So much wingnuttery this week, and more to come. Take, Atlanta's Peachtree Presbyterian Church. Please!
On June 7, Pastor Vic Pentz, late of Princeton and Fuller Theologicals, announced to his surprised congregation his little extralegal "safe haven" plan for it. According to Ministry Today, Pentz promises that the church will care for any newborn baby that's dropped off at the church.
"I make a promise to you now and I don't want you to keep this a secret," Pentz said. "The Peachtree Presbyterian Church will care for any newborn baby you bring to this church. We will be the family to find a home for that child, and there's no limit on this. You can tell your friends, and they can tell their friends. … You can tell the whole world."
If you think I'm joking, go here and download either the video or mp3 . You'll find his offer in the last couple minutes of the ironically named Ethics of Life sermon. WARNING: Go to 54-56 minutes. The more hearty, of course, can sit through an hour of Pentz's praise of Juno and a very odd lecture on the marginalization and shame suffered by today's "unmarried mothers." Must be why adoption agencies are beating away unwed pregos with a stick.
Pentz says that the church will partner with Bethany Christian Services, "which will handle the 'how' of making this happen." A Bethany representative will speak at the church in August.
Upon hearing of his decision, Pentz said, "They (Bethany) just smiled and nodded and said, 'You know, we've been praying for a pastor to stand up and say that. Because we can provide all that support that you promised."
Pentz and Bethany might also consider a little talk with the Georgia Department of Human Resources, too. Or maybe not. If they'll licence the thankfully defunct New Beginnings agency out of Edgewood Baptist Church in Columbus, they'll license a boll weevil. (NOTE: During a liability panel at a NCFA conference I attended a few years ago, the director of New Beginnings said she kept clients from suing the "agency" by making them sign a contract with God promising not to. That didn't stop NB from being sued by angry aparents under civil RICO. Gladney's Heidi Cox looked like she wanted to reach over and bitch slap the woman).
Peggy Baird, the director of adoption services for the non-profit Families First service agency was a bit less impressed than the happy shiny Rev. Pentz. She told WXIA-TV that "while she admired the sentiment, he (Pentz) didn't delve into the legal and psychological complications that go into giving up a child for adoption... I think if he's going to pursue this with his congregation, he's got to do ongoing education."
But hey, what's ethics and best practice when those babies are coming in on a wing and a prayer!
WXIA-TV commenters agree: