Letters, October-November 2006

I am excited over the quality and content of Christian Odyssey, the flagship magazine of our denomination. I eagerly devour its contents from cover to cover. It is a smorgasbord of spiritual delights.

I was touched and moved to tears by Dr. Lila Docken Bauman’s article, "My father’s living will." I asked my wife if she and the children could write an article when I passed and title it "Left Behind." Her response was, "What if I go first?" I plan to use the magazine as an evangelistic tool with neighbors, friends and family.

Pastor Richard, Chicago

When reading the Alister McGrath interview, I noticed your magazine implied that he was a "scientist" when he converted from atheism to Christianity, yet a check of his bio reveals he was around 18 when he "left atheism."

I realize Christian apologetics is a daunting challenge, but aren’t Christians supposed to be honest, not manipulating the data? It sounds more impressive if a scientist converts to Christianity.

Leon, email

But why should we assume that an 18-year-old cannot be a scientist?

Great thought-provoking article on heaven. I enjoyed it. But when did the Golden Rule become "For God so loved the world..."? (August/ September p. 5, column 1) I thought it was "Do unto others..."

SB, email

Oops — you are quite right. Our mistake.

"Unmasking male depression" (August/September issue) is an article that hits close to home. I suffer from depression and have for a very long time. It’s only been about five years, or so, that I have come to understand what was wrong. I have gotten professional help, which has helped. I do struggle with the problem and maybe always will. Thanks for the information. I plan on sharing it with my doctor.

email

The article "Unmasking Male Depression," by Archibald D. Hart, caused some concern in me and prompted me to send out a word of caution. He states, "A lot of spousal abuse could have depression as the cause or trigger." And later he states, "So the more you love your husband, son or father, the greater is the potential that he will hurt you…. The women involved need to understand that the male’s ‘bad’ behavior is coming from his depression, not himself."

As one who works in the domestic violence field, this set off some alarms. I would encourage the writer to also state that whatever the reason for the abuse, depression or otherwise, she must keep herself and her children safe. That is the priority. It is the man’s responsibility to work on his depression issues.

Dr. Hart comments: Obviously a wife must keep herself and her children safe. But not all depressed males are abusers. So a wife has to love her depressed husband (this is the context of this statement). Of course, the love must hold the husband accountable. My point is that one should not overlook depression as one possible cause of abuse.

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