December 5, 2006

Web Letters

Raise Your Glasses
Thank You for the fine article, “Is Cow’s Milk Safe to Drink?” (Nov. 23, 2006). It was balanced and put our focus to what is true and important, rather than on diverse peripheral issues.
Evie Kinman
Children and Christianity 
Regarding “Are Churchgoing Youth Falling Away From the Faith?” (ARonline exclusive): The problem is less a failure of young people “getting” Christianity, and more a failure of the churches to evangelize and disciple their captive audiences. How much time and money is invested in making sure “God’s grandchildren” know what their parents/pastors/teachers are convinced of when it comes to faith and practice?
Could it be that teens are abandoning the “faith of their fathers” simply because they’ve never been introduced to the One in whom their fathers’ faith is founded?
Robert Joe
Men and the Church 
Speaking as a man, I’m willing to go out on a limb and say we are just as emotional and spiritual as women. God made us that way in the beginning, but over the centuries we’ve been conditioned to hide our feelings.
How about those denominations where members are encouraged to “let it all out,” shouting, crying, etc? Wouldn’t men attending such churches feel less afraid to show their emotions and therefore enjoy it more and appear more spiritual?
Seventh-day Adventist services, along with most other denominations, are about as far toward the opposite end of this spectrum as you can get. While women freely wipe their tears, men fight to suppress theirs. I can say from personal experience it’s an uncomfortable situation. How do we change something so entrenched in our culture?
One last question for the men: If you were the only male in your church, would you attend?
R. Brautigan
Leaving So Soon? 
Thank you, William Johnsson, for your leadership of the Adventist Review (“Johnsson to Retire After 24 Years as Editor,” Oct. 26, 2006). During this time the magazine has been like a life-line to me. Many times I have thought to write and thank you for various articles, or for the various editions of the Review that have been inspiring and uplifting.
Over the years the Review seems to have gone from strength to strength and Adventist World is a pinnacle. The magazines have helped keep me grounded in the faith and given me a sense of belonging to the wider church family.
God be with you in your retirement.
Greta Anscombe
It is with sadness that we learn you are retiring, but that time had to arrive one day. You have done a wonderful job as editor of the Review, and we have greatly enjoyed it over the years. It has been a wonderful blessing to our family. My Dad received it as long as I can remember (81 years).
You have certainly earned your retirement. We pray God to richly bless you and your family as you enjoy a well-earned rest. Are you coming “home” to Australia?
We pray that God will bless Bill Knott as he takes over the important job of editor. He has been associated with it for many years, so should be familiar with the job. Soon our Lord will come and we will all be in the “better land.” What a glorious day that will be!
Eva Everett
Pappinbarra Junction,
New South Wales

Required Reading 
The Adventist Church is fortunate to have the wisdom and leadership of Bert B. Beach, who served the church for many years in the Public Affairs and Religious Liberty Department of the General Conference. His article, “The Appeal--and Peril--of Fundamentalism” (Oct. 26, 2006), is one of the most important articles I have read in the Review. Beach has had personal contact with many of the religious and political leaders throughout the world.
I recommend that our Adventist teachers of religion, history, political science, social science, and psychology share this article with their students. The material clearly presents the complexities of fundamentalism. We are living in serious times; the forces of evil are at work. Let us take care how we represent our Lord.
Natalie Dodd
Centerville, Ohio
Challenged by an Editorial 
I just completed reading William Johnsson’s astounding editorial, “Out of Africa” (Nov. 9, 2006). And yes, it did disturb my comfort zone. I read parts of this splendid editorial a second time.
I blinked when I read this paragraph: “Today, in fact, at least 20 million in Africa are Sabbath keepers.” A first reading leaves one feeling overwhelmed and almost helpless.
Perhaps it’s time for a prayer revival in the church targeting Africa, and may the revival begin with me! I thank God for a church paper that tells it as it is--even if it disturbs us. May God strengthen us to meet the challenges God places before us.
Dick Rentfro
Thorp, Washington
Inspired by Week of Prayer Readings 
Thank you so much for the most wonderful 2006 Week of Prayer readings (“Journey of Hope,” Sept. 28, 2006). They were the most inspiring readings I have ever read. They will be a hard act to follow, but keep it up.
Vivian Ahlkvist
Sonora, California