Botoxic Pastor

I grew up Episcopal on Staten Island in New York City.. mom, my siblings and I attended services every Sunday. I have some pretty good memories of church back then. So when I saw this Fox News story below I was a bit surprised:
NEW YORK — A New York pastor accused of using church funds to pay for plastic surgery has been ordered to serve five years probation.

The Rev. William Blasingame also must pay back $84,537 to St. Paul's Memorial Episcopal Church on Staten Island.

Prosecutors say he paid for personal luxuries, including tens of thousands of dollars worth of plastic surgery and Botox treatments, with money earmarked for the needy and the upkeep of church grounds.

Defense attorney James Hasson said Wednesday that Blasingame plans to sell land he owns in Georgia to cover the restitution, the Staten Island Advance reported.

Blasingame pleaded guilty to felony grand larceny in September. He could have faced 15 years in prison if convicted at trial.

His lawyer says Blasingame is "very sorry."
Yet I have to admit that I was not too surprised about a story of a pastor feeling entitled to people's offerings.. I have been involved in church finances for many years.. but using donations dedicated to the poor for Botox.. now that is low.


  1. I'm not surprised that a pastor was caught with his hand in the collection box but I am surprised that you said, "I have to admit I was not too surprised about a story of a pastor feeling entitled to people's offerings."

    You, having been a pastor, would certainly know better than I would whether such an act is "not too surprising." I wouldn't have guessed that and I'm disappointed that such a attitude is not unusual in your experience.

    Why would they feel that way? Is it because their salary comes from that source; that they feel the church owes them as much financial support as they need.

    (Why did you stop using DISQUS for comments?)

  2. Easy question first Joe: I found out that DISQUS hijacked blog comments.. I lost the ones they managed when I changed my blog template.. so I decided not to use them with the new template.

    My experiences with pastors are three-fold.. 1) seeing the actions of church workers while I attended different churches; 2) sitting on a board that oversaw the dismissal of three pastors and 3) serving on a pastoral staff in both voluntary and paid positions.

    In retrospect (and not wanting to be indiscreet) I have to say that I have seen all sorts of stuff in ministry.. people who work for churches are people and prone to the same temptations as everyone else. The problem is that everyone (themselves included) thinks that they should be above this sort of thing.. and of course they should practice what they preach.

    The other thing that I have seen enter in is rationalization.. some do have a sense of entitlement (like many of the celebrity preachers) but others simply are, IMO, deceived when it comes to money issues.

    All that said I have to balance it out and say that I have seen a lot of church workers sacrifice for the ministry.. they are committed people who have a lot of integrity and honesty. Most of the people I have worked along side of have been hardworking people and good friends.

    I have tried to answer in generalities because I have friends who read here and I in no way would want to cast dispersion on them or their ministries.

  3. he has the plastic surgery done to himself?

  4. Sadly I'm not surprised either. Too many self-serving pastors out there. :/


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