Tuesday, 27 April 2010

*Nick and Gemma Wells - Faith-Healing Fans

John of God - aka Joao Teixeira de Faria - is an infamous Brazilian faith healer.

UPDATE, 11 May: ASA report "We have decided to pass your complaint to our Compliance Team"

John allegedly doesn't charge for his "healing" work - which is fair enough, since according to the man himself...

"I do not heal, God is the one who heals"

However, organising tour parties to visit John at his Brazilian home are big business. A number of people in the UK offer this service, two of whom are Nick and Gemma Wells.

The Wells' advert in Nexus Magazine contains some claims which I'm fairly confident can't be substantiated with evidence. ASA complaint follows.

"I write to complain about an advert in "Nexus" magazine (April-May 2010, Vol 17, No 3, p16).

The advert, for Nick and Gemma Wells, promotes an organised tour to visit the Brazilian faith healer Joao Teixeira de Faria, aka "John of God".

I suspect that the advert may be in breach of one section of the British Code of Advertising, Sales Promotion and Direct Marketing (CAP) code. I can provide an original copy of the advert by post, if required.

1. The CAP Code, Section 3.1, states "Before distributing or submitting a marketing communication for publication, marketers must hold documentary evidence to prove all claims, whether direct or implied, that are capable of objective substantiation."

2. Under Sections 3.1, I challenge whether the advertiser holds documentary evidence to prove any of the following claims:

(i) Joao Teixeira de Faria has "remarkable powers of healing"
(ii) Many people have benefitted from Joao Teixeira de Faria's "healing work"
(iii) The "Casa Crystal Bed...offers a powerful healing facility"
(iv) Joao Teixeira de Faria has "healed and treated millions"

3. I confirm that I have no connections with the advertiser, the magazine or with the alternative medicine industry in general. I confirm that I am not involved in legal proceedings with the advertiser or the magazine."