Columnists > Mailbag


Issue: "Sciavo: Saved by the bill," Nov. 1, 2003

Our choices are not limited to either dominating the culture or insisting on a purely secular public square. A worldview pluralism that allows many religious voices to participate in the culture is certainly better than a secular public square in which the Christian message is treated as a private fairy tale. The key is to distinguish worldview pluralism from religious relativism; we can encourage the hearing of different religious voices without accepting all of them as equally true. - Greg Voth, Rocky Hill, Conn.

In the last 30 years, Christians have largely been ineffective at bringing about a moral government and culture via political means. Our efforts failed because we have shortchanged the Great Commission, seeing the future in policy rather than in making and living as disciples of Jesus. As A.W. Tozer wrote, "Because we are the handiwork of God, it follows that all our problems and their solutions are theological." - Dan Edelen, Mt. Orab, Ohio

Back to business

Excellent article about the latest developments in the ECUSA ("Insufficient funds," Oct. 4), but you did not mention the creation of the Anglican Mission in America, and the ordination of six bishops under the aegis of the archbishops of South East Asia and Rwanda. At great cost (loss of pensions and church property), over 50 priests and bishops in the AMiA are establishing new congregations, ordaining priests and deacons, and getting on with the business of the gospel. - Hilda M. Anger, Valparaiso, Fla.

Clear and windy

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Thank you for your eye-catching and informative graphics regarding Hurricane Isabel in the Sept. 27 ("Isabel's slow march") and Oct. 4 ("The waiting is the hardest part") issues. My favorite graphic used semicircles to rate the winds. It gave a clear picture of what the terminology that I hear on the news means. I've saved that whole page for future reference. - Nancy Young, Phoenix, Ariz.

I often receive issues late but I have never said anything to WORLD because, as a periodical librarian at a Christian college library, I know that it does not just happen to WORLD, but to Time and The Wall Street Journal, too. There are many missed issues and there is also the problem of periodicals damaged in transit. The USPS has a delivery problem. Don't blame WORLD. - Jean Shankle, Pensacola, Fla.


Misquotes, whether intentional or the result of sloppy journalism, color the news we read. "New York state of mind" (Sept. 13) illustrates the importance of accountability in journalism. My thanks to Lieutenant Commander Beidler are two-fold: for his service to our country, and for calling The New York Times to account. His example challenges us to demand accuracy from the news media. - Linda Truman, Louisburg, Kan.

It was distressing to hear of the reputation that Christians have at present. It makes me aware of how everything I do or say can be taken the wrong way by someone who doesn't know or understand me. - Rebecca L. Sabourin, Vergennes, Vt.

Pure prose

I can't get enough of WORLD. Having worked in journalism in the liberal bastion of the San Francisco Bay Area, it's been refreshing to come up for air and breathe in prose that's so pure. Thank you Gene Edward Veith and Andree Seu, who wax so eloquently in matters of culture and philosophy. And to Joel Belz and Marvin Olasky, your insightful and balanced analysis, which is always rooted in the Word, challenges my mind and lifts my spirit. Each issue ends up in the hands of unbelievers (in Marin County, no less) who enter our family business. What a privilege to be able to offer an "unsuspecting" public a glimpse of truth and hope. - Marla Freeman Swoffer, Novato, Calif.

Posted blessings

I was glad to hear you are working on a more prompt delivery of WORLD, but because I live in Little Rock I'm not too optimistic ("Please keep us posted," Sept. 20). The post office here seldom seems to be in much of a hurry. - James T. Davis, Little Rock, Ark.


Holly Marie Patterson, who died after taking RU-486, obtained the drug from a Planned Parenthood clinic in Hayward, Calif. ("Legal, but not safe," Oct. 4, p. 37). Antoine Yates kept a 425-lb. tiger in his apartment (Quick Takes, Oct. 18, p. 6).

Rain of gods

I must disagree with Mr. Veith that a "naked public square" is the preferable alternative to a polytheistic civil religion ("Gods and country," Oct. 4). We should try to teach and evangelize, and we cannot do that if our religion is kept in the closet. Let us demand that our governments at all levels respect reasonable freedom of speech and allow the display of all religious symbols. God is on our side; as long as we remain on His side, the symbols and speech of His words will show forth His righteousness. Fear not to stand for God. - Frank W. Russell, Nalcrest, Fla.


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