Letters to the editor (06/06/12)

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Doing your own thing?
Editor:
The book of Judges ends with “no King in Israel and every man did that which was right in his own eyes.” (Judge 21:25).
In other words, everybody was “doing his own thing.”
The little phrase, “doing your own thing,” originated with the rebellious hippie movement of the ’60s. Many of these who wanted to do their own thing were soon found in jails and hospitals.
Some ended up lying there much like a shriveled vegetable as a result of drugs. Smoking pot was considered the thing by these young rebels. Many went on to stronger drugs. Addiction became a way of life for many of them.
A great number of these kids were from well-to-do families, living in plush neighborhoods. Remarkable as it was, they left a comfortable bed in a private room full of fine clothes, gadgets and luxuries to sleep with some companions in a dirty, rat infested loft somewhere just so they could do their own thing.
You still see some leftovers from this, long-haired boys following the rock music scene — sallow, pale, unhappy, pretending to be having a good time.
Girls who could have enjoyed the good things in life dressing in the dirty, scroungy trousers and sweat shirts, their hair looking like a hurricane warning. Many of them get into serious moral trouble that will leave them scarred for life, just so they can have their own way and do their own thing!
Human nature has always been in rebellion against God. The music and dances of each generation mirror this antagonism against God, against decency and against what’s right. These people shut themselves out from the wonderful will of God, for God does have a perfect plan for each individual life.
When Jonah defied God and bought a ticket to Tarshish, fleeing from the presence of God, he was doing his own thing by running away from the will of God for his fie, which was to preach to the people of Nineveh.
He ended up in a whales belly chapel, taking an underwater trip in the interior of gigantic sea monster.
You, too, can get into a whale of a lot of trouble if you ignore or bypass the will of God in your life. Jonah probably never looked, felt or smelled the same after being thrown up on the beach by the big, bellowing, apartment-size whale he had lived in for these days and three nights.
But he was ready to do business for God. And he was given a second chance (Jon 3:1.) Maybe you have been slow to obey God. Why not give up your own thing today and save yourself a whale of a lot of grief.
The Israelites in the book of Judges, doing their own thing, are so typical of miserable humanity all around us today. People who will not listen to the facts about death, dealing tobacco often smoke their way into cancer clinics and heart disease wards of American hospitals.
People who think they can outsmart God and get by the drinking beer, wine or whiskey may eventually have liver or brain damage.
Wise King Soloman describes those who are foolish drinkers (Prov. 23). Statistics show that more than 5,000 teens  and youngsters who are killed every year in the United States on the highways in accidents involving alcohol.
Let God have your life. Your own thing may be in the path of disaster.

Mike Silva
Belen

Jesus Christ created the one, true church
Editor:
Our Father in Heaven is not a scoundrel!
He established a (family) church in the year 33. He did not create the first Protestant Church. In the year 1517, Martin Luther created his own church out of human doctrines: “Sola Scriptura” (Bible alone);  Sola Fide” (faith alone), and “private interpretation” (every man his own judge of the Bible.)
What was the consequence? To date, it totals over 40,000 plus different Protestant churches. As history proves, it produces bad fruits of division and disunity.
“The Bible itself was a church teaching. The faith of the church was not based on the Bible; the Bible was based on the faith of the church; a church that looked annoyingly Catholic,” wrote David Griffey, a former Baptist minister.
Scripture alone? Scripture itself states that it is insufficient of itself. The Bible calls the church and not the Bible “the pillar and ground (foundation) of truth,” (Timothy 3:15)
The church produced the bible, and not vice versa; the canon of the bible was not even settled until the fourth century by the Holy Catholic Church.
The Gospels are really the family papers of the Holy Catholic Church, and she alone possessing the family traditions, can interpret what those family papers really mean.
“Saints of sacred history like … St. Stephen, St. Francis, St. Ignatius (44-107 AD), St. Jude, St. Jerome, St. John, St. John the Baptist, St. Joan of Arc, St. Bernard, St. Patric, St. Anthony, St. Clare, St. Martin of Tours, Mother Teresa, St. Teresa, St. Therese, Arch Bishop Futton Sheen, and all the unbroken apostolic succession of 265 popes … all those mentioned and more had a  breadth and depth to their devotion.
“There was a comprehensive and continuity in their approaches to two universal truths that was sorely lacking in the secular world.
“They were not, as C.S. Lewis would say, capitalist or socialists. They were liberal or conservative, Republican or Democrat. They were ‘other,’ ‘above’ and ‘beyond.’
“They stood on a different foundation, not one cast to and fro by the prevailing media current events of the day. Theirs is a solid foundation that stands firm no matter the pressures from the outside world,” wrote Griffey)
The church is the bride of Christ. Knowledge is knowing a fact. Wisdom is knowing what to do with that fact. Christ left a church, not a Bible, to teach, govern and to sanctify in his name until the end of time.
The Catholic Church has existed for 2,000 years, and will be here till the end of time because of the promises of Christ. (Matthew 28:19, 20 and Matthew 16:18)
“I would not believe the Gospel itself, if the authority of the Catholic Church did not mine me to do so,” St. Augustine, 354 AD – 430 AD.
In closing, a few more sacred historical facts:
1. Invention of the art of printing by Mr. John Gooseflesh, 1440 AD
2. Invention of the printing press by Mr. Joannes Guttenberg, 1445 AD
3. Catholics were first called Christians in Antioch by St. Ignatious (44 AD-107 AD
4. Private interpretation of Scripture cannot be the guide or teacher of man (2 Peter 1:20,21 and 2 Peter 3:16)
“It is simply an historical fact that the Catholic Church stands alone. She does not merely belong to a class of human religions. She is the one, Holy Catholic, Apostolic Church, founded by Christ for the salvation of all mankind and commissioned to teach all nations his name. She received this devine commission more than 1,400 centuries before a single Protestant sect saw the light of day,” said G.K. Chesterton.
The Holy Spirit reassures us that the church is “the pillar and foundation of truth and the church of the Living God,” (1 Timothy 3:15)

Gilbert Ulivarri Jr.
Belen

Officers do what they have to do
Editor:
I resent John Lopez’s accusation that APD officers are “slaughtering” citizens.
Recently, a convicted felon got out of prison on a Monday, and by Friday, attempted to have a gunfight with APD officers with a semi-automatic rifle.
No, it was not an “assault rifle.”  It is a federal felony for a convicted felon to possess any firearm.
This fellow evidently doesn’t believe in any laws. In all the shootings referred to by Mr. Lopez, not one innocent person has been injured by gunfire. A tribute to their training.
Several years ago, a Belen High School graduate, Army veteran, former Valencia County Sheriff’s Deputy and APD officer witnessed a shooting in Albuquerque evening  traffic. He left his patrol car and fired two rounds at the assailant, striking him once, and held him for arrest and trial.
No innocent citizens were struck. What would Mr. Lopez have this officer do? Ignore the criminal and turn in a report?
During the late ’90s, I wrote a report on officer-involved shootings and the resulting Post Traumatic Stress Disorder affecting many of them.
In my 40 years here, I have met and worked with a number of city, county, state and federal law enforcement officers and I never heard one mention a shooting or brag about taking a criminal life.

Paul Rockhold
Rio Communities