Wiley Update

August 25, 2007

The LA Times has an update on the controversy surrounding Wiley Drake, who endorsed a candidate on church letterhead and then after having an IRS complaint filed urged Christians to give cursing prayers against Americans United for the Separation of Church and State. (For background, check out my previous posts here and here.) The LA Times piece offers a couple of interesting items:

On the advice of his attorneys, Drake has since declined to be interviewed.

... There needs to be a distinction between one's personal enemies and the enemies of God, said Sister Thomas Bernard MacConnell, founder of the Spirituality Center on the campus of Mount St. Mary's College and a veteran teacher of spiritual direction.

"It is very possible that my enemies are not God's enemies," she said. Referring to Drake's targets, she added, "Who is to say that those people are God's enemies?"

... The Rev. Dickson Yagi, a Southern Baptist pastor and an expert on Buddhism, says in some streams of esoteric Buddhism, such as Shingon and Tendai, adherents perform a fire ritual as the main worship.

... "This would be quite shocking to all Southern Baptists," he said.

"In the New Testament, Jesus Christ comes and says, 'Forgive your enemies, pray for your enemies, love your enemies,' " Yagi said. "This idea of enemies has really changed in the New Testament. We cannot do those things, because Jesus Christ taught us to forgive our enemies, love our enemies, pray for our enemies and he died for his enemies."
It seems that Drake is starting to take this issue seriously and realize that he might be in real trouble for his endorsement. The comments by MacConnell and Yagi are excellent! Hopefully, the whole Drake episode will remind us about working harder to love and lovingly pray for everyone.