December 13, 2010 Leave a comment
When you apply for non-profit status as a church, you understand that you must remain politically neutral. If you don’t, you could lose your tax exempt status. Maybe Delegate Emmit Burns, who also happens to be the pastor at the Rising Sun Baptist Church in Woodlawn, didn’t get the message. Or maybe he just missed that clause when setting up his church. Either way, I’d say they’re far from neutral.
This morning I was sent an anonymous message (at least as far you’re concerned) about a particular visit to said church this past Sunday by our very own councilman, Tom Quirk. Now for an elected official such as himself to attend a worship service violates no rules, but when the pastor of the church, also an elected official, publicly calls Quirk his “money man,” things get a little murky. Apparently when Burns ran out of money during his costly and most unopposed campaign, he turned to Tom. Okay. First of all, why? Quirk was running in a highly contested race, whereas Burns was practically a shoe-in. But let’s put that aside for a moment. The question you must ask yourself is why any of this is pertinent to one’s walk with God. Oh wait, I forgot to tell you why Tom was in attendance this past Sunday. It seems he decided to give a sizable donation to the church. Now why would someone do that? Give money to a church he doesn’t attend? I certainly understand slipping a $20 bill into the offering plate as it passes. That’s just good form, but to be called to the front and recognized…that had to be a fairly large chunk of change.
Let’s back up a bit. During the campaign, Quirk attended on several occasions and each time recognized from the front. Hmmm, careful Delegate Burns, because that could be construed as an endorsement, and a sizable donation at the conclusion of a successful bid for office could be interpreted as payback. Who knows though? Maybe Councilman Quirk has been making his rounds to various churches in the area spreading the wealth so to speak. If that’s the case, I’d be happy to give him the name and address for my church. After our sound equipment was stolen last month, we could certainly use it. However, something tells me that’s not the case.
This wouldn’t be the first time I’ve heard of overt bias coming from Del. Burns and his congregation. During the primary, Rising Sun hosted a Democratic forum for candidates. By mistake, our friend, Rich Reinhardt, a candidate for Clerk of the Court, was invited. After speaking, people in the audience actually applauded. They seemed to agree with his platform. Then again, they thought he was a Dem. Once they realized that he was actually a Republican, Delegate Burns asked him to leave. He wasn’t even allowed the time to gather his materials and they were not returned to him after the fact. For all intensive purposes, he was thrown out. Now I could be wrong, but, outside of the Reinhardt debacle, I have yet to hear of a Republican being invited to Rising Sun. If I’m wrong, I’ll be happy to retract, but I’m guessing I won’t have to.
.The amazing thing is that I’m sure they will continue to promote Democrats at Rising Star because really, who’s going to check into it?