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(Opposing Views)   You can do a lot of bad things as a priest and hang on to your job. Plagiarizing sermons from sermons.com is not one of them   (opposingviews.com) divider line 96
    More: Dumbass, John McGinn, sermons, Episcopal Church  
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5939 clicks; posted to Main » on 21 May 2013 at 11:25 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-05-21 12:21:24 PM
Why would that be a problem? oh I get it, probably has something to do with money, never mind "sharing the word", that would be crazy.

/dnrtfa
 
2013-05-21 12:25:36 PM
Sure, it starts with stealing sermons, but it ends with stealing techniques for fingering altar boy anuses. Seen it a hundred times
 
2013-05-21 12:26:23 PM
Jesus is going to come back and sue your ass for using those words he wrote in the Bible.
 
2013-05-21 12:27:45 PM

Theaetetus: They caught him when he started his new sermon about his personal trials growing up as a small black woman in Mississippi.


Today's sermon: "the Lord loves a workin' man." Next week: "don't never ever trust Whitey."
 
2013-05-21 12:32:16 PM

UrukHaiGuyz: our priest was a hard-drinking Aussie who frequently plagiarized his own sermons.


media-cache-ak1.pinimg.com
 
2013-05-21 12:33:06 PM

d23: [i.qkme.me image 453x604]


There's a girl who works here that looks exactly like that and exposes just as much cleavage daily.  Dead F'n Ringer.
 
2013-05-21 12:37:15 PM

Dazrin: Tom_Slick: elderly preacher, he and his wife had no children, when he died he left everything to the church he had retired from 20 years earlier. In his 20 years of retirement he traveled to small churches conducting services when they were in between preachers or a preacher just wanted a 2 week vacation. Anyway while cleaning out his house a file cabinet was found full of sermons, on the folder of each sermon was a list of churches where he gave the sermon to make sure he never doubled up. He essentially wrote all of his sermons in the 1960s and then proceeded to deliver them through the 1980s.

That's fairly common for traveling preachers. It is one reason why they tend to have good sermons - they have practiced it a hundred or so times, so they should be able to give a good performance.


I know minsters that recycle sermons on a 4 year cycle.  No one remembers the sermon from the first time, and really, how many ways can you do 1 Corinthians Chapter 5 (and why should you have to build a speech from whole cloth every single time?)?
 
2013-05-21 12:38:31 PM

UrukHaiGuyz: WhyKnot: Fizpez: FARK rebel soldier: I know RTA is a sin in the One Holy Apostolic and Catholic Church of the People's Republic of Farkistan, but you all seem to be missing something here: The guy is a priest with the Episcopal Church, and I don't seem to remember the Episcopal priests molesting my ass when I was a boy.

None of that matters one bit - the word priest brings a Pavlovian response from a significant fraction of Farkistan - reading the story would be an inconvenient speed bump on their way to making the required pithy comment.

Fark - where Christianity is a sin, republicans are evil, Obama is a god, kids and their parents have no right to be anywhere at anytime, everyone tips 35%, oppressive government is cool as long as it is against the 'other guy', and all hot chicks are always 'meh'.

/you sound fat


Ha!

I'd go stand in the corner, but I can't find my prying bar to get me off of the couch.
 
2013-05-21 12:39:46 PM
The congregation knew something was wrong when he started the sermon with "H, T, T, P, dot, W, W, W, dot...
 
2013-05-21 12:58:01 PM

meanmutton: Maybe it's because I'm an atheist and don't understand the intricacies of religion but what, exactly, is wrong with reading a sermon that someone else wrote?


Because it would be impossible for God to put the exact same words in everyone's head....wait...no...hey!!!
 
2013-05-21 01:06:14 PM

RedPhoenix122: Lando Lincoln:

What? Priests can't borrow sermons from other priests? What freaking ever.

I know, they stole the entire Torah from the Jews


And the Prophets and Writings too. And the Dead Sea Scrolls.

Anyway.

It behooves me to inform y'all persons of the cloth and suchlike that I can write Christian sermons from several doctrinal viewpoints, everything from "Groovy! Jesus is love!" to "Obey God and fear his whoop-ass!" I can even prove from Scripture that we should praise God because he has low self-esteem or because he's some kind of horrifying psycho.

Whether you hold to baptising children or not, or think Jesus is God or just a prophet, or literally believe the Bible or not, whether you say Satan works for God or is a Communist Homo, or even however you feel about Jews, gays and/or "non-whites," I can write sermons that will fill that collection plate or tip jar. And because not everybody has my gift for oral rhetoric I'll even include notations like "[raise hands to sky here]," "[pause for three seconds here]" and "[stage-whisper next sentence]."

Yea O fellow Farkers, for but a moderate remuneration I can turn you from a wallflower dweeb to a Pastor of Power. You'll become a respected figure in your community: you might get rich or even laid. I give discounts to snarky secret atheists and I accept Paypal too. EIP!
 
2013-05-21 01:16:26 PM
Every sermon I've ever heard sounds like every other sermon. Who cares? It's not like these are works of art or contain actual, unique and important information.

Sermon formula:

Bland, generic anecdote + semi-relevant bible text + painfully obvious conclusion relative to viewing the bland generic anecdote through the lense of the semi-relevant bible text = sermon.
 
2013-05-21 01:23:42 PM
Until early modern times (let's say until the invention of radio sermons), plagiarizing sermons was an art.
When clergymen discovered the radio, then TV, and finally the Web, the art of sermon-lifting went into a sad decline1.

Just as much of modern publishing is dedicated to cook-books (or food porn) which nobody ever reads much less uses, most of publishing prior to the invention of the radio consisted of collections of sermons. These often ran to many volumes. Since books were often sold without bindings (just the paper, uncut, ready to be bound to the client's specifications), these collections became the gathering place not only for sermons that nobody would ever hear again (unless a clergyman got their hands on the volume(s)) but also pornography, political propaganda and basically anything immoral, illegal, or embarrassing, such as Dame Barbara Cartland novels--especially those she wrote before 1832).

You can still find collections of old sermons in bookstores for this reason. They'd have been used to wrap fish centuries ago if it weren't for the treasures of literature often found within.

Books of sermons were thus a sort of literary equivalent of the fake book safe. If you had something valuable you could hide it in a book of sermons safe in the assurance that it was highly improbable, if not nearly impossible, that anybody2 would ever find it. Some of the greatest literary works of all time, such as Voltaire and Diderot, were bound in books of sermons. Atheists, revolutionaries, great writers, scientific excentrics, political thinkers--all have been reduced to hiding among the sophoric or sophomoric (or both) pages of the sermon. There's quite a lot of irony in books of sermons, also a lot of interesting illustrations of sexual positions. Maybe this is why conservative Christians are such utter hypocrites. Their reading material makes EC comic books look like Psalms.

1(See Oscar Wilde, "The Decay of Lying", for a similar disaster in the XIXth century)
2Except, of course, the millions of readers who knew the trick.3
3
You can learn a lot of crap like this by hanging around Old and Used Book Dealers.
 
2013-05-21 01:26:06 PM
phalamir:

I know minsters that recycle sermons on a 4 year cycle. No one remembers the sermon from the first time, and really, how many ways can you do 1 Corinthians Chapter 5 (and why should you have to build a speech from whole cloth every single time?)?

What's worse is among "typical" Protestants there's a list of what kinds of sermons to give when called the Revised Common Lectionary; it runs in 3-year cycles. Furthermore it tells you how to use Scripture:
The major principle behind the lectionary is that on a Sunday members of congregations should be able to hear the voice of each writer week by week, rather than readings being selected according to a theme. Thus, in any given year the writer of one of the first three gospels will be heard from beginning to end. Likewise the rest of the New Testament is heard, in some cases, virtually in total, in others in large part.
This principle is subject to a number of exceptions. Firstly, different principles apply during the special seasons of the year: Advent, Christmas, Epiphany, Lent and Easter. Here appropriate lections relevant to the season are chosen. The rest of the year, called Ordinary Time, begins in February (after Candlemas) and runs until the Second Sunday before Lent. It then resumes after Pentecost until the Sunday before Advent which is kept as the Feast of Christ the King.
I'd rather write sermons based on theme myself, given as how I'm all poetically inspired & shiate, but there's no reason you can't use my sermons in any order you like. And preaching from a particular gospel is really just a a variation on a book report; for a slightly higher fee I can even consciously employ New Criticism, textual analysis, SciFi or Pomo. Preach my text and you'll sound like you really like to read.Consult today! You might make bishop yet!
 
2013-05-21 01:27:00 PM

wildcardjack: I'm a used book dealer and one of the harder things to move was a ten volume collection called "500 sermons", or at least I think that's the title. It was a few years ago.

It was the time I balanced a history of doing drug deals in bookstore parking lots with doing a book deal in a drugstore parking lot.


4See? This is the type of crap I mean! Booksellers are full of it! Raconteurs, that's what they call themselves. The rest of us in the Republic of Literature have various other names, especially when we are in a hurry.
 
2013-05-21 01:37:16 PM

brantgoose: wildcardjack: I'm a used book dealer and one of the harder things to move was a ten volume collection called "500 sermons", or at least I think that's the title. It was a few years ago.

It was the time I balanced a history of doing drug deals in bookstore parking lots with doing a book deal in a drugstore parking lot.

4See? This is the type of crap I mean! Booksellers are full of it! Raconteurs, that's what they call themselves. The rest of us in the Republic of Literature have various other names, especially when we are in a hurry.


I have no idea what you're harping about. I'm a bum that hustles books around. Hell, all I read is old sci-fi and Roman nobs, like Seneca and Cato.
 
2013-05-21 01:37:23 PM
Jesus, Horus, Mithra ... kind of plagiaristic there too.
 
2013-05-21 01:39:56 PM
Oh, yes. And sermon recycling. Some clergymen (and I suppose, clergywomen) use their successful sermons over, perhaps every year. It would be an enormous public crisis of morals that would inspire them to replace the habitual sermon for one day of the Church Calendar with a new sermon.

If their hand is forced, they might write a new sermon but you can be sure the occasion of this novelty and disruption would be quite serious. You'd know it was coming in advance--for one thing, you wouldn't see the clergyman for a whole week. Attendance might well be over-flowing on the day of the New Song in Heaven.

Not everybody objects to this system. Especially in some of the more lax, Quietist congregations, people appreciate the predictability. Repetition has much to recommend it, in preaching as in teaching. Eventually some of it may sink into the numbest numbskulls.

Also, it is easier to sleep through a familiar sermon than a wild and novel one.

Not only is this a good thing for the congregation, but it is a good thing for the clergy. They can hone their best sermons as carefully and slowly and smoothly as an Inuit hunter making a soapstone sculpture through the long Winter Night. They can turn a dull and pedestrian sermon into a work of art over the course of fifty or more years. They can work it up into some great that it is an honour to hear, even if you are an old atheist reprobate, and move their audience to tears and laughter as slickly as any Saint.

But in the end, you get what you pay for, and if you want fresh, topical sermons, you have to pay a fresh, topical clergyperson to write and deliver them. Otherwise, stealing sermons is probably the best idea for all concerned. The clergyperson is innocently amused and occupied by searching through millions of already polished sermons, some which may require an updating of the lingo to remove archaic language, such as thees and thous where thees and thous no longer have a right to be, but otherwise, it can lead to a great improvement in the quality of sermons.

And after all, isn't sharing what Christianity is all about?

"If you enemy has a good thing, steal it. If your friend has a good thing, it is already yours." I made that proverb up myself, or perhaps I didn't and simply forgot where I found it.

I Googled this proverb and a couple of variants and did not find them, so obviously the first person to come up with this saying used completely different words, possibly another language. So it's mine. Mine. Mine. Mine. You can use it, but don't abuse it by stealing from me.
 
2013-05-21 01:46:37 PM

phalamir: remus: I don't think God is litigious as much as liturgical.

Then you are totally unfamiliar with the Church Councils in Late Antiquity


Not sure about that.  I can't see how God could possibly get litigious.  For starters, where would he get a Lawyer?  It's not like he has any around.
 
2013-05-21 01:50:14 PM

remus: phalamir: remus: I don't think God is litigious as much as liturgical.

Then you are totally unfamiliar with the Church Councils in Late Antiquity

Not sure about that.  I can't see how God could possibly get litigious.  For starters, where would he get a Lawyer?  It's not like he has any around.


I have it on good authority that Old Scratch is on retainer.

/both sides are bad?
 
2013-05-21 01:54:17 PM
This happened in an Episcopal congregation, and it's my impression that Episcopalians value intellectual pursuits and integrity somewhat higher than your basic Baptist xenophobes. Thus, the outrage.

Still, on the whole, it's pretty false outrage. I think it gets back to whether any given preacher sees himself as an actor presenting a script or as a writer presenting a parable.
 
2013-05-21 01:56:36 PM
We have a pastor from Ohio and one from Iraq.  The Ohio pastor drums the love God, serve others.  The Iraqi pastor preaches Job without the happy ending.  You can see whole rows of people wither when he gets to their sin.
 
2013-05-21 02:06:41 PM

darth_badger: Jesus, Horus, Mithra ... kind of plagiaristic there too.


Go watch Zeitgeist debunked, and be un-moron'd.
 
d23 [TotalFark]
2013-05-21 02:10:53 PM
*Sigh* cute girl again, please...

i.qkme.me

thank you...
 
2013-05-21 02:11:55 PM
Religious people are amazing.  You can rape children, and they will help cover it up and move you to another church so you can do it again.  But give the same sermon as someone else has given, and you get fired.
 
2013-05-21 02:27:34 PM

RedPhoenix122: I know, they stole the entire Torah from the Jews


Then collapsed in a fit of the giggles and handed most of it straight back.
 
2013-05-21 02:29:50 PM

JuggleGeek: Religious people are amazing.  You can rape children, and they will help cover it up and move you to another church so you can do it again.  But give the same sermon as someone else has given, and you get fired.


It's right there in the franchise agreement.  *SHEESH*

Cute girl is more than cute and yes, thank you . . .
 
2013-05-21 02:43:17 PM
Doesn't that religion just steal ideas from previous religions anyway?
 
2013-05-21 02:50:34 PM

Tom_Slick: CSB:

When I was young we lived next door to an elderly preacher, he and his wife had no children, when he died he left everything to the church he had retired from 20 years earlier.  In his 20 years of retirement he traveled to small churches conducting services when they were in between preachers or a preacher just wanted a 2 week vacation.  Anyway while cleaning out his house a file cabinet was found full of sermons, on the folder of each sermon was a list of churches where he gave the sermon to make sure he never doubled up.  He essentially wrote all of his sermons in the 1960s and then proceeded to deliver them through the 1980s.

/CSB


Considering it's 99% conservative moralistic Readers' Digest-grade platitude, you've got to admire the record-keeping involved in his recycling. Also, he wrote it originally, and recycled it when essentially retired.

If I was that critical of self-plagiarism, I couldn't stand to listen to U2.

/oh, wait...
 
2013-05-21 02:51:15 PM
This scores a 0.0 on my giveashiat scale
 
2013-05-21 03:00:35 PM
Given the organization has a certain tendency to worship a creator, it's not surprising that plagiarism gets their goat.  And given the organization is incapable of recognizing actual evil, it's not surprising that the pastor feels he did nothing wrong.
 
2013-05-21 03:09:21 PM

meanmutton: Maybe it's because I'm an atheist and don't understand the intricacies of religion but what, exactly, is wrong with reading a sermon that someone else wrote?


Yup that one flummoxed me too.
 
2013-05-21 03:22:07 PM

ukexpat: meanmutton: Maybe it's because I'm an atheist and don't understand the intricacies of religion but what, exactly, is wrong with reading a sermon that someone else wrote?

Yup that one flummoxed me too.


A royalty cheque.
 
2013-05-21 03:23:14 PM

ukexpat: meanmutton: Maybe it's because I'm an atheist and don't understand the intricacies of religion but what, exactly, is wrong with reading a sermon that someone else wrote?

Yup that one flummoxed me too.


Not the reading as much as the publishing, think of it as recording a cover song and not giving credit.
 
2013-05-21 03:24:46 PM

LisaNeedsBraces: ukexpat: meanmutton: Maybe it's because I'm an atheist and don't understand the intricacies of religion but what, exactly, is wrong with reading a sermon that someone else wrote?

Yup that one flummoxed me too.

A royalty cheque.


And now featuring a proper English sentence structure:

What's wrong here is that the guy made $$$$$ from the sermons without giving credit and/or a royalty cheque to the original author.  Artists'/authors' rights and all that...
 
2013-05-21 03:27:45 PM
It's not like there's anything new being added to the Bible. I would be surprised if any pastor is giving a sermon someone, somewhere hasn't already delivered.

That being said, putting them online was a mistake.
 
2013-05-21 03:54:13 PM
Tommy Moo:

It's not like there's anything new being added to the Bible. I would be surprised if any pastor is giving a sermon someone, somewhere hasn't already delivered.

But word for word?
 
2013-05-21 03:54:16 PM

meanmutton: Maybe it's because I'm an atheist and don't understand the intricacies of religion but what, exactly, is wrong with reading a sermon that someone else wrote?


Right? It's not as if the lessons in those sermons lose their meaning over time.  Granted, some stuff might need updating every now and then, e.g. references to changing technology or world events.  But six paragraphs about what "Love they neighbor as thyself" really implies isn't going to suddenly become incorrect or less meaningful because it's been said before or wasn't written by the guy reading it.

I'm a Lutheran.  Do other churches think this is wrong?  Do your pastors (or whatever) think to themselves "Hey! I'll teach about the prodigal son today!  Oh, wait.  Jesus already did that one.  Stupid Jesus.  Always hogging all the good parables."

Or maybe it's like lip syncing.  Everyone knows that all the big-name preachers do it.  I mean, it's hard to keep your breath during those big dance numbers.
 
2013-05-21 04:00:57 PM
wildcardjack:
I have no idea what you're harping about. I'm a bum that hustles books around. Hell, all I read is old sci-fi and Roman nobs, like Seneca and Cato.

You are living my dream.  Well at least the parts of it that don't involve comforting Jeannie after her difficult divorce from Major Nelson.
 
2013-05-21 04:05:52 PM

Lando Lincoln: What? Priests can't borrow sermons from other priests? What freaking ever.


It's not that he borrowed sermons from other priests, it's that he bought a book of sermons that he was perfectly able to use in his church. However, he went on to publish them online and in print form claiming to be the author. How stupid do you have to be to try to re-publish something currently available in print?
 
2013-05-21 04:40:38 PM
Hmm, at the seminary my mom was taught exactly where to find sermons to copy online. She inherited her grandfather's books of sermons as well, he was a Lutheran pastor who had 50 volumes of fill-in-the-blank sermons for all ocassions. Of course they are hideously out of date so she never uses them. But sermons are like car commercials by the automakers, basically mass produced with little holes where you fill in personally relevant information for the local dealerships.
 
2013-05-21 05:12:44 PM
Wait till the bake sale ladies get busted for stealing recipes from Southern Living magazine.
 
2013-05-21 05:13:16 PM
I preach on average once a week (and haven't molested anybody).

The big deal here is passing someone else's stuff off as your own.

Some have argued here that if your preaching is based on the Bible, the content should be essentially the same so who cares if you use others' material.

I disagree with this firstly because of the basic dishonesty involved (which means your word isn't trustworthy on anything else) and secondly because if you are going to speak in public with any authority it seems to me that you should have worked through the ideas for yourself. So using someone else's sermon or commentary to help shape your ideas is ok, quoting them with acknowledgement is OK, but you have to have put in the effort yourself too.

Sometimes I recycle sermons (I preach in church and also in a prison) but never exactly the same twice. And in both cases they are all my own work.

I'm also currently investigating two proven instances of plagiarism by published authors who are also full time christian ministers, so I'm getting a kick/blessed/etc...
 
2013-05-21 05:21:45 PM

FARK rebel soldier: I know RTA is a sin in the One Holy Apostolic and Catholic Church of the People's Republic of Farkistan, but you all seem to be missing something here: The guy is a priest with the Episcopal Church, and I don't seem to remember the Episcopal priests molesting my ass when I was a boy.


Perhaps your memories are repressed.... or maybe you're Jewish.
 
2013-05-21 05:33:14 PM

Pelvic Splanchnic Ganglion: I'm unclear on what the problem is.  Sermons.com appears to be intended for that exact purpose.


Silly boy; it's intended to make money.

"Sermons.com is the largest subscription based preaching resource in the world "

Wonder how many schoolteachers plagiarize lesson plans.

The essence of plagiarism is representing someone else's work as your own.  It is a deception practiced  upon one's audience, even if it is not a violation of the author's copyright because he granted permission.  In the unlikely event that a copyright holder said, "Go ahead, use my work verbatim and don't tell anyone," he would be complicit in plagiarism.
 
2013-05-21 11:22:39 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x5Gnuqg3NEI">http://www.youtube.com/wa tch?v=x5Gnuqg3NEI
 
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