Hugh O’Neill III

Lead: Raised in English homes after the death of his father in the 1550s, Hugh O’Neill, one of the claimants to the huge O’Neill estates in Northern Ireland, balanced affection, ambition and loyalty during the Tudor conquest.

Intro: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts

Content: His grandfather, Conn O’Neill, was the last undisputed Great O’Neill, the ancient title carrying with it clan leadership and vast estates in Ulster. He achieved his position with the connivance of English crown authorities, but then mistakenly conferred his inheritance on an adopted son, Matthew Kelly, stirring up a harsh inner-clan dispute with Conn’s eldest son Shane O’Neill. As a result, Conn ended his life in bitter exile. Matthew’s orphan, Hugh O’Neill, was raised in English homes in the Pale and London, the most important of which was that of Sir Henry Sydney, Lord Lieutenant of Ireland. The English obviously saw in Hugh O’Neill a native Irishman who could advance their cause in Ireland. After 1587, with English sponsorship, he became the 2nd Earl of Tyrone and gradually defeated his clan rivals, particularly Turlough Luineach (lin ek) O’Neill.

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Jonestown I

Lead: Over two decades Jim Jones grew his congregations through a combination of charismatic leadership and a message of equality and compassion. Yet, there was a dark side to Jim Jones. It led to mass murder and suicide.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Jim Jones was born James Warren Jones in Crete, Indiana. In 1955 he founded the People’s Temple in Indianapolis, Indiana. An independent minister, who later affiliated himself and was ordained by the Disciples of Christ, he preached against racism and attracted a large number of African American parishioners at a time when there were few integrated churches in America. An early member of the People’s Temple said he joined because it “espoused strong bible teachings and practical Christianity such as helping the poor, visiting the sick and following the actions of the Apostles.”

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Jonestown II

Lead: By 1977, hundreds of followers of Jim Jones had moved to an agricultural commune in Guyana on the northeastern coast of South America. Jonestown, however, would be for them no paradise on earth.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Complaints from former members and several burgeoning investigations revealed financial fraud, mistreatment and abuse of members at the cultish People’s Temple of San Francisco during the mid 1970s. To escape the growing scrutiny, Pastor Jim Jones led about 1,000 followers to Guyana. It didn’t take too long for Jones’ promises of an agricultural Utopia to grow quite stale. Deborah Layton Blakey, a former trusted and key member, part of the inner circle, defected. In June 1978 she signed a 37 point affidavit indicting Jones and Jonestown for inhumane living conditions, drug addiction, coercion, armed guards, torture, brainwashing and most disturbing of all - the threat of a revolutionary mass suicide.

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Jonestown III

Lead: On November 18, 1978, Congressman Leo Ryan of California was assassinated in Guyana by followers of cult leader Jim Jones. At the same time Jones was leading his followers in the largest known mass suicide of the twentieth century.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: A day earlier Ryan and a delegation of thirteen arrived at the Jonestown compound, an agricultural commune near the coast of this northeast South American country, the home of the People’s Temple. Ryan was disturbed by reports and allegations he had heard about Jonestown and went in person to investigate.

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Shabbatai Sevi – III: Lurianic Kabbalah

Lead: In the 1600s an explosive upsurge in messianic Judaism laid the groundwork for the claims of a pseudo-messiah, Shabbatai Sevi. His rise was part of a spiritual revival known as Lurianic Kabbalism.

Intro: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Traditional Judaism, while anticipating the coming of the Messiah, has not placed great emphasis on messianism as a dominant part of religious life. This began to shift in the 16th century when profound spiritual changes emerged from the region around Safed, the northern-most prominent village in Palestinian Gallilee which is also the home of that part of mystical Judaism commonly referred to as the Kabbalah. By the 1630s a new form of mystical spiritualism, indeed a spiritual revival, known Lurianic Kabbalah, was rising to a powerful position in world-wide Jewish life.

Shabbetai Zevi – Jewish Messiah – I

Lead: In 1665 Shabbetai Zevi, (‘shabatite say ve), a Jewish rabbi from Smyrna on the western coast of present-day Turkey, claimed to be the long anticipated messiah. The explosive devotion he inspired was made possible because the way had been prepared.

Intro: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.


Content: Of the three great religions which look back to Abraham as founder, Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, two have powerful messianic traditions. The Messiah is that person whose arrival will restore harmony to the universe lost at the time of the Fall and affect reconciliation between God and man. Christians believe that Jesus was the promised messiah and that his death and resurrection and imminent return will signify the end of human history.