Thursday, February 10, 2005

Christian Groups Exploit Tsunami Disaster

Disaster aid furthers fears of proselytizing
By Jane Lampman
Christian Science Monitor

...since 2000, Evangelical Christians across the globe have mounted a missionary effort targeting the "10/40 Window" - the Muslim, Hindu, and Buddhist nations between 10 degrees and 40 degrees north latitude. East Asians, such as Koreans, as well as Westerners are active in several countries.

But now the tsunami has drawn a host of smaller Christian groups to the region. They see the tragedy as an opportunity to present their spiritual message along with material aid.

There are reports in Indonesia, India, and Sri Lanka of groups handing out Christian tracts purporting to explain the tragedy, seeking to move Muslim children into Christian orphanages, or urging those they provide with goods to attend prayer meetings.

"I think evangelists do this out of the best intentions, but there is a responsibility to try to understand other faith groups and their culture," says Vince Isner, director of FaithfulAmerica.org, a program of the National Council of Churches USA, who just returned from Sri Lanka.

"There's a power imbalance when people are in dire need," he adds. "When others offer aid and ask, 'By the way, do you know why this happened to you? There's a better way,' it becomes a delicate power struggle."


Entire Article

2 comments:

Rainbow Demon said...

It's just simply amazing how much harm these people are actually doing in this world, and they think it's good...
'Missionary Mercenaries' 4 JesusPeace,
=RD=

Thivai Abhor said...

Rainbow Demon,

I have had the good fortune to meet some truly "progressive" Christians, but these groups that take advantage of misfortune in order to fulfill their evangelical agenda--truly sick. Reminds me of the food pantry I used to work at where the church group would require that these poor people who were coming in for food sit down and allow themselves to be preached at for 10 minutes or so, before receiving their allottment.

Imagine, you are already in a humbling position, you just want to pick up the food to bring home to your family and the organization decides this is a good time to "convert" you because you might be weakened and receptive...

On another note, I was watching this show called "Wife Swap" last night--did you happen to see it. In this episode, they switched the "wife" of a conservative Texas, republican, Christian, millionaire, interracial family with the "wife" (in this case the one who appears more "submissive" in the relationship) of a lesbian couple that also has a child.

I was very impressed by the husband from the Christian couple and the kids were amazing--all of them very willing to learn about someone different, but the wife was the epitome of closed-minded hatefulness--painful to watch (I know people like her)... alternating between anger and pity.

The hatred from this woman, especially in her conversation with the other wife at the end of the show was sickening...