I’m sure most of us have seen the crazy vans driving around town with every square inch covered in Bible verses and exhorting people to believe in Jesus and be saved. We probably all roll our eyes as well, but when these crazy religious zealots die, their beliefs and the beliefs of their equally nutty families can quickly go right down the religious wingnut rabbit hole.
Take the case of 52-year old Peter Wald, the driver of the van pictured to the left, who likely died sometime in March of 2013. I say likely because nobody really knows when he died because his family, thinking he might come back from the dead, walled him into an upstairs room of their house in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada for six months, hoping that God would bring him back to life.
It was nearly six months later when the authorities arrived to evict the family for non-payment of their mortgage that they discovered the room upstairs, sealed with duct tape to protect the family from the stench. The family, expecting the eviction, had Peter’s belongings packed and his shoes ready to go. They sincerely believed that God would raise him from the dead in time to be kicked out of the house.
Kaling Wald, Peter’s 50-year old wife, said “That was how strong our faith was.” No, that’s not strong faith, that’s religious insanity, something that the assistant crown attorney Janet Booy agreed with. She said that faith had “tainted and warped her better judgment.” Kaling was ordered into counseling for the “public health concerns” of the case. The judge, Superior Court Justice Marjoh Agro, said “This is not about your religious beliefs. It is about your safety, the safety of your children and the safety of the community at large.” No, sorry, it was about her religious beliefs and the beliefs of her children. When you have crazy beliefs you do crazy things. These people are crazy.
This is what happens when religious insanity is compounded. Peter Wald died because he was convinced that God would heal him from complications from his diabetes. God didn’t. Then his equally crazy religious family waits for him to rise from the dead. He doesn’t. And nobody will tell these people that they’re out of their ever-loving minds except for people like me who don’t tread lightly whenever religious delusions come to call.
So here’s a whole family that deserves a shout-out on Horror Show Saturday. It’s just one more case of crazy religious beliefs and where they can lead when allowed to run amuck.