BYRON CENTER, Mich. (WOOD) - The man who started A Rood Awakening, a worldwide educational ministry, was fired by his board and now is accused of embezzling and failing to pay taxes -- leaving the organization on the hook to the IRS.
The sign on the door of the Byron Center ministry's office used to say 'A Rood Awakening,' for Michael Rood. His name has since been removed.
The ministry's website describes Rood as "the Messianic matador," challenging conventional religions with his interpretation of the Hebrew scriptures.
After the board took action against him, Rood allegedly showed up with a group of nonemployees and took over the ministry's building for a while. A court order stopped that, and then the board fired him.
"We came in a few days after that -- we came into the building and everything was gone," said Ken Klump, a former colleague of Rood's. "Cameras were missing."
The studio where Rood created the videos he sent out worldwide was cleaned out, along with records of the organization, Klump said. In a video on his website, Rood accuses former employees and board members of trying to take over his ministry.
Now, the ministry is closed, 15 employees are gone after being fired and there is a court hearing Wednesday to keep Rood off the property.
Against court order, Rood is still running his website from somewhere in North Carolina, some told 24 Hour News 8.
24 Hour News 8 tried to contact Rood but was unsuccessful.
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