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Massachusetts Priest Plagiarizes Sermons, Gets Suspended

Steven Lively,flickr

Today’s sermon asks, is it right or wrong to re-preach someone else’s sermon? The Rev. John McGinn, longtime pastor at St. John’s Church in nearby Sandwich, MA, must have a lot to say about this, but he’s keeping it to himself after being suspended for allegedly plagiarizing sermons for years.

Rev. McGinn is the first to tell you that he subscribes to sermons.com, however his boss, Bishop M. Thomas Shaw, sees this as a serious breach of pastoral relationship. Rather than fuss with it all, Rev. McGinn is calling it quits and retiring! So, I made a few calls to my cleric friends and surprisingly they told me that taking or copying someone else’s work is common nowadays and they agreed that if credit is given, it’s something they have also done! Using other work, with credit reference given is fine with me.

Everyone needs a new idea, approach or quote. I do, however, have a problem with a pastor plagiarizing, word for word, a sermon without saying it wasn’t his! It’s simply not honest.

[CBS News]

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