From XFamily - Children of God
Lecturer no longer at Stanislaus State
Press » Modesto Bee » 2007-09-06
By Michelle Hatfield
A California State University, Stanislaus, sociology lecturer with ties to a suspected cult is no longer with the college. Campus officials said Barry Gerard-Prendergast, 58, is not a member of the faculty, but declined to comment further. Gerard-Prendergast worked through the spring semester on a one-year contract, which wasn't renewed. Last year, a student looked him up online and found that he once was a member of the Children of God. Now called The Family International, the group is a self-described Christian missionary organization. But people who have left the group say it's a cult and have alleged that members have taken part in prostitution, sexual acts between adults and children, and child pornography. Gerard-Prendergast acknowledged in an e-mail to The Bee last winter that he had been a member of the group, but said that he had not been affiliated with The Family for 15 years. He said his past involvement did not affect his ability to teach sociology. Stanislaus State officials said their employee screening process did not routinely include Internet checks. A Google search showed Gerard-Prendergast on the faculty of Teikyo Loretto Heights University in Denver this academic year.