New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - January 13, 1995, New Braunfels, Texas
6A ■ Herald-Zeitung ■ Friday, Jan. 13, 1994
■ To talk with Managing Editor *Mark Lyon about Church Life, call 625-9144, ext. 21.
Not all pro-life supporters are violent
“God bless John Salvi,” said the picket sign held by a supposedly pro-life picketer outside the Norfolk jail holding John Salvi III who was arrested for firing on a Norfolk abortion clinic after killing two women in Massachusetts clinics.
“Thank you for what you did,” shouted Donald Spitz, a former Pentecostal minister. “He is a defender
of the defenseless.”
TV accounts of violence against abortion providers always give visibility to such pro-life sympathizers with the killers.
They ignore 99.9% of the pro-life activists who are non-violent and fear the killers will stereotype their pro-life cause as a violent crusade.
“They’re setting back our peaceful protests in front of the clinic. They turn people against us,” said Carolyn Venable, director of a group that has had daily rallies there for 21 years.
“First Things,” a monthly magazine ran “Killing Abortionists: A Symposium,” (a collection) of articles by 17 pro-life leaders, in December. They focused on Paul Hill’s killing of two people at a Pensacola clinic.
“It makes no Christian sense to try to justify murder to limit murder,” wrote John Cardinal O’Connor. “Attend to God’s revelation: ‘Do not be conquered by evil but conquer evil with good” (Romans 12:21). No Christian has the moral right to declare himself the sole detective, distnct attorney, judge, jury and Supreme Court.”
Ralph Reed, Jr., director of the Christian Coalition, said “To kill in the name of defending life is hypocrisy, pure and simple.”
He recalled Martin Luther King saying. “Always be sure that you snuggle with Christian methods and Christian weapons. Never succumb to the temptation of becoming bitter.” Terry Schlossberg, director of Presbyterians Pro-Life, wrote: “Paul Hill’s philosophy is one of anarchy. It opposes the role of government expounded in the religious tradition into which he was received.
Hill lost his ministerial credentials in one Presbyterian body in 1992; he was excommunicated by another in 1993 for advocating killing abortionists as justifiable homicide.”
Paul Hill was a misfit. He was fired from one church and then asked his denomination, the Orthodox Presbyterian Church, to strip him of his ministerial credentials because he believed in giving communion to infants. He joined Trinity Presbyterian Church in Val-panso, FL as a layman. It allowed kids to receive communion.
He never talked about killing abortionists until Michael Griffin shot Dr. David Gunn. He began arguing that it was justifiable homicide. Though his church was strongly pro-life, it was opposed to killing abortionists. Hill began to be quoted in the press and appeared on “Night-line." That embarrassed Trinity.
When warnings had no impact, Trinity's session held an ecclesiastical trial and charged him with “refusal to heed the directive of elders to cease and desist advocacy of this position,” recalls its pastor, Rev. Michael Snyder. “We told him he was advocating anarchy, overthrowing the government.”
Hill said he personally would not kill abortionists but would only encourage others to do so.
He lost and was excommunicated. He took it to an Appeals Court. The excommunication was upheld.
Hill wrote out a statement and got 20 fairly prominent people to sign it. Joe Scheidler, director of the Pro-Life Action League refused to sign it, though he had written the book “Closed: 99 Ways To Stop Abortion" which inspired the creation of Operation Rescue whose tactics of intimidation were never supported by National Right to Life, America's largest pro-life group.
Hill called Scheidler and argued, “lf a girl walked into a class with a gun intending to kill them, you would save a classroom of kids if you took her out.”
Scheidler countered, “lf you want to save babies, you have to convert the mother. She is the one who wants it dead. She hires the abortionist, who is the hit man. lf he is killed, she can hire another. I can point to 500-600 lives a year saved by our approach, babies who just had a first Christmas ”
What’s alarming is that violence feeds violence.
The first murder inspired Hill to kill two more.
John Salvi followed suit.
And the minority of pro-life s people supporting death is growing.
(John McManus is a syndicated columnist.)
Living By Appointments
Appointments. I live by appointments. If it’s not in my book, on the calendar or arranged with my wife or secretary, then chances are it won’t get done.
Appointments are a true discipline for me.
In other words, writing down stuff to do in my little daytimer is not really my nature. And so I do it deliberately in order to bring some kind of sense to my day. My little brown book tends to dictate the day.
But the other day was not like that. The other day I was with the elders of our church just outside of Kerrville in one of my very favorite places in the world. Years ago I found this little hill county retreat and began a love affair with the land, water and white-tail deer trails that snake up the limestone.
I never fail to find some hidden spring trickling from the rocks or a passel of wild turkey that explodes from the roost in my wanderings. It’s my kind of place.
But appointments rule the day, remember? And so when the meetings were done and the decisions made, my internal daytimer said that it was now time for an appointment with God.
After all, we had some issues to discuss. Important plans to finalize. And I needed some answers to some gnawing questions that had chewed on me for much too long. God and I needed to talk and my agenda was set. For the next hour and a half, we would meet. Off to my deer trails I went.
Ever approach God like that? Kind of like making an appointment to get your car serviced. Have it here by 7:30 and we’ll have it ready by four. Make a list of all the little glitches and squeaks and hope that they are able to get them all fixed. Nothing worse than having to take it back for another appointment. Nothing worse indeed.
So here I was with a “conquer the mountain” attitude looking for God in the cedar and oak draws of the Lazy Hills Ranch. All the way up the mountain I concentrated hard on the questions that were left festering for too long. Like a car overdue for an oil change, I popped into the quick lube expecting my 20-minute quick fix from God.
But God was silent. Not rude, just silent. Not angry, disappointed, withdrawn, or uninterested. Just very, very silent.
What had been designated by me as my appointment and my agenda was slowly eroding away by a very uncooperative God. The nerve.
But on the mountain that day I realized that the problem was not God. The problem was that the constraints of my schedule and agenda were of little concern to Jesus who was more interested in just spending time with me. I was looking for a heavenly Mechanic to fix the glitches and squeaks of life. Jesus was looking for some uninterrupted time to just walk and be together.
Just the kind of thing that He had done so long ago in those long walks with inquisitive disciples who didn’t know important from really trivial either.
Oh, yes. There is a scripture that comes to mind. Tucked into the fifty-fifth chapter of Isaiah is a discourse that the prophet recorded during a dramatic quiet time with Jehovah. Here is what God said to him: "For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My way.”
He sure has a way with words, this God of all creation. As fretful as we are about
the circumstances of life, Jesus remains committed to long walks, simple truth and close friends. Not quick fixes, appointments, and my agenda.
That hour on the mountain didn’t accomplish what I had set out to do. There were no dramatic plans, no firm contracts, and no completion dates set foF the progress of life. But what was accomplished was really more important than checking oft' items on my spintual to-do list. For once again I sensed the reassurance that God was still on my side. His promise remains that He will never leave us or forsake us. And He is a God who keeps His promises.
So next time you talk with Jesus, think about my mountain. My plan was to get an answer. His way was to spend time listening. My plan was to deal with issues. His way was to hear the concerns of my heart. My plan was to make decisions. His way was to leave the decision until later. But you know what? I’d rather have His ways instead of my plans any day.
Because His ways, I’ve come to find, are not nearly as stressful as mine.
(Dennis Gallaher is pastor of Freedom Fellowship Church in New Braunfels.)
Lutheran Brotherhood makes donation to campus ministry
The Lutheran Campus Ministry of the University of Texas received a $1,000 New Connections grant from Lutheran Brotherhood Foundation.
Lutheran Brotherhood, a fraternal benefit society, offers life and health insurance, annuities and investment products to Lutherans nationwide. Through its fraternal programs, Lutheran Brotherhood aids its members, their communities and Lutheran organizations.
The Lutheran Brotherhood Foundation provides support for creative projects which address Lutheran multicultural ministry, rural ministry, church growth and wellness. New Connections grants are an additional category of Foundation funding available to Lutheran 501(c) (3) organizations through Lutheran Brotherhood field force members who serve these non-profit organizations as volunteers. The Lutheran Brotherhood District Representative, Greg Gunderson, FIC, LUTCF at 707 N. Walnut #104 in New Braunfels.
Monthly breakfast set Sunday at St. John’s Episcopal Church
This Sunday is the monthly parish breakfast at St. John’s Episcopal Church, 312 S. Guenther from 9:00 a m. to 10:00 a m.
Information will also be available concerning the three new adult education classes.
Affirmative Aging will address the needs and interests of those who will be directly or indirectly involved in a supporting role with the elderly.
Homebuilders Couple Series will aid couples who are feeling the stress and strain in their marriages. It will help to enrich and strengthen love for one another, deepen your commitment to Christ, and equip you to help other couples in need. Master Your Money is a video series that will take you through most of the financial problems affecting each of us during our walk with Christ.
This series will be offered on Monday. Thursday and Saturday to accommodate busy schedules.
Lutheran Brotherhood District Representative Greg Gunderson RC, LUTCF, presents a check for $1,000 to Pastor Craig Sommer of The Lutheran Campus Ministry of the University of Texas, through the New Connections grant made possible by the Lutheran Brotherhood.
FUMC offering Saturday service
The First United Methodist Church is offenng an informal worship service at 5:30 p.m. on Saturdays. 572 W. San Antonio, 625-4513.
Bingo at OLPH
Bingo Night is every Thursday at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Hall, New Braunfels. Early Birds 7:15 p m.
Prayer Care Ministry at St. John’s
St. John’s Episcopal Church, 312 S. Guenther, has a new Prayer Care Ministry. The purpose of this new service to the community is to provide a place for early morning prayer and meditation. According to church sources, this ministry is designed to offer a quiet, reverent place where a person may share his problems with God, by dialogue through Jesus Christ in the Holy Spint. Prayer pastors will be available as needed. The church sanctuary will be open, for this ministry, from 7 a.m. to 8:30 a m. Monday through Friday. Everyone is welcome to participate, regardless of religious affiliation or belief.
Successful Money Management set at St. Paul
St. Paul Lutheran Church will present Successful Money Management from a Biblical Perspective on Tuesdays, Jan. 17, 24 and 31 at St. Paul Lutheran Church, room 118 located at 181 S. Santa Clara.
Cost is $49 per couple or individual. You must register and pay in advance to attend.
For immediate reservations, call 625-9191 or mail check to St. Paul Lutheran Church, 181 S. Santa Clara, New Braunfels, Texas, 78130. Child care will be provided by the church.
Final night of Family Ufo Conference set at Calvary
The final night of the Family Life Conference with Dr. R.M. Hays of Oklahoma City will be held tonight at Calvary Baptist Church, beginning at 7 p.m.
A nursery will be provided and refreshments will be served after the service.
Founder’s Day Prayer Breakfast
Founder s Day Prayer Breakfast Committee members (from left) Marie Offerman, Marty Lindley, Rev. Daryl C. Higgins (committee chairman), Rev. Scott Tjernagel, Rev. Richard Carse, Dr. Kenneth Peters. Plans have been finalized for the March 21 Founder’s Day Prayer Breakfast to be held at the civic center, as part of the 1995 Sesquicentennial celebration. The 7 a.m. prayer breakfast will commemorate the founding of New Braunfels on March 21,1845. Descendants of the founding fathers will be recognized, table displays will provide pictorial glimpses over 150 years. The internationally know Inspirational author/pastor Dr. Bruce Larson will be the guest speaker. Molly Joe’s will provide a catered breakfast, featuring food enjoyed by the first settlers. Tickets are $10. Sales begin at the end of January.
Editor's note -
Send Church Life announcements and press releases to Mark Lyon, editor, New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung, 707 Lands St., New Braunfels, Texas 78130. Call 625-9144 for additional information.
Baptist leaden We re not afraid of Gingrich
GREENVILLE, S.C. (AP) — The descendants of slaves freed by Abraham Lincoln will tight to keep the Republican Party from killing social programs important to blacks, the president of a black Baptist group says.
“And I’m here to tell Brother Gingrich and the Republican Party and any other ultraconservative, white or black, that we not only tasted freedom but we know how power operates," said the Rev. Henry J. Lyons, head of the 8 million-member National Baptist Convention USA Inc.
He made the reference to new U.S. House Speaker Newt Gingrich, a Georgia Republican, in a talk last week at the Baptist Educational and Missionary Convention of South Carolina
After the speech, Lyons said he would write to Gingrich and President Clinton.
"He is still the president, and I intend to let him know that the National Baptist Convention stands strongly behind him, but then we are going to hold the Republican Party accountable,’’ Lyons said
Lyons said he was worried that Republicans would take millions of people oft welfare, while spending billions of dollars on defense projects.
He called excessive defense spending "a different kind of welfare” that props up the defense industry.
On-Line O’Connor talks about abortion, AIDS
NEW YORK (AP) — Cardinal John O’Connor has had his own television show. He writes a weekly column for the archdiocesan paper. And now, he’s spreading his message in a new realm — cyberspace.
In what was billed as a first of its kind event for a Catholic cardinal, O’Connor answered questions for about 45 minutes recently on an on-line computer information service, Prodigy. Responding to subscribers’ queries, he touched on subjects from AIDS to the pope to abortion.
“I feel as though I arn on ‘Star Trek,”’ the 74-year-old head of the New York Roman Catholic Archdiocese said at one point.
But he predicted on-line services like Prodigy will have a broad impact and that "ifs certainly a way to reach people who never come to church."