You and I and everyone else has surely been watching the news, the videos, the protests surrounding Planned Parenthood. Some of us may have suspected that more atrocities were happening than the public was aware of. Others deny that anything is happening at all, that the videos have been doctored to look particularly damning.
Here’s what I know.
I know I have never been inside a Planned Parenthood.
Therefore, I can’t say for certain what goes on.
But this I do know this…
Evil is everywhere. And if the allegations are true, it would not surprise me. It would not surprise me at all if there were doctors who were harvesting babies for profit.
It would not surprise me at all, because one time, several years ago, I had a brush with a doctor who did just this very thing. He ran an illegal, black-market, fetal organ harvesting operation…
…And he was a part of my church.
The Upstanding Churchgoing Organ Dealer
Yes, we had a man who visited our church who did this very thing.
But we did not know it at the time.
In fact, he visited at our invitation. He and his wife became important parts of our church community. Several months passed before anyone suspected anything, before anything seemed out of place.
Once we started pulling up the rugs, looking for dirt, dirt we found everywhere. The man was all over Google. ABC News had done an undercover sting on him. We watched a man whom we accepted as a brother in Christ, say on hidden camera some of the very things that the people from Planned Parenthood are recorded as saying. If you remember Kermit Gosnell, that story was eerily similar to what we had personally found.
The video shows him, enjoying a lobster dinner, talking about body parts and dollar amounts.
The story of my church all those years ago, the terror and traumatic aftermath of that revelation are far too long a story to tell here. But soon after we found him out, so did police. He went to prison the same way that Capone did – for taxes. He died a few years later in his home, divorced and abandoned by his family.
Why Do We Act Surprised?
There may be some of us who doubt that Planned Parenthood, or anyone is capable of such evil. We do not want to believe that people chop up babies and sell their organs. We do not want to believe that men and women cut the faces off of newborns and sell them like scrap metal.
Here is the fact: they do.
They may or may not do it under the name Planned Parenthood. I don’t know. But they do just the same.
I am not surprised by this. No one should be surprised at this.
I am only surprised by our collective naivete in the face of such evil. This is what happens when we treat certain groups of people as sub-human. We degrade them, and then we exploit them for profit. We live in a culture that has been built on this practice. We are saturated by it.
We did not want to believe that there would be a group so extreme that they would decapitate, rape and slaughter dozens of people, and broadcast it to the world. But there is such a group, alive and working in the world today.
And to deny that such things happen is to do the very thing that we scream and cry about every time someone is sexually abused – we protect the abuser. We allow babies to be killed, to be raped, any time we foolishly deny that there are rapists or killers.
Evil Hides In Plain Sight
I hate being so graphic and unpleasant, but the world is a graphic and often unpleasant place. It doesn’t come with a movie rating for “comic mischief.” The world is not a Thomas Kincaid painting.
I think that we believe that, as a society, we have somehow evolved out of evil. We believe that we are enlightened, civilized. We can look at the ancient cultures who practiced human sacrifice, even infant sacrifice and recoil in falsely righteous indignation. We can comfort ourselves and say, “We have come so far.”
Many of our churches don’t talk about it much anymore, but if there is anything we should understand, it is this:
Evil hides in plain sight.
Evil can hide, disguised as an upstanding church-goer.
Evil hides in the guise of equal-rights or health-care.
Evil can take the form of anything.
Evil hides in plain sight, in our very lives. It hides in websites that promise discreet affairs. It hides in disloyal thoughts and harsh words. And until we are prepared to confront the wickedness that hides in our own lives, I believe the church will never be prepared to take a moral stance on anything outside its walls.
But guess what?
Evil hates the light.
It recoils from exposure.
It is painful for the dark to be exposed.
But shining the light on evil is what we are called to do.