News from the Tennessee Valley Opinion


Segregation still
evident in churches

Our nation will be celebrating the memory of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. He has been compared to Moses with the deliverance of an oppressed people in the United States. The civil rights movement and laws have brought about positive changes in society along with human dignity and equality. The places of racial segregation where blacks could not enter: restaurants, motels, front-seat passengers on buses, and worshiping at white churches, have been opened to blacks by the cumbersome secular pressures. However, blacks still face the strange claim from white parishioners who will limit the black membership to a certain number; otherwise look for white flight to suburbs.

While Americans are familiar with Dr. King's speech at the March on Washington, very few know of the pointed address that he gave to the Second United Methodist Church Conference on Human Relations meeting at the Hilton Hotel in Chicago a day prior to the historic event. Dr. King spoke on the topic, "The Role of the Church in this Period of Social Change." The highlights in his remarks were "Segregation is on its death bed and the only question confronting the church and the nation is how costly and bloody they will make its funeral. At 11 o'clock on Sunday morning when we sing 'In Christ there is no East or West,' we are in the most totally segregated hour of the week and the most segregated schools in America are the church schools." I would say the same for the Saturday worshippers.

Where do we go from here? I conclude with the words of Dr.Tom Butts, former pastor of the Michigan Avenue Methodist Church in Mobile, saying "Real integration (as opposed to encapsulated absorption) will never happen until someone gets brave enough to appoint a black minister to a significant white congregation." Then, I say, that the evidence of the love of God in the congregants will be real or not.

Isaiah J. Ashe


Support helped Salvation Army help less fortunate

Once again, the residents of Morgan, Lawrence and Limestone counties of Alabama have opened their hearts to make the Christmas season at the Salvation Army a wonderful success for the underprivileged elderly, children and parents in this area.

We at the Salvation Army would like to thank all who volunteered their time ringing bells, adopted angels from the Angel trees, gave donations to our Red Kettle Drive, donated toys and food, packed bags, stuffed stockings, and gave monetary donations this year and helped to make Christmas a wonderful time for us and those we serve.

We especially would like to thank WHNT-19 News for its public service announcements concerning our Angel Tree locations, THE DECATUR DAILY for the positive news articles concerning our Red Kettle Drive and our Angel Tree Program.

We would also like to thank Colonial Mall for allowing us to set up our Angel Tree Adoption center there. Decatur, Hartselle, Moulton and Athens super centers sponsored Angel Trees and gave us a warm response to our Red Kettle Drive. Without you we would have never seen the success we experienced this year.

It is such a humbling experience to be part of a community that has such an overwhelming outpouring of support of our many programs.

We pray God's blessings for each of you throughout the coming year.

Maj. David Singletary

The Salvation Army — Decatur Corps


'Daniel' an attack
on Christianity

It is with sadness that I react to the "Book of Daniel" series from WAFF/NBC. As a believer in Jesus Christ, I hurt that the public media would support such a program.

I find it very disheartening that a network would support an attack such as this. I understand that there is a freedom of expression in this country, but I also understand Biblical doctrine that promises that God, in his time, will deal with such attacks on Christianity.

Mickey Maddox


Show conveys that Christians aren't perfect

Re: "The Book of Daniel." I watched the show, and yes, it was fraught with problems. But I don't agree with the reader that there's not a dysfunctional family like that. Of course there are. I think the show is simply trying to show non-Christians that no one is perfect. No, not even an Episcopalian priest's family. But it is also conveying the message that through Christ Jesus we can be forgiven our sins. If they don't take that message from that program, then like they said — turn it off.

Gayle Barley


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