At­tach­ing church ti­tle, church name to per­sonal views is wrong

Maryland Independent - - Community Forum - Bobby J. Wal­lace, White Plains

I wish to re­spond to the let­ter by the Rev. Charles Hof­facker, rec­tor of St. Paul’s Epis­co­pal Parish, pub­lished in the Feb. 3 edi­tion (“Tyranny re­spects no one,” Mary­land In­de­pen­dent).

Rev. Hof­facker writes about the mil­lions of cit­i­zens ris­ing up against the in­jus­tice of Don­ald Trump — not Pres­i­dent Trump, just Don­ald Trump. Rev. Hof­facker writes about di­verse or­ga­ni­za­tions and net­works speak­ing out about how their con­stituen­cies and in­ter­ests are threat­ened by the ex­trem­ism of a pres­i­dent most vot­ers voted against.

Rev. Hof­facker seems to be an ed­u­cated per­son, so a les­son about how the Amer­i­can elec­toral sys­tem put Pres­i­dent Trump in of­fice does not ap­pear to be nec­es­sary. What does ap­pear to be nec­es­sary is some ad­vice for Rev. Hof­fack- er. I am sure not all mem­bers of St. Paul’s parish agree with his po­lit­i­cal views, so he has con­flicted him­self with those who do not and is en­cour­ag­ing those who do to dis­re­spect the elected pres­i­dent by his vit­ri­olic ut­ter­ances. He has fur­ther in­sured that those prospec- tive church­go­ers who dis­agree with his views will never darken the door of St. Paul’s.

Rev. Hof­facker would do well to heed the words of Je­sus, who said, “Give to Cae­sar what is Cae­sar’s and to God what is God’s.” Rev. Hof­facker ex­pressed his per­sonal views about Pres­i­dent Trump’s ap­pli­ca­tion of a law passed by the U.S. Congress. He used his of­fi­cial church ti­tle and his church’s name in an at­tempt to add cred­i­bil­ity to his per­sonal views. Pres­i­dent Trump’s ap­pli­ca­tion of a law may be the sub­ject for dis­agree­ment among rea­son­able peo­ple, but it hardly rises to the level where the cit­ing of Hitler’s atroc­i­ties is jus­ti­fied.

Rev. Hof­facker has failed in his pri­mary mis­sion: that be­ing lead­ing a di­verse group of Chris­tians to do God’s work. Rev. Hof­facker has prob­a­bly joined a grow­ing list of movie stars, singers, busi­ness peo­ple and oth­ers who de­pend on sup­port from all cit­i­zens, who have cost them­selves dearly by un­nec­es­sar­ily of­fend­ing half of their prospec­tive cus­tomers and in his own case, church mem­bers.

I am not a mem­ber of St. Paul’s Epis­co­pal Parish, so I do not know for sure how the parish’s in­ter­nal af­fairs work. I do know that if my pas­tor at­tached his of­fi­cial church ti­tle and my church’s name to such an un­jus­ti­fied hit piece on the pres­i­dent of the United States, there would be a se­ri­ous dis­cus­sion by the con­gre­ga­tion about his fu­ture em­ploy­ment.

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