Why are Whitney Rose and Mary Cosby fighting? Truth about 'RHOSLC' cult leader rumors

'Regardless if all of these rumors are true, I will forever hold a regard for my old friendship with Mary,' said Whitney


                            Why are Whitney Rose and Mary Cosby fighting? Truth about 'RHOSLC' cult leader rumors
'RHOSLC' stars Whitney Rose and Mary Cosby (Bravo)
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Mary Cosby and her eccentric lifestyle garnered a lot of interest from 'Real Housewives of Salt Lake City' fans. Aside from Mary's marriage to her step-grandfather, Robert Cosby Sr, her absurdly extravagant lifestyle and penchant for gawdy designer outfits raised a lot of eyebrows. 

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The housewife was portrayed as a very religious and God-fearing woman who is deeply involved in running her Church on the popular reality show. The ongoing season 2 will feature Mary battling rumors of running a cult and being the cult leader. The promos for season 2 reveal Whitney Rose and Lisa Barlow finding themselves tangled in the controversy when they begin to wonder if there's any truth to these rumors. Whitney is heard saying, "All the rumors are that Mary is a cult leader.” In another scene, Lisa is seen meeting the late Salt Lake City community leader Cameron Williams, who says, “Is it a cult? Yes. Does she call herself ‘God’? Yes.” Later, Mary tearfully defends herself to Lisa, exclaiming “I’m not God! I worship the god in me!” While we will get to see more of this drama play out on the show, it looks like these rumors may have fractured the friendship between Whitney and Mary.

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Why are Whitney Rose and Mary Cosby fighting?

Whitney's decision to bring the rumors of Mary running a cult and being a cult leader to the table clearly didn't sit well with Mary. The Pentecostal First Lady reportedly isn't speaking to Whitney. In an interview with  Access Hollywood's 'Housewives Nightcap', Whitney shared the details of the issues between them. She explained, "Our relationship takes a big hit this season…I truly thought Mary was one of my friends. I really respected her. I was good friends with her family members...she was so great with my dad but yeah, things changed.” 

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The rumors of Mary running a cult were reportedly doing rounds for a very long time according to Whitney. "You have to understand this. Those rumors have been circulating for years. It wasn't a surprise when I heard them. I heard them before, it's all over the internet. When we started season 1, all of that came up...I never really gave it any concern. As Mary's friend, I felt like it was my job to not go there, to no look into it, to turn my head, don't acknowledge, block those people reaching out to me and that is what I did for Mary. But for season 2, it became very hard because these people started coming into our [Instagram] Lives and reaching out to us. It was a lot," the housewife added. 

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The duo's friendship is still on rocks. "To be honest, I'm still processing it. I'm still, Mary won't speak to me so I unfortunately don't have the opportunity to talk to her about it and that's the type of friend I am. I will go put out the fires and shut the door, and be like, "Girl, what is going on?" but she never affords me the respect of that conversation. It's been hard. It's hard not to believe it [the rumors] when you can't really get an answer from the other side but I still support her. I still love Mary. Regardless if all of these rumors are true, I will forever hold a regard for my old friendship with Mary," expressed Whitney.

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Is Mary Cosby running a cult?

Mary inherited her grandmother Rosemary “Mama” Redmon Cosby’s Faith Temple Pentecostal Church and multimillion-dollar estate following her passing. The housewife also married her step-grandfather (Rosemary's husband at the time of her passing) Robert Cosby Sr., according to her late garndmother's wishes. Mary became the first lady of the Church, while Robert became the Bishop.

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After Mary flaunted her wealth and extravagant lifestyle on 'RHOSLC' she was heavily criticized for it. Many fans even wondered if her Church's members were funding her lifestyle. When this topic came up during the show's reunion, Mary flat out snuffed the rumors by saying that her congregation was 'stingy and poor'. "My church couldn’t possibly take care of me. I’m a God-fearing woman. I would never do that," she said at that time.

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But since then many former members of her congregation have come forward accusing the housewife of running a cult and forcing her Church members into donating huge wads of money, by emotionally manipulating them. The Daily Beast reported Mary's uncle Ernest Walton confirming that there was some truth to the rumors doing the rounds. He told the outlet, "I think it’s an abomination. Everything’s coming out into the light now and everything’s coming down." The outlet also spoke to several former members of the Church who recounted their experience of being a part of Mary's congregation. 

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A former member named Ralph Arnold Jr. revealed that Mary preaches that she is God on Earth to her congregation. He said, "She preaches that she is God on Earth." "The church has gone to ruin and most everyone has left because Mary has no anointing whatsoever when she preaches. She just screams at her members and mentally abuses them into submission. [She] brainwashes them on the regular, not to mention the utterly flamboyant and hypocritical life she lives.”

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Another former member who chose to remain anonymous revealed to the outlet, "They would sit and demand money until they got a certain dollar figure, whatever [sum] was in their head before they let people go. Now, that didn’t mean they had guns to your head, but they would shame you if you left. They would shame you if you didn’t give enough. So, it was a form of mental manipulation.” 

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Arnold shared a word of advise to Mary's urrent congregation. "I would behest them to run for their lives as fast as they can away from her and [Robert]. To protect whatever faith they may still have and try to start healing,” he said. “[The congregation] is faithful to a fault, and what has happened to them is just heartbreaking.” 


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Mary however denises all these allegations of running a cult. ‘Clearly I’m not gonna get on national television, be a Housewife and be in a cult. Like, come on. I believe in my church. There’s no cult. My church members, they know those are false allegations. Those are ridiculous. It’s the people that are looking for fault,’ she also told Entertainment Tonight

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'Real Housewives of Salt Lake City' Season 2 airs every Sunday at 9/8c on Bravo.