The REAL Disciples of New Dawn

At the start of this year the Disciples of the New Dawn appeared on the aether powered radar screens of the Steampunk Community with their e-flyer attacks on retro-futurists as a collection of “steamyiffing” sexual perverts. We responded on January 9th, 2015 with an article that questioned Disciples of the New Dawn . . . Satire, or Sincere? Since then more theories and evidence have emerged to support the conclusion that the Disciples of the New Dawn is actually a satirical project, but did you know that there is a real Church of the New Dawn?

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Welcome to www.newdawnchurch.com

Based in Miami, Florida, the Church of the New Dawn was established in 1981 with a small group of about twenty people were meeting together to learn more about the Bible. Over time the group grew, expanding into bigger meeting spaces “from a little blue room, to a shopping center. From elementary schools to high schools” until finally it became the New Dawn Church. The rhetoric of their website is far removed from that of the Disciples of the New Dawn, and the site is actually presented as a bilingual page in both English and Spanish.

Rudy Rivero

Pastor Rudy Rivero

Pastor Rudy Rivero, the lead pastor was “born Puerto Rico, but was raise in South Florida,” Associate Pastor Brian Todd was “born and raised in Buenos Aires, Argentina,” and being based in Miami there is clearly a need for Spanish speaking services. The church list their beliefs clearly on the site which include a lot of the standard belief sets that one would find in a Christian organization that adheres to scripture, including belief in:

8. In the existence of Satan and his angels, which we call demons.
9. In everlasting life for believers and punishment for those who do not accept Christ.

But despite these beliefs in essential evils and divine punishments, it is very clear that this church is not the Disciples of the New Dawn. I emailed Paster Brian Todd to ask him for his opinion regarding the Disciples of the New Dawn, but as of yet have not heard back from him. I also never heard back from Father Patrick Oliver Embry, founder of the Disciples of the New Dawn, whom I sent a Facebook message back in January.

Aside from the over exaggerated language of the Disciples of the New Dawn, there are several embedded clues that indicate that they are indeed a satirical group posing as a right-wing religious group. The first clue suggests that they are gamers . . . Disciples of the New Dawn can be abbreviated down to DND . . . D’n’D . . . D&D . . . Dungeons & Dragons.

Occult_dndBack in the early 1980’s role playing games (RPG) were prominent in right-wing Christian campaigns as being a product of Satanism. After her son took his own life, Patricia Pulling blamed RPGs, founded Bothered About Dungeons & Dragons (BADD) in 1982, and was dedicated to the elimination of Dungeons & Dragons and other such games. The Disciples of the New Dawn’s initials are thereby a potential clue for satire in reference to these early religious attacks on nerd culture.

The biggest clue, however, is the name of the Disciples of the New Dawn’s “founder” Father Patrick Oliver Embry. Once more the clue is in the initials . . . Patrick Oliver Embry . . . P.O.E . . . Poe . . . Poe’s law!

New Dawn SPNot to be mistaken for Edgar Allan Poe, Poe’s law is named after its author Nathan Poea literary adage which stipulates that without a clear indicator of an author’s intended sarcasm it becomes impossible to tell the difference between an expression of sincere extremism and a parody of extremism.

Without a blatant display of humor, it is impossible to create a parody of extremism or fundamentalism that someone won’t mistake for the real thing.” 

Poe’s law was formulated in 2005 by Nathan Poe on the website christianforums.com in a debate about creationism. The original sentence read, “Without a winking smiley or other blatant display of humor, it is utterly impossible to parody a creationist in such a way that someone won’t mistake for the genuine article.

With 10,552 likes, at the time of this article’s publication, the Facebook page of the Disciples of the New Dawn has grown in popularity with sarcastic and savvy users; many appreciate the humor that is actually mocking the rhetoric of right-wing Christians who preach hate and punishment rather than love and forgiveness. One trouble with satire, however, is that once it’s been revealed as satire it loses its barb . . . but then again, the internet is vast and a new sucker comes along every second. Despite being told that it is a satire, many high school students still conclude Swift’s “A Modest Proposal” with waves of disgust and the query “Did he really believe that?!”

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