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Saturday, 26 November 2011 01:40

Pastor Cajoles Flock into Kissing-Fest

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In the last few years we have witnessed a trend with an increasing emphasis on this kind of 'ministry' being propagated in what claim to be scripturally based Christ centered churches.

I do not object to married or engaged Christian couples displaying moderate nuances of affection publicly such as holding hands or a quick kiss etc. I am not a stuffed shirt puritanical religious freak and I don't pay much mind to those who are. But discretion imposes parameters and this exceeds prudent limits. This is inappropriate in public, even for married couples, especially in a church service. There is a time and a place for expression of marital romance, but in public or in church is neither the time nor the place. It cheapens the romance by reducing it from something personal and intimate into something approaching exhibitionism. I find it altogether inappropriate and any doctrinal theology used to justify it is bogus and devoid of exegetical support.

This kind of thing has reached the level of virtual vulgarity in the language of T. D. Jakes and Mark Driscoll and it is not ordained of God's Spirit. Matrimony is holy and holy means 'set apart.' Pregnancy and babies are the manner God ordained for married couples to let it be publicly known they have been intimate; not putting on a stupid show - worse still under the banner of religiosity as with this kind of nonsense or Mark Driscoll's hatchet job on 'The Song of Solomon' or T. D. Jakes' 'Stick in the Hole' sermon. These trends should be offensive to the Body of Christ.

Again, my doctrine is apostolic not patristic. I am not Augustinian in my theology and I do not subscribe to the Manchean gnostic taboos of sexuality Augustine imported into the church from the pagan world that remains the preserve of Roman Catholicism etc. to this day. I have no hang ups addressing such issues as marriage or sexuality from a scriptural perspective when appropriate and when directed by the Holy Spirit. But this kind of junk is not that; It is just cheap junk passing itself off as a contemporary version of Christianity. It is rather pseudo Christian.

(Jacob Prasch/ Moriel)

By ANNIE KARNI
Last Updated: 8:07 AM, November 20, 2011
N Y Post

It's Our Lady of Spin the Bottle.

[caption id="attachment_8064" align="alignright" width="300" caption="HOLY SMOOCH: Pastor Maurice Johnson actively encourges his flock to be amorous, and they are making out just fine."][/caption]

Pastor Maurice Johnson of the Winners Church in Queens delivers the sexiest Sunday sermon in town, preaching on how to keep romance alive in marriage "” and then asking congregants to make out in a passionate, public kissing contest during the service.

The parishioners with the most passion "” and tongue-wagging "” win $50 to spend on date night.

"Your bedroom and your love life are fires that must be nurtured and fought for," Johnson preaches in a booming voice that reverberates through the makeshift church in the PS 38 gym in Rosedale, Queens.

"Use the power of touch to ignite passion in your marriage," Johnson tells his giggling, nondenominational congregation of 75.

He adds, "You should be visually stimulated for your husband or your wife. It is your biblical responsibility to look good for your spouse."

Johnson then calls upon four married couples to rise and approach the pulpit.

As a keyboardist and a drummer ooze R&B tunes such as "I Like It" by DeBarge, the couples demonstrate their passion "” by locking lips, hips and tongues for a seemingly endless five minutes.

When they come up for air, the rest of the churchgoers choose a winner by clapping for the most amorous couple.

Johnson, 39, told The Post he chose to deliver a series of sermons, titled "The Power and Pleasure of Romance," to underscore the importance of marriage in the African-American community.

"Some people were like, "˜It seems strange to do at church,' " he said, "but they thought it was very creative."

Keeping a romantic partnership ticking, he said, depends on showering your spouse with physical affection.

"God created a desire for love and romance," Johnson said.

The face-sucking had some churchgoers blushing.

"You see kissing in all kinds of contexts, but you don't necessarily see it in a marriage context," said Frantz Cochy, 39, who won the contest when he seemed to forget that he was in front of a crowded room and hungrily embraced his wife of 13 years, Makeetah, 36.

"I wasn't embarrassed, but I guess I felt a little awkward," he said.

Olaiya Ayani, 33, had to cajole his wife, Ayanna, to stand up and play tonsil hockey in front of the packed room. But once on stage, the couple wrapped their arms around each other and didn't hold back.

"My father and my mother never showed affection in public," said Ayani, who met his wife two years ago on Craigslist. "I told myself, "˜I'm going to be more affectionate to my wife.' "

The pastor said he encourages married couples to drop their guard and experiment with each other in public.

"Any society that celebrates marriage, romance and love is going to be a free society," Johnson said. "Public displays of affection aren't wrong. Adam and Eve were naked, and they were not ashamed."

The bachelor pastor says he'll practice what he preaches next year, when he expects to marry.


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Read 3036 times Last modified on Saturday, 26 November 2011 01:40

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