February 1st, 2011
10:45 AM ET

Tennessee Pastor: Marriage needed for church baptism

A Tennessee pastor refused to baptize a couple's baby in church unless they get married. WMC reports.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Christianity • Houses of worship • United States

soundoff (79 Responses)
  1. Val

    amazing that MY comment of a week ago is "still awaiting moderation" which means I guess that it cannot be seen by anyone but me? What a foolish site this is that cannot stand to listen to the cold, hard truth! Don't know why I'm even bothering to write now as I am sure this will not be seen either. Reason and intelligence is forbidden, this I know. Goodbye, farewell.

    February 8, 2011 at 1:48 pm |
  2. Baptist Batista

    The video doesn't even mention BAPTISM. It mentions BLESSING babies. The pastor doesn't want to encourage FORNICATORS in their state of FORNICATION making a mockery of a spiritual BLESSING. Pure and simple.

    February 6, 2011 at 10:46 am |
  3. Q

    After winding up this discussion, perhaps we can return to how many angels really can dance on the head of pin...

    February 6, 2011 at 12:47 am |
  4. Jim Rousch

    It's actually quite wise to baptize infants because Jesus said that you had to believe like a child. So, the idea that baptism should wait until someone is old enough to believe is stupid.

    And people WONDER why I'm not a Christian anymore! Man, is the lack of compassion thick in here, or what?

    February 3, 2011 at 12:26 am |
    • EAE

      Something fishy in this article because Baptists do not baptize infants. They actually do wait until they are old enough to decide to believe for themselves. They do baptize children, but only those old enough to choose to accept Jesus as their Savior.

      Do not judge Baptists or Christians by what this article says.

      February 5, 2011 at 12:21 am |
  5. RR

    My friends had a baby 23 years ago. They were not married at the time. The only person who was willing to baptise their little girl was a Lutheran pastor. And he also said: "and one day when you are ready, I would love to marry you". And today they are and have 5 kids, and they are humble Christians and have fond memories of the man who was so kind to them. And thus they are kind to others.

    February 2, 2011 at 11:51 pm |
    • Anglican

      God be blessed. This family be blessed. Peace

      February 3, 2011 at 12:22 am |
  6. tallulah13

    In related news, Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny have come forward to say that they refuse to bring presents to this child of unmarried parents.

    The Tooth Fairy is declining all interviews and simply says she has no comment.

    February 2, 2011 at 9:33 pm |
  7. doctore0

    Hopefully the parents will skip the baptism, and the TRAP the pastor is preparing for them.

    February 2, 2011 at 3:53 am |
  8. HotAirAce

    I heard this pat or being interviewed on Fox by Alan Colmes (sp?). I don't think he ever used the word "baptize" – he said "blessing."

    Not that it matters much to me – it's all manmade silliness!

    February 2, 2011 at 3:09 am |
  9. Cascadoux

    I'd be surprised if he'd even baptize Jesus. Good lord, when are they going to realize that it is grace that even saved him and those of his ilk?

    February 1, 2011 at 11:17 pm |
  10. Anglican

    Nicole. I am not a priest. I am sorry. May the peace of my Lord be with you.

    February 1, 2011 at 10:37 pm |
  11. Nicole

    The local priest of our Catholic church refused to christen me because my parents were not married (they were 21 & 24). I was very hurt, as a child, because I felt excluded from the community due to something that was not my fault.

    I'm now an atheist. I wonder if that priest had known the first step in me questioning the validity of organized religion would stem from not spilling some water on my forehead if he would have acted the same way.

    February 1, 2011 at 10:19 pm |
    • EAE

      Several years ago I had a student killed in a drunk driving accident. The local catholic priest refused to do the funeral because the mother had never had the child christened. Her now ex-husband had objected and after the divorce she just never got around to it. A local Baptist minister offered to do the funeral at his church and comforted the mother with assurances that God does not send small children to hell. He even visited and prayed for the younger brother who had been sent to a larger hospital in another city.

      Of course news of this kind of caring and compassion never seems to get reported.

      Incidently, the mother was not in any way pressured to become Baptist. She actually stayed Catholic. It was simply all about sharing God's love with her and her family when they needed it.

      February 4, 2011 at 12:36 am |
  12. TheRationale

    Of all the things you could be fussing about, imaginary things should be at the bottom of the list.

    February 1, 2011 at 9:28 pm |
    • Anglican

      The Rationale who said God should be hated and is vile. Rest well.

      February 1, 2011 at 10:46 pm |
  13. tallulah13

    My sisters and I used to "baptize" each other when we went swimming, although I suspect it had less to do with religion and more to do with dunking a sibling.

    I consider the act of pouring water on someone's head to "save their soul" as silly as the whole ritualized cannibalism that somehow goes hand in hand with christianity. Unless of course they are filling some sort of skull reservoir that can be used to douse flames in case of eternal damnation.

    February 1, 2011 at 9:24 pm |
  14. frubble

    I'm glad this pastor is black. If he had been white all hell would be breakin loose among the white people haters. Also infant baptism is merely just a sweet ceremony for the family. The child doesn't know anything about it. Baptism would only count if the person being baptised knew exactly what it means and agreed with it. That he said he would baptise the child outside the church sorta overrides his point though. But I guess maybe he feels he doesn't want to 'defile' the church or something by blessing fornication in it.

    February 1, 2011 at 6:58 pm |
  15. toby

    Jesus is the last of the sun gods, so choose your myth carefully.

    February 1, 2011 at 6:32 pm |
  16. TamarS

    One more Christian Kindness practice huh? What a rigid and unkind man.

    February 1, 2011 at 5:08 pm |
  17. Reality

    A modern view of baptism from a Catholic graduate theology class:

    "The story of Adam and Eve is only symbolic.

    This story was composed in the 900s BCE and functions as an etiology (explanatory myth) .

    In the 900s Israel was self ruling, under King David and Solomon. The people were no longer at war and the question."

    Why are we not happy?" may have been asked. The short answer is sin. (Look at 1 Kings 11 for some clues into why the story depicts Eve sinning first and then tempting Adam [Solomon] is therefore only symbolic of man's tendencies to sin.

    Baptism does not erase original sin since the sin does not exist. The old "laundry of the soul," approach to Baptism is no longer accepted.

    Infant Baptism is only a rite of initiation and commits parents and godparents to bringing up the child in a Christian home."

    And if there was no Adam and Eve, it follows that there was no biblical Noah. see also http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Noah's_Ark#Other_flood_stories

    February 1, 2011 at 4:00 pm |
  18. 2 Dads & 3 Kids

    Since when do Pastors get to pick and choose who gets to be a christian? Oh yeah, christians think they get to choose who is good and who is not good enough. Boy talk about hypocrisy.

    February 1, 2011 at 3:08 pm |
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