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Pastor asks for prayers against foes

Times Staff Writer

For the second time in six months, Buena Park pastor Wiley S. Drake has called on his followers to pray for the demise of leaders of Americans United for Separation of Church and State.

Last week, Drake learned that the IRS had launched an investigation into his endorsement of former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee’s presidential bid, an inquiry that Americans United had urged.

The endorsement was written on church letterhead and announced during a church-affiliated Internet radio show. As tax-exempt organizations, churches are barred from campaigning for candidates. IRS officials declined to comment on the matter, citing privacy regulations.

In an e-mail Thursday, Drake urged action against Americans United and the American Civil Liberties Union.

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As he had in August, Drake quoted Psalm 109, which speaks of wicked and deceitful people and asks God to let such a person’s days be few and let his children be fatherless and his wife a widow.

“In light of the recent attack from the enemies of God, I ask the children of God to go into action with imprecatory prayer,” he wrote.

Imprecatory prayers have been defined as praying for someone’s misfortune or as appeals to God for justice.

The Rev. Barry W. Lynn, Americans United executive director, called Drake’s appeal to his supporters “reckless and repugnant.”

“Introducing this kind of religious extremism into American life is reprehensible,” he said.

david.mckibben@latimes.com


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