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Let the little children come

“Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.”  –Jesus  (Luke 18:16, NIV)

A well-known pastor in my very small town was arrested.  I’m sure many folks in our conservative southern town are up in arms about his arrest.  I’m sure they feel he was justified in his actions.  In fact, I’m surprised he was arrested.  Here is what he is accused of doing:

His church has a Christian school.  One of the children was misbehaving.  Someone at the school called the child’s mother and told her she must come to the school to spank her child or give permission for a school official to spank him.

Now let’s stop here for a moment.  Seriously?  These educators and administrators couldn’t come up with anything other than spanking?  These adults who claim to have the mind of Christ could not tap into the incredible creativity of the Creator and come up with anything else?  Wow.  It had to be violence.  It had to be hitting.  That was the best they could come up with.

Ok, back to the story.  It isn’t clear whether the mother gave permission or not.  Regardless, the 45 year old pastor of the church spanked the child leaving (according to the arrest warrant) “revoltingly egregious bruising to his buttocks” with four bruises measuring more than three inches by one inch in size. 

Mr. Pastor is now charged with assault and battery of a high and aggravated nature.  I very much hope it sticks. 

What has this child learned about Jesus from one of his supposed “shepherds?”  What has he learned about love and grace?

Does your church have a stance on corporal punishment against children?  Are they involved in something like this?

ETA:  Just heard from a reliable source that the child was four years old.