Why Paisley is untouchable in his own church
Your correspondent Rev Mervyn Cotton has raised an interesting question as to the silence from the Free Presbyterian pulpits (Write Back, February 26).
The Free Presbyterian Church was established 60 years ago, and through the decades maintained a faithful separated witness against compromise - especially in the Presbyterian Church.
Things have changed dramatically in recent years since Rev Ian Paisley became First Minister.
Silence prevailed even when the power-sharing Executive was established and those principles of separation were quickly abandoned both in the political world and, more distressing, in the Free Presbyterian Church.
Senior clergymen have a misguided loyalty to Rev Paisley and are largely silent and the younger clergymen have been obliged to sign an undertaking that they will not speak out against any other ministerial colleague. One senior clergyman actually said "I do not agree with Ian Paisley going into the power-sharing Executive. I know it is not right, but I just have not the courage to condemn this."
Free Presbyterianism is silent in the face of spiritual and political compromise because Ian Paisley has been exalted to a position in the church by ministers and members that is untouchable and contrary to the Word of God.
No man can serve two masters.