LANCASTER - "Unfortunate," "a misfortune," and "surprised me" were the oft repeated reactions to news of the Rev. Everett Priddy's Tuesday arrest on a charge of indecent exposure.
By Thursday afternoon, it seemed all of Lancaster had heard of the incident. Yet, while his arrest certainly astonished the town, the community's reaction was one of support rather than condemnation.
"Brother Priddy is the shepherd of our flock, and as members of his flock we are going to stand behind him," said Janet Lane, a member of Priddy's Hyattsville Baptist Church congregation.
According to Stella Gaffney, another member, the church deacons met Wednesday night and have given Priddy some time off. "We're all absolutely dumbfounded. I felt like I'd been hit in the stomach. I just don't know what will come of it," she said of the arrest. "We're all going to pull together and pray for him."