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Pastor admits charging $50K on church's credit cards, gets 15 years
Chicago Tribune ^ | 5 May 2014

Posted on 05/05/2014 5:58:32 PM PDT by Gamecock

A former South Side pastor who ran up more than $50,000 in personal expenses on the church’s credit cards was sentenced Monday to 15 years in prison for theft, according to Cook County prosecutors and court records.

Bernard Johnson, 47, who was pastor at St. Paul Christian Methodist Episcopal Church, pleaded guilty to one count of felony theft from a place of worship.

In May 2009, he opened an American Express account in the church’s name and used that to pay for clothing, trips, airline tickets for family members, restaurant tabs, car rentals and hotel stays, the charges alleged

(Excerpt) Read more at chicagotribune.com ...


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1 posted on 05/05/2014 5:58:32 PM PDT by Gamecock
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So did he steal from the church or from AMEX?


2 posted on 05/05/2014 5:59:02 PM PDT by Gamecock (The covenant is a stunning blend of law and love. (TK))
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To: Gamecock

I’ve never heard of “Christian Methodist Episcopal.” Around here, we have “African Methodist Episcopal” and “African Methodist Episcopal Zion.”


3 posted on 05/05/2014 6:00:51 PM PDT by Tax-chick (My teenagers are annoying.)
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To: Gamecock

This is so awesome!! “Church” is not a word in the Bible!! It was inserted for the Greek word “Eklessia” ( meaning the “called out “ i.e. SAVED) in 1638 by King James to gain control over the “believers”. Church derived from the word “KIRKE” or “CIRCE” meaning the circle that PAGANS SAT IN!! If you Believe— you are saved. You don’t need a club house to pay for or a “preacher” to pay his mortgage and car payment and 40K!! JOHN 3:16— That is all you need.


4 posted on 05/05/2014 6:07:51 PM PDT by SADMILLIE
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To: Tax-chick
I thought it was a typo myself, but a quick visit to Google provides us with more info:

The Christian Methodist Episcopal Church, familiarly known as the CME Church, was organized December 16, 1870 in Jackson, Tennessee by 41 former slave members of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South. Composed primarily of African Americans, the CME Church is a branch of Wesleyan Methodism founded and organized by John Wesley in England in 1844 and established in America as the Methodist Episcopal Church in 1784. As such it is a church of Jesus Christ adhering to the basic tenets of historic Methodism, welcoming into its fellowship any and all desiring to “flee from the wrath to come and be saved from their sins.” It holds that Jesus Christ is the Incarnate Son of God whose life, teachings, sacrificial death on the cross and glorious resurrection from the dead reconciled humankind to God, overcame sin and conquered death, procuring thereby eternal salvation to all who believe. The CME Church believes that the Holy Spirit is God’s continuing presence in the world empowering the church to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ and fulfill its mission of saving and serving all humankind. Basic to the faith of the CME Church is the conviction that the Bible is the inspired Word of God containing all things necessary for human salvation. Presently the church reports approximately 850,000 communicant members in the continental United States, Nigeria, Ghana, Liberia, D. R. Congo.

Source

5 posted on 05/05/2014 6:10:14 PM PDT by Gamecock (The covenant is a stunning blend of law and love. (TK))
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To: SADMILLIE

And yet a church and it’s proper function is described throughout the NT. Not to save but for the saved.


6 posted on 05/05/2014 6:12:15 PM PDT by Gamecock (The covenant is a stunning blend of law and love. (TK))
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To: Gamecock

Okay. It looks like this CME split off from the general American Methodist branch (”Methodist Episcopal Church”) in the deep South, while the AME split off in the North and Mid-Atlantic states.


7 posted on 05/05/2014 6:13:50 PM PDT by Tax-chick (My teenagers are annoying.)
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To: Gamecock

“St. Paul Christian Methodist Episcopal Church”

They sound a bit indecisive to me. Is this one of those “all paths lead to god” churches?


8 posted on 05/05/2014 6:16:42 PM PDT by driftdiver (I could eat it raw, but why do that when I have a fire.)
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To: Gamecock

So in other words he did what Democrats do with taxes, treat them as their own personal unlimited ATM


9 posted on 05/05/2014 6:17:15 PM PDT by GrandJediMasterYoda (Hitlery: Incarnation of evil.)
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To: Gamecock

The resemblance is faint but doesn’t he somehow remind you of a younger Juan Williams?


10 posted on 05/05/2014 6:18:31 PM PDT by OldPossum ("It's" is the contraction of "it" and "is"; think about ITS implications.)
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To: SADMILLIE

So you shouldn’t worship with other believers and evangelize Gods word to the unsaved?

And you don’t need the support of other believers?

Seriously?


11 posted on 05/05/2014 6:18:43 PM PDT by driftdiver (I could eat it raw, but why do that when I have a fire.)
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To: OldPossum

You are right!

Maybe take of 20 pounds? Perhaps he was 20 pounds lighter before he got the credit card.


12 posted on 05/05/2014 6:23:30 PM PDT by Gamecock (The covenant is a stunning blend of law and love. (TK))
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To: SADMILLIE
--- Church derived from the word “KIRKE” or “CIRCE” meaning the circle that PAGANS SAT IN!! ---

Jesus told his followers to sit in the circle that pagans sat in? Why?

“If your brother or sister sins, go and point out their fault, just between the two of you. If they listen to you, you have won them over. But if they will not listen, take one or two others along, so that ‘every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.’ If they still refuse to listen, tell it to the church; and if they refuse to listen even to the church, treat them as you would a pagan or a tax collector.

“Truly I tell you, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will bef loosed in heaven." --Jesus

--- If you Believe— you are saved. ---

Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by my deeds. You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder. You foolish person, do you want evidence that faith without deeds is uselessd ? Was not our father Abraham considered righteous for what he did when he offered his son Isaac on the altar? You see that his faith and his actions were working together, and his faith was made complete by what he did. And the scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness,”e and he was called God’s friend. You see that a person is considered righteous by what they do and not by faith alone.

13 posted on 05/05/2014 6:33:32 PM PDT by St_Thomas_Aquinas ( Isaiah 22:22, Matthew 16:19, Revelation 3:7)
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To: Gamecock

And I believe that it was originally called the Colored Methodist Episcopal Church. The AME Church was founded shortly after the Methodist Episcopal Church in the 1780’s. The AME Zion Church came later, but I don’t recall the circumstances. I have visited AME and CME churches and found them to be of the traditional Methodism I grew up in.


14 posted on 05/05/2014 6:52:56 PM PDT by Southside_Chicago_Republican (If liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear.)
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To: Gamecock

Didn’t know Juan Williams had a brother.


15 posted on 05/05/2014 7:03:08 PM PDT by SeaHawkFan
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To: St_Thomas_Aquinas

John 3:16.


16 posted on 05/05/2014 7:15:06 PM PDT by SADMILLIE
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To: SADMILLIE

Keep reading, There are over 7900 more verses in the NT. Many of which tell us about the early church and elders and such.


17 posted on 05/05/2014 7:22:03 PM PDT by Gamecock (The covenant is a stunning blend of law and love. (TK))
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To: Gamecock

But most are Hearsay— non admissible evidence — Except Joh— He was a witness with first hand knowledge. Mark? Luke? What a joke. Matthew? All 30 years after the resurrection. Non admissible evidence.

/ what a j0


18 posted on 05/05/2014 7:28:46 PM PDT by SADMILLIE
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To: Gamecock

Did he donate to Obama???


19 posted on 05/05/2014 7:47:07 PM PDT by Nifster
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To: Gamecock

15 years is a bit long for this. 5 years max as long as he pays it all back.
Jon Corzine stole $1.6 billion and is a free man.


20 posted on 05/05/2014 7:52:52 PM PDT by minnesota_bound
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To: Gamecock

Looks like an early ‘80s era album cover.


21 posted on 05/05/2014 9:04:53 PM PDT by Oratam
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To: minnesota_bound

I am having the same reaction you are.
Our sentencing is so out of whack!


22 posted on 05/05/2014 10:06:25 PM PDT by AllAmericanGirl44
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To: SADMILLIE
If you Believe— you are saved. You don’t need a club house to pay for or a “preacher” to pay his mortgage and car payment and 40K!! JOHN 3:16— That is all you need.

Have you ever considered that there may be a purpose behind it? Jesus spent three years preaching about one topic. And that topic wasn't 'getting saved'.

I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.

John 10:10

23 posted on 05/05/2014 10:11:43 PM PDT by Hoodat (Democrats - Opposing Equal Protection since 1828)
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To: Gamecock
And yet a church and it’s proper function is described throughout the NT. Not to save but for the saved.

Well said. A church is a congregation of sinners who are now accountable to each other.

24 posted on 05/05/2014 10:13:15 PM PDT by Hoodat (Democrats - Opposing Equal Protection since 1828)
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To: SADMILLIE
John 3:16.

Matthew 6:33

25 posted on 05/05/2014 10:14:50 PM PDT by Hoodat (Democrats - Opposing Equal Protection since 1828)
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To: Gamecock
Read the article. Although the Rev. used a church credit card, which he obtained without authorization, he WAS the pastor and is probably allowed to sign for quite a bit. Sorry, but this sounds more like a case for the vestrymen rather than the law. BTW, why would the vestry take on a pastor who was on probation for a similar contretemps in the past? Something a bit screwy here. ... and sure to be something else going on. If it were just about the money, which isn't all that much, they would have to bust every pastor in Chicago.

This light-fingered fellow gets 15 years, and The Reverend Al Sharpton is free to walk the streets?

26 posted on 05/05/2014 11:23:07 PM PDT by Kenny Bunk (Take congress in 2014. Have a Constitutional Convention of the States. Save the Republic.)
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To: SADMILLIE
The King James Bible was finished in 1611.

The word 'church' is a legitimate translation for 'Eklessia'.

The church is the body of believers.(Eph.5)

You are correct you don't need a building, the 1st century church met in homes.

The 'church' in the Old Testament was an assembly.(Acts 7)

27 posted on 05/05/2014 11:36:14 PM PDT by fortheDeclaration (Pr 14:34 Righteousness exalteth a nation:but sin is a reproach to any people)
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To: SADMILLIE
Not when the Holy Spirit is involved!

All of the NT are equally God's words

28 posted on 05/05/2014 11:39:26 PM PDT by fortheDeclaration (Pr 14:34 Righteousness exalteth a nation:but sin is a reproach to any people)
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To: All

All of the Bible are God’s words (Old and New Testament)


29 posted on 05/05/2014 11:40:40 PM PDT by fortheDeclaration (Pr 14:34 Righteousness exalteth a nation:but sin is a reproach to any people)
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To: Kenny Bunk

I did read it carefully. Still think my question is valid, but it is that. A question. Not a legal opinion.


30 posted on 05/06/2014 3:23:30 AM PDT by Gamecock (The covenant is a stunning blend of law and love. (TK))
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To: Gamecock
....my question is valid, but it is that. A question.

Forgive me, I was rushing to not judgement, lest I be judged! That is an interesting legal point. If he got the AMEX in the Church's name, the Church could be on the hook. However, it could also become an insurance matter.

50 Large? How could that paltry sum be a 15-year problem in Chicago? The board could certainly wring this much out of the poor SOB's hide. Then there's Calypso Louie, Emmanuel Rahm, Jesse Jackson, The Reverend Wright .... come on my brothers, bail the guy ... and the church ...out

31 posted on 05/06/2014 9:49:42 AM PDT by Kenny Bunk (Take congress in 2014. Have a Constitutional Convention of the States. Save the Republic.)
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To: SADMILLIE

——But most are Hearsay— non admissible evidence — Except Joh— He was a witness with first hand knowledge. Mark? Luke? What a joke. Matthew? All 30 years after the resurrection. Non admissible evidence.-——

Glad you cleared that up for me....never knew I was laboring under a delusion that the Gospels except for the book ofJohn was bogus....

The whole of Christendom for 500 years must have been idiots....

/ S


32 posted on 05/06/2014 10:03:10 AM PDT by Popman ("Resistance to Tyrants is Obedience to God" - Thomas Jefferson)
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