The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America


Letters down in number

9/11 tragedy absorbs readers

(The Lutheran received roughly half the usual number of letters for this issue, perhaps reflecting time readers spent absorbed by TV coverage and related issues. The October issue was printed before the attacks. We regret the disappointment that caused for some readers. — Ed.)

I continue to have a difficult time working through the events of Sept. 11 and trying to determine what an appropriate response might be to the tragedies of that day. While I have great empathy for those who suffered losses, it seems many people are demanding an unrealistically simple response. As a gay man, I have experienced the harm too often inflicted upon sexual minorities by well-intentioned religious folks who feel there are simple answers to complex questions. The parallels are too powerful to ignore and continually force me to examine what appropriate responses might be to other problematic situations in life.

Frank S. Loulan
Phoenix, Ariz.

I've designated today (Sept. 17) as my personal day of mourning, reflection and reconciliation. I've endured the shock and horror of the terrorist attacks on our country. I've experienced the anger and the mourning, the confusion and the unabashed need to lash out at someone, anyone. I feel the fear that nothing ends here; my family may be hurt. What others in the world have long suffered has now hit home--and we are the victims. My prayer is this: that God will bless America with the intelligence and ability to see right from wrong, good from bad, guilt from innocence and love from hate. Let us not lash out in anger at those who have done nothing wrong, and especially keep us from hurting other Americans who have chosen our way of life and freedom as their home.

Bill Spaulding
Louisville, Ky.

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February issue


Embracing diversity