Differences Between Acts of love by a Christian Organization Vs a Non Christian One - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 23 Old 10-01-2011, 09:14 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Our Bible study group (Anglican) is doing a study series on the fruits of the Holy Spirit. Two sessions back, we were discussing the gift of love and this question came up. I'm still thinking on it, have even discussed this with DH (who is not formally religious but very supportive of my and our children's beliefs). I really believe in humanitarian causes, and I've seen some lovely, grassroots organizations like Project Colors (do work with orphans in Africa by helping people living there set up long term beneficial projects like safe daycares and lunch programs) or local environmental groups do wonderful work with no religious affiliation. Do you see any tangible difference in the way in which Christians love one another as individuals or organizations? My husband mentioned that he has noticed a lot of Christian organizations will help without identifying - like a Catholic organization may send volunteers to help in a war stricken area without identifying as Catholic but we always know if it's Red Cross - I don't know if I've noticed that, his observation. Any thoughts on this? Our minister says she's still struggling with puzzling this out in some ways and it's partly why she asked!

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#2 of 23 Old 10-02-2011, 02:11 PM
 
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I know my churches charity organization gets a lot of flack because they will sometimes work with non christian groups.  And while they would not be likely to allign with a religious group in opposition to Christianity they are happy to go with who ever works and help out who ever is already working in an area or addressing a problem successfully.   Money is often better utilized if you are increasing the efforts of someone already successful int he field.   No need to re invent the wheel.  But they are not concerned with having their name on stuff.  They are concerned with helping.  I think there are lots of groups doing very good things.  Its all love in the end.  i guess it all depends on what your goal is and how you can reach that goal using your gifts and talents.  If your ultimate goal is feeding people food o giving people shelter then it does not really matter if you are Christian or not.  food is good.  shelter is good.  But if your primary goal is to preach the gospel and to use your good works as a vehicle for preaching then you you need to evaluate how to reach your primary goal and may have to work alone so that you are able to get your message out without contradiction/.  I am not saying one goal is more valuable than the other.  but it does effect how good a secular group or a group of another religion would be in reaching your desired goal.  Lets face it.  Missionaries often use physical help but their primary goal is not to feed people or build them houses.  They are using this help to be able to influence people towards Christ.    In this case on Christian work will do.  


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#3 of 23 Old 10-02-2011, 04:34 PM
 
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There may be far less difference between the two today than there once was. I think the thing is, a great deal of the whole concept of Christian charitable acts, which originated as part of Christian belief, have by now been absorbed into the general culture. 

 

Every religion and culture has some kind of practice of almsgiving or assistance to the poor, but Christianity had its own particular approach to charity, arising out of Christian teachings and concepts. Things we now take for granted, like hospitals, soup kitchens, homeless shelters, free schools for the poor, orphanages, and the like, were originally founded by Christian organizations. Over the years, these institutions became familiar, and many of them are now run by government agencies or secular groups. Even non-religious groups which run such charities are, without realizing it, accepting at least part of the Christian world view when they see these actions as essentially good. The theological basis for some of these charities may be forgotten or set aside, but Christianity was the basis for most of it.  

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I think sometimes Chrisitian groups do things that secular groups or organisations may struggle with or choose not to do. Prisoner/criminal support springs to mind. In Australia most of it seems to be done by church organisations.


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#5 of 23 Old 10-03-2011, 04:27 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by mamabadger View Post

There may be far less difference between the two today than there once was. I think the thing is, a great deal of the whole concept of Christian charitable acts, which originated as part of Christian belief, have by now been absorbed into the general culture. 

 

Every religion and culture has some kind of practice of almsgiving or assistance to the poor, but Christianity had its own particular approach to charity, arising out of Christian teachings and concepts. Things we now take for granted, like hospitals, soup kitchens, homeless shelters, free schools for the poor, orphanages, and the like, were originally founded by Christian organizations. Over the years, these institutions became familiar, and many of them are now run by government agencies or secular groups. Even non-religious groups which run such charities are, without realizing it, accepting at least part of the Christian world view when they see these actions as essentially good. The theological basis for some of these charities may be forgotten or set aside, but Christianity was the basis for most of it.  




This seems very likely to me, and especially obvious in an older part of Canada with remaining /government/church partnerships in hospitals (my husband currently works in a previously convent run hospital that is now a true partnership). I think we absorb so much of the religious culture historic to our community. Lilyka, I agree the end goal is a very important point. I, personally, feel that when people don't have their basic needs met, making room for religion is not a priority, so I like it when I see our church supporting causes like clean water, food and addressing poverty without the missionary/aiming to convert work. If that is the aim, then of curse I guess you would have to be more direct.

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#6 of 23 Old 10-06-2011, 07:47 PM
 
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Originally Posted by FarmerBeth View Post

Our Bible study group (Anglican) is doing a study series on the fruits of the Holy Spirit. Two sessions back, we were discussing the gift of love and this question came up. I'm still thinking on it, have even discussed this with DH (who is not formally religious but very supportive of my and our children's beliefs). I really believe in humanitarian causes, and I've seen some lovely, grassroots organizations like Project Colors (do work with orphans in Africa by helping people living there set up long term beneficial projects like safe daycares and lunch programs) or local environmental groups do wonderful work with no religious affiliation. Do you see any tangible difference in the way in which Christians love one another as individuals or organizations? My husband mentioned that he has noticed a lot of Christian organizations will help without identifying - like a Catholic organization may send volunteers to help in a war stricken area without identifying as Catholic but we always know if it's Red Cross - I don't know if I've noticed that, his observation. Any thoughts on this? Our minister says she's still struggling with puzzling this out in some ways and it's partly why she asked!


I think you know it is the Red Cross because the organization is recognized world wide, has worked hard to develop connections across/apart from political and religious divides, and is able to do much of their work precisely because they are clear that there isn't a hidden agenda.  I don't know that it is any more or less publicized than say the Salvation Army.  My personal perception is that religious organizations do make a point to showcase their religious affiliations.

 

 


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#7 of 23 Old 10-06-2011, 08:11 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I agree that they frequently do, but there are also those that frequently don't.  Our local food bank is run by the Baptist church, but you wouldn't know unless you went out of the way to find out, the Catholic church near my kids' old school was instrumental in organizing Christmas help for less fortunate families attending the local school, but the school involvement was the only publicized part, and a lot of churches support causes like helping in disaster or starvation situations and don't particularly publicize.  I guess my husband's point (which I didn't entirely agree with) was that while we have the Salvation Army's and Church of Latter Day Saint situations, there's also a lot of undercover Christian work in communities, whether it's hospital volunteers (a lot of this!) organized by a church but that do not identify or bring religion into the volunteer situation or those supporting causes far away.  I think that some of why we know of secular groups is situations like Red Cross and Amnesty International that are easily recognized, but I have seen smaller groups (like Project Colours mentioned above) purposefully work hard to be recognized for a very understandable and valuable reason: that not-for-profit groups have a hard time getting funding with so many charitable choices out there, and that some advertizing is necessary to keep programs running.  I also think that sometimes religious groups know that they can help more by addressing the matter at hand than by having religion enter the equation, as it could make people uncomfortable, when say, the main focus of concern might be providing food for the community.  In both cases the parties are acting in self interest; the religious party may benefit more from helping more anonymously and the not for profit by identifying.  I certainly wasn't meaning to diminish the good work of the Red Cross, and I do agree that some religious groups showcase their affiliations, but I think it is much more complex and varied than the PP (or my DH) imply. 


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#8 of 23 Old 10-06-2011, 09:03 PM
 
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I am not Christian, but the title of this post caught my eye and I thought I'd throw in my two cents.

 

First off, there is no difference between a helping hand from a Christian and a helping hand from anyone else.

 

Secondly, I can tell you that most of the people I know, regardless of their religion, are MORE RESERVED taking charity from a Christian group than a non-Christian group. The reason for this is simple: many (but not all) Christian groups require people to attend service or tolerate proselytization in order to benefit. Some Christian groups require that the people who benefit submit to Christian ethics/rules. It is very difficult to go through a hard time in life and then get the message that not only do you feel worthless, but -btw- your beliefs are wrong, too. A lot of people go without in order to retain their own faiths.

 

On a related sidenote, archeology, recovered documents, etc. have all shown that charitable acts, including soup kitchens, orphanages, etc. have existed in some way shape or form long before the existence of Christianity or the cultural presence of the Judaic tribes. Christians do not corner the market on compassion or having altruism be central to religious teachings/beliefs/lifestyles.

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#9 of 23 Old 10-06-2011, 09:29 PM
 
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I agree that they frequently do, but there are also those that frequently don't.  Our local food bank is run by the Baptist church, but you wouldn't know unless you went out of the way to find out, the Catholic church near my kids' old school was instrumental in organizing Christmas help for less fortunate families attending the local school, but the school involvement was the only publicized part, and a lot of churches support causes like helping in disaster or starvation situations and don't particularly publicize.  I guess my husband's point (which I didn't entirely agree with) was that while we have the Salvation Army's and Church of Latter Day Saint situations, there's also a lot of undercover Christian work in communities, whether it's hospital volunteers (a lot of this!) organized by a church but that do not identify or bring religion into the volunteer situation or those supporting causes far away.  I think that some of why we know of secular groups is situations like Red Cross and Amnesty International that are easily recognized, but I have seen smaller groups (like Project Colours mentioned above) purposefully work hard to be recognized for a very understandable and valuable reason: that not-for-profit groups have a hard time getting funding with so many charitable choices out there, and that some advertizing is necessary to keep programs running.  I also think that sometimes religious groups know that they can help more by addressing the matter at hand than by having religion enter the equation, as it could make people uncomfortable, when say, the main focus of concern might be providing food for the community.  In both cases the parties are acting in self interest; the religious party may benefit more from helping more anonymously and the not for profit by identifying.  I certainly wasn't meaning to diminish the good work of the Red Cross, and I do agree that some religious groups showcase their affiliations, but I think it is much more complex and varied than the PP (or my DH) imply. 



It may be regional - our local foodbank is organized by a church and it is made very clear. The hospital volunteer groups here are a secular/non-religious group. I do think that churches are a good source of community volunteers which I think is partly demographic (age, income, ethnicity) and that there is often cross over between community and church volunteering. Churches have historically been the source for community organizing, and that structure remains. But I think as we move towards a more secular or pluralistic society, that will (is) changing.

 

My guess is that the church's involvement in the school Christmas program you spoke of was kept low key for a reason - that sort of association isn't generally publicized for obvious reasons. I'm not disagreeing with you that there are Christian churches who do good work without looking for recognition for their group but I don't think that represents the majority, at least where I live.

 

And I agree that determining the benefits of publicizing religious affilitations is a nuanced one, depending on circumstances. I personally think twice and do a lot of research before contributing time or money to a Christian organization for fear that their good works come with subtle or not-so-subtle strings attached for those they proport to help. I'm grateful to those who don't "fly under the radar" and make their associations clear as it makes that an easier task for me.

 


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#10 of 23 Old 10-06-2011, 10:30 PM
 
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I think the 'problem' comes in that some (not all, but some) Christian help comes with strings attached. Those churches are seeing this as 'mission' work and seeking to evangelize along with serving. Many other Christian organizations are simply serving.

 

I don't know if other religions have the same issues - are the proselytizing Muslim charities? Jewish? Buddhist? I know, for example, that there's a relatively new Muslim charity in our town that helps people regardless of religion or background, but it was hard for them to get the word out initially that you didn't  have to be Muslim to be helped.

 

Secular help would be without strings, I assume.

 

I think it's also important to remember that Christian covers a huge range of churches and beliefs. I don't like using the word "Christian" as a generic descriptor. Maybe it's because I'm in the US, but I always associate the term with conservative, Evangelical Christians. I've been told by some of them that I'm not really Christian because I was raised Catholic and until I accept "Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior" I won't be Christian. eyesroll.gif

 

I think if acts of love come from the heart and by love alone, there is no difference.


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#11 of 23 Old 10-07-2011, 04:08 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I am not Christian, but the title of this post caught my eye and I thought I'd throw in my two cents.

 

First off, there is no difference between a helping hand from a Christian and a helping hand from anyone else.

 

Secondly, I can tell you that most of the people I know, regardless of their religion, are MORE RESERVED taking charity from a Christian group than a non-Christian group. The reason for this is simple: many (but not all) Christian groups require people to attend service or tolerate proselytization in order to benefit. Some Christian groups require that the people who benefit submit to Christian ethics/rules. It is very difficult to go through a hard time in life and then get the message that not only do you feel worthless, but -btw- your beliefs are wrong, too. A lot of people go without in order to retain their own faiths.

 

On a related sidenote, archeology, recovered documents, etc. have all shown that charitable acts, including soup kitchens, orphanages, etc. have existed in some way shape or form long before the existence of Christianity or the cultural presence of the Judaic tribes. Christians do not corner the market on compassion or having altruism be central to religious teachings/beliefs/lifestyles.

 

 

 

Actually, I completely agree with you, and that's why I posted the question.  Everyone in our Bible study, even though they are Christians and you are not, felt the same way and knew there are good works all over from all sources, from all times, and couldn't see any difference.  The minister, BTW, was not looking for a "which is better" sort of scenario, but for if there was a qualitative difference in the way that secular and Christian organizations carry out good works.  So far, I can't see any either from the outside.  It did occur to me that from the inside, many faiths (not just Christian, actually, that's also why the question posed was between Christian and secular, not Christian and other faiths, because my understanding, as well as what we discussed at Bible Study, is that the point of view on good works between different faiths is much the same just coming from a different angle) believe they have a duty to perform good works, so they may have different intentions than someone who sees good works as important but not a duty. 

 

Thanks for the responses!



 


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#12 of 23 Old 10-07-2011, 04:55 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I think the 'problem' comes in that some (not all, but some) Christian help comes with strings attached. Those churches are seeing this as 'mission' work and seeking to evangelize along with serving. Many other Christian organizations are simply serving.

 

I find sorting through this difficult, too.  There's some Christian organizations working in Africa that I don't give to because I worry that there are strings attached and that people won't get the help they need.  Then, as you said, many Christian associations simply serve.  I fondly remember working in a nursing home where Mennonite women were quietly coming in to help feed dementia patients once a week and all anyone noticed about affiliation was that they all wore "such pretty, long dresses".

 

I don't know if other religions have the same issues - are the proselytizing Muslim charities? Jewish? Buddhist? I know, for example, that there's a relatively new Muslim charity in our town that helps people regardless of religion or background, but it was hard for them to get the word out initially that you didn't  have to be Muslim to be helped.

 

I find this funny (strange funny, not ha ha funny).  Where I live now is so isolated, except for a university in the area's only town with a huge (at one time the highest number in North America) number of international students who aren't full time residents, so I don't see that type of diversity to compare (there's lots of other diversity, in the form of many native tongues in the area and lots of native and black populations).  When I lived in Halifax, there was the diversity to compare, with a huge population of Buddhists and Arabic now being the second most spoken language as the Muslim community has grown.  I haven't seen any proselytizing Muslim or Buddhist charities, either.  I guess this is routed in how some Christians interpret the Bible.  "Spread the good word" is literal to some and just show through good example to others.

 

Secular help would be without strings, I assume.

 

Is it always?  When I worked with parents, some would feel they got wonderful help from LLL (La Leche League).  Others would come back with horror stories of being ostracized for weaning their toddler when they had enough (I had a great time with LLL, but I bumped into this enough as a parenting counselor I'm sure some of these bad experiences happened).  Working  in a not for profit family resource centre I know that as an organization we made judgement calls who to enter into programs, etc, and sometimes we didn't have those who had a need but also had wildly divergent views on parenting back in a group.  It may have been the best for group dynamics or it may have been best not to deal with" lost causes" but I also think that people helped were expected to show acceptance of the positive parenting principles. And while the help may be without strings in some other secular organizations, there can be lots of strings attached if you wish to belong to one, like pressure to be a vegetarian if working for an environmental group.  I guess I can agree with secular help being often without strings.  It's just that there are agendas in any group or individual, secular or Christian, and I think lots are hidden even from ourselves.

 

I think it's also important to remember that Christian covers a huge range of churches and beliefs. I don't like using the word "Christian" as a generic descriptor. Maybe it's because I'm in the US, but I always associate the term with conservative, Evangelical Christians. I've been told by some of them that I'm not really Christian because I was raised Catholic and until I accept "Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior" I won't be Christian. eyesroll.gif

 

I feel like that, too.  I think our minister used "Christian" because she didn't want it to turn into the usual Catholic vs Anglican thing that can happen around here.  I've encountered the same thing for being an Anglican from Evangelical Christians.

 

I think if acts of love come from the heart and by love alone, there is no difference.

 

Agreed



 


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#13 of 23 Old 10-07-2011, 10:10 AM
 
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Quote:

I don't know if other religions have the same issues - are the proselytizing Muslim charities?

In dh's country, absolutely.  Pretty much exactly the same stuff going on as the worst kind of strings-attached Christian "charity".  In some cases it's even more blatant, literally bought conversions.  The missionaries I know actually avoid this kind of behavior because the last thing they want to develop is a culture of "rice Christianity" (conversion in order to get help).  They focus on providing care or resources, and making spiritual stuff available, but mainly "being Jesus" to others, whether they accept Jesus or not.

 

One thing our church did recently was along these lines.  There is a Christian village in Sudan that is lacking clean, safe water (lacking much water at all).  The church wanted to help these people out.  But they were made aware that if they did this, it would cause tensions between that village and a nearby Muslim village.  So their conclusion, along with the leaders of the Christian village, was that they would raise enough money for two wells, dig one for the Muslim village first, and then the one they originally planned.  In that way they could help more people than they'd originally thought, not just with water issues, but with avoiding heightened tensions in an area where things are already dangerously inflamed.  There is no proselytization planned, though obviously there is the hope that this will improve relations between the two villages and between the Muslims and Christians living there. 

 

 

On the subject as a whole, I don't think there is pragmatically any difference between Christian and non-Christian charity.  I think the differences lie in the spiritual arena, and perhaps people's perspectives, motivations, and beliefs about giving as a whole.

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#14 of 23 Old 10-08-2011, 05:09 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Wow, cappuccinosmom, what a beautiful way for your church to help without causing a worse divide between the villages.  I'm sure these types of works provide such long lasting improvement in the lives of others.


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#15 of 23 Old 10-08-2011, 01:28 PM
 
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just a couple of more thoughts that I had.

 

Red Cross.  Yes we all recognize their symbol.  I don't think they are flashing it for vanities sake or to raise more money ect (at least not when they are helping people)  I think they show their symbol because their reputation precedes them.  That association opens doors that are opened to no one else.  It keeps them safe in war zones.  Well, safer.  I don't think it is tooting your own horn to build a reputation or rely on one.  A solid reputation makes aid possible in places that need it the most in ways that others cannot deliver.

 

Reasons Christians serve.  I think there are three main reasons.  1) Advertising for how much better they are than the others. (this is easily unbiblical) 2) As an opening to spread the gospel.  As in "Now that everyone has a full tummy and warm clothes we have a little presentation for you".  I am neutral on weather this is right or wrong.  is this really any different than having your friends over for a pampered chef "party" or a fundraising gala?  I mean it is a pretty standard tactic even in a non religious setting.   Of course how tightly those strings are attached and how many varies greatly.  3) Some Christians serve because they take Christ's commandment to feed the hungry and visit the sick and imprisoned and give water to the thirst very seriously.  in which case they are more concerned about their soul than the people they are serving (not that they are not concerned about the souls of those they are serving but that is not their mission, their reason for serving).  and I think #2 and 3 can be combined in various ways.


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#16 of 23 Old 10-09-2011, 06:38 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I think that safety is a good reason for Red Cross to show their symbol, too, and understandably.  They work in war torn areas where their safety really is threatened.

 

I think lilyka's #2 reason is a really tricky one to grapple with.  I agree that the tactic of attending to physical needs before presenting a viewpoint, secular or religious, is standard everywhere.  The problem is, that when done in some ways, it comes across as insincere.  I can remember a co-worker trying to sell me Avon, and there was this classic first give a compliment, then feel for objections and find a refuting solution kind of tactic happening in a conversation that was not about Avon, and I was kind of freaked out.  That can happen with religion.  Like, if I was invited to a community supper put on by the church and while casually discussing my children's school I had someone from the church tell me,"And that's why you need to bring this to God in prayer", that would feel odd even though (in my viewpoint) everything should be brought to God in prayer.  Contrast that with helping someone in a non-religious way and then taking the time to know them as a person.  Then, out of genuine connection and love, you tell them how having God in your life has made a difference to you.  That, for me, would feel so much different, and even if I disagreed it would feel OK because the person had been respectful enough to build a relationship with me before getting too personal.  I think making genuine connections and being aware of personal boundaries makes such a difference in how we build community both in a secular way and as Christians.  I guess I serve for combined 2 and 3 reasons, but the third has always been more comfortable for me because I'm not worried about overstepping my boundaries.  Something I've really been working on as a Christian has been learning to be comfortable stating non-secular viewpoints in a respectful manner.  I found myself doing this more when it was the more honest thing to do (rather than wrapping everything in politically correct language) as my children have grown older and demanded real answers and opinions from me.


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#17 of 23 Old 10-09-2011, 10:45 PM
 
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2) As an opening to spread the gospel.  As in "Now that everyone has a full tummy and warm clothes we have a little presentation for you".  I am neutral on weather this is right or wrong.  is this really any different than having your friends over for a pampered chef "party" or a fundraising gala?  I mean it is a pretty standard tactic even in a non religious setting.   Of course how tightly those strings are attached and how many varies greatly.


Charity, or good charity, is by definition the act of helping people obtain access to the means to fulfill their needs.  So yes, these things really are that different from people in vulnerable positions with limited options finding aid coupled with proselytism.  Feeling obligated to buy a pot because you had a good time and ate some hors d'oeuvres is nothing at all like feeling obligated to profess a faith because the people who provided you food when you had little expressly want it of you.  I mean, whether or not it's wrong is another issue.  But the comparison isn't valid.

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#18 of 23 Old 10-10-2011, 08:43 AM
 
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Originally Posted by lilyka View Post

2) As an opening to spread the gospel.  As in "Now that everyone has a full tummy and warm clothes we have a little presentation for you".

I see that as strings attached. I think its okay to be a shining example of your faith but trying to indoctrinate others because they are poor, hungry or otherwise deprived in some way is inherently wrong... IMO.

True charity is given freely, with no strings attached.

I'll step back now because spirituality is supposed to be a support only forum, not a debate forum. OP, you might try this topic in Religious studies where we can debate.
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#19 of 23 Old 10-10-2011, 04:27 PM
 
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Just for the record, I am not saying I would do.  LOL  But I know organizations that do it to varing degrees, even within their organization.  Salvation Army comes to mind.  The homeless shelter I volunteer at is a Christian Organization as well.  They do not push faith on anyone but you are expected to operate under a lifestyle that is supported by a specific  churches doctrine.  Grace is always said before a meal is served.  But the church serving is the one asked to lead it (even if it is a different belief system the people running the show.)  No one is preached to although the guests are sweet and always inquire about our church and beliefs.  But we are serving because of number 3 and not #2.  Another soup kitchen the sermon is expected.  We do not serve at that one.  at the same time though I would be willing to listen to someone drone on if I was hungry enough and they had food.  


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#20 of 23 Old 10-10-2011, 06:43 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I see that as strings attached. I think its okay to be a shining example of your faith but trying to indoctrinate others because they are poor, hungry or otherwise deprived in some way is inherently wrong... IMO.
True charity is given freely, with no strings attached.
I'll step back now because spirituality is supposed to be a support only forum, not a debate forum. OP, you might try this topic in Religious studies where we can debate.
 
 
I was more looking for different ideas than outright debate, and I think lilyka is not so much in disagreement with you as pointing out that sometimes this happens with some charities, whether we agree with it or not.  I know that personally I don't agree with way of spreading the gospel, rather than through example or by building an actual relationship where redpectful exchange of ideas can happen.  But it does happen.  That being said, I will try to cross post this in Religious Studies tomorrow.  Post Thanksgiving clean up to deal with right now.


 


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#21 of 23 Old 10-12-2011, 05:15 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I think the debate is not about the original question of this thread but about the ethics of charities using the giving of material help as an opening for spreading the gospel.  I think it's a worthwhile debate, and one I have always struggled with when deciding which charities to support, so I am starting a new thread in Religious Studies.  See you there.


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#22 of 23 Old 10-12-2011, 06:40 AM
 
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Well... going back the blatant advertising of red cross... what other organization will track down military members for their families?  In every situation where something has gone wrong they are always there.  Generally the first responders.  I don't consider them a charity anymore.  I consider them to be a welcome sign to most.  You're in peril, you see the red cross has a tent up that's where you go. 

 

As far as other charities with strings attached, well they could reach more people without it.  When I lived in Monterey and I was still involved in church, we would set out once a month to deliver clothes and packs of food.  We then would hand out a flier that stated you could if you wanted come to our church on these nights for a shower, food a place to sleep and some spiritual uplifting if you needed it.  However the kitchen and sleeping area was away from the rest of the church and if they didn't feel led to go in and  listen then they didn't.  They were never prodded or pushed into it.   

 

I have seen situations where in order to get a pack of food you had to submit to prayer and a good look at your life choices.  WTH?!  Couldn't someone just be down on their luck that month?  Couldn't they just need a little extra to get by?  Does it really mean they are not right with god because they lost their job? 

 

Interesting thread.

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#23 of 23 Old 10-12-2011, 06:56 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by Imakcerka View Post

Well... going back the blatant advertising of red cross... what other organization will track down military members for their families?  In every situation where something has gone wrong they are always there.  Generally the first responders.  I don't consider them a charity anymore.  I consider them to be a welcome sign to most.  You're in peril, you see the red cross has a tent up that's where you go. 

 

As far as other charities with strings attached, well they could reach more people without it.  When I lived in Monterey and I was still involved in church, we would set out once a month to deliver clothes and packs of food.  We then would hand out a flier that stated you could if you wanted come to our church on these nights for a shower, food a place to sleep and some spiritual uplifting if you needed it.  However the kitchen and sleeping area was away from the rest of the church and if they didn't feel led to go in and  listen then they didn't.  They were never prodded or pushed into it.   

 

I have seen situations where in order to get a pack of food you had to submit to prayer and a good look at your life choices.  WTH?!  Couldn't someone just be down on their luck that month?  Couldn't they just need a little extra to get by?  Does it really mean they are not right with god because they lost their job? 

 

Interesting thread.

 

 

 

 

I agree about the Red Cross, actually DH and I discussed his view later, and he was on the same page.  I also think they need the advertizing for their safety.  Our Canadian Forces are pretty quick to define themselves on peacekeeping missions, too, and for good reasons.

 

I think it's just right to help people, and seeing a good example can lead people to church all on it's own, with no strings attached.  I have the thread about the strings attached issue posted in Religious Studies right now, so that people can be OK with debating without the "support forum" issue.



 


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