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Sunday, September 11, 2005

This church's pastor is an idiot

From KLTV.com come this heartwarming story of Christian "love":
Local Church's Sign Offends Evacuees

A confrontation this morning between an East Texas church and an evacuee from New Orleans. It centers around a sign out front of Woodland Hills Baptist Church on Old Jacksonville Road in Tyler, about a mile inside the loop. Some say the message is offensive.

"I drove by that sign and was just horrified when I saw that," says Kelly Jackman who now lives in Tyler but used to live in New Orleans.

That sign at Woodland Hills Baptist Church reads ,"The big easy is the modern day Sodom and Gomorrah."

Kelly along with her sister Robin Lafont, an evacuee from New Orleans, showed up this morning at the church to talk to the man who put it up, Pastor Wiley Bennett.

During a heated discussion, Robin asked, "What's the point of the sign out there?" Pastor Bennett replied, "The point of the sign is New Orleans, Las Vegas, San Francisco, and New York City are some of the most wicked cities in America."

Robin, who still has family members unaccounted for in New Orleans, is offended by the sign. "I'm telling you. This hurts. Why would you want to put more hurt, more salt in my wounds and why would you want to do this to me?"

Kelly adds, "And to go by and see this church saying that God did this to destroy these people and basically they're celebrating that by putting that sign up there saying look at what God has done. He has destroyed the city of New Orleans because it is evil."

Pastor Bennett says, "Anybody that's ever visited New Orleans, the very name its self - Big Easy - denotes that it's easy to find sin there..."

WRONG!! You wanna know where the nickname "the Big Easy" came from? Black musicians from the east and further up the Mississippi used to consider New Orleans to be maybe the one place that they could always find work. It was almost too easy to be a paid musician there, and so it is that they came to consider New Orleans the "Big Easy". There was nothing vulgar about the term, and if it weren't for it being so attractive to black musical artists there never would have come the unique sound of jazz (although I've heard some preachers rail against jazz itself as being "evil" but that's a rant for another time...)

Anyway, the pastor of this church... is acting like an idiot, to be nice about it. See, this is what happens a lot when some Christians take it upon themselves to be more an authority on God than anyone else. This guy relishes hurting people, though he won't admit it. Take a looksee at his church's website: obviously a "King James only" outfit. Which explains the horridness of it: King James only churches usually have some of the worst websites I've ever seen. Whenever a church is King James only, that pops a big red flag in my mind: they see that as a license to inflict all the pain they want to, in the name of the Lord. Believe you me I know.

Anyway, I don't believe that Katrina was a punishment from God on New Orleans alone: the most "sinful" part of town escaped practically unscathed. And the "Southern Decadence" gay pride parade went ahead as scheduled, by the way... not that I think anything highly of that (I don't) but that fact alone smacks this notion that Katrina was "divine retribution" upside the head.

Okay, enough ranting here. Time to get ready for church, and who knows if I won't rant about this there either...