The True Force
We returned full of excitement after taking our two kids to see The Phantom Menace and pulled out "Saber savior" (May 22) from the mail. Thank you for the differing views on the movie and its influence on the culture. As Christians who thrive on seeing how the gospel can intersect with the culture, we appreciated the varying thoughts on this week's cultural phenomenon. Overhearing my husband and me discussing the different views, my 7-year-old son shook his head and said, "It was a lot of fun, it was a great movie. Let's just enjoy it." It was a lot of fun and we did enjoy it-perhaps even more so because we know the True Force. Please don't ever stop helping Christians reflect on what is happening in our culture, even if it is "just" entertainment. - Jacquelin Gatliff, Northville, Mich.
Use the culture
Your coverage of The Phantom Menace was superb. Other magazines only discussed the present-day phenomenon, while your magazine took me back into history to find out why the original Trilogy may have been so popular. When discussing the Star Wars series, I always try to bring people back to God's Word and Christ's sacrifice. Christians should be able to use the popular culture to point people to Christ, deftly explaining the similarities to true spirituality as well as the counterfeit. - Carrie Rostollan, Warren, Mich.
Piercing the hype
I had just come home from watching The Phantom Menace when we got your magazine with the Star Wars cover in the mail. I thought your articles on the movie were right on. You did not get wrapped up in the special effects and hype as some reviewers have, but merely presented the facts about the movie. Personally, I enjoyed the movie very much, although I thought the acting could have been better. - Hannah Pratt, Orlando, Fla.
To demolish pretensions
After seeing the cover photo on "Saber savior," my 8-year-old daughter asked, "Well, that isn't Christian, so why is it on the cover of WORLD?" This seemed a prime opportunity to help her understand what it means to follow Jesus in the world. Rather than sticking our heads in the sand, "We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God." I often read letters to Mailbag complaining about your coverage of "questionable material." While the subject matter doesn't often uplift me spiritually, I recognize the need to be informed about the issues that are shaping our world. - Elaine R. Pearson, Boston, Mass.
Balderdash in 1977 and still balderdash 22 years later. That's Star Wars. - Glenn Garner, Sequim, Wash.
What we need
Thank you for your stellar articles on The Phantom Menace. You showed how, while the movie is far from perfect and not worth the idolization it's getting, it might just be what a country with mixed morals needs. - Tyle Huckabee, Lincoln, Neb.
God bless George
The critic in me instantly began to find fault with The Phantom Menace as the credits rolled. Yet Star Wars displays to us good and evil, minus the thick gray line. God bless George Lucas for standing up for something in a world where that is condemned. - Benjamin C. Kreis, Grand Junction, Colo.
I do not agree with all the "Force" business in Star Wars, but I will see the new movie and enjoy the time to have fun and not hear cursing. When we have an opportunity to participate in a cultural phenomenon like this we truly can be in but not of the world and maybe even give others a piece of our worldview-much like you did in the articles. - Dave Licklider, Shawnee, Okla.
The baby religion
This article on Star Wars was a farce. Pagan religions, Earth religions are not myths. They were began long before Judaism and especially Christianity, which is the baby religion of them all. New Age is not new. The whole world does not revolve around "what the Bible says." You can only get respect for your beliefs when you give the same respect for others'. Christianity is the myth. I cannot give my name and address for fear of my, my husband's, and my children's safety. You never know what violence Christians are capable of. - Silver Dragon & Lion Wolf
Wiccan Priestess and Priest, location withheld
Please cancel my subscription. I am tired of reading about this old sin-infested world. And since when does a "Christian" magazine do a cover story about Star Wars? - Jeff Yutzy, Plain City, Ohio
Sticking with WORLD
Please do not cancel my subscription for any reason whatsoever. - A 17-year-old reader, Lake Havasu City, Ariz.
Your article, "UN population controllers seize new opportunity" (May 22), shows how when we charge President Milosevic with genocide, he is able to charge the West with infanticide. He kills Albanian men while we, with the UN, eliminate food and medical supplies to these same Albanians in favor of equipment to kill their babies. - Kathy Clark, Rockford, Ill.
A complete overview
My husband and I thought "The fires next time" by Mindy Belz (May 22) was excellent coverage. We listen to NPR and take several magazines, but none of them gave such a complete overview of what we are and will be facing in the years to come. Keep up the good work. - Donna Adee, Minneapolis, Kan.
I have spent countless hours reading your website. I just sent in my subscription request. It is refreshing to find that there is still a desire in this country by some journalists to proclaim the news in a manner that would be pleasing to our Lord. - John McMordie, Westfield, Mass.
Think and rethink
There are some things I don't like about your magazine. The remnants of my Pietistic rearing don't care a bit about your movie reviews, my dispensational position sometimes takes issue with what I think may be implied, and I don't always agree with your editorial conclusions. But you shouldn't write to totally please me because you need to make me think and rethink my positions. Thank you for doing what you are doing. - Dick Hess, Lakehurst, N.J.
I live in Ohio, am a 14-year-old girl, and liked Gene Edward Veith's article, "In praise of teenagers" (May 15). I'm glad an adult has finally realized that not all teens are being hopelessly indoctrinated by the liberal media and death-metal rock. I have recently joined a youth group full of kids committed to Christ-some of the most open-minded, accepting kids I know, but still refusing to budge one inch on beliefs. I know I don't have an easy road ahead of me. I know I'm going to be ridiculed for my beliefs, as well as for stupid things like being "smart" and liking classical music instead of the most recent contemporary band. But I'm going to stand firm with God's help. - Cassia Smith, Hamilton, Ohio
Funny at best
In your May 8 issue a letter writer said concerning homosexual rights that "old, intolerant ways will not be tolerated much longer in this country." If we will not tolerate intolerance, then we ourselves are being intolerant. It's like saying, "Never use the word word." I am only 12 years old, but I know that contradicting myself is only funny at best. - David Pfast, Lexington, S.C.
A treasure map
Thank you, Andree Seu, for the postcard and snapshots from the valley ("A grieving primer," May 22). I haven't arrived there yet, but I'm keeping your road map in the pocket right next to my heart. Someday it will be tattered from use, and yellowed, breaking apart along the brittle folds like one of those old treasure maps-which it really is. - Ferree Bowman, Novelty, Ohio
Stay tough. I've noticed far more abrasiveness and inflammatory language from your critics than from anything Joel Belz or Marvin Olasky has written. - Gary L. Jones, Wrens, Ga.
Reclaim the culture
Thank you so much for your magazine, especially the articles on culture. I believe it is wrong to throw up our hands in despair when we could do so much to make an impact in this nation by reclaiming the culture. - Shep Pittman, Quincy, Fla.