NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — When the bronze lid of the baptismal font disappeared from the West Park Presbyterian Church on W. 86th Street, Rev. Robert Brashear confronted the nearly 60 Occupy Wall Street protesters who’d been sleeping there.
“I, in my upset, talked about the fact that even in the 1980s when we had a lot of crack addicts etc. in the neighborhood, and even robbing people in the church, that particular religious symbol had never really been disturbed before,” Brashear said.
“I tried to make clear that I don’t believe in collective punishment but I do believe in collective accountability and responsibility,” he added.
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Brashear gave them 24 hours to come up with a response.
They agreed to find other places to stay within two weeks, and to find an artisan who can make a replacement for the sacred piece if they don’t find it.
“Which I think would be a beautiful solution if that would come about,” said Brashear.
The pastor says he still supports the protest.
“I don’t think you can blame the movement for not being able to deal with the issues of people that our culture and society has not been able to deal with, either” he said.
In the first week the group was there, his computer also went missing. The group promised to reimburse him.
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