comscore Church sign on Ramadan draws angry reaction from Trump delegate | Honolulu Star-Advertiser
Top News

Church sign on Ramadan draws angry reaction from Trump delegate

DALLASTOWN, Pa. >> A pastor is decrying an angry phone message and social media posting from a school board member who’s also a Republican convention delegate about a church sign that reads: “Wishing a blessed Ramadan to our Muslim neighbors.”

The Rev. Christopher Rodkey said he got a call June 11 about the sign outside St. Paul’s United Church of Christ, in Dallastown, Pennsylvania, from an unidentified man who called the sign “despicable” and referred to Islam as a “godless” and “pagan” religion.

Rodkey said he looked up the caller’s number and found it belonged to Matthew Jansen, a member of the Spring Grove Area School District and an elected delegate to the Republican National Convention who supports Donald Trump.

A photo of the sign was also posted on Jansen’s Twitter page along with the church’s phone number. Rodkey said he received a number of hang-up calls, prompting the church to disconnect the phone and answering machine, and was still getting calls five days later.

Rodkey said he posted the message on the sign because he believes that Muslims are used as scapegoats by the religious right and his church “is interested in religious tolerance.”

Jansen said he has driven past the church many times and has seen “disturbing things” on its sign, but this one “was over the top as far as I was concerned.” To him, Jansen said, the message was “blasphemous” and deserved a response.

Jansen said he was irate when he called Rodkey’s cellphone and forgot to leave his name but later called the church back to leave his name and number. He said he wasn’t trying to do anything intimidating but wanted to confront what he called the “greater issue of Islam.”

“I don’t see Islam — or the Muslim belief — I don’t see it as legit,” he said, noting that the Orlando shooting happened a day after his call.

Rodkey said he was disturbed by the message and post as well as other items on Jansen’s Twitter page, especially because they came from a school board member and convention delegate.

“I can’t believe an elected official would believe the things that he does,” he said. Jansen said his voicemail message and social media posts are his own views and don’t represent the views of others.

Comments (8)

By participating in online discussions you acknowledge that you have agreed to the Terms of Service. An insightful discussion of ideas and viewpoints is encouraged, but comments must be civil and in good taste, with no personal attacks. If your comments are inappropriate, you may be banned from posting. Report comments if you believe they do not follow our guidelines.

Having trouble with comments? Learn more here.

Leave a Reply

  • It’s always so pathetic how some people think it’s their business to be so angry on their god’s behalf. If your god is real and omnipotent, then let him take care of this himself if his feelings got hurt by some church sign. You aren’t his special little crusader. Get a life.

    • Exactly. I have a neighbor that has decided upon herself that she is the God’s judge and executioner and therefore has a right to try to make her neighbor miserable. She goes out of her way to tell any and everyone that her neighbor, who has done nothing to her or her family, is evil and deserves the wrath of God. And then she goes to church and sings praises to her God and celebrates His love for all His children except, God forbid, the one that she has decided has made a mistake in his past and warrants God’s hatred. When people decide that they have been given the Sheriff of God badge they begin to think that they have been given the right to hate on others either have a different view or have done a mistake that they deem is deserving of God’s wrath. Never mind that they have done wrong themselves. It’s as if they do so to make themselves “look” good in the eyes of God. How many times have we encountered this? It pits religions against religions and in this case neighbor against neighbor.

  • This shows the inner self of a Trump delegate. “I love the poorly educated!’ Go Trump!

    The DNC, and Senator Sanders, now have their goal at making Mr. Trump’s loss as widespread as possible in an effort to crush him completely.

    • There are crazies on both sides. It’s just that the main stream media will only point out the deeds of the right wing nuts. I’m sure there are a lot of left wing nuts, that support Clinton that does just as stupid things. It just doesn’t find its way into the headlines.

    • In 1996, Bill Clinton became the first US president to hold an Eid al-Fitr dinner at the White House to celebrate the end of Ramadan, the Muslim month-long dawn-to-dusk fast. Eid al-Fitr includes six “Takbirs,” the raising of hands and shouting, “Allahu Akbar!” to declare that Allah, the moon god, is “Greater” (than the God of all other religions, including Christianity – see Halal Meat).

  • Do not hire true Muslims: One whole month “RAMADAN” out of the year they are exhausted and their work suffers because they are not allowed to eat during the day. Then they gorge themselves at night and sleep poorly. Such religious followers make me doubt that humans are intelligent beings.

Click here to see our full coverage of the coronavirus outbreak. Submit your coronavirus news tip.

Be the first to know
Get web push notifications from Star-Advertiser when the next breaking story happens — it's FREE! You just need a supported web browser.
Subscribe for this feature

Scroll Up