A group that has been approaching female students on the University of Guelph-Humber campus promoting a religion that identifies the Christian God as female was reported to university security on Friday but do not appear to be dangerous.
At least one student publication and local media in the United States have reported on those referencing the so-called “God of mother” phrase with rumours circulating on social media that the group is affiliated with a human sex trafficking ring.
Vice President of IGNITE John Kokkoros told the Post he alerted campus security first thing on Friday morning after hearing about the incidents on Thursday night.
“I personally don’t take these things lightly and wanted to be better safe than sorry by passing the information to security,” Kokkoros said in a statement.
This group that has taken over Guelph-Humber social media groups and been the focus of much discussion online is not related to a sex trafficking ring, but is affiliated with the World Mission Society Church of God, a organized religious institution based in New Jersey.
The rumours about the apperant evangelicals were described by Lexington Police in Kentucky as unsubstantiated on Dec. 30 of last year, but the instituition has been described in the past as a cult, according to an NBC News Lexington affiliate.
It is unknown exactly when the sex trafficking rumours popped up, but they appear to have begun in when the church opened a chapter in the Liousville area, based on the local media reports from the U.S. shortly before the New Year.
Local police did admit that that the group may just be aggressively recruiting, according to NBC News.
An article posted by the Vanderbilt Hustler, a student publication for the university, reported on Jan. 29 that students were engaged by a Caucasian woman and older black man talking about “God the mother”.
The pair reportedly attempted to “exchange contact information or lead them away from campus.”
The Post has reached out to university administration officials for comment, with no response at this time.
Psychology Program third year Hannah Derue told the Post that she encountered the envangelicals “probably in late December” of last year on the bridge between the university and Humber College, were they were “insistent” to share their beliefs.
Derue, 20, said she was stopped a pair of two females that she described as “about my age”, who introduced themselves as Korean who had thick accents that wanted to talk about their beliefs that recognize the Christian God as female.
Derue, thinking they were lost on campus, asked if they were looking for directions.
The pair responded that they wanted to talk about the female form of God, and Derue, uninterested, said she had to leave to the “expressive” disappointment of the religious individuals.
A female Guelph-Humber student told the Post on condition of anonymity that she was “confronted in the Humber [College] building right outside Starbucks” on Thursday evening by a woman of Chinese ethnicity that appeared to be a student.
The source, who will be identified as Jane Smith, said that she was getting napkins to clean a coffee spill around 5 p.m. when she paused for a moment to listen to a guest lecturer in the lobby before being approached by the woman, who wore glasses.
Smith was asked whether she believed in God and if she wanted to join a bible study, which the student refused and left to attend a midterm examination, describing a “funny vibe” she had felt due to the experience.
When Smith heard of similar experiences being posted about on social media by peers at Guelph-Humber, the source said she realized “how wrong it could have turned if I had given her any information [or] even given her more of my time”.
“I hope spreading the word will make people aware to take precautions and maybe will even scare these horrible people away,” Smith told the Post.
“It’s so close to home and frightening that this could be happening at our school.”
More stories and details to follow. Image of the University of Guelph-Humber from previous files.
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