I enjoyed the “Bishop’s Perspective” [“Smokin’ Sam and the sour old sisters,” May 7 edition]. I think every Christian has gone through the judging thing. Many still are. I’m with the Bishop. I don’t want that job. As soon as I learn how to read minds and know hearts like God, I might give it a try again.
Rev. Roy Fowler
Afton UMC/Stone Dam UMC
Johnson City District

I am great disturbed by some of the things that are taking place in the United Methodist Church. Some of our bishops are sinning against God and are serving us all incorrectly. It is my prayer that all UMC leadership will act and vote in accordance with God’s word. It is going to make it very difficult to remain a member of the UMC if things continue as they have. We all need to serve God, not man.
Charlcia Baker
Jones Chapel UMC
Chattanooga District

I was recently privileged to be a part of a large interfaith event in Washington, D. C. when peace advocates from 47 states and six countries assembled to study the spiritual and social dimensions of several issues which impact the life of our planet.

As a United Methodist I joined with others to go to the offices of our Representatives John J. Duncan Jr. and Zach Wamp as well as Senators Bill Frist and Lamar Alexander. In our appeal, we noted the extraordinary cost of nuclear weapons. The list for Fiscal Year 2005 includes:

  • $27.6 million for the Robust Nuclear Earth Penetrator (RNEP) “bunker buster” which is to have up to 70 times the power of the bomb that destroyed Hiroshima (+250%)
  • $9 million for Advanced Concepts for nuclear weapons, moving toward “mini nukes” which, despite the label, would do incredible harm to the earth and its creatures (up from $6 million)
  • $30 million to refurbish the Nevada Test Site, pressing for 18-month readiness
  • $10.2 billion for “Star Wars” Missile Defense System (+12%)
  • $747 million Y-12 bomb plant in Oak Ridge (double 6 years ago)
  • $6.6 Billion total Department of Energy bomb budget (+5%)

International treaties aside, we’re preparing for new “useable” nukes. It should be noted that there are uniformed military and retired generals who declare nuclear weapons are useless. Instead of honoring years of hard work developing international treaties to move back from the brink of global annihilation, we are apparently moving down a very perilous road.

Citizens are trying to find the facts and gathering together to reverse this dangerous course. The Oak Ridge Environmental Peace Alliance has just coordinated another action in the city that continues to develop Weapons of Mass Destruction. The Chief UN weapons inspector, Mohammed ElBaradei is quoted in Financial Review 9/5/03: “The U.S. government insists that other countries do not possess nuclear weapons. On the other hand they are perfecting their own arsenal. I do not think that corresponds with the treaty they signed.”

I believe that we should insist on the renewal of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. My view is that God still holds title to the Earth and that all persons are sacred and valued in God’s sight.
Carol Green
Green Meadow UMC
Maryville District


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