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Letters from our readers

Issue: "Stand in the gap," Nov. 5, 2005

Children of disaster

I wept when I first saw the photo of that precious 3-year old child, Kirsten, on the cover of your Oct. 8 issue ("After the storms"). As a father and grandfather and great-grandfather of 23, my heart weeps especially for the children of this Gulf Coast disaster, so vividly represented by this little one. I pray that she and all the children displaced by Katrina and Rita will have loving parents and family who will tell them of the special love of our Savior for such as these.
-Bill Leonard; Colorado Springs, Colo.

I do not recall having read anywhere that secularists in our society are suing over having faith-based organizations like the Southern Baptists and the Salvation Army assist in the recovery along the Gulf Coast. Doesn't this equate (in their minds) to the "official recognition" of God by the government?
-Dick Northrop; Wytheville, Va.

Bodies lined up

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I remember, years ago on a trip to Chicago's Museum of Science and Industry, a vague sense that something just wasn't right about its collection of human fetuses, those bodies lined up like so many jars of pickles. Now we have Dr. von Hagens' ghastly "corpse art" traveling the world, making plenty of money, and getting rave reviews ("Corpse art," Oct. 8). I can't decide what's most shocking: his "pieces," the factory that plasticizes the remains, the waiting list to be part of the exhibit, or the busloads of schoolchildren whose consciences will be seared viewing Dr. von Hagens' work.
-Susie Roberts; Margate, Fla.

I visited "Body World" in Chicago and did not find the displays provocative, disrespectful, or morbid. They were vivid pictures of the systems of our "fearfully and wonderfully made" bodies fitting and working together. Regarding interment, I would hate to think that God's power to raise the dead is contingent upon having an intact body, properly buried.
-Laura Hulce; Holland, Mich.

It must have made Gene Edward Veith ill to write "Corpse art." It made me ill to read it. The fact that the display has found a welcome in America as "science" is a telling critique of American science and the philosophical ideology that it is based upon.
-Susan Bentley; Freedom, Calif.

God-sized families

Right on for "Disappearing act" (Oct. 8) regarding the need for more babies in Europe and elsewhere. Although the United States is at replacement level in our birth rates and immigrants are arriving, we are in jeopardy, and not necessarily numerically. The disdain for children permeates even into our churches. We all don't need to have huge families, but perhaps we need to allow God to control the size of our families instead of contraceptives.
-Janine Iversen; Franklin, N.Y.

I can find no indication in the Bible that God ever suspended the directive to "be fruitful and increase in number," yet in the face of 40 years of the culture preaching zero population growth, the church has been mostly silent.
-Mark Simmons; San Jose, Calif.

Eleazar's heir

Kudos to Noah Riner, student body president at Dartmouth College, for his speech ("Convocation conviction," Oct. 8). Dartmouth was founded in 1769 by Rev. Eleazar Wheelock, a Congregationalist pastor and fervent supporter of and participant in the Great Awakening. Established to reach American Indians and prepare them as missionaries to their own culture, Dartmouth, like virtually all early American colleges, was primarily interested in the spiritual character of its students. Let us pray that Mr. Riner's bold challenge may awaken again that purpose.
-Guy R. Strayhorn; Fort Myers, Fla.

Mr. Riner did well to express who he was. What he did was very courageous, and his action gives me strength.
-Christina Wilson; Westlake Village, Calif.

True conservatism

I appreciated "Battle for conservatism's soul" (Oct. 8). In the past, it was controversial whether the government should have extensive welfare programs. Today, it's controversial whether the government should give religious nonprofit organizations a break because of some mumbo-jumbo about "separation of church and state." I agree with Sen. Santorum that Republicans need to revert to true compassionate conservatism, which "believes in the transformative power of faith, and the integral role of charities, houses of worship, and other institutions."
-Jacob Pfister; Indianapolis, Ind.

Good games

It seems to me that this is how video games should be assessed ("More than a game," Oct. 8): If they are merely point and shoot, they are undesirable. If they glamorize murder, licentious sex, or theft, they are diabolic. If they show corruption as corruption and encourage violence only in pursuit of justice and protection of those under attack, they can be forces for good.
-Don Codling; Lower Sackville, Nova Scotia

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