WILSONVILLE, Ore. - A woman and her ex-husband were caught red-handed spending millions of dollars that was supposed to go to their church, so why is she now publicly asking for money and living a life of travel and leisure while her victims remain unpaid?
Mary Manin-Morrissey is the former leader of The Living Enrichment Center and had a following around the world from her 95-acre Wilsonville campus.
She and her former husband spent millions of dollars that had been loaned to the church on themselves and on failed business ventures.
In 2005, her husband went to prison for money laundering, but she was never charged with a crime. It was part of a plea agreement - he would plead guilty to money laundering on the condition that she would not be charged.
It is a point that still frustrates victims.
Tom H. has one of the largest stakes in the failed church - he loaned a total of $650,000 to the church, which is part of the almost $11 million that may never be repaid to dozens of people.
At one time, Steve Sanders was one of the Morrisseys biggest supporters, but he never understood how she avoided prison.
"It is difficult for me, for one person who was active in this and who got training here, to believe and see the planning that she did, that she could be gullible and just oblivious to what was going on," he said.
Manin-Morrissey is now teaching spirituality workshops on board cruise ships, sometimes taking several trips each year. She also runs Life Soulutions and Evolving Life Ministries, a virtual church online where she asks for contributions. There is also a physical church in Lake Oswego.
In her 2005 bankruptcy case, Manin-Morrissey was permanently prohibited from holding the position of Officer, Financial Manager of Financial Fiduciary for any charitable or religious non-profit entity.
Manin-Morrissey said she is following those rules. Her current church operates as a for-profit business, according to the state.
She would not talk specifically about her finances, but we tracked down where the online contributions go. They are sent to a UPS store on Barbur Boulevard - to a post office box controlled by Manin-Morrissey.
State investigators told KATU News they want to make sure Manin-Morrissey is not diverting income because a portion of her pay is supposed to go into an account for victims. So far, there is $74,000 in the account. She and her ex-husband owe $10.7 million.