“The Church” For Sale – $1M (Or Best Offer)

church 4 sale

I have railed against the pulpit pimps blood-lust for money in too many previous articles to note (just use the “search bar” in the upper right-hand corner of this blog). I have been accused of sounding like a broken record, and (worse) “airing family business” for all the world (saved and unsaved) to see.

No matter how painful the truth may be, it still must be told – and the sad truth is that the majority of “Church Inc.” today is led by money/power-hungry hirelings with the theological depth of a soda cap. Oh yeah, and these wolves would be toothless if it weren’t for the swooning lust of sheeple who rain cash all over the vipers every Sunday and Wednesday like they were oiled-up strippers.

Even worse, some hirelings decide to run for “public office” under the guise of serving their communities when in fact they’ve just found a better way to grease the sheeple AND the system. Of course, you wouldn’t expect a wolf who has perfected the science of  the “tithe/offering/love offering/first fruit/anniversary/building fund” graft to stop short of actually selling themselves (and the sheeple who “submit” to them) to the highest bidder, would you?

Such is the case (according to the New York Times) with Calvin Butts (Spotlight seeker & Pastor of Abyssinian Baptist Church in NYC) and BILLIONAIRE Mayor Michael Bloomberg of NYC. Bloomberg is running for a 3rd term as Mayor of NY, and he’d like the endorsement of prominent black clergy race-herding vote deliverers, so what (pray tell) do you think ol’ Mike used to grease the wheels a bit? Why, MONEY of course!

Except, this time, Butts threw his friend (and Bloomberg contender) under the bus…for what you ask? Why, MONEY of course!:

Mayor Deprives Rival of Black Clergy’s Support

A few weeks ago, the Rev. Calvin O. Butts III, the influential pastor of the Abyssinian Baptist Church in Harlem, came to a difficult decision, one he had wrestled with all summer.

He would not endorse William C. Thompson Jr., the city comptroller and a longtime friend and ally, for mayor, as he had promised Mr. Thompson last spring. Instead, he would endorse Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg.

Mr. Thompson was furious at the betrayal. But what he did not know was that Mr. Bloomberg gave a $1 million donation to the church’s development corporation — roughly 10 percent of its annual budget — with the implicit promise of more to come.

“What could I say to a man who was mayor, and was supportive of a lot of programs that are important to me?” Mr. Butts said in an interview before he endorsed Mr. Bloomberg.

Now that’s just cold-blooded, but characteristic of the reptile class that Butts represents. And don’t think this is a case of “rich Whitey” dangling cash in front of the down-trodden Black man enticing him to bite of the forbidden fruit. Remember, these “down-trodden Black men” live far more opulently than you or I (and I’m a middle-class Black man), so they need “help” about as much as I do (which is not at all). 

Nope, these race-herding vote deliverers know exactly what they’re doing…and what they want in return: 

Some prominent ministers have been appointed by Mr. Bloomberg to influential city boards and committees. Others have enjoyed the administration’s help in buying city property or winning zoning concessions for pet projects. A few of the largest institutions, including Abyssinian and the Greater Allen A.M.E. Cathedral in Jamaica, Queens, have taken in millions of dollars in contracts to provide city services during Mr. Bloomberg’s eight years in office. 

Looming over it all is Mr. Bloomberg’s dazzling wealth, whether already bestowed — as in the case of Mr. Butts — or hoped for down the line. 

“We have to come to his foundation sooner or later,” said the Rev. Timothy Birkett, pastor of the Church Alive Community Church in the Bronx, who is backing the mayor this year. “We hope that he will be receptive.” 

See – these wolves have married their quid-pro-quo lusts from within the church wall with the quid-pro-quo reality of their political environments. Fortunately, not every Black minister in NYC is lining up at Bloomberg’s boots for a lick (and some cash): 

“Some of these endorsements that we see are indicative of a faith statement by some of our religious leaders,” said the Rev. Clinton M. Miller, a protégé of Mr. Butts and the pastor of Brown Memorial Baptist Church in Brooklyn. “The statement is, who do I trust more, in terms of how I am going to get my projects done?” Mr. Miller said. “The choice is between a municipality and God.” 

But, alas, A.R. Bernard, Floyd Flake (a former Congressman himself), Butts, and others don’t have a problem with Caesar sliding a few sheckles their way. I wonder what they’ll do when Caesar comes around looking for a return on his investment – you know, like an endorsement from the “Black Church” on gay rights issues, abortions, and other AntiChrist objectives…Hmmm…Moving along… 

I encourage you to read the article in its entirety – and think about the last time your Pastor endorsed offered a thinly veiled suggestion that you vote for a politician in your town. 

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15 Responses to ““The Church” For Sale – $1M <i>(Or Best Offer)</i>”

  1. 1 Harmonic Praise October 29, 2009 at 6:09 pm

    Politics in the pulpit!

    I guess some Black preachers never change in thinking the only way they can make a name for themselves in the community is to court the white politician who will slip them a little money and invite them to the dinner party!

    I think when Jesus talked about “rendering unto Caesar that which is Caesar’s,” he wasn’t intending on it being justification for the church to court the political system to advance it’s own agenda. As a matter of fact, Jesus nor the Apostles ever sought political validation and sanction for their ministries!

    Only when these preachers come to understand the difference between the Kingdom of God and the governments of this world will the situation ever get better!

  2. 2 pierced October 29, 2009 at 7:10 pm

    Unfortunately, this is nothing new – the church being made merchandise of and Black ministers acting as shills for prominent politicians. (The votes of the sheeple and the endorsement of the hirelings are offered up for a “price”.)

    It’s really very simple and clear, I keep making the same refrain:

    Matthew 7:15 – 17
    15Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.

    16Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?

    17Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.

  3. 3 Broken Pastor October 29, 2009 at 9:07 pm

    Slap me if I ever say or do something so godless!
    God have mercy on us all!

    But ST, you mix me up. I’m cryin’ and chucklin’ at the same time…
    “‘Church Inc.’ today is led by money/power-hungry hirelings with the theological depth of a soda cap.”
    “the swooning lust of sheeple who rain cash all over the vipers every Sunday and Wednesday like they were oiled-up strippers.”

    Man you can turn a phrase up so hot it would melt paint off a car.

  4. 4 Job October 29, 2009 at 10:16 pm

    I still remember when Lee Atwater bragged that he got someone elected governor of New Jersey, I think Christie Whitman, by paying certain New Jersey black preachers to tell their parishioners to stay at home. Also around the 2000 election I was attending a church (I won’t name it, but it is a rather prominent one on Moreland Avenue in DeKalb County) whose pastor bragged on his connection to Al Gore, and stated that if Gore won, a ton of money was coming the church’s way which would be used to add new programs (i.e. a senior citizen’s center) and expand existing programs. And of course, who can forget the Eddie Long incident … he endorsed Cynthia McKinney’s Republican opponent, claiming that it was because he was pro-life but it later turned out to be because McKinney wasn’t making him feel special and important enough. But Long fell back in line when he was very close to getting some money from the Georgia legislature – money to build some sort of youth center or something like that – and Billy McKinney blocked it out of revenge. Also, Word of Faith preacher out of Detroit, Keith Butler, ran for Senate in like 2004 or something. He has a satellite church run by his son in Cobb County, and he was in Atlanta all the time taking up offerings to support his election bid. And please do not forget how Mike Huckabee was going around shaking down ministers for campaign funds, including Kenneth Copeland. Some pastors raised as much as $1 million for the guy. Huckabee was also able to win a few friends among black preachers, and had he actually won the election, it would have been a real problem.

    This really has been going on for quite awhile. I recall reading an article a months back which stated that one of the main backers of Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal was this Roman Catholic priest who had one of the nation’s most widely listened to radio shows. Apparently, this priest would get on every week and A) extol the virtues of Roosevelt and the New Deal and B) viciously bash, trash and bait Jews. (This was before the Vatican II, after which Roman Catholics were supposed to start officially loving Jews.) So apparently this “politics and religion” thing long precedes the civil rights movement.

    And this “faith-based programs” thing is only going to make things worse. Remember, it was started by Bill Clinton, the whole “midnight basketball” thing. Then John Ashcroft expanded it with the welfare reform bill (which Clinton signed), and George W. Bush expanded it again. Then Barack Obama co-opted it. The thinking is that Obama is going to use it as part of his “community organizing/national service” thing. But during the election, Roman Catholics made no attempts to conceal that Mitt Romney was their candidate because he sent a ton of tax money to Catholic charities and social services as governor of Massachusetts and promised to give them even more as president. Catholics tried to get evangelicals to go along, claiming that if Romney got elected the Protestants would heavily benefit from the whatever leftover scraps remained after the Catholics took their turn at the trough, and they were furious when evangelicals said “no thanks” and backed the aforementioned Huckabee, having the unmitigated gall to choose their own issues and interests over doing their duty, which was to open up the federal treasury for the Catholic Church coffers. So that was when they started circulating the story that Huckabee and his supporters were motivated by anti-Mormon and anti-Catholic hatred.

    But it looks like Rome has gotten the next best thing in Obama anyway. Catholics backed Obama over McCain in a huge way, and Obama has already begun the payoff by giving the Vatican its 6th Supreme Court justice. Also, note that Obama’s first two high profile visits to religious institutions were at Roman Catholic Georgetown and Notre Dame. My guess is that a ton of “faith-based programs” money is going to start flowing their way, and also that Roman Catholic hospitals – which have really been hurting financially in urban areas – will benefit heavily from the healthcare reforms.

    So as bad as what Butts, Bernard and Flake are doing look, they are really just small time, guppies or even plankton in the big pond. Gotta keep your eyes on the big fish.

    • 5 pierced October 30, 2009 at 1:10 pm

      Thanks Job for again elucidating on the issue of the unholy alliance of religion and politics!

    • 6 speaking truth October 30, 2009 at 1:53 pm


      Eddie Long is famous for currying favor with politicians and soliciting (and giving contributions to spur) donations to his own pet projects. That said, “pay to play” has been around for a long time with churches and politicians…this is just the latest example…

  5. 7 brian foulks October 29, 2009 at 10:48 pm

    Wow..The state of the church saddens me at times brother. Or should I say that how some view these pastors saddens me.

  6. 8 gcmwatch October 30, 2009 at 8:37 am

    IST, the truth that you tell is only painful to those who are enablers of the church pimps and false prophets.

    I find it quite joyous because the Word of the Lord is right, sure, perfect, holy and just. What it says, I accept without respect of person.

    These folk will be in for quite a surprise when they meet the Incarnate Word and he informs them that he never knew them.

    Blessings to you and KEEP upholding God’s truth!

  7. 9 Broken Pastor October 30, 2009 at 12:25 pm

    Brothers and sisters,
    While listening to a sermon this morning, I was convicted about my previous comment. My heart was wrong in adding the lines about chuckling over sin.

    Sin is terrible. And nothing to laugh about. And I put myself in the Lord’s place to judge it. The LORD is the One and Only righteous Judge. Please forgive my judgmental attitude and my exulting over my enemies falling (Proverbs 24:17 “Do not gloat when your enemy falls; when he stumbles, do not let your heart rejoice.”)

    ST, I don’t reply to this to slap you either. You are my brother and friend. I barely know all the pain you have endured. This is about me and my heart. I entrust your heart to the LORD.

    In regard to truth, I do think you are accurate in your assessment of the preachers and people. I just want to urge you to stay humbled by the grace of God. Why?

    I want the gospel to win and for Jesus to get all the glory. I’m so proud of Him!

    • 10 speaking truth October 30, 2009 at 1:46 pm

      Broken Pastor,

      I too believe we should remain humble in exposing false teachers (and those like them). This quest is no to bring honor or glory to my limited intelect, but to direct others toward God’s glory alone. Sometimes you have to chuckle to keep from crying over the decay in the church today – and I think my “turn of phrase” style in writing is my way of venting without cursing.

      As I’ve said before – I want nothing more than the repentence of false teachers and a return to holiness, so I won’t rejoice when they fall…I’d rather rejoice when they get up again.

  8. 12 hiscrivener October 30, 2009 at 4:33 pm

    My man!

    You know me, I like to find the humor in just about everything. Not so much here. Honestly, I thought that was a lovely photoshopping effort at first.

    This is an abysmal indictment on the state of the church, the fear of God and the progress of our people. It’s an abomination.

    Since when did church buildings go the way of concert arenas and athletic forums? And in this economy, are we willing to just be sheered and taken out to pasture for a quick brick of cash?

    It’s depressing. It’s enraging. And, I suppose… it’s typical.

    Nice post, brother. Appreciate your spirit, but you know that already.


  9. 14 Lady D November 1, 2009 at 9:39 pm

    Are you serious???? The sad thing is the sheeple love man more than God and will continue to support this foolishness. All will claim that God is blessing and showing favor to these wolves in sheep clothing; and condemn to hell those that speak against this Roman government-Pharisee,Christ crucifying hookup.
    Keep pressing the battle to the gate!

  10. 15 Kayce November 3, 2009 at 4:08 pm

    I so enjoy reading this website. Let the truth be told!

    I was not surprised to read that another pastor/clergy leader sold out for money. These days, it is rare to read when a pastor stands up and isn’t “for sale.”

    But we all know that this money from Bloomberg and anyone else, comes with a price. No one is giving millions and doesn’t expect something back in return. Once you have sold out, you have to keep up the act-or there is going to be trouble.

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