around its absolutist rejection of medicine to treat disease. Freeman claimed that "when genuine faith is present, it alone will be sufficient [to] take the place of medicines and other aids."
In his congregation, diabetics stopped taking insulin and mothers eschewed pre- and post-natal care. Prayer was also used to try to bring loved ones back from the dead. At Faith Assembly, dead babies were laid next to live ones, in hopes the live babies would transmit life to the dead children.
As reports flooded in detailing alarmingly high rates of infant and maternal mortality, the law intervened. Freeman was officially charged with aiding and abetting in the "negligent homicide" of just one of the reported 90 deaths within his congregation. Two weeks before the opening court date, Freeman died of bronchial pneumonia and congestive heart failure, complicated by a gangrene leg, for which he had refused treatment, even to the point of not changing bandages to keep the wound clean.
4. Charles Meade
In 1984, the End Times Ministries founder and his congregation resettled in Lake City, Florida, the only place Meade believed God had told him would survive the coming Armageddon. End Timers also believe that to be tired is a sin and illness is nothing more than evidence of "unbelief". Because of this, the End Times congregation has had 12 babies die from diseases that medical officials say could have been prevented with basic treatment.
Concerned citizens of Lake City believe that many more infants may have died undocumented. But in only one instance have End Times parents been convicted of negligence when their teenage son died of a treatable heart condition. When Meade died in 2010 he had never been prosecuted nor held accountable for any crime. His End Times Army still flourishes under another minister's tutelage.