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Southern Religion

What should Catholic politicians who support Roe v. Wade say?

Mark Silk led us to this from George Dennis O’Brien’s new book:

Stop trying to avoid the issue by saying that you are personally opposed to abortion or that you accept the Church’s views on abortion, but it is not your responsibility as a legislator to impose your moral will on the country. That is a cop-out. Any-slavery legislators in the nineteenth century did not retreat into personal opinion or religious cover–they thought that there was something wrong with the law of the land that needed radical change. The problem with abortion for a sensible legislator is not whether it is right or wrong, religious or impious; it is that it cannot be legislated away. When rounded on by one’s local bishop for “supporting abortion,” don’t duck for cover–ask the bishop just what law he would recommend that would accomplish the prohibition of abortion. You won’t likely get an answer.

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November 11, 2010 Posted by | Church/State | , , | Comments Off on What should Catholic politicians who support Roe v. Wade say?

British Baptist pastor faces up to 80 years in prison

Christa Brown writes about the case of Robert Dando:

  • Dando was very closely connected to the highest levels of Baptists’ worldwide leadership. He previously served as executive assistant to the president of the Baptist World Alliance. This was a guy who ran with the big dogs.
  • Dando “was embroiled in another child sex abuse scandal when he was a minister at Orchard Baptist Fellowship” in the United Kingdom. In 2001, when the leader of the church, Dr. Anthony Gray, was convicted of serious sex offenses against a 14-year-old boy, Dando said this: “All our youth work is carried out within proper guidelines.” Yet, we now know that Dando too was sexually abusing kids, and had been since at least as far back as 1995. (Do these guys run in packs?)
  • At the time of his arrest, Dando was the prominent senior minister of Worcester Park Baptist Church in suburban London.
  • Dando pled guilty to repeatedly abusing 2 boys in Virginia, starting when they were 7 and 8 years old. Virginia prosecutors said that, under questioning, Dando also admitted to sexually abusing boys in the United Kingdom.
  • Dando had plenty of access to kids. His wife was a national vice-president of the Boys’ Brigade, a Christian youth organization with more than 500,000 members in 60 countries. Dando also worked for a children’s charity in India.
  • Dando previously worked as a magistrate on a family court panel, which dealt with child care and child access proceedings.

Update: Dando target of UK investigation

Claire Fox of the Guardian writes:

A Baptist minister who admitted abusing children in the US faces a British police investigation after confessing to similar offences.

Reverend Robert Dando, 46, a senior minister at Worcester Park Baptist Church, pleaded guilty in Fairfax, Virginia, to four counts of sexually molesting the two young sons of family friends.

Dando sexually abused the boys between 1995 and 1999, from the ages of seven and eight.

Officials told Fairfax County Circuit Court one of the victims said Dando molested him by touching his genitals on 50 to 60 different occasions.

Fairfax County prosecutors have also revealed Dando admitted under questioning to touching young boys in the United Kingdom in a similar way.

November 11, 2010 Posted by | children, Churches, Crime | , , , , | 2 Comments

No majority for repeal of health reform

His boss, Richard Land, misled the way. So it’s understandable that Doug Carlson of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics and Religious Commission tried to extract a referendum on health reform from last week’s mid-term elections:

Aspects of health care reform faced a referendum as well. Citizens in three states—Arizona, Oklahoma and Colorado—had opportunity to express their feelings on the health care law rammed through Congress. Arizona and Oklahoma each supported an exemption from the mandate that almost everyone purchase health insurance or else face a fine. A similar initiative lost in a divided vote in Colorado. Nationwide, the number of people upset over Obamacare has not budged. Exit polling by Rasmussen shows that 59 percent of voters favor its repeal.

It isn’t that simple, as this week’s Kaiser Family Foundation poll made clear. There is a majority for repeal or alteration of one aspect of the health reform legislation — the requirement that all Americans have health insurance or pay a fine — but overwhelming support for the remainder of the legislation.

Kaiser Health poll answers regarding whether to keep or repeal specific provisions

Only 24% of those polled supported outright repeal of the law. The conundrum, more specifically:

Looking ahead, Americans remain divided about what lawmakers should do, with 21 percent of the public favoring expansion of the health reform law, 19 percent wanting to leave it as is, a quarter wanting to repeal parts of the law, and 24 percent wanting the entire law repealed.

Given the rising number of Americans, middle class and poor, who are without health insurance, the absence of a majority for outright repeal of the reform legislation is no surprise.

November 11, 2010 Posted by | Law, Medical Care, Politics, Religion, SBC | , , , , , | Comments Off on No majority for repeal of health reform