I was shocked, disappointed, stunned, angry (lots of feelings) when I read the last three letters in the December issue of the Record — grouped and entitled "Readers Support PWS&D". I too support PWS&D through prayers, the mission work which I do at our church, sometimes through direct donations when there is a special appeal. However, I do not seem to share the feelings of the letter writers who deemed the insert from World Vision to be "inappropriate, insulting, horrifying, and very disappointing". WOW — so now mission and the sharing of the tremendous wealth of the first world, is only appropriate if carried out through PWS&D? How insulting to our denomination! How narrow minded and parochial!
I was very disappointed at the reaction, in the December issue, to the World Vision catalogue being included in a recent issue of the Record.
After reading the letters section in the December issue of the Presbyterian Record, I was very disappointed with the responses from Rev. Kate Ballagh-Steeper and Wilma Welsh with regards to the World Vision catalogue. Surely they are missing the point — what does it matter which organization helps people in need, as long as the people who need help receive it! World Vision also does marvelous work in countries overseas and I personally sponsor two children and know that the small amount that I give is at least helping someone and I know that it is appreciated! So let's show some Christian love here.
I do not always find myself in agreement with the points made by the Editor and Publisher of the Record. There are however, two instances in the December issue where I find myself in full agreement with his position and his action. The first is his editorial Hospitality For Strangers Isn't Optional. The second being his action in including the World Vision material with the Record.
Why do the letter writers protesting your paid advertising for World Vision not see such agencies as partners rather than competitors? How much does the church denominational identity of the givers and deliverers of relief matter to the recipients? Are we motivated to give to world relief and development by compassion for those in need or denominational pride?
As a long term elder at Graceview Presbyterian, Etobicoke, I have been concerned with the shrinkage in membership of our national church. The Record over the past year has not only provided information on the decline but has reported success stories such as Oro Community Presbyterian in the Orillia area, Grace Calgary, and Central Vancouver, to name a few.
It was with disappointment when I could not find Peter Plymley's column in the September and October issue. I wondered what had happened to him. Then I read the announcement of his retirement in the November Record.
Brian Stewart's message, Christians Are On The Front Lines Everywhere, is one of the finest, most soul-stirring I have read in many a day. Coming from a press source, so often refractory of the Christian faith, it truly zings a new song unto the Lord and lifts our hesitant hearts.
I read the Moderator's November article, Ecumenism – A Canadian Product, with pleasure and pride in my country. I have the good fortune to live in an ecumenical community. I concur that Canada's gift to the world is acceptance, collaboration and mutual up-building. The CBC's Greatest Canadian contest recently reminded us of prime minister Pearson's role in that respect. Canada is definitely at the forefront in professing and acting upon Jesus' second great commandment.
Regarding the last paragraph of David Harris' November editorial: “people on your list who already have everything they need.would be thrilled if you made a donation on their behalf to PWS&D.” What a brilliant suggestion! The idea prompted me to call my sister with whom I normally exchange Christmas gifts. However, I simplified it a bit, and suggested that she make her donation to a charity of her choice in her own church (she is Anglican), and I will make mine to PWS&D in my church. We are both happy knowing the gifts are so worthwhile.as well as.no stress.no gift-wrapping.no delivering. and, you are right, additional income tax deductions.
Your October issue emphasizes the need for church growth but, pays insufficient attention to the blessing and power of prayer! Over the span of my 80 plus years I have been very involved with two churches, both of which started with a very small group of dedicated praying people, who have rejoiced to see remarkable growth – spiritually and numerically.