From Our Readers
Thank you for the article “Sunbathers Beware!” (September 22, 1987). For some time I had a small spot on my leg but paid no attention to it. After reading the article, I consulted a dermatologist, and it turned out to be a malignant melanoma of the third degree. It took 29 stitches to close the wound after the cancer was removed, and I’m still recuperating. I’m very grateful to you for the information.
D. S., Brazil
We had to give injections twice a day to my mother, who was dying of cancer. They were painful for her, that is, until we read in Awake! (June 22, 1987) that applying ice to the area would numb it and would make penetration smooth and less painful. If we forgot, she would ask for it. She would easily dehydrate, and the “salty drink that saves lives” (September 22, 1985) helped her feel better and survive till we got her to the hospital. It was the only thing she would drink.
D. A., United States
I and my friends were greatly offended by your June 22, 1987, article “Homosexuality and the Clergy.” What is the point of telling others that some clergymen, especially Catholics, are homosexuals? I am sure that the clergy of Jehovah’s Witnesses are not immune from the influence of sexual sin in our society.
I’ll admit that every priest is not a saint. But I’ll bet that the Church has a track record on fidelity to purity and the meaning of sexuality that would surprise many outsiders. As a Catholic, I at times point out errors of other religions. But I do not attack the personal integrity of their ministers. That is bigotry.
L. B., T.O.P., et al
St. Martin de Porres Dominican Community, United States
The point in telling others that some clergymen are immoral is the same point Jesus made in telling certain clergy of his time that they were “like whitewashed tombs that look handsome on the outside, but inside are full of . . . every kind of corruption. In the same way you appear to people from the outside like good honest men, but inside you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness.” (Matthew 23:27, 28, Catholic “Jerusalem Bible”) You are correct that Jehovah’s Witnesses’ elders are not completely immune from the influence of sexual sin. But the few who err are immediately removed from office for such. On the other hand, clerical misconduct in many churches often results only in “transfer” or “treatment” unless it becomes too scandalous. This was recently illustrated in a “New York Times” article of June 12, 1988, about several priests charged with child molestation, one of whom had “been in treatment for 10 years” while still serving in parishes.—ED.
I appreciate the international points of view and flavor and the historical background of Awake! The content has won me over. The thoughtfulness provokes insight and reassures me. I had thought your organization would be steeped in unloving biases so common today. I am happy to have investigated before I gave up. My prayers are for my family and friends who are still not opening this window for a peek.
A. R., United States