A barbecue restaurant in Wauconda has ties to a religious group known for nude rituals, the Chicago Tribune reports.
Little Rock Stock Cafe was opened by the Light of the World Ministries, the newspaper reported. According to the Tribune, a former minister and current board member, Phil Livingston, heads a different group called Naked Apostles—which, as the name suggests, involves naked “prayer counselling.”
"The Naked Apostles are End-Times messengers," the group's website reads. "They are called to stand naked before the Church and prophesy that this hour is a time of warning to wake up before it is too late."
Light of the World’s minister, Mike Ericksen, told the Tribune the Naked Apostles are a separate group and the naked rituals do not take place at the Wauconda restaurant.
“We have always known that ‘facing the music’ was inevitable and has to happen for us to move on and finally be a respected part of this community,” the Tribune reports Ericksen as saying in an email.
Livingston and his wife can be seen naked in videos on their group’s website discussing different religious concepts.
“Light Therapy helps to desexualize nudity in a way that helps many people overcome struggles in areas of sexual addiction, false religious moralities, homosexuality, pornography, in addition to many other areas,” the website reads.
Wauconda’s Mayor Lincoln Knight said on Facebook that the village can’t forbid a business from opening and doesn’t require a license to open one.
Ericksen told the Tribune in an email that the nude rituals of the Naked Apostles were never a part of the Light of the World Ministries. The rituals are nonsexual, he told the newspaper.
Some Wauconda residents said on social media they would not support the business because of the Naked Apostles connection, but others said it was their right to exercise their religious beliefs.
Livingston told the Tribune in an email that business has been on the decline since the community became aware of his religious acts. He said he hopes the cafe will be a “wholesome and valued part of Wauconda.”