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How To Shrink Your Church In One Easy Step
The Aquila Report ^ | 24Aug14 | Alexander Griswold

Posted on 08/24/2014 12:21:56 PM PDT by ReformationFan

By now, we’ve all heard the refrain that U.S. churches need liberalize their teachings on sexuality and homosexuality or rapidly decline. The logic behind the argument is simple: more and more Americans are embracing homosexuality and same-sex marriage, including growing numbers of religious Millennials. So long as churches remain the face of opposition to gay marriage, those churches will shrink into irrelevancy when gay marriage (inevitably, we are told) becomes a settled political issue.

These arguments often see church acceptance of homosexuality as a carrot as well as a stick. It isn’t so much that denouncing homosexuality will drive people away from church, but that embracing it will also lead people into church. LGBT individuals and their supporters, many of whom hold a dim view of religion after a decades-long culture war, will reconsider church if denominations remove their restrictions on gay marriage and ordination.

But a number of Christian denominations have already taken significant steps towards liberalizing their stances on homosexuality and marriage, and the evidence so far seems to indicate that affirming homosexuality is hardly a cure for membership woes. On the contrary, every major American church that has taken steps towards liberalization of sexual issues has seen a steep decline in membership.

(Excerpt) Read more at theaquilareport.com ...


TOPICS: Catholic; Current Events; Evangelical Christian; Mainline Protestant; Moral Issues; Religion & Culture
KEYWORDS: alexandergriswold; ecusa; elca; griswold; homosexualagenda; moralabsolutes; pcusa; ucc
Good refutation of the liberal argument that rejection of Biblical teachings on marriage and sexuality will cause the church to "grow."
1 posted on 08/24/2014 12:21:56 PM PDT by ReformationFan
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To: ReformationFan

I would rather go to church with 2 others than compromise my beliefs.


2 posted on 08/24/2014 12:27:42 PM PDT by dila813
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To: ReformationFan

Already posted:

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-religion/3195807/posts


3 posted on 08/24/2014 12:28:16 PM PDT by humblegunner
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To: ReformationFan

Consider that homosexuals are only 1.5% of the US and UK respective populations why would they promote the way they walk in life?


4 posted on 08/24/2014 12:32:13 PM PDT by Jack Hydrazine (Pubbies = national collectivists; Dems = international collectivists; We need a second party!)
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To: ReformationFan
My wife and I decided last week to leave the church we have been attending for about 5 years...

Not so much because of the sexuality and homosexuality issues...

The pastor never preached against these issues...or for them...probably concerned he would offend some members...

We left because of the milquetoast preaching...

5 posted on 08/24/2014 12:36:12 PM PDT by Popman (Jesus Christ Alone: My Cornerstone...)
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To: ReformationFan

“churches need liberalize their teachings on sexuality ...”

No way... Yahweh....


6 posted on 08/24/2014 12:38:00 PM PDT by Vendome (Don't take life so seriously-you won't live through it anyway-Enjoy Yourself ala Louis Prima)
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To: ReformationFan

Refuse to obey.


7 posted on 08/24/2014 12:40:28 PM PDT by jsanders2001
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To: ReformationFan

Apparently, we can get people to follow the Bible by rejecting the teachings of the Bible! Liberal logic 101!

I think a lot of people would start going to church again if churches stopped with the shallow platitudes of Cafeteria Christianity. Even the “conservative” churches are far too accommodating to the Sodomites. Churches need to start heeding the words of Scripture (as well as the position of our Founding Fathers) and start advocating for our legal system to begin administering capital punishment against Sodomites.


8 posted on 08/24/2014 12:42:51 PM PDT by Objective Scrutator (All liberals are criminals, and all criminals are liberals)
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To: ReformationFan

I cannot understand why anybody would give up their Sunday morning and a bit of their money to attend a church that really doesn’t believe in much of anything. May as well relax, get some work done or whatever.


9 posted on 08/24/2014 12:43:13 PM PDT by all the best
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To: ReformationFan

God doesn’t reject homosexuals but the sin of it. To teach homosexuality as an accepted Biblical doctrine is pure heresy with a steep penalty to pay.


10 posted on 08/24/2014 12:44:07 PM PDT by tflabo (Truth or tyranny)
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To: all the best

Exactly. If they want liberalism on a Sunday morning all they have to do is stay home and watch television. It’s cheaper and requires less effort.


11 posted on 08/24/2014 12:45:14 PM PDT by ReformationFan
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To: Popman

I hope you two find a church with good strong Biblically orthodox preaching.


12 posted on 08/24/2014 12:46:44 PM PDT by ReformationFan
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To: Popman

I had a family member leave a Presbyterian USA congregation because they never bothered to actually talk about the Bible. The last straw for her was when the minister decided to read a poem a lady wrote about her dead cat in front the congregation, all while relying less on God’s written Word and more on feelings.

Any congregation which uses its hymnbook more than its Bible shall surely be cast into the Lake of Fire.


13 posted on 08/24/2014 12:47:11 PM PDT by Objective Scrutator (All liberals are criminals, and all criminals are liberals)
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To: ReformationFan
(from the article):"..The logic behind the argument is simple: more and more Americans are embracing homosexuality and same-sex marriage,
including growing numbers of religious Millennials."

While the gay/lesbian population is 02.5% of the U.S. population, they press their agenda on traditonal conservative institutions, including Churches.
Just because the gay / lesbian agenda has been legitimized by this administration , doesn't make it right; remember, Prohibition was legally reversed.
Also ,but most importantly, religious Christians believe that God's Word is eternal, and does not bend to the whimsey of curent 'popular' agenda.

14 posted on 08/24/2014 12:52:11 PM PDT by Tilted Irish Kilt (FUBO; Obungler = The didler CIC)
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To: ReformationFan

Does a significant number of the population even still go to a church? I stopped going years ago for personal reasons, and it was also rather monotonous/boring anyway. It would be great if one could go and just listen to a message for an hour, but there’s all of the socializing, handshaking, and singing that I don’t care for.

Churches would probably do themselves some good by streaming their sermons online. Offerings can be done via paypal, ect. Unfortunately, in today’s world of stagnant wages and people working around the clock, Sunday is no longer a ‘day of rest’ for many people. If churches are going to survive, they’re gonna have to adapt.


15 posted on 08/24/2014 12:56:07 PM PDT by KoRn (Department of Homeland Security, Certified - "Right Wing Extremist")
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To: ReformationFan
I hope you two find a church with good strong Biblically orthodox preaching.

We have...we had been going to Calvary Chapels for over 25 years until our last move...12 years ago..

When we moved we looked for the closet CC and the pastor there was a former youth minister and I understand a really good one, except he seemed to be stuck in that youth minister mold when he took over the pulpit...took only a few weeks of that, to drive me away..

Just found out he left a few years ago and a asst. pastor from another CC I know personally took over...

16 posted on 08/24/2014 12:58:59 PM PDT by Popman (Jesus Christ Alone: My Cornerstone...)
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To: ReformationFan

Jeremiah, Elijah and others found sound preaching does not always result in growth. Likewise heretical teaching does not always mean shrinkage.

All we can do is tell others what we know to be true.


17 posted on 08/24/2014 1:03:29 PM PDT by HarleyD ("... letters are weighty, but his .. presence is weak, and his speech of no account.")
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To: dila813

Amen!


18 posted on 08/24/2014 1:04:11 PM PDT by MNDude
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To: Jack Hydrazine
Consider that homosexuals are only 1.5% of the US and UK respective populations why would they promote the way they walk in life?

A considerably larger percentage is compromised by, or in bondage to, pornography, which clouds and crosses natural sexual boundaries. Contemporary culture is ripe for judgement lest Sodom and Gommorah have their verdicts overturned on appeal as unscriptural.

19 posted on 08/24/2014 1:06:54 PM PDT by af_vet_1981 (The bus came by and I got on, That's when it all began)
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To: Objective Scrutator
Churches need to start heeding the words of Scripture (as well as the position of our Founding Fathers) and start advocating for our legal system to begin administering capital punishment against Sodomites.

Hmmm, sounds a lot like Sharia law; no thanks; I don't trust churches or governments to legislate the Scriptures in righteousness.

He put another parable before them, saying, “The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a man who sowed good seed in his field, but while his men were sleeping, his enemy came and sowed weeds among the wheat and went away. So when the plants came up and bore grain, then the weeds appeared also. And the servants of the master of the house came and said to him, ‘Master, did you not sow good seed in your field? How then does it have weeds?’ He said to them, ‘An enemy has done this.’ So the servants said to him, ‘Then do you want us to go and gather them?’ But he said, ‘No, lest in gathering the weeds you root up the wheat along with them. Let both grow together until the harvest, and at harvest time I will tell the reapers, Gather the weeds first and bind them in bundles to be burned, but gather the wheat into my barn.’”

20 posted on 08/24/2014 1:18:46 PM PDT by af_vet_1981 (The bus came by and I got on, That's when it all began)
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To: ReformationFan

since people who are promiscuous or active homosexuals rarely enter the inner space of any respectable church, I fail to see how liberalizing the rules of morality will cause them to suddenly come back to church.


21 posted on 08/24/2014 1:52:59 PM PDT by Gumdrop (~)
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To: Popman

Wouldn’t be Methodist, would it?


22 posted on 08/24/2014 2:04:15 PM PDT by matthew fuller (Demonazi's are openly marching us (Jews, Christians, Conservatives) double time to Holocaust II.)
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To: matthew fuller

No, Southern Baptist...


23 posted on 08/24/2014 2:25:59 PM PDT by Popman (Jesus Christ Alone: My Cornerstone...)
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To: af_vet_1981

Very well put.


24 posted on 08/24/2014 2:31:00 PM PDT by onedoug
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To: Popman

In most denominations, I believe, preaching is on scripture. In my church most every Sunday it is the Gospel reading. The sermon is supposed to be a bridge explaining how scripture written more or less 2000 years ago can be applied to life today. The Gospels which are the biographies of Jesus don’t easily go into social issues - but in living a righteous life. It speaks to me.


25 posted on 08/24/2014 2:50:03 PM PDT by elpadre (AfganistaMr Obama said the goal was to "disrupt, dismantle and defeat al-hereQaeda" and its allies.)
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To: ReformationFan

we already saw the stats that showed Chrstians accepting “gay marriage” end up acceping abortion, pornography and every other deviancy.


26 posted on 08/24/2014 3:00:10 PM PDT by GeronL (Vote for Conservatives not for Republicans)
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To: ReformationFan; x_plus_one; Patton@Bastogne; Oldeconomybuyer; RightField; aposiopetic; ...
+

Freep-mail me to get on or off my pro-life and Catholic List:

Add me / Remove me

Please ping me to note-worthy Pro-Life or Catholic threads, or other threads of general interest.

27 posted on 08/24/2014 3:05:36 PM PDT by narses
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To: KoRn

There are churches that stream online even in this smallish town. The past sermons are also available on the first 3 I checked around here.

Oakwood Baptist

http://oakwoodnb.com/attend/sermons

First Baptist New Braunfels

http://fbcnb.org/podcast.html

Freedom Fellowship (whatever that is)

http://www.freedomnb.org/scmedia.php?type=recent&loc=www.freedomnb.org/media/media/recent.php&;


28 posted on 08/24/2014 3:14:19 PM PDT by GeronL (Vote for Conservatives not for Republicans)
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To: ReformationFan

Some Episcopalian churches have done so. Saw it with my own eyes.


29 posted on 08/24/2014 4:04:47 PM PDT by cloudmountain
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To: af_vet_1981
By your logic, the Founding Fathers believed in something akin to Sharia Law. Such a statement is imminently foolish.

Legislation against Sodomites is a Judeo-Christian value, values which our nation was founded upon (and was confirmed by the Supreme Court in one of its more reasonable decisions, the decision of Holy Trinity v. United States (1892)). It would be one thing if only a small subset of historical Christendom advocated for such legislation, but that's simply not the case. The Bible and the majority of Christendom has long advocated for capital punishment against Sodomites; the recent Christian trend against doing so is due to rejection of Christian values in favor of libertine values.

The rejection of Christian norms (i.e. rejection of classroom prayer, the establishment of the Lemon Test, the so-called "sexual revolution", etc.) is directly responsible for and directly coincides with the rise of the entitlement mentality and the empowerment of regulators in the 1960s. If we allow secularism and its values (i.e. sodomy) to flourish, society shall surely collapse.

The parable you cite does not apply to the moral law so clearly laid out in the OT (of course, the NT rendered the civil law and ceremonial law moot, and the parable Christ gives seems to reference this). Sodomy clearly falls under the same category as the 10 commandments. If we simply take the parable at face value without considering the rest of Scripture, we would be forced to do away with pedophilia laws as well.

30 posted on 08/24/2014 4:35:23 PM PDT by Objective Scrutator (All liberals are criminals, and all criminals are liberals)
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To: Popman
My wife and I decided last week to leave the church we have been attending for about 5 years...
Not so much because of the sexuality and homosexuality issues...
The pastor never preached against these issues...or for them...probably concerned he would offend some members...
We left because of the milquetoast preaching...

I understand what you're saying.

There are only .5% - 1.5% of the population who claim to be homosexual, so that sin would be rare. The MORE ordinary sin would be fornication and adultery.

There aren't many heroin users so THAT sin is kind of rare. The more ordinary sin is over-eating, drinking too much and such.
I did hear a sermon about our bodies being the "temple of God" and thus must treat it as such.

The OTHER more common sins, mean spirits, lying, cheating, malicious gossip...are addressed. MOSTLY I get Jesus as the example in the New Testament.
It's all good stuff.

The story about the men on their way to stone an adulteress was so good. "You without sin, cast the first stone." And to the woman: "Go and sin no more."

THOSE stories mean more to me than the sad sack homosexuals who DECIMATED themselves with AIDS.
Just a thought, o milqutoast-preaching disliker. :o)

31 posted on 08/24/2014 4:45:50 PM PDT by cloudmountain
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To: Objective Scrutator

What the Father of our country thought of sodomites. But I guess the Kenyan clown knows better.

http://cnsnews.com/news/article/george-washington-drummed-out-soldier-infamous-crime-attempted-sodomy

Back in 1778, at Valley Forge, however, Gen. George Washington approved the dismissal of a soldier for “attempting to commit sodomy,” with “abhorrence and detestation of such infamous crimes,” according to Washington’s papers at the Library of Congress.

Washington (1732-1799) was the leader of the Continental Army in America’s revolutionary war against Britain and served as the first president of the United States and thus as its first “Commander in Chief” of the armed forces and the militia, as stipulated in the Constitution. Valley Forge, in eastern Pennsylvania, was the site for the Continental Army’s military camp during the winter of 1777-78.

On Mar. 10, 1778, at Valley Forge, Gen. George Washington approved the dismissal from service of Lt. Frederick Gotthold Enslin for “attempting to commit sodomy” with another soldier.

In the first president’s papers at the Library of Congress is a series of orders with the title, “Head Quarters, V. Forge, Saturday, March 14, 1778.” It includes the following entry,

“At a General Court Martial whereof Colo. Tupper was President (10th March 1778) Lieutt. [Frederick Gotthold] Enslin of Colo. Malcom’s Regiment tried for attempting to commit sodomy, with John Monhort a soldier; Secondly, For Perjury in swearing to false Accounts, found guilty of the charges exhibited against him, being breaches of 5th. Article 18th. Section of the Articles of War and do sentence him to be dismiss’d the service with Infamy.

“His Excellency the Commander in Chief [George Washington] approves the sentence and with Abhorrence and Detestation of such Infamous Crimes orders Lieutt. Enslin to be drummed out of Camp tomorrow morning by all the Drummers and Fifers in the Army never to return; The Drummers and Fifers to attend on the Grand Parade at Guard mounting for that Purpose.”

Enslin’s dismissal came less than two weeks after another soldier, Ensign Anthony Maxwell, was acquitted of the charge of “propagating a scandalous report prejudicial to the character of Lieutt. Enslin” on Feb. 27, 1778, according to the transcription of the court martial dated Mar. 3, 1778.

The document reads: “At a Brigade Court Martial whereof Colo. Burr was President (Feby. 27th. 1778,) Ensign Maxwell20 of Colo. Malcom’s Regiment tried for propagating a scandalous report prejudicial to the character of Lieutt. Enslin.21 The Court after maturely deliberating upon the Evidence produced could not find that Ensign Maxwell had published any report prejudicial to the Character of Lieutt. Enslin further than the strict line of his duty required and do therefore acquit him of the Charge.”

“His Excellency the Commander in Chief approves the aforegoing sentences and orders Ensign Maxwell to be discharged from his Arrest …” the transcription states.

The two following notes are also provide in the document at the Library of Congress.


32 posted on 08/24/2014 4:56:56 PM PDT by NKP_Vet
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To: ReformationFan

Ask J.C. Penney’s just how successful you can be catering to the 1.5% and ignoring the 98.5%.


33 posted on 08/24/2014 6:06:42 PM PDT by Some Fat Guy in L.A. (Still bitterly clinging to rational thought despite it's unfashionability)
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To: elpadre

So the woman taken in adultery was not a social issue and the woman at the well also? That was all Yeshua spoke about was how sin broke the person and also the nation. Everything in Torah and spoken by the Master was about today and everyday for two thousand years. If you want to shrink the church step away from there 501c tax break. You can not serve two masters as you will love one and hate the other. Give onto Rome that which is Rome’s and onto G_D that which is G_Ds. Sounds social to me.


34 posted on 08/24/2014 6:45:03 PM PDT by lostboy61 (Lock and Load and stand your ground!.)
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To: KoRn

“Does a significant number of the population even still go to a church? I stopped going years ago for personal reasons, and it was also rather monotonous/boring anyway. It would be great if one could go and just listen to a message for an hour, but there’s all of the socializing, handshaking, and singing that I don’t care for.”

At least you are honest about wanting to just be entertained at church and not wanting to fellowship with other believers. Just watch Joel Olsteen and everything will be fine.

Imagine the success of the first century had they done their disciple building by not interacting with each other. Or are you possibly not into making new disciples?


35 posted on 08/24/2014 7:32:27 PM PDT by Blue Collar Christian (quod est Latine morositate)
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To: Blue Collar Christian

“...but there’s all of the socializing, handshaking, and singing that I don’t care for.”

Yea, who would want to socialize with other who believe as them. That’s just crazy!

A cardboard box in Montana awaits you.


36 posted on 08/24/2014 7:59:54 PM PDT by Henry Hnyellar
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To: Objective Scrutator
By your logic, the Founding Fathers went against Scripture in rebelling against the British government, primarily because they objected to the taxation policies of said authority.

Are you willing to advocate capital punishment for everyone who commits any sexual sin, such as looking at pornography ?

37 posted on 08/24/2014 8:03:47 PM PDT by af_vet_1981 (The bus came by and I got on, That's when it all began)
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To: af_vet_1981
Jesus was a capitalist, and would have endorsed the Founder's revolt against the British. "Render unto Caesar what is Caesar's" is if anything a capitalist statement, precisely because the profits one makes off of one's labor and land do not belong to Caesar. If you plan on citing Romans 13:1-2, please continue to read verse 3, which clarifies that the only valid governments are those which are "terrors to evil" (clearly, liberal/socialist governments would not be recognized as legitimate by Scripture).

It's difficult to prosecute people who look at pornography in their homes without unduly invading their privacy. That being said, people have the right to live in a society without smut being shoved down their throats, and I would heartily endorse prosecution of anyone who publicly produces, distributes, consumes, or promotes such filth. One example of a good position is this one.

38 posted on 08/24/2014 8:30:02 PM PDT by Objective Scrutator (All liberals are criminals, and all criminals are liberals)
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To: Objective Scrutator
Jesus was a capitalist, and would have endorsed the Founder's revolt against the British. "Render unto Caesar what is Caesar's" is if anything a capitalist statement, precisely because the profits one makes off of one's labor and land do not belong to Caesar. If you plan on citing Romans 13:1-2, please continue to read verse 3, which clarifies that the only valid governments are those which are "terrors to evil" (clearly, liberal/socialist governments would not be recognized as legitimate by Scripture).

A capitalist in order to give to others; the currency belonged to Caesar, the soul belonged to God. It is folly to presume the LORD blessed rebels who killed so many of their countrymen over money, just as it would be folly to presume approval to rebel against the government now.

It's difficult to prosecute people who look at pornography in their homes without unduly invading their privacy. That being said, people have the right to live in a society without smut being shoved down their throats, and I would heartily endorse prosecution of anyone who publicly produces, distributes, consumes, or promotes such filth. One example of a good position is this one.

To be scriptural you must prosecute all the offenders, including the consumers. Death by stoning I presumably, like they do in Iran.

39 posted on 08/24/2014 9:26:47 PM PDT by af_vet_1981 (The bus came by and I got on, That's when it all began)
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To: Henry Hnyellar

Did you read my whole post or just the quote I took from another FReeper to comment upon?


40 posted on 08/24/2014 9:47:23 PM PDT by Blue Collar Christian (quod est Latine morositate)
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To: Popman

That is what makes a church home hard to find. I don’t expect a fire and brimstone sermon every Sunday but if I don’t hear one after 3-5 visits I move on. The one we are at now the pastor does pretty good. Two Sundays ago he flat said in a sermon that he would not marry a young couple that approached him to wed them because they were already living together and he spent the whole sermon on sexual sin. He has made scriptural references to homosexuality as well.

So far so good.


41 posted on 08/25/2014 7:00:31 AM PDT by Resolute Conservative
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To: Gumdrop
since people who are promiscuous or active homosexuals rarely enter the inner space of any respectable church, I fail to see how liberalizing the rules of morality will cause them to suddenly come back to church.

I think much of the homosexualizing of churches is driven by (liberal) parishioners who have homosexual relatives, rather than by the homosexuals themselves. They think "changing the rules" makes everything hunky-dory for them.

42 posted on 08/25/2014 2:10:57 PM PDT by Sans-Culotte (Psalm 14:1 ~ The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.”)
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To: lostboy61

certainly - the point is that sermons are scripturally centered, not topical.


43 posted on 08/25/2014 4:31:22 PM PDT by elpadre (AfganistaMr Obama said the goal was to "disrupt, dismantle and defeat al-hereQaeda" and its allies.)
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