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Report on 'counterfeit Christianity' stirs responses
From Shelley Fife of Auburn:
It is bad enough that three churches combine to spread misinformation and hatred toward other churches, but that you choose to freely publicize it is appalling (news story in Acts of Faith, Jan. 8, Counterfeit Christianity questioned).
Wouldnt it be more appropriate to extol the good works and virtures of churches instead of advancing the act of church bashing? Do you realize that you have offended at least 10 percent of the people living in the Federal Way area? Probably not, because you apparently think we are members of a cult, not your next-door neighbor, the person sitting next to you at PTA or at your childs soccer game. Would you have given an interview to a preacher and announced the days and times that he would be denouncing the Jews? I think not.
These churches should worship God as they see fit and allow others to do the same. I do not appreciate them spreading lies in the name of God about me and my religion to my neighbors. Perhaps they missed the sermon in the Bible about loving your neighbor.
From Ron Gailey:
I was offended as I read Counterfeit Christianity questioned. The article published information about conferences where citizens will be armed with information when (Jehovahs) Witnesses or Mormons knock on their doors and offer to tell them about their faith.
I support the right of three Federal Way churches to host this conference. However, I am disturbed that the Mirror would publicize it with an article. Jehovahs Witnesses, members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and members of the New Age movement are fine citizens in our community. I see them living their faith quietly and decently. The Mirror does not need to dignify, with an article, a conference that labels the faith of these citizens as counterfeit.
It is my hope that the Mirror, which is a reflection of the values of our community, would be more cautious about such veiled attacks in the future.
From Matthew Jarvis:
As a longtime Federal Way resident and reader of the Mirror, I was disappointed to see an article advertising what I call religious pornography. While I hold the right of freedom of religion very close and give all others that same right, it doesnt mean they are right. The Watchman Fellowship has for many years been an organization that breeds hate against non-Catholic/Protestant religions, especially, two of the fastest- growing religions in the USA. In my opinion, this is the same as giving recognition to a KKK gathering or other hate groups. I sincerely hope the Mirror will contact the respective local leaders of both the Jehovah Witnesses and the Church of Jesus Christ (the Mormons) and write a column with their views.
From Randy Nicholls of Auburn:
Apparently a group which travels from town to town attacking other religions was in our town this week. Professionalism would dictate a bit of balance when covering this type of event. Imagine the uproar if the visiting group were muslim and your reporter wrote, The conference isnt intended to vilify (Christians) but is meant to show how their faith is wrong. Then to include a quote from a Muslim Web site associating Christians with cults and the occult. Every religion which does not infringe on the rights and liberties of others deserves our respect.
I can understand covering the local event, but please dont sharpen the spears of those coming to attack good members of our community.
From Brad Partridge of Auburn:
On Jan. 10, I received a number of telephone calls from concerned citizens who had just read an article. The article appeared to be an infomercial for a group that comes into communities with the specific purpose of slamming particular religious groups and their beliefs in the name of Christianity. The surprising part of the article is that it was written by a staff writer of the Mirror and, I presume, approved by the editor. I am a paying customer of the Mirror and am considering canceling my subscription. I dont know if I want to be associated with a news media that freely promotes groups with agendas to belittle targeted members of our community based on their religious beliefs.