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May 09, 2005

Preacher ousts members...or does he?

I skipped this story when I first heard about it because it was either A. some crackpot that anti-Christian bigots would use to accuse all of us of doing the same thing or B. a complete fabrication on the part of Liberal “christians” within the church who want to embarrass the pastor because of his stand on the issues. The pastors has offered only that, “No one has ever been voted from the membership of this church due to an individual's support or lack of support for a political party or candidate”

This past Sunday the alleged ex-communicated members, with their attorneys (apparently not reading the Sixth chapter of First Corinthians) attended the service. Lots of other outside witnesses were there, too, but the pastor only briefly mentioned the turmoil enough to refer to it as a “great misunderstanding”. The media and bloggers are reporting only what those kicked out are saying.

It's interesting the way quotes are twisted:

Chan Chandler, pastor of East Waynesville, had been exhorting his congregation since October to support his political views or leave the church, said Selma Morris, a 30-year member of the church.

“He preached a sermon on abortion and homosexuality, then said if anyone there was planning on voting for John Kerry, they should leave,” she said. “That’s the first time I’ve ever heard something like that. Ministers are supposed to bring people in.”

Okay, did the pastor mean stop being a member, or he simply saying that since he would be speaking against abortion and homosexuality, two things Kerry's campaign endorsed, those who supported Kerry would be offended and therefore might not want to hear it and might want to leave the service? Remember this is North Carolina we're talking about here. There are a lot of yellow-dog Democrats there, whose loyalty to the Democratic party far outweighs their loyalty to their church, which, to them, is more of a social club than anything else.

But notice the comment by Selma Morris? “Ministers are supposed to bring people in.” Okay, yeah, but at what price? Is sacrificing scripture worth gaining members? Personally, I don't want to go to a church like that. I don't know of too many real Christians who do.

Maybe they're right. Maybe the pastor is a crackpot, but it's just disturbing to me that every one's so quick to jump to that conclusion without getting the other side, especially given the source.

Coverage: Outside the Beltway, ChristWeb, The Narrow, Ambra Nykola

Posted by Danny Carlton at May 9, 2005 09:05 AM

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