The beliefs and sentiments expressed by those whose letters appear here are not necessarily shared by the Adventist Review or its editorial staff. These letters have been edited for clarity and length. -- Editors

Fighting the Right Fight
Regarding the online feature, “Christians Call for Partnership Against Poverty”: No human initiative will solve human problems, because they are the result of a system of disharmony. It doesn’t matter how sanctified humans are, as long as greed and selfishness prevail we will continue these cycles. They only answer is the Second Coming. Only when Jesus is established as Lord and Master of this earth will the problems of humankind be eradicated.

We continue to talk about the Second Coming yet fail to admit that none of our present programs provide any hope of ushering it in. If we’re really serious about eradicating all of humanity’s problems, we need to confront the truth regarding the delay of the Second Coming, instead of being satisfied with inspirational references to it.

Darius A. Lecointe

This is an extremely important topic, but once again, let’s be practical. What country is going to forgive the debt owed by another country? We are spinning our wheels. We need to attack the problem at its source.

Education is the problem. We have poor, illiterate countries. Remove the poverty and you still have illiterate countries that will find themselves in poverty again. Poverty is not the problem: illiteracy is. Remember, give a man a fish (dollar) and you’ll feed him for the day. Teach a man to fish and he’ll sustain himself for a lifetimeand his family also. The answer is teaching.

Milton Perkins

Strung Along
Regarding the editorial, “One Strand at a Time” (Oct. 13, 2005): I heard a similar story from my Dad about 60 years ago, but never have I heard such dramatic lessons as Bill Knott pulled from the story. Let’s all “go fly a kite.”

Art Miles
Apison, Tennessee

Beware Busyness

Regarding “The Epidemic of Busyness Among Christian Leaders”: WOW! What an article! Then for Michael Zigarelli to admit that researching and writing the article made him “busy” and that he had less time for God; what a terrific fellow to admit that we all fail. Failure is not final; and the Lord never stops pursuing us.

At this time in my life I’m not busy all the time and I still don’t spend extra time with the Lord. No excusesSatan is just out to distract us with the busyness of life.

Lucy Courter Butcher
Crystal Beach, Florida

Telling the Truth in Love
In the interest of honest feedback, I’m the first to agree with Karl Haffner that there is truth and there are moral absolutes. We should embrace these and advance them. However, the embrace of truth does not exempt us from carefully applying truth to the concrete experiences of people groups. Thus Pastor Haffner’s online column, “Politically Carrot” struck me as both confused and confusing.

First, the term “politically correct” was never defined. Maybe it’s me, but when such a volatile term is undefined it opens the way for all sorts of misinterpretation. For instance, if “politically correct” is verbal conformity to some transient “trend of the month,” such conformity might be misguided. Or if it means that we cannot discuss truth for fear of social disapproval, then we should reject the notion out of hand.

But if “politically correct” means that we engage in important conversations on sensitive issues with care and consideration that we intend to share in the larger market place of ideas, then the idea of “politically correct” is appropriate and arguably Christian. Let’s take the idea of “victims” cited, undefined, then decried and dismissed by Mr. Haffner.

While persons or groups can simply be “victims” in their own minds, it does not logically follow that people or groups cannot be and therefore are not “victims” in fact. Were not Jewish people “victims” of Nazism during Hitler’s tyranny over Germany in World War II? Or, when we see scientifically validated disparities in health care treatment and outcomes for minority populations as per the latest Institute of Medicine Report, are these citizens victims in “self perception” or in fact? Or when the poorest of the poor were failed by multiple layers of government during the recent Katrina hurricane, were they not “victims?”

It strikes me that Haffner’s column is simply one more way of dismissing particular histories, experiences, and sometimes the inequities that accompany them in the name of truth telling. I have never read the gospel or the ministry of Christ in that way. But then again, my concerns for sensitivity and context might simply be “politically correct.”

Leslie Pollard
Loma Linda, California

I am writing in response to the column, “Politically Carrot.” As a high school teacher who was once asked to change her Shakespeare play from the one recommended by the curriculum to one a little “less edgy,” I have only this to say: “Amen! Preach it!” I look forward to reading more of Pastor Haffner’s columns.

Lori MacDonald

Where Were the Adventists?
I have watched the news following Hurricane Katrina. Now Seventh-day Adventists claim to be contributing to the relief effort and helping the people there. My question is: Why was the Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) not mentioned in the news? I heard of disaster relief provided by other churches, people from other countries and states, but I never heard any announcements regarding Seventh-day Adventists. Only in the Adventist Review did I read that our church helped the survivors of that disaster. Doesn’t the church like to be recognized by the outside world?

Miriam Febles

The Seventh-day Adventist Church has designated Adventist Community Services as its official agency for disaster relief in North America.  --Editors

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