Church Starves 2-Year-Old To Death Because They Thought He Was ‘Possessed’

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Screen Shot 2015-04-14 at 9.15.39 PMIt was the best of times, it was the worst of times–no, after reading today’s news, it’s hard to say it’s anything but just the worst of times. A church in Texas who let a two-year-old slowly starve to death over the period of a month deserves to rot in the hell of their own choosing.

The boy suffered this horrible fate at the hands of the members of a church called Iglesia Internacional Jesus es el Rey, as the Dallas Morning News reports, led by self-declared prophet Araceli Meza and her husband, the church’s presiding pastor. The reason for his death? Meza believed that he was possessed by demons. Demons who, much like little boys, can be killed by the denial of three square meals a day.

According to a tipster who secretly called the police, it took 25 days for the church to starve this poor boy of life as well as nourishment, despite one parishioner’s attempt to provide food to him. And then after his death, Meza held a “resurrection ceremony” in which she anointed his body with oil and tried to convince God to return him to life. (It didn’t work.) There’s video of the ceremony at the Dallas Morning News site, in case your day isn’t already effed up enough by just knowing about the existence of this story. Meza was arrested and charged with a count of injury to a child causing serious bodily injury by omission. Yes, we live in a world where Purvi Patel can be charged with feticide and child neglect for the loss of her pregnancy, but a woman who straight-up kills a living, breathing toddler in between writing Book of Revelation fan-fiction doesn’t warrant a murder charge. What a world we live in.

The religious right wing likes to think they have a monopoly on the moral high ground, but there’s nothing moral in driving imaginary demons out of a child at the cost of his life (nor in putting a woman in jail for a significant portion of her life over a miscarriage, induced or otherwise; or in high-fiving one another over denying pizza to boys who like boys). Why should a church that’s willing to let children suffer and die be afforded a higher moral status than a woman who didn’t want to be pregnant, or a gay couple who wants a triple-tier pizza cake at their eighties-themed wedding reception? A living little boy who had a favorite color and favorite TV show deserves our protection before a fetus does. Purvi Patel is in jail, this child is dead, and we don’t have the chance to make either thing right.

(Image: Dallas Morning News)