A political ad on the radio statewide that claims the “Centennial Baptist Church” may be bulldozed for a shopping center – but doesn’t explain that the church in question is in Oklahoma – has upset parishioners at the Centennial Baptist Church in Caldwell, Idaho. “I think it’s kinda deceptive there to put our name in it,” said church treasurer Ben Mannen. “It’s not too good.”
Laird Maxwell, sponsor of Proposition 2 on the November ballot, said he talked with the church’s pastor and has since made a point in public statements of noting that the church his ad refers to is in Sand Springs, Okla. “It was just a misunderstanding,” Maxwell said. “I now know for certain that there is a Centennial Baptist Church in Caldwell, Idaho.”
Maxwell said he put in an order to add an Oklahoma mention when the ad runs in the Treasure Valley, but not all stations made the change. Mannen said he heard the ad again Wednesday and it was unchanged.
Maxwell said he figured he didn’t need to change the ad in any other part of the state, “because I only found one other Centennial Baptist Church and it was in Arkansas.”
The Caldwell church has been at its current location for more than a decade and previously was located downtown. About 250 to 300 people attended services there last Sunday. Said Mannen, “Anybody that’s asked, we just tell them, ‘it’s not us.’”
Betsy Z. Russell covers Idaho news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Boise.
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