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Guest Post: On Crimes and Church, by Cindy Brakey

Updated: May 25, 2023

**This post has been updated to reflect recent information**

For the second time this year, my church, the First Congregational-Christian Church of New Gloucester, has been the victim of criminal acts.

The first time was in March, when someone broke into the church in an apparent attempt to

find money. Some office doors and a file cabinet were damaged, and the phone and internet

lines were cut. Fortunately, nothing in the sanctuary was disturbed. On the Sunday following this incident, I asked the congregation to pray for the person or persons who did this because it seemed to be an act of desperation.

The second criminal act was this week, when someone stole the pride flag that the church council had decided to display from the church’s sign on Gloucester Hill Road. Even though the person replaced that flag with a small American flag, he or she interfered with the church’s rights. I am praying for the person who committed this theft. **

While I do not agree with the council’s decision to display the pride flag, I cannot condone someone stealing a flag from church property. I have been working through proper channels within the church to express my concerns about the divisive nature of singling out any one group, whoever they are, for special treatment. I don’t want political views to be what my church is known for, and I want my church to welcome all of God’s children.

These days, politics is driving wedges between people, even in churches - especially my local church. However, I have decided that if I hang out only with people who agree with me on everything that I am no longer able to know, love and value people who are different from me.

**As a point of clarification, I have learned that the person who put up the American flag was not the same person as the one who stole the pride flag. In any event, I still believe that it was inappropriate for someone to steal a flag from church property.


*This is a guest post by Cindy Brakey. The views expressed are those of Cindy Brakey, and not endorsed by the New Gloucester GOP. The New Gloucester GOP supports the right of individuals to submit guest blog posts freely, and without censorship. If you are interested in sharing an article, or post please send all submissions to

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