People Respond to Televangelist Peter Popoff's Deception

Letters to the Editor

(a sample of letters collected over the years)

Hello Brian,
First, I would like to say that I am hurt however not surprised that such a person as Peter Popoff is taking advantage of hurting people. I admit that I myself has given money to his ministry but something led me to investigate. I typed in his name and all sorts of links came up discrediting his authenticity. This is really heartbreaking because we're living in such a confusing and desperate time. People are looking for true prophets. I pray that God exposes them all because hurting people don't need that kind of pain. This is only an avenue for the enemy to really reek havoc in the kingdom of God.

Thank you for caring enough to shed light on the situation. God Bless.

[Name withheld]

Dear Brian,

I am a single mom trying to hold on to and find what faith I have and have lost.  I have an array of emotional, spiritual, and financial drama that only satan himself can claim as handywork.

I too have been in contact with the infamous Rev. Popoff.  He has squeezed some money out of me as well.  Desperate for support from the high, I went along with it because I so badly wanted answers.  I stopped receiving letters from him for a short time when I exclaimed that I wondered how God would only bless and help me if I paid for it.

I understand true Christians are faith givers and guiders not ones who only support you for cash.

Well, eventually he started writing me again.  He is sending me, prayer cloths, burlap sack wallets for remittance of my seed, holy water, holy oil.  He has instructed me to wipe this oil on my face and feet.  Then anywhere I was feeling pain.  Then send him back the empty container for him to pray over.  I did not do this.  Also he is after me to sign letters and send them back so he may pray over my vibrations.  Ok - lets see, desperate for personal resolution yes, but completely stupid - no.  I refuse to sign anything and I believe there should be something done about this.

I was anxiously waiting his letters.  But all I was getting was one after another with promises and sure things but only if I was obedient to God by sowing a seed.  Saying that God would take me out of this position I was in.

The latest letter promised a miracle beyond dreams before New Years Eve.  Don't see that happening either because I have not sent him money lately.

If there is goodness in you, I would appreciate a word or two on my behalf.  I am struggling with a nasty custody battle with my ex-husband under the most bizarre conditions and financially its even worse.  My health has taken a turn for the worse and I need ... well a miracle.

On the other hand, I have the most awesome child and I am convinced that its a work of God.  Has to be.

Thanks for listening.

[Name withheld]
Lonely, broken and lost

Hi Brian

I don't know you but I saw your article about Peter Popoff giving false hope and deceiving people, well his ministry will not stop sending letters to my dad -- Frank *********** -- who died on November 13, 2005.

My mom and I have returned the envelopes, where Popoff claims things like my dad will "receive a miracle.."  We return the envelopes in clear writing:  "Frank *********** Deceased / return to sender" or "Stop sending, Frank has passed away."

But the Peter Popoff Ministries idiots still send us the mail.

Finally, my mom wrote them a letter saying "Frank ********** has died, please stop sending us your mail".

They, of course, request for money for "miracle prayers" to "save Brother Frank".  My mom and I know that my dad sent about $1000, we couldn't stop him and he wouldn't talk about it.  If Peter Popoff gave my dad a sense of comfort -- fine.  But we just want them to beat it and not send the letters!

Do you have any suggestions?  I am thinking of contacting the CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation) because they have a Consumer Report program that checks things out.

Thank you,

[Name withheld]

Hi Brian,

Was searching for anything on Peter Popoff Scams and came across your webpage. I know exactly how you feel. I was desperate and saw this "Prophet" on one of the christian channels over here in the UK. I was sold by what I thought were unorthodox but nevertheless truthful methods by this guy in selling you what you wanted to hear, that wealth was around the corner and all your debts will be made clear. I never saw this guy before that time on TV, so I thought he was genuine. However I now know that he:

1. committed fraud which was exposed by a secular magician, of all people.
2. claims to be a prophet, but just "prophets" from all the money he gets scamming gullible believers like myself.
3. is using this letter fraud thing with aplomb
4. has a wife that is just as corrupt as he is.

I still get these letters subtley or not so subtley telling me my faith will only be rewarded if I send him money, or "faith seed"as he likes to call it. I used to read them still, but now I just bin them. I have a good mind to tell him exactly what I think of him, in biblical terms of course.
Anyway got to go and thank you for helping to expose this man;

"It is a terrible thing to fall into the hands of the Living God"

Yours in Christ

[Name withheld]

Dear Brian,
I read with interest about Popoff's "personal" letters because back in the 80's I started getting the same type letters.  I needed no Amazing Randy to reveal Popoff's fakery.  God revealed it to me!  Popoff's staff accidentally sent a letter to my address, but to another person's name, on the same day I got one from him.  The letters were identical except for the names.  The person lived a few blocks from me that was how the address got mixed up.  One letter he wrote me invited me to a healing service he would be at in Santa Barbara.  He was careful to instruct me that before I took my seat, I must tell one of the people up front what my name was and what I was there for.  He was on an early morning radio broadcast that would come on just before I went to work and I used to listen to him.  I actually believed his bunk for a while and sent in a prayer request.  That's when all the letters began coming in full force, prayer cloths, water, etc and always begging for money.  He used to say on the radio, "I feel someone is being led by God to send in a check for...$" and he would give an amount.  He claimed the money was to drop Bibles on the shores in Russia for people to pick up.  On the radio he had a guest whom he claimed to be his 80-year-old father from either Russia or Germany.  Popoff claims to have been born in Germany (and claims to have "instantly" been able to speak English by a miracle).  The "father's" voice on the radio sounded like a very young man's voice and the accent was sooo fake I could have done a better impersonation myself!  That was when I wrote the radio station and told him to get that guy off the air and told them all about the fake voice of the father, the identical letters, etc.  He was taken off the air (I was surprised they listened to me, but I think they already had their misgivings about him).  I think they sent him a copy of my letter because he wrote me a seathing letter, saying I wasn't a good Christian, etc. -- guilt trip.  I wasn't surprised when he was exposed by Randy in 1987, but even more surprised to see him back again on TV again!!!  He wrote some books about his life that he sent to me full of unbelievable miracles that he had experienced, such as his whole family instantly being able to speak English.  Though he claims to be German, he doesn't even have a hint of a German accent.  I know people who have come from Germany and lived here for years and they still have a detectable German accent.  He sounds like he is from the Southern part of the U.S. After he was exposed, I called his ministry and the staff member I spoke to about the exposure situation said, she didn't care, she believes in "live and let live" and felt no remorse or responsibility for being a part of his fake ministry.  I heard either that he or one other fake minister would just take the checks and throw away the sad letters begging for prayer and a miracle for their situation, and the letters were never even read.  I am so sick of this stuff, but I think there will be more of his kind in the last days.  It says so in the Bible.  God bless you.

[Name withheld]

Hey Brian, I just wanted to say that I was another victim of the Peter Popoff scam. I tested positive for HIV and have been seeking a miracle for God's healing. One early morning, I heard these people saying that they were healed of HIV, and he seemed believable. When I got my letter I was excited at first, but I've always had a sixth sense or an intuition inside me that would go off when things weren't right. Everytime I questioned it, the letter said something about being obedient and how sometimes you have to do "foolish" things in order for God to bless us. I always was leery because he didn't really tell us about reading scriptures or praying once. It felt more like witchcraft doing all these ridiculous things. Trace your foot on his, take 5 pennies, sit a cup of water by your bed. And he always focused on a financial problem which is common with a lot of people to have, but financially I was alright.

To make a long story short I just decided to go with my "God given" intuition and stop responding to the letters. God hadn't failed me yet when I listened to him.

That next day, the news did an investigative report about it, but I missed it, so I just typed his name up and found your site. I just wish I knew what I could do. How can he keep getting away with this? He's stealing money! Lucky he only got about $40 from me, but still, that's my $40 dollars and gas is high!

I just wanted to tell my story for someone else who finds your site because of Peter "Ripoff's" scam!

[Name withheld]

Hi! I was watching TV evangelists one night and came across Peter Popoff. Because of my problems at the time, I called the number for prayer requests. Then a week or so later came a letter saying if I would send $17.00 I would receive $1700 to $17,000 in a short time. So I sent the $17.00. I received another letter, instead of money, saying bad spirits, etc. were withholding my blessings. Then I received another letter stating that if I didn't respond and send money, something bad was going to happen to one of my loved ones. I receive letters quite often now. He sends the sort of letters you mention and also things to do like: throw a coin in a lake, put one under your pillow--------; or the one I have just received, you are to burn the white insense and send him the burnt ashes with $20-----------; etc.

I think this is an awful thing to do in God's name. I was raised in a Pentecostal church, was saved when I was a teenager, and continue to do my best to serve God. Sometimes I feel like I need a few extra prayers, as things get a little rough at times. My husband passed away a couple years ago at the age of 54, I am on Social Security disability because of a back problem and don't get much money to live on. Which is all really beside the point here. I'm not looking for any sympathy, just wishing to make a statement for those who don't or can't or really believe Popoff is going to help them solve their problems. I do believe that when many pray in the name of the Lord, it helps a lot, so that is why I called the number. But I can't really fall for his evil scheme. I almost did, at first. But I should know, one should not have to pay for prayers.

I feel sorry for those out there who are sending him hundreds of dollars and are losing their faith because they receive nothing in return but more letters asking for more money and being blamed because they didn't do it right or didn't send enough or evil is keeping them from receiving blessings. To use God's name and the ministry in this way is just the most evil thing I can think of. Just imagine the people that he is hurting.

God bless you and good luck in exposing Peter Popoff for what he really is.

[Name withheld]

Brian, I never read your investigation report but ran across the letters sent to you about the fraudulent Prophet Peter Popoff.

I worked in his office in California for a short while.

I just want you to know that those unfortunate people who have sent seed money can get it back.  I know for a fact all the information is kept on a database including all personal information from "partners" with the dates that every amount of money was sent by them.  By merely requesting their money back it will be returned.

I hope this will help some of the people who were ripped off.

Thank you for your concern in this matter.

[EDITOR'S NOTE:  Popoff's employees don't always read the notes sent to them and are known to ignore a person's requests.  That's why you need to get creative and right to the point, as this next man did...]

Dear Brian,

After reading what someone said on your site about writing to Peter Popoff and requesting your money back, I tried writing several times. The first 2 letters I sent, I never got a response from them. So I knew they were just ignoring me.

Then I decided to get more aggressive. I took 4 of the letters they sent me, where he makes false promises and begs for money, and I ripped them up into pieces and put them into 4 of his return envelopes. In each envelope I included a note written in big letters with a black marker. In those notes I told him that it was blasphemy that he was using bible scripture to manipulate people into sending him money. I called him a con artist and said I was considering suing him if I didn't get a refund. I also said that many websites on the Internet were talking about him and calling him a fraud. Then I sent all 4 envelopes out on the same day.

I guess this time they got the picture. A few days later I got an envelope from them with a check for $87.50 which was the total amount he stole from me. God answered my prayer.

Maybe this can serve as an example for others. If everyone knew they could get their money back, Popoff would be in financial ruin. I guess he would deserve it anyway.

But I'm really happy to get my refund. I need it for the holidays.

thank you

Dear Brian

I refer to my previous E-mail regarding Popoff's deception and the authorities to whom I had written.  I just want to let you know that, so far, I have received a reply from BBC Watchdog.  They are passing the details on to their researchers.  They had many letters from people, but should the researcher wish to investigate Popoff's London office they will contact me in due course.

Also, after two very strong letters to the London office and Popoff's home in California, I received a cheque for the £263.00 that I claimed which had been deceptively requested from me.  It came from a company by the name of Fisher in London.

Like another E-mailer, I tore up letters, sent them in their own return envelopes and threatened to sue him if he did not return my money.


A committed Christian

Dear Brian,

My name is Anita and I, along with many others, too have been a victim of deceit.  I desperately bought every word that "prophet" Popoff wrote.  Hook, line, sinker....... well, the entire fishing pole!  A few months ago, I began to be convicted and God opened my eyes. I am so glad that I didn't send him my last dime again since then..........

I, desperately, corresponded with him for about a year and a half.  It was so crazy how deep things got.  I did many things and made many decisions under misguidance.  I lost my house and other things, my relationship with my husband has suffered tremendously.  I was led to believe that he was the cause of our problems, like the devil was using my husband to destroy my faith in God.  OUCH!!!!!!!!

I received many things from Mr.Popoff like anointed coins and moldavite stone AKA meteor rock (which my research has led me to see that moldavite is believed to have psychic qualitities).......hello wiccanism.  I was also asked repeatedly for my birthdate......hello astrology and zodiac.  I did a lot of things with hopes that I was obeying the Lord.  I am so ashamed.  I kept almost all of the letters he sent me and one of them is verbatim to the one you have posted.  My sister in law and my grandfather in law recieved the same letter also.  My grandfather in law never contacted him either!

Here is something else too..... when the year turned up I was sent a letter just like one the year prior but with dates changed for "miracle events" and I was asked to do the same "faith act".  Like I had disobeyed and God decided to delay my miracle.  Which I know now that "God is not a man that He should lie" and that "he watches over His word that it may come to pass".  If God says it, He will do it and if what a man says in the name of the Lord does not come to pass then that man has spoken presumptuously and is not to be feared...(Deuteronomy).

I, too, sent a lot of money that I didn't have.  At times I sent change because it was all I had.  Even though I sent it to the wrong person, I have been trying to console myself with the fact that "He looks on the hearts of men."  He knows I did it thinking that it was for Him.  I know I was wrong and have repented. I don't care about the money.  If he uses it wrongfully that is on his head, but I know now that "The wealth of the wicked is stored up for the righteous".  I hope that you can see my heart in this and that this helps another desperate person that goes to a church that neglects its members.  I thank Him for you.  I am confirmed in my heart by many things on your site.  I am confident that He is raising up a generation that will speak the truth with a boldness At All Costs!  Deceit is one of the devils most powerful tools... but the truth... Jesus...the way the truth and the life shall set us free!  Also I feel that we need to really hang onto this verse in Psalms "Thy word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path."  Not man's word...His word! (of course I learned the hard way)

I apologize for being winded but I am relieved that light is falling on the deeds of the wicked!  I have many other views that I would like to share and ask you about.  Email me back if you can!  Thank you and God bless!

Peter Popoff's "Personalized" Fundraising Letter

The Roots of Today's False "Seed-Faith" Doctrine

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