Readers write: Online church services, and investigating truth
Letters to the editor for the April 12, 2021 weekly magazine. Readers discuss the irreplaceable elements of in-person worship and truth-seeking skills.
Centering on people
If I had only one magazine subscription, it would be for The Christian Science Monitor. I was just reading the Feb. 22 cover story, “When a border runs through a family,” and realized that the Monitor presents the news with a people point of view. I read the Monitor articles clear through, unlike the “hard” news that I just skim. This is the news I want, need, and can actually use. Thank you.
Elizabeth E. Stevens
The Feb. 15 cover story, “The rise of digital religion,” provides excellent insights into the way that online services are transform-ing Christian churches in the United States.
The author, however, does not mention aspects of in-person services that are clearly superior, such as congregational singing and fellowship after church. Online services are here to stay, but many Christians will give thanks when they return to an auditorium, sing out loud, and enjoy spontaneous face-to-face conversations with fellow worshippers.
The Feb. 22 article “After a ‘post-truth’ presidency, can US make facts real again?” should be an ongoing investigation. For 14 years I conducted classes on accuracy and balance in interpretation for California State Parks guides and interpreters, along with a class on interpreting controversial topics.
People are sometimes inaccurate, but they don’t lie nearly as often as they misspeak, mispronounce, exaggerate, confabulate, oversimplify, or tell a joke that their audience doesn’t get: inaccuracies without an intent to deceive.
The goal is to value accuracy; know your sources of information, and be will-ing to share them. Let the visitor weigh the value of the source. And any anonymous source, like “the internet” or QAnon, calls for skepticism.