Columnists > Mailbag


Issue: "Gore strikes out," Dec. 9, 2000

Pray more

Reading your Nov. 11 cover story, "Public saints, private sinners," I was struck with our responsibility to pray for those in leadership. Years ago in a foreign country, our pastor resigned because of a moral failure. There was great sadness and hurt, and we realized that we had not done our part to pray faithfully for our shepherd. This election has prompted me to gather pictures of our leaders in government to help remind me to ask God's protection and guidance for them, too, that God will also "give them a way to escape." - Katrin van der Vaart, Annandale, Va.


I was dumbfounded to read of the dalliances of Mr. Trout as reported in your Nov. 11 issue. It reminds me of the words of Nathan the prophet after David had committed adultery with Bathsheba: "... by this deed thou hast given great occasion to the enemies of the Lord to blaspheme...." - Herman J. Klingenberger, Jr., Rochester, N.Y.

Honor the repentant

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The examples of infidelity among Christian leaders are certainly disheartening, but instead of being further berated and embarrassed for their sins, repentant men and women should be honored since they are paying the penalty for their sins. Hypocrisy exists in every one of us-Christians and non-Christians alike-and grace, not "tough-minded actions" or a demand for "high standards," is the only sure solution. - Rebecca Tredway, St. Louis, Mo.

Gradual plunge

Regarding Messrs. Trout, Bakker, Swaggart, et al., I doubt that those men were walking closely with the Lord in their daily lives, then suddenly fell off the cliff into sexual sin. I have a hunch that in every case there was a point where they began to inch off the path, and that the first step was just a small one. If those men would honestly identify that point, perhaps they could help the rest of us avoid that first little step. - John W. Alexander, Madison, Wis.

Fall far, fall hard

Lynn Vincent's article about recent moral failings by Christian leaders was on the money. I agree with the proposed safeguards against more failings-prayer, accountability, and tougher discipline. But I think that Christian organizations should fire Christians who have fallen morally, and accept resignations as a merciful exception. Christians profess higher callings and set higher standards than those of the world, so we must uphold them or face the ridicule and contempt of the world. - Hugh Henry, Dahlonega, Ga.

No need to know

I was not aware of Mike Trout's adultery until I read WORLD and, frankly, I did not need to know. I agree that this kind of hypocrisy is damaging to the cause of Christ, so why publicize it? I imagine the pain his wife and children are experiencing has been deepened by opening up this private family matter to public lynching. - Linda Martin, Centerville, Ohio

Life's like that

"Public saints, private sinners" was not an article that most Christians would take joy in reading. But much of life is not to our liking; I'm happy that WORLD took this issue head-on. All of us-not only Christians-should know about the behavior of those who are public figures. - Ronald L. Mentus, Brookfield, Conn.

Another one

The day after the election, I read, "By the time this issue of WORLD reaches most of our subscribers we will know who has won this year's presidential race" ("Pro-Gore press," Nov. 11). Yet another presidential prediction gone awry. - Al Hsu, Downer's Grove, Ill.

It was easy

How could Mr. Olasky accuse the press of being slanted toward Al Gore? They have said themselves that they are neutral. Should we not believe them? Seriously, he was right on target. It was the clearest and most sensibly put article I have read on the topic. And thanks for the website. - Richard H. Hess, Lakehurst, N.J.

Well remembered

I'm afraid that your comment that the heavy metal genre is "barely remembered" is far from accurate ("Rusty metal," Nov. 11). I was in the secular radio industry when guys like Ozzy Osbourne came onto the scene and went solo. Now they are continuing their geriatric careers by touring with other hard rock bands. Just because these hard rockers are pushing 50 and have gone through detox doesn't mean that their influence isn't dangerous to young minds. - Deana M. Williams, Colorado Springs, Colo.

The dark truth

"Mind monopolizers" (Nov. 11) was fair and insightful, but in decrying the growth of "tolerance" and the fading of "absolute truth," let's remember that we only see that truth as in a glass, darkly. There was a time when evangelical churches and missions refused to cooperate because each had a monopoly on the truth and the others were "wrong." We can rejoice that many evangelicals now serve God together with a tolerance for different interpretations of the Bible and different translations of the Bible, while united in their faith in the authority of the Bible. - Richard Brown, Princeton, N.J.


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