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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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Bridge over 'digital divide'

Even as some of the nation's top technology leaders met at the White House this spring to talk about the gap between the computer haves and have-nots, an ELCA congregation on Chicago's South Side, St. Thomas, was opening its doors to the after-school crowd of elementary students who daily use the church's 12 computers.

Begun four years ago with several used computers donated by members, the afternoon program is a cooperative venture with the neighborhood school. Parishioners keep the computers up-to-date and also help with the weekend study time for students.

The White House conference reported that 60 percent of Americans with incomes above $75,000 have Internet access, but only 9 percent of those with incomes below $25,000 are on the net.


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