Molotov and Maranatha

Last December, Good published a profile by Kristin Rawls of Jason “Molotov” Mitchell and his wife Patricia (“DJ Dolce”). Molotov is one of WND‘s more abrasive commentators: he has no problem with the Uganda Anti-Homosexuality Bill, pointing out that it reflects Uganda’s culture and that gay Ugandans can simply leave the country; he has a long list of “Nazis” that includes Obama and Wiccans; and – inevitably – he regards Sandra Fluke as a “slut”. I looked at some of his material here, and managed to elicit a comment from the man himself.

Good’s profile includes some personal background:

Molotov has a more troubled past. His father was an evangelical Christian who worked construction. His mother has struggled for years with symptoms of mental illness. Molotov disapprovingly notes that she “had a very strong feminist thing going on,” and one day, “my father came home and she’d just left a note and taken me with her. She was cursed by God for doing that. To this day, she hears demonic voices non-stop.”

Molotov’s father Wayne Mitchell may indeed have “worked construction” when Molotov was very young, but for most of Molotov’s life he has been an evangelist and pastor. One wonders why Molotov has decided to downplay this now; a 2008 article in Harper’s mentions that

Mitchell’s parents divorced when he was five, and his father, an evangelical pastor who now heads the Beacon City Church in Boston, raised him.

According to a 1995 article in Charisma (snippet on Google Books), Wayne Mitchell “worked with Maranatha Campus Ministries in the 1980s”, and he created an organisation to evangelise foreign students, called “Churches Serving Internationals” in Durham, NC. Jay Rogers of the Forerunner (a Maranatha newsletter) has further details:

I was contacted by Jason Mitchell… Jason mentioned that he knew The Forerunner and that his dad had been part of Maranatha Ministries. Jason didn’t remember me, but I knew him quite well when he was a teenager. His father, Wayne Mitchell, now a pastor in Boston, and I produced The Mandate, a version of The Foreunner for Chinese students, for three years in the mid-1990s.

I am glad to see that Jason has turned out to be even more radical than his father. God is truly a sovereign God!

Maranatha has a particularly controversial history; the organisation was was accused of authoritarianism and abuse in the 1980s, and it collapsed in 1989 – I discussed this here. Some of those involved with Maranatha then reformed as Morning Star International, later rebranded as Every Nation. In the 1990s, Wayne Mitchell was the associate pastor of a Morning Star church in Durham called King’s Park International Church. He moved to Boston in 2001, but an association remains: the senior pastor at KPIC, Ron Lewis, created a new organisation to evangelise students, called Campus Harvest, and Molotov’s “Illuminati Pictures” created a promo for this group in 2007. In Boston, Wayne Mitchell formed Beacon City Church; however, as I discussed here, Beacon City was originally “Maranatha Christian Church of Boston”, and later “Boston Morning Star Church” (it has recently “joined forces” with another Boston church, called Aletheia Church).

Another student group created by KPIC is High Rise, which in 2009 hosted Ugandan pastor Martin Ssempa. This was before Ssempa’s had become infamous for a viral video in which he conflated gay sex with coprophagy, but his views were very much on record.


Morning Star International should not be confused with Rick Joyner’s MorningStar Ministries. However, Joyner is friendly with Bob Weiner, who headed Maranatha. Another controversial figure formerly associated with Maranatha is Pastor Terry Jones, as I discussed here.