Monday, August 06, 2007

CHARITY: How I envy this effort of love!

Dan Edelen of Cerulean Sanctum has linked to a neat Wall Street Journal story on philanthropy.
Marie Delahoussaye, a widow in Texas, asked for money to replace an obsolete hearing aid that “whistles.” In neat, black cursive script on green-lined memo paper she wrote, “Please consider helping me. I live very frugally. I don’t waste anything.”

Ms. Buffett paid for two hearing aids that cost about $1,800 total. Ms. Delahoussaye—who says she never expected to receive a response—says the devices have helped her reconnect with friends and her community. Before getting the hearing aids, “I couldn’t hear the phone ring,” she says. “I would go to church and couldn’t hear the sermon.” She says the experience has reaffirmed her faith in strangers. “This has made me realize there are still good people in the world,” she says.
Though the WSJ piece is worth reading in and of itself, its Dan's comments on the story that makes clicking over worth the trouble.
A story that makes the heartstrings sing, right?

But did anyone here catch the deeper issue? This elderly widow couldn’t hear the sermons at her church. She writes to Warren Buffett. Doris Buffett comes to her assistance. And this hearing-impaired widow gets her new hearing aids. She says it reaffirms her faith in strangers.

But at whose expense does that reaffirmation come?

You see it? I hope I’m not the only one asking, “Where was her church?” I hate to think that she mentioned this to people at her church and no one did anything. It seems that way, though, doesn’t it? [CRIB emphasis]
Back in the late 19th and the early 20th centuries the church abdicated her throne for social issues; relinquishing control of all sorts of Christian responsibilities to the government and the welfare state. We've paid a heavy price for doing that!

Paul taught this ...
Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others.
Philippians 2:3-4

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