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Pat Robertson & Hurricane Gloria

In 1985, with Hurricane Gloria headed toward the east coast, televangelist Pat Robertson promptly went on the air to pray. "In the name of Jesus," he declared, "we command you to stop where you are and move northeast, away from land, and away from harm."

Incredibly, the hurricane did in fact begin to head northeast. Robertson's claims to have changed the course of the hurricane were met with considerable scorn, however, particularly in Long Island -- which lies to the northeast of Robertson's native Virginia and was devastated by Gloria after she changed course.

[After enrolling at what is now the New York Theological Seminary in 1956, Robertson became involved with a circle of fellow believers who were early participants in the neo-Charismatic movement -- many of whom often spoke in tongues.]

[When Philadelphia TV weatherman John Bolaris warned that Hurricane Schwartz was the "Storm of the Decade" in March 2001, many viewers took a "snow day" off from work. The storm, unswayed by Bolaris's forecasts (complete with graphics and theme music), promptly changed course. The storm's chief casualty? John Bolaris, who recieved a torrent of hate mail, emails and phone messages, including one which warned, "If I owned a gun, there would be one less person to worry about!"]

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