Letters

Promises to Keep
I found Ward Harkavy's article on the Promise Keepers' "home church" ("Preach for the Stars," October 30) simultaneously enlightening and troubling. My own "dreams" and thoughts these last few days have been about the PK folks, wondering what need they manage to fill in the hearts of their countrymen.

I am a disabled vet of the Vietnam era, and last Monday evening I told a friend how the militarism of the PKs is disturbing. I thought aloud how rigidly the program operates. I wondered about how many of the PKs have been in the active-duty service. Perhaps the success of PK is due to a rigid, simplistic way of doing things. Getting an answer from a leader, then following through on it! Avoiding muddying variables can make life more bearable.

I see things quite differently from the PKs; therefore I have not attended any of their events. With a variation on the old saying "Some of my best friends are Promise Keepers," I wish to maintain those friendships, but I wonder if the connection to the other men through PK is akin to what I knew in the service.

As one who preaches the word of God in the best manner I know, I am troubled by the militaristic images used by some others also undertaking the same task. Harkavy's "chain of command" is a well-turned military phrase for this closed group of folks who bring the word of God to others using scripture to their advantage. Since all preachers vocalize things as they hear God wanting them to, I wish to bring to you my views on Ryle's use of Scriptures as cited by Harkavy.

First of all: Connecting the winning of a football game by quoting Isaiah 11:11 is too much. The prophet was not quite directing his thoughts to a Catholic gridiron opponent.

Second: I cannot for the life of me find any words in Judges 5:2 that could be construed as setting up any gender issues. My New Revised Standard Version reads, "When locks are long in Israel, when the people offer themselves willingly--bless the Lord!"

I am glad that my message scripture for this week aimed toward All Saints' Day. It, too, is from Isaiah. It reads "On this mountain the Lord of hosts will make for all peoples a feast of rich food...and will destroy the shroud that is cast over all peoples" (my emphasis). All people are welcome to worship God with us.

Thanks to Harkavy for his good work on this front.
The Reverend Dan Strizek
Pastor, Bethany United Methodist Church
Denver

I read with interest Ward Harkavy's article on the Boulder Vineyard and the Promise Keepers. I try to keep track of your persistent Christian-bashing and traditional-values trashing.

I wonder if it ever occurred to Harkavy that the reason for the obvious success of the Vineyard Fellowship, Faith Bible Church, Calvary Temple and the Promise Keepers might be grounded in the possibility that what they teach and preach is actually true.

Oakley Pell McEachren
Aurora

The Bus Stops Here
I want to thank Alan Prendergast's "Divide the Ride," in the October 23 issue, for printing the truth about two self-styled "supporters" of RTD's Guide the Ride ballot initiative: RTD board chairman Ben Klein and boardmember Jack McCroskey. Whether through breathtaking incompetence or downright deviousness, these two characters did everything they possibly could to sink the measure they claimed to support.

I have no problem with anyone, including RTD boardmembers or employees, openly opposing Guide the Ride. Honest, healthy debate over substantive issues is what good government is all about. What really disgusts me is that Klein and McCroskey claimed they were for Guide the Ride, yet engaged in a steady stream of bizarre antics and public posturing tailor-made to sabotage the measure.

Klein's and McCroskey's so-called "debates" with Guide the Ride opponent (and fellow boardmember) Jon Caldara were utter mockeries. Time and time again, these supposedly experienced politicians would meekly buy into virtually all of the opposition's exaggerated claims without offering any comprehensible support for the initiative.

One might charitably conclude that Klein and McCroskey were merely feeble yet well-intentioned, were it not for their contrasting zeal in publicly badmouthing other supporters of Guide the Ride who apparently hadn't paid them enough deference. Klein and McCroskey behaved like spoiled little kids, and their public temper tantrums were obviously severe blows to Guide the Ride.

I'm writing this letter before the vote on Guide the Ride. Mark my words: If the initiative passes, Klein and McCroskey will be falling all over themselves trying to reap credit, as RTD's chairman and the "Father of Light Rail," respectively, for the glorious victory. If Guide the Ride fails, they'll as usual disavow any personal responsibility and heap blame and derision upon RTD's staff.

McCroskey once called Klein "the most hypocritical man I know." It just goes to prove the old saying: It takes one to know one.

I'm writing this letter on my own time, based on public sources, and solely in my capacity as a private citizen. However, I'm also an RTD employee. Since a majority of RTD's board has already demonstrated its contempt for freedom of speech by voting for a "blatantly unconstitutional" resolution (to quote the court that struck it down) to punish Guide the Ride supporters, I must ask that you please not disclose my name.

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