Lottery SCAMs...and how to avoid them!

Lies, Fakery, Greed and Tomfoolery

A collection of mailed SCAMs

Quotations from a SCAM letter sent by: “The Passionist Missionaries”

Please remember, the quotations below are from the SCAM letter of the “Passionist Missionaries” _not_ by

Image of Passionist Missionaries logo May the Passion of Christ Be Always in Our Hearts

“‘May the Passion of Christ Be Always in Our Hearts.’

“Dear Friend of the Passionists,

Supposed image of Father Robert Joerger

Who is this man?
Why is he encouraging you to gamble?

“As we get closer to the holiday season, particularly the celebration of Thanksgiving, I want to invite you to participate in our THANKSGIVING SWEEPSTAKES DRAWING.

“Many of our friends have participated and tell us that extra spending money at this time of year is very helpful. The Grand Prize is $2,500, so I urge you to return your tickets right away in order to qualify for the Grand Prize Drawing on November 19 with an “Early Bird” drawing on November 14.

“You do not have to send a gift in order to qualify, but I hope that you will. Our work among the poor and suffering expands daily, as those we serve in Haiti, Jamaica, West Indies and here in the United States grow in numbers. Our Passionist priests and brothers serve those who have fallen through the cracks of our society...the poor, the elderly and youth at risk. We bring to each of those we serve the compassion and love of God and the redemption we find in the Passion of Christ.

“Your prayers and your financial gifts can make a great difference in the lives of those we serve. They are also a benefit to our aged and infirm priests and brothers who need special care.

“Please help support our ministries with a gift of $15, $25, $50 or more. Be assured that whatever you send will be a blessing to us both!

“I have already filled out your tickets. You simply need to complete the additional information and return the tickets along with your donation and the Reply Form in the envelope enclosed. You need not contribute to win, but we hope you are moved to do so.

“Good luck and God bless you.

“Gratefully yours in Christ,

Supposed image of Robert Joerger signature

“Father Robert Joeger, C.P.


P. S. Please write your special intentions on the Reply Form. When you do, please include the less fortunate among us whom we serve. Remember also our Passionist Missionaries in your prayers as we struggle with the same financial hardships as the rest of the nation and the world. Thank you!

Please remember, the quotations above and below are from the SCAM letter of the “Passionist Missionaries” _not_ by

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image of Sweepstakes Prizes


  1. No contribution is required for you to be eligible to win the Sweepstakes. A contribution will not increase your odds of winning.
  2. “Your odds of winning depend upon the number of entries received.
  3. “All applicable local, state, and federal regulations apply. Offer void where prohibited by law.
  4. “The Sweepstakes is open to all residents age 18 years and older of the United States and its possessions.
  5. Winners will be randomly selected from a pool of all received tickets.
  6. “You will be notified by telephone or certified mail if you have won.
  7. “Cash prizes are awarded in one lump sum.
  8. Deadline for Grand Prize entries is November 18. The Grand Prize Drawing is November 19. Deadline and Drawing for Early Bird entries is November 14. Entries must be received by these dates to be eligible. We are not responsible for lost or misdirected mail.
  9. “Each ticket must be completely filled out for this drawing. We are not responsible for illegible entries.
  10. “Only original tickets are eligible for this drawing. Copies or other facsimiles will not be accepted.
  11. “A copy of all winners will be furnished to you upon request.
  12. “Prizes over $600.00 require a completed W9 Form before prize is awarded.

Please be certain you read, understand and fulfill all the official rules.

Please remember, the quotations above are from the SCAM letter of the “Passionist Missionaries” _not_ by

Personally, I don’t understand why any religion would be involved with gambling. And that’s exactly what a lottery is. As the letter says, they “hope you will be moved [emphasis added] to” contribute. Like any lottery, you are enticed (moved) to spend a usually small sum for a chance to get a much larger sum. I know of no religion that encourages gambling. It certainly is not how most are taught to be good stewards.

It should be noted that ”casting lots” is not the same as a lottery. In the first instance, it usually is a means of making a difficult decision where two (or even a few) equal choices exist. In the second case (a lottery), there is not much argument that it is simply gambling, whether one pays for the entry or not. There is no difficult decision to be made. The only thought is that one will receive a sum much greater than the cost of the ticket. In other words, “get something for nothing” ( or close to it ). This falls squarely into the area of all the other SCAMs on this site—a plea to our materialistic tendencies.

Although there is evidence of all types of people ”casting lots,” most are using that method to determine the will of their god. Obviously, asking God to let us ‘win’ something instead of anyone else is, at a minimum abusing His name!

In the case of a lottery, there is the very real opportunity for the entrant to be influenced by the size of the return. This is a classic example of how humans become addicted to any behavior. The fact that there is money being spent on lotteries instead of even basic family needs cannot be argued. There have usually been laws enacted by governments to protect its citizens from this tragedy. Of course, even governments are now seeing that lotteries can be a method of increasing their revenue without taking any responsibility for the damages it may cause.

That damage is the main reason I find it confusing and sad that any religion would use this form of “fund raising.” If any group knows the heartache and problems caused by gambling, surely it is religion. Ultimately, gambling is just another manifestation of greed. Don’t fall for its deceptions. If you want to support an organization, make a contribution, not because they try an enticement that encourages your greed but because you want to support their cause.

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