Off The Record: On Religion, Politics & Equality
“God wanted us to come here to help children,we are convinced of that,” - Laura Silsby
God is a tough subject. People run from the discussion of religion in our civil society like a pack of scalded dogs. Especially when it comes to the idiotic acts of a handful of their followers. Like those troublesome, murderous Muslim terrorists, legions of pederast priests, and meddling Baptist missionaries dabbling in child-trafficking. Or, to the other extreme, some of the faithful will cry religious discrimination or a war on Christianity (typically perpetrated by, according to some, the MSM).
Full disclosure: I was raised Catholic. After spilling my 7-year-old sins in a confessional to a haggard old priest, I received the sacrament of communion. Later, I took Saint Veronica’s name for my confirmation — confirming just what, I don’t know.
Following each of these Catechismal events were receptions featuring donuts and coffee in the church basement, a pile of cards and no further revelation to my role in God’s plan. I am no longer a Catholic, nor do I practice any religion. And I am comfortable with that.
What I am not comfortable with are people cloaking themselves in God to preach intolerance and hate, to tell people with their theory and through law what they can and cannot do, or to flim-flam the public into believing their money-for-kids scheme [insert scandal or public repentance here] was really altruistic or ordained by God [insert deity here].
Belonging to a religion — specifically here a Christian religion — does not make one exceptional.
Is it, as one of my commenters suggests “Christian bashing” to calling out a self-proclaimed “Baptist” [Silsby], on a specifically Christian mission (self-appointed or church approved), who does something reprehensible in the name of God? Innocent boobs should be tolerated, the rational believer, encouraged, and the conniving religious leader must be rebuked.
Some will argue she isn’t a religious leader, like the comment left on my blog above suggests:
“I think the use of ”baptist” missionary in someways is misleading. Ms Silsby who heads an independent ministry is not being called by any Baptist church to be a missionary.”
Priest, pastor, deacon, rabbi, cleric: she doesn’t hold any churchy titles. So no, Laura Sislby isn’t a religious leader in an ordained fashion. But she is a religious leader. She leveraged her entrepreneurial moxie (or deception) and over the course of two years managed to:
Laura Silsby is probably not as God-fearing as her doe-eyes-through-jail-cell-bars suggest. She’s probably not even a dyed-in-the-wool Baptist if push came to shove. Her interests, as her financial woes, lawsuits and balking followers lead us to believe, were probably motivated by money and perhaps a certain level of fame.
In our reality-television loving society, where everyone is a celebrity, it is no wonder, and no new news that religious leaders enjoy fame — and fortune — in the USA. I don’t need to list them here. We know their names and are aware of their televangelist programs and mega-churches, complete with gift-shops.
Angelina and Brad have made adopting children from foreign countries fashionable. Add Madonna to that mix as well. Laura Silsby is a small time operator in comparison, but with her elaborate plans for an adoption vacation retreat on the coast of the Dominican Republic, she set her sights high.
Ultimately, this religious talk is a red-herring when it comes down to matters of law. Thank God for the law. But, perception is reality. When the lines of money, fame, and the politics of religion converge, nothing good comes from it.
Sources, further reading: