Letters — Dec. 1, 2006

Clash in Delmarva continues over singer

Georgetown’s Community Thanksgiving Worship on Nov. 22 was boycotted by half of the eight churches which had planned to participate. Their grievance was that the rector of the host church had asked a person who happens to be gay to sing a solo at the service. The boycotters apparently felt they could not listen to “Be Still My Soul” sung by “a homosexual” and “an unrepentant sinner.”

While I consider that hateful in the extreme, I recognize the right of Christian fundamentalists, Neo-Nazis, the Ku Klux Klan and others to hold homophobic views as long as they do not become hate speech inciting to violence. Sadly, that too often happens.

We have seen this clash before in Delaware between Christians who condemn gay people so thoroughly as to even deny them equal civil rights, and Christians who believe gay people and straight people are equal before God and also equally deserving of legal equality.

The former generally believe theirs is the only possible biblical perspective. They might be enlightened to know that 118 Delaware clergy members have signed a statement affirming equality for gay people: it is on the “Of The Spirit” page of www.towardequality.org.

Interestingly, church attendance that evening was not sparse. Many other worshippers in various churches heard about the boycott — and filled the church.

Douglas Marshall-Steele

Program helps families and children

Children & Families First is a private statewide non-profit agency that strengthens families and communities by providing quality social, educational and mental health services. Children & Families First does not discriminate on the basis of race, creed, religion, gender, national or ethnic origin, age, sexual orientation, handicap, political affiliation, or any other discriminatory basis or criteria.

In 2005, Children & Families First provided services to 29,545 individuals in Delaware; 1,110 abused and/or neglected children were placed in a safe and nurturing environment through our Foster Care and Adoption programs. Our new Grandparent Resource Center in Georgetown offers group education and individual case management to help those parenting the “second time around” (over 7,000).

We have helped 2,995 individuals in Kent and Sussex counties who are moving from welfare to work so that they will retain their jobs and gain necessary skills. Our Resource Mothers program worked with 745 at-risk pregnant woman and their infants by connecting them with prenatal medical care and social services.

These are but a few of our programs. If you would like more information, please call Maureen Leary at 856-2388, ext. 160.

We thank you for your participation in our toy drive this year and wish you and yours a wonderful holiday season.

Children & Families First

We must remember the real story of Christmas

“In God we trust,” “one nation under God,” “to God and country” — these are the words that shaped the moral fiber of our country. This is the language our country was founded upon.

What has happened? We no longer are allowed to have God in our workplace, or our schools, basically anywhere but church. You can’t tell me it doesn’t make a difference.

That is why I love the Christmas season, because Jesus is the reason for the season, and no American Civil Liberties Union lawyer can do anything about it. For this is the time of year, the love, warmth, and tenderness of the son of God brings us closer together. What a wonderful feeling.

Yes, I know Christmas has become a commercialized mess, but deep down inside of many hearts, Jesus is still the reason for the season.

Our forefathers were right to found our country under God, and if we live under God’s rules, we would be a much better country. So celebrate the real meaning of Christmas, remember all the love and tenderness we value at Christmastime can be ours the whole year through, just by believing in the babe from Bethlehem.

Herb Fogleman
Ocean View