“Quo vadis?” The modern usage of the phrase refers to a Christian tradition regarding Saint Peter. According to the apocryphal book The Acts of Peter, Simon Peter is fleeing from likely crucifixion in Rome at the hands of the government, and along the road outside the city he meets the risen Jesus. Peter asks Jesus "Quo vadis?” to which He replies, "Romam vado iterum crucifigi." ("I am going to Rome to be crucified again"). Peter thereby gains the courage to continue his ministry and returns to the city, to eventually be martyred by being crucified upside-down.
Regardless of whether this account from a book that was not included when the Bible was being canonized, the idea that Peter thought he should be leaving Rome when in fact Jesus wanted him there is a cautionary tale for us all- even those who would be ministers. And especially Christians who are living in a democratic republic where their participation is part of being a good citizen and requires so many decisions to be made in less than perfect circumstances.
The recent political activity by a minister from the Cleveland area shows some of the pitfalls that can come and how Aubrey Vaughn’s certainty about what direction he should go could easily be flawed and the opposite of what he should be doing.
Pastor Vaughn has made many political decisions that people can agree or disagree with. He has no drivers’ license because to get one the state wants to verify citizenship by seeing your social security card and Pastor Vaughn refuses to have a social security number. He has been jailed because he believes if his church doesn’t have to pay taxes, why should he. So he is no stranger to drawing a line in the stand and labeling things “good or evil” like he has Bobby Rader and Henry Patterson, except with this new line most people will view he has involved himself in personal attacks.
His activism in the past leaves us with questions – like does he drive without a license? Or shouldn’t he help society pay for “our common defense”, etc. by paying his taxes? And his actions against Bobby Rader leave us with questions too. Quo vadis, Brother Aubrey?
We realize the political team of the man who you support (Sheriff Patterson), has as a common characteristic “tax dodging” tendencies. We realize also they have bragged that they would send you out into public under the well thought of moniker, “Pastor”, and that they could get you to do whatever they wanted you to do. They have indicated a little anti-government rhetoric and a common belief that Jesus is the Son of God has bound you to them so tightly that you would help villainies’ Henry Patterson’s opponent.
But just as Peter headed one way and came to know he should turn around, we ask the same of you Brother. Not about whom you are voting for, but about you casting your Pastor’s pen into this local Sheriff’s race and claiming some kind of discernment about Bobby Rader and his integrity. Bobby Rader is a very well thought of Christian businessman who has helped so many children and so many adults in this community that it would be difficult to even guess how many lives he has effected. The help he offered to people came long before he ran for a political office. His Ted Poe style of administering justice has just added to opportunities Judge Rader has had to do good works.
The political team you have associated yourself with told us months ago that they predicted the commissioners’ court would want Rader to stay on the bench until after voters selected his replacement. They also threatened/extorted and attempted blackmail through their point man Eddie Shauberger that they would use that decision by the court and political spin on certain cases Judge Rader had ruled on to humiliate and berate – "Unless he pulled out of the race against Patterson". Quo vadis, Brother Aubrey?
Bobby Rader is not just highly revered by those who know him, he is loved. Loved by many who would tell you his walk and his talk about His Lord are solid and sincere. Why would a minister of the Gospel characterize Bobby’s decision to continue his work until a replacement has been chosen? You admit it is lawful, but you act as if is not moral. That makes no sense to many of us – and to be frank, the direction you have headed in on this matter seems wrong headed. You don’t have to disavow Patterson as your candidate of choice, but seriously, are you actually going to allow these people to use your position as the Shepherd of a church flock, to try and ruin the reputation of one of the most well thought of men in the county? Based on your opinion that his work in the courts gives him an unfair media advantage over the incumbent Sheriff? Quo vadis Brother Aubrey?
These people, this political team of Patterson’s… history will record have faithfully been at the same political meetings you have attended – they do their work in secret and they have secret motivations. Pictures of Valdez and Fuddy Williams and others are hard to come by. Are they not deceivers, Pastor? They have been careful to position themselves in their writing as “grateful for the assistance of local authorities”, yet we can not find one local authority, except Henry Patterson, who wants to be associated with them. They have bragged privately that they will unseat every one of the judges the voters have just elected. But their public writing acts like they are here to help WE THE PEOPLE.
Quo vadis, Brother Aubrey? We respect your courage to take a stand, but are you going to ask the rest of us to join you and these political chameleons in the soon to come distortion of Judge Rader’s work on the bench? Judge Rader ran as a Republcian when there were no local Republicans. He refused to go along to get along. His actions as a judge are very similar to that of Ted Poe. Highly energetic, innovative, honest, and the hardest working JP in the county – Bobby Rader deserves better.