But this time, it is by other Christians who are seeking revenge against the United Church of Christ, who publicly endorsed same sex marriage last month. While it would be easy to launch into a diatribe expressing the obvious implications of this cowardly act, I won't. Instead, I will let it be a warning to all of you who feel that there should be a stronger link between church and state. If people are willing to do this illegally in the night, imagine what politicians would do to restrict your faith and church, given the legal weight of the law. What ever your faith (Catholic, Baptist, Methodist, Mormon) there is something about it that the other Christian sects don't like.
Is this a hate crime?
One week ago, this Augusta County church was vandalized and set afire - five days after the national church's General Synod voted in Atlanta to endorse gay marriage.
By Laurence Hammack
The Roanoke Times
MIDDLEBROOK - A layer of soot still coats the sanctuary. The white ceiling is stained dark gray by smoke. Anti-gay graffiti remains spray-painted on the brick walls of St. John's Reformed United Church of Christ.
One week ago, this Augusta County church was vandalized and set afire in what some are calling a hate crime. The blaze was set last Saturday - five days after the national church's General Synod voted in Atlanta to endorse gay marriage.
Although a link between the UCC vote and the vandalism has not been established, the foot-high words written in black spray paint on the church's wall suggest such a motive: "SINNER. GAYS LOVER. UCC SINERS. LESB HELL."
The words pain the Rev. Dorcas Lohr each time she walks past them to her office in the back of the church.
William White, a Roanoke landlord who has been an outspoken voice in other national issues involving minorities, issued a statement of his own.
White, who said he was recently appointed leader of the area's National Socialist Movement unit, said he does not condone what happened at St. John's. But, he added, he understands why such incidents happen.
"There is no question that those allegedly 'Christian' faiths who pollute their doctrines with anti-social, hateful, Jewish ideas, such as the endorsement and spread of homosexual marriages, make themselves targets for violence," White said.