After nine years of service as senior pastor of Grand Concourse Seventh-day Adventist Church in the Bronx, NY, Burnett Robinson’s stint has ceased after he preached a sermon approving of marital rape.
According to Religion News Service, Robinson preached about wife submission to husbands on November 13. He egregiously said, “gentleman, the best person to rape is your wife.”
Robinson was placed on administrative leave on Tuesday (November 23) by the Greater New York Conference of the Seventh-day Adventist (SDA) church. On Wednesday (November 24), it was announced Robinson had resigned. Communications consultant for Seventh-day, Kevin Lampe, said Robinson would no longer be allowed to serve at any Seventh-day church.
A statement on behalf of Robinson’s resignation was released:
“The Greater New York Conference of Seventh-day Adventists recognizes many have been deeply harmed by the sentiments expressed by Robinson. The views he expressed are wrong and not accepted by our church. Rape and sexual assault of women are crimes and should always be treated as such. We will continue to educate and counsel all pastors, seminary students, and staff to fully understand that this type of rhetoric is abhorrent and unequivocally unacceptable.”
In a short snippet of his November 13 sermon, Robinson said, ““In this matter of submission, I want you to know upfront, ladies, that once you get married, you are no longer your own. You are your husband’s,” he said before pausing for a moment. “You understand what I’m saying? I emphasize that because I saw in court the other day on TV where a lady sued her husband for rape. And I would say to you, gentlemen, the best person to rape is your wife. But then it has become legalized.”
SDA has over one million members they serve in the U.S., Canada and abroad. Approximately 977 members are a part of the Grand Concourse located in the Bronx. Bancroft Daughma will now serve as the interim pastor of this branch.