January 18, 2008

Church discipline at Allen Baptist

This summer I read an account in the Hillsdale Daily News of a senior citizen arrested for trespassing during a church service in Allen, Mich.

Today another article in my feeds got my attention: “Banned From Church”. Having forgotten about this summer's incident, it wasn't until a few paragraphs in that I realized the Wall Street Journal was leading its feature with the same saga of Karolyn Caskey, the 71-year-old dissident arrested this June (and again in July) during services at Allen Baptist Church.

The charge was trespassing, but Mrs. Caskey's real offense, in her pastor's view, was spiritual. Several months earlier, when she had questioned his authority, he'd charged her with spreading “a spirit of cancer and discord” and expelled her from the congregation. “I've been shunned,” she says.

Local novelty aside, the Journal article is worth a read.

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