January 13, 2010

1501 Web Letters (2010)

Learning to Lead
Once again Fredrick Russell (A Certain Sound, or a Comfortable Sound? )has lifted the organizational bar for those of us entrusted with the stewardship of our organizations. His reminder that comfortable and cozy operations are insufficient to accomplish the task committed to us represents a challenge and an opportunity.
Thank you for your inspiring encouragement to peel back the blinders on our thinking and dream a bigger dream. Our God, His church, and our mission deserve it.
Leslie N. Pollard
Loma Linda, California

It is entirely possible that a restructuring is necessary. Those trained for pastoral ministry are not always good choices for some of the jobs they are asked to do in administration. Some men and women are good administrators, business persons, etc., and some are not. They jeopardize rather than help the church when they are placed in positions they are not qualified for, just to keep them employed. If they’re asked to fill positions other than as pastors, they should have training in that area.
Connie Heitsman

Which Holiday, Eh?

Just a note on the online article, “Managing Holiday Stress”: In the fifth paragraph Arlene Taylor tells of her childhood in the Canadian prairies, and mentioned that Memorial Day was a sign that summer was just around the corner.
As far as I know, Memorial Day is a term used in the United States, not in Canada. Canada observes Victoria Day a week earlier, but it is more of a celebration honoring the birthday of Queen Victoria and the current Canadian sovereign. It marks the informal beginning of the summer season.
Dave Corson
Portland, Oregon

More Openness, Please
Carlos Medley’s editorial, “An Open Letter to an Adventist Leader” (Dec. 17, 2009), was excellent.
In Florida we have “government in the sunshine,” which is intended to make public governmental meetings and dealings more open to public access and scrutiny. More openness in church meetings at every level would engender more understanding and better decisions.
Jonnie Shipbaugh
Panama City, Florida

I loved that editorial. One thing (suggestion) is missing, however. Why are brief resumes of candidates for various offices not distributed at constituency meetings? Some nominees aren’t known by everyone. Why should I vote for someone about whom I know nothing?
When I ask this question publicly, I’m told it’s to avoid electioneering. This is another example of our need for transparency.
As for the lack of responses, this is a reflection of our North American Division constituency: the more educated, active, and political members have left the church--some for the very reasons mentioned in the editorial and what I have mentioned.
If you haven’t noticed, the Anglo membership in the North American church is rapidly disappearing, if not already gone.
Alex Belisle

The Aggressive Church?
Good job in the editorial, “Standing Up for Us” (Dec. 10, 2009). It is needed and will be useful to save people for the kingdom.
Is it possible for the church to be even more aggressive toward its detractors on the Internet? How about exposing them, listing their names in all union conference papers?
One slick magazine is Proclamation. Its goal is to spread disinformation about the Seventh-day Adventist Church and draw members away. We should be able to do something constructive, instead of just absorbing its destructive propaganda, and losing members in the meantime.
Elwood B. Boyd

A Question of Clarity
I’m writing in regard to the column by Clifford Goldstein, “This is the End, My Friend” (Dec. 10, 2009). The consequences of the second law of thermodynamics are so far-reaching that whole books have been written on the subject.
It might be thought nit-picking, but the article stated that “heat flows from hot to cold, never the other way around.” That statement states only a consequence of the law, similar to saying that water only runs downhill is a consequence of the law of gravity. The earth revolving around the sun is another consequence of the law of gravity (balanced against centrifugal force).
Wesley A. Whitten
Arlington, Texas

Generous 365 Days a Year
In his editorial, “God With Us” (Dec. 10, 2009) Stephen Chavez reminds us that we are often charitable from Thanksgiving to Christmas, feel good about ourselves, and forget about the disadvantaged until next year.
I work at a local food pantry, and like all food pantries, ours has seen a 100 percent jump in the number of clients this year. Our director was interviewed for a radio segment and stated that we receive 75 percent of our yearly donations during November and December. We have been blessed all year with contributions of food and money and thus have been able to help many families in the community. But when you think about it, people are hungry 365 days a year, not just during the holidays.
I know we all are hurt by this economy, but for those of us who can and do give, think about giving on a regular basis.
Pat Korns
Westmont, Illinois