By James L. Lambert
Before I start this commentary, I want to make it absolutely clear that there are thousands of courageous ministers and priests in this country who regularly stand up for moral and Biblical positions against the tide of public opinion. These folks stand up for Biblically based positions on moral issues - no matter the cost. I admire both their courage and integrity.
However, it is appropriate to confront the thousands of pastors and priests (across the nation) who by their silence refuse to address the moral issues of our times.
Some examples of moral cowardice from our clergy are as follows:
· Approximately nine years ago, the senior pastor from a large north San Diego county church, refused to show his personal support for a men’s sexual addiction-recovery group because he was ‘embarrassed’ to discuss the subject matter from the pulpit. Subsequently the leader from that support group had to leave the church. The group leader told me later that he personally knew of numerous men, from inside this pastor’s church, who were struggling with sexual and/or porn addiction. The fact that this program could not get the support from this well known Senior Pastor, greatly frustrated the group leader.
· While on assignment for Agape Press, I covered a demonstration in front of a popular Orange County church that refused to comment to the media why ‘pro-life’ protesters were camped outside their facility. “Senior pastors were reluctant to comment on the demonstration … Pro-life organizer Steve Klein felt the need to demonstrate in front of (the) church was due, in part, to their leadership’s reluctance to support a (pro-life) cause that many inside the clergy felt is too ‘political’.” Cheryl Sullenger, a spokeswoman for Operation Rescue goes even further by explaining that with so many women being having abortions over the years, the pastors commonly will place the financial concerns of their church over the moral issues of the day.”
· Christians, (including one activist who tried to shut down some newspaper stands in the neighborhood that sold porn to minors), wanted to warn a large (central) San Diego church, of the dangers of pornography in their neighborhood. Church officials approached the anti-porn activists one Sunday morning. The church officials started to become hostile when the asked the activists to leave the public sidewalks outside the church.They didn’t like the presence of anyone passing out literature to
their congregates. Yet all that the anti-porn activists wanted to do was warn
members of what was happening near their church.
· In 2006 former homosexual and now Christian activist (James Hartline) tried for months to organize church leaders to oppose a decision by the San Diego City council involving a local historic Cross that essentially agreed with atheist Phillip Paulson. Paulson and his attorney wanted to see a historic cross atop Mt. Soledad in La Jolla, CA. removed because it was on public property. (The present cross which was built in 1954 was dedi-cated as a war memorial in the 1950s. A cross has been on the site since 1913). Hartline urged ministers throughout the county to appear before the council to dissuade city leaders against removing the cross. He talked to the media, went on talk radio and published stories on an Internet site in an effort to convince the clergy and the public to get involved. On the day of the hearing for public comment only about a dozen ministers showed up, yet there are over 1800 churches in San Diego county.
· Marriage is defined by Christ himself in the New Testament (Matt. 19:5). Yet thousands of today’s clergy find it difficult to defend traditional marriage. Why? Writing for Townhall.com, Janet LaRue, esq. asks: “Are those pastors who are missing in action (and not defending traditional marriage) conceding that sexual conduct which God condemns is morally equivalent to marriage? What do they think will happen in the public schools? And in the workplace? And are they going to remain silent if the court expands its ruling to include polygamy and marriage between close relatives?” She notes in her column from last October, that of the 11,911 churches in California only 203 supported the marriage amendment. La Rue asks best selling author and Saddleback Church pastor Rick Warren: “Where was your support for Prop. 8?” … “Your office isn’t returning calls requesting information” … “Are you prepared for when you’re sued for refusing to perform same-sex marriages or refusing to rent churchfacilities for ‘gay’ functions? Do you think these judges will prefer your religious liberty or their own notions of ‘equality’?” The former council for Concerned Women of America, confronts pastors and priests with a poignant question: “John the Baptist lost his head for speaking out against the king’s perversion of marriage. What are you afraid of losing?”
· Finally, Barack Obama is set to speak to the graduating class of ’09 at the University of Notre Dame. This university has a long Catholic tradition. Its football facility portrays an image of Christ nearby. Administrators recently invited Mr. Obama to speak at their school rather than stand up for the defenseless among us - the unborn child. Mr. Obama is on record of defending even the most extreme forms of infanticide. Within the last few months, he has re-enacted federal funding for abortions not only in this country but around the world (through the UN). This is outrageous. This is why every Priest around the country should call the president’s office of Notre Dame University and demand that Mr. Obama not be honored with an appearance at the school along with an honorary degree.
It’s time for all of us to stand up for what is right for our country’s sake instead of following the path of least resistance. It is time we demand that our spiritual leaders to do the same. You can help by posting this article on your church’s front doors and pray for your spiritual leaders!
James L. Lambert, a frequent contributor to ChristianMirror.net and author of Porn in America, is a licensed nationwide real-estate mortgage loan sales agent and can be contacted through his website.