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Corralitos Pastor Calls on Community to Shame Two Individuals Allegedly Caught Stealing
by Santa Cruz News
Sunday Mar 10th, 2019 1:11 AM
Fr. Derek Hughes of the Holy Eucharist Catholic Community Church in Corralitos is calling on community members to "shame" two individuals he says were caught on security camera footage stealing from a parishioner's vehicle parked outside of the church during Ash Wednesday Mass on March 6. In a social media post that is starting to go viral, Hughes uploaded still shots of the two men, and called on followers to "Please share and shame!" Shaming individuals accused of crimes has become commonplace in Santa Cruz County, with large social media groups such as "Take Back Santa Cruz" and "Santa Cruz Hall of Shame" dedicated to it. This may be, however, the first example of a local church calling on its followers to publicly shame someone as a group. Many Christian scholars have written about their opposition to shaming.
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On March 7, Hughes first post concerning the incident on social media included one extremely blurry photo and stated that the church possessed, "still pictures and high definition videos of the crime taking place", adding that, "If the tools are not returned by tomorrow, I will give the video and still pictures to the sheriff and post and shame the men, on Facebook, to the community."

"We have clear facial pictures of both from several security cameras. The picture below is deliberately out of focus," he said in the March 7 post.

On March 8, Hughes posted two new, clearer stills of the two individuals with the update: "the video is enroute to the sheriff". It was the most recent post concerning the incident.

Under the jurisdiction of the Diocese of Monterey, the Holy Eucharist Catholic Community Church has included very little information on their website pertaining to their specific beliefs, save one small quote:

"We are a supportive, faith-filled community that welcomes all people. Through our baptismal call to stewardship, we build up the Body of Christ, as we pray, worship, celebrate and reach out in service to others."

Pastor Stephen Altrogge of Sovereign Grace Church of Indiana, PA wrote in an article titled "You Can't Shame People Into Repentance" that the Bible rarely contains examples of Christians shaming each other.

"We repeatedly see God bringing people to shame, often out of a desire to bring them to repentance. God brought shame upon the Israelites when they abandoned him," Altrogge writes. "But you don’t see shame as a discipleship technique used between believers."

Altrogge gives a reason why individuals may choose to shame one another:

"We think we can because in the moment, shaming makes us feel powerful. Strong. In control. When we shame someone, we feel like we’re putting them in their place. When we shame our kids, we feel like we’re controlling them. When we shame those in the church, we feel like we’re keeping moral boundaries in place."

Jesus himself was not a fan of shaming, according to the Bible. Scholars cite Hebrews 12:2, which, referring to Christ, states “For the joy that was set before him [he] endured the cross, despising the shame” (verse 2). Shame is the one agony of the crucifixion mentioned in the Bible. In his final moments Jesus despised that shame.
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by Santa Cruz News Sunday Mar 10th, 2019 1:11 AM
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