Reverend Ralph White is kicking babies out of his pulpit if they can't produce a marriage license for their parents. Or, rather, kicking babies out of the baptismal font -- and therefore heaven. This Memphis minister is taking a stand on babies born out of wedlock and the teen parents who continue to be sexually active even without marriage. Additionally, the pastor says he will not condone fathers who do not take care of their children, citing the Bible, which says those men are worse than infidels.
Harsh words, reverend! But I do agree with what the pastor is trying to do. Teen pregnancy is an epidemic, and sending a message to young people everywhere about taking responsibility is a good one. I just don't think the baby should be the target of withholding by the Bloomfield Full Gospel Baptist Church.
As the innocent person in the trio, a baby shouldn't have to pay for the sins of the father. And if you are a hard-core Baptist, you believe that baptism is necessary to enter the kingdom of heaven. Kicking out a baby isn't very Christian-like. And hey, weren't Mary and Joseph unmarried parents?
Of course every church has the right to set its own rules, and you can find another pastor to baptize your baby if you really want to, just not on Reverend White's shift.
The pastor does acquiesce and says he will baptize a baby if you have an event in your home, or elsewhere, just not in the church. So if parents are really serious about giving their baby a Christian start in life, they can make it happen. With a side of judgment, I'm sure.
What do you think about the pastor's harsh stance on unmarried parents?
image via PinkMoose/Flickr