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Banned From Church

Alright, so when was the last time your church kicked a 71-year-old lady out?

I just read this article (yes, it's from Jan18, but I just came across it), and some Baptist church in Michigan kicked this lady out of the church. A couple thoughts...

So, there's a need to have some order and church discipline, and I'm sure the WSJ didn't get all the little personal details that lie behind a story like this, but... Wow! Is this really what's best for that local church? or the broader Church? When does it come to a point that someone should be banned from a church? Adultery? Public drunkeness? Gossip? Bed wetting?

And not trying to rationalize anything that may have legitimately been an issue of conflict within that church community, but, according to the article, she'd been a member for 50 years, taught Sunday school, helped pay the church's electricity bill when funds weren't there, and even cut the grass. She's planning to have an image of the church building engraved on her freaking tombstone! I'm thinking, she was probably acting with what she thought was in the church's best interest.

Sounds a lot like middle school. With adults. In positions of power.

That is a funny mental picture, though: I'm seeing the lady from Driving Miss Daisy sitting on a cot in the jail cell, one of those general holding cells with like six or seven other people. Her nice Sunday church clothes, hair pulled up in a little bun beneath one of those small fancy hats, hands neatly folded in her lap holding her purse, with a stern, disgruntled look on her face. "You robbed a church?" "No, I just attended one."

That's also a sad mental picture: 'No, I was just attending a church!' Yeah, that's the church in action right there, baby!

This article certainly makes it sound like a total power-play by the people in charge. She got kicked out of the congregation, escorted out of a service by Statey, twice, and is now publicly shunned by members of the church... because she asked the new pastor to abide by church bylaws and appoint some deacons?!? I'm not even Baptist and that sounds ridiculous!

Warning: Don't disagree with that pastor-guy. And if you do, don't mention it more than once.

Those were just a few of my reactions in no particular order. I'd be interested to hear what anybody else thinks about something like this.

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