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Book of Devotions Penned By Hillary Clinton's Pastor Plagiarized; Publisher Destroys All Copies

( [email protected] ) Sep 06, 2017 09:33 AM EDT
September 6, 2017: A planned book of devotions penned by Hillary Clinton's pastor has been cancelled after it was discovered that much of its content had been plagiarized.
"Strong for a Moment Like This: The Daily Devotions of Hillary Rodham Clinton" by Rev. Bill Shillady has been cancelled after it was discovered that much of its content had been plagiarized. Getty Images

A planned book of devotions penned by Hillary Clinton's pastor has been cancelled after it was discovered that much of its content had been plagiarized.

The United Methodist Publishing House, owners of Abingdon Press, released a statement on Tuesday announcing "Strong for a Moment Like This: The Daily Devotions of Hillary Rodham Clinton" by Rev. Bill Shillady would be withdrawn and all remaining copies destroyed.  

The decision was made after an "extensive review" of the book found numerous instances of plagiarism, the Rev. Brian Milford, the president and publisher of The United Methodist Publishing House, said.

"Abingdon Press has zero tolerance for plagiarism. Consequently, we have discontinued sales, will remove existing copies from all sales outlets, and will have them destroyed along with our existing inventory," he said.

As reported, the book included 365 of the 600 devotionals and inspirational prayers Shillady sent to Clinton in the months leading up the 2016 presidential election.

"Secretary Clinton found strength from these devotionals that I sent to her each day at 5am," he said earlier this year. "My team of writers and I used passages of scripture, a reflection on that passage, and a prayer to support her depending on the events that were taking place. I would write the devotional after reading the headlines of the day."

Last month, however, it was discovered that the prayer he sent Clinton the day after she lost the presidential election was similar to a blog post by the Rev. Matthew Deuel from Warsaw, Indiana. At the time, Shillady apologized and said he would credit the Indiana pastor in future editions of the book.

"I deeply regret my actions," Shillady said Tuesday. "I was wrong and there is no excuse for it. I apologize to those whose work I mistakenly did not attribute. I apologize to those I have disappointed, including Secretary Hillary Clinton, Abingdon Press, and all the writers and others who have helped me publish and promote this book. I ask for everyone's forgiveness."

CNN notes that Clinton appears on the cover of "Strong for a Moment Like This," and wrote a foreword for the book praising Shillady and his writings. She was reportedly scheduled to discuss the book with Shillady at a Sept. 7 event in New York.

Earlier, Shillady recounted how, after her shocking loss to President Trump last November, Clinton was "heartbroken." However, "her faith helped her move through that darkness," the pastor said.

Shillady added that since the election, Clinton has also "spent time walking in the woods and having time to think and pray. Now she says she's coming out of the woods."

Now, the former first lady wants to try her hand at preaching, he said, as she knows the Bible "remarkably well."

"We were having a photo shoot for the book and chatting about preaching and she said, 'Bill, I think I'd like to preach,'" he said. "In United Methodism, there's a tradition of having lay people preach from the pulpit, and I think she's going to look at occasionally doing that and sharing the good news without it being a politically charged environment."

Clinton's own book "What Happened" is scheduled for a release later this month.

Tags : Hillary Clinton, Devotional, prayer, Rev. Bill Shillady, presidential election