Author Interview with Metropoleis Messianic Minute’s Clarice Westwater
cw: A pleasure.
jmk: For those unfamiliar with the evangelical Netcast you co-host, would you please be so kind as to provide us with some history and overview?
cw: My husband, Scott (White), founded Metropoleis III Multimedia Corp. in 1994 (MIII). It became a successful Internet content provider by offering high quality, online video and audio feeds from live rock concerts. A very spiritual man, Scott recently sought to apply this same technology to stream church services online.
A family friend, Pastor Peter Huckalby, was establishing a new church in Arizona. These new, non-denominational, mega-churches build huge auditoriums to accommodate their parishioners, but they always seem at capacity. We decided to assist in that effort by bringing one’s God and conduit of choice inside the home. It’s simply product diversification: religion is a growth industry.
jmk: The resulting corporate – sectarian partnership, Metropoleis Ministries, has drawn criticism from some quarters as opportunistic. Any comment?
cw: Darling, at some level all religion is profit driven. We’re just up front about it. Our cybergation appreciates the candor.
jmk: And the elaborate haute couture wardrobes, set designers, consultants and stylists you fly in from around the globe using parishioners’ money?
cw: Now we couldn’t very well have Bitsy watching the festivities from a lawn chair, could we?
jmk: Bitsy, your toy pug, has acquired near cult status. How do you explain her popularity?
cw: Good breeding and charisma, Jason. It runs in the family. Force of personality will attract a following. That and pheromones, I imagine. I’ve always prided myself on having a nicely balanced combination of the two. Bitsy is very fond of her Recamier.
jmk: Some theologians have posited that this is all social satire and self-parody: a publicity stunt to help distract from the MIII’s newsworthy civil and criminal trials for the alleged mismanagement of investor monies.
cw: Not at all, darling. We are quite serious about our tithings. Quite.
jmk: Charges of Ponzi schemes have been explored in other journals, so allow me, instead, to examine histories. During the course of the civil suit against MIII CEO, Scott White, evidence has surfaced that he has silent partners with La Cosa Nostra. How do you respond?
cw: Scott is a free spirit and Renaissance man, so his formative years led to some inventive and colorful business partnering. I’m not aware of any unlawful activity.
jmk: So you’re denying the existence of any silent partners backing MIII that may have ties to the Cali Cartel?
cw: I will refer that question to my attorney for a response, given the ongoing legal proceedings.
jmk: And your past romantic involvement with Russian organized crime capo, Sergei Mikhailov?
cw: That was all rumor and innuendo. Charges were brought on two occasions by federal prosecutors in Canada. You will recall he was acquitted in both instances. At present, my sole focus is keeping my current love interest out of the Big House. Now, if you have what you need, I do have a spa appointment I need to get to.
jmk: I do, Clarice. Thank you for your time.
cw: A delight.