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Revealed: Next Gloriavale leader to get 'absolute power' over $30m empire

Newshub logoNewshub 16/05/2018 Patrick Gower

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Gloriavale's guiding document shows its next leader will get absolute power.

It means Hopeful Christian's replacement as "Overseeing Shepherd" will get control of a "$30 million asset base".

Newshub has obtained a copy of 'What We Believe', a document everyone in Gloriavale has signed.

It says: "I give the Overseeing Shepherd of our Church communities the absolute and unfettered right to use all the property, assets and money of the Christian Church Community Trust."

The next leader will therefore have an "absolute and unfettered right" to Gloriavale's business interests which range from dairy farming, aviation and moss-picking to oil exploration.

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And that is why the power struggle between Howard Temple and Fervent Stedfast is so important.

Expelled member James Ben-Canaan said Mr Temple, a 75-year-old American, was the official next in line. 

"I understand he will be the Overseeing Shepherd, as they call it; top dog, call it what you will," he said.

But there will be a challenge from Fervent Stedfast - a 72-year-old who already has day-to-day control.

"He is a very dominant man, so there's going to be some friction there," said Mr Ben-Canaan.

The community's guiding document shows Hopeful Christian's replacement gets control of the money. © Newshub The community's guiding document shows Hopeful Christian's replacement gets control of the money. He described Hopeful Christian as having a power like no other in Gloriavale.

"He had a sort of aura about him that made you fear him."

The true challenge for the next leader of Gloriavale is whether they can keep the people in line.

Without Hopeful Christian's dominating mix of charisma, religion, authority and power, can they get the people of Gloriavale to do what they want them to do?

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