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Blackmailing Ministers

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The New York correspondent of the Boston Journal tells the following oase : A Presbyterian pastor of eminence was made the victim. His chureh was one of the most wealthy and fashionable in the city. It etnbraced the most eminent and distinguished merchants. The pastor was a superb preacher. But ho was a sensitive, scholarly man, shrinking f rom notoriety and jealous of his reputation. He was marked by a gang of blackmailers, who went for hirn. He was entrapped into visiting a house to see a sick woman, and then threatened with exposure if he did not pay money. He found himself in the toils of desperate people, and paid varions sums, till the amount reached $1,000. He found he would be ruined financially as well as otherwise, and he did at last what he should have done at the start. He called his deacons together and made afull statement of the whole affair. The pólice were put on jhe_traojc Ga'rtii8ii;1a'fi}rïw:o"öf the company sent up the river. The pastor retained his position till his death. In one of the Episcopal churches of the city, to-day one of the most noted, a rector was on the top wave of popular favor. His chureh was crowded and fashionably attended. One Saturday afternoon while tho preacher was in the very zenith of his fame, the senior warden received a letter from the rector aunouncing his resignation and stating that he had sailed that morning for Europe. The jarish was filled with consternation. The ector was urged to return. It carne out ;hat he had been the victim of blackmailers for months. His purse was exhausted and he was nearly mad. The story he ;old was a strange one. He was awakened at night by a violent ringing of his ell. A poor woman was sick unto death. Would the rector come to her chamber and baptize her little infant, that she inight die in peace 't jOf course he would. Instead of sending his visitor after a policeman while he dressed he confided in the man - lelt his home and went into one of the slums of the city. He was lead up the creaking stairway, dark and riokety, until he reached the attic. He was greeted by a shout that deafened him and the door was locked upon him. Five hundred dollars was the ransom. The rector had no such sum about him. An obligation was signed bearing date - midnight - with the name of the street upon it. The sum was paid the next day. From time to time money wasdemanded. Men hung around the chureh door, and had an altercation on the steps of his house when he had company. He was dogged constantly. The rector had no one to aid him ; he had gone too far to speak. In desperation he threw up his josition and lelt the country. He came out of the ordeal all right, his usefulness jeing dimmed, but not destroyed. These are but specimens of a dozen cases that I could give in which timid, scholarly, sensitive uien have done yery foolish things o escape an exposure that will come sooner or later.


Old News
Michigan Argus