Tall ships festival inspired feelings of global hope...

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

July 05, 2000

Tall ships festival inspired feelings of global hope

When the tall ships sailed gracefully out of Baltimore's Inner Harbor last Thursday, they left behind a community that's a little more optimistic, a little more hopeful about its world.

The tall ships reminded us that there are many kinds of people out there, speaking many different languages, living many different lifestyles. But when it comes to community, we all want the same things: peace, happiness, prosperity.

United Way of Central Maryland applauds the tall ships that left such a glorious impression on our residents and visitors.

We thank Deutsche Bank Alex.Brown for helping make this event possible, for its continued leadership in our community and for its commitment to the betterment of life for our residents.

Proof of the company's philanthropic concerns are obvious: It is consistently one of United Way of Central Maryland's most generous supporters, contributing $200,000 in matching funds this year for a special initiative to increase membership in our Alexis de Tocqueville Society of $100,000-and-above givers.

Deutsche Bank continues to run United Way's largest Tocqueville campaign, with 52 donors in 1999. The company's leadership remains actively involved in United Way's efforts, with Tim Schweizer, managing director, chairing this year's Tocqueville campaign, and Mayo A. Shattuck III, co-chairman and co-chief executive officer, chairing it in 1998.

Deutsche Bank Alex.Brown's commitment to Baltimore demonstrates the positive impact global companies can have on our communities. We thank them for helping improve the lives of so many people in central Maryland.

Larry E. Walton

Baltimore

The writer is president and chief professional officer of the United Way of Central Maryland.

Baptist churches may ordain women

While there is much that I find disturbing about the new Baptist Faith and Message statement adopted by the Southern Baptist Convention ("Southern Baptists vote to forbid women pastors," June 15), I wish to address one issue.

I refer to the section that excludes women from pastoral roles. The convention has no power to prohibit a local church from ordaining a woman as a minister or calling her as pastor.

Nor does it have the power to rescind a minister's ordination or to remove a pastor from the pulpit.

All ministers in Southern Baptist churches are ordained by local congregations, and each local church is free to call whomever it pleases as pastor.

I have been a Baptist minister for 27 years. I was ordained, not by the Southern Baptist Convention, but by Norwood Baptist Church in Anniston, Ala.

The convention will probably, within a couple years, amend its constitution to exclude churches that ordain women or call women as pastors. But it cannot dictate to state conventions or local church associations.

However, these bodies may - and many will - use the new statement as a basis for excluding churches that ordain women or call women to pastoral roles. Some associations, even without the new statement, have already done that.

But all Baptists are not alike. There are Baptists in the Baltimore area who believe that God calls men and women alike for all forms of Christian ministry.

Lamar Wadsworth

Baltimore

The writer is a member of Woodbrook Baptist Church.

Sickle cell sufferers still awaiting cure

In our excitement over the decoding of human genome with its potential for curing cancer and many other diseases, let's not forget those members of our society suffering from sickle cell anemia.

It is one of the simplest, if not the simplest (a single mutation) of all genetic abnormalities, and we are still awaiting the "cure" half a century after its discovery.

Those with sickle cell might be more convinced of the enormous potential of the current landmark breakthrough only if their misery had been alleviated by now.

Dr. A.K.M. Shamsuddin

Baltimore

Provident Hospital loss evokes memories

As I have aged, I often tell people "I'm falling apart." As I have grown old, I weep when I am happy and cry when I am sad or upset.

Recently, news came to me that the Bon Secours-Liberty Medical-New Provident hospital building will be torn down. I cried.

I cried for the lost hopes of so many people who struggled so hard and for so long to raise funds for the "New" Provident Hospital.

It was a struggle to get legislation passed in Annapolis to continue the process. It was a struggle to fire up the community to the task. When all that legwork was done, the biggest struggle was to raise the matching funds.

The whole city rallied behind Charles G. Tildon Jr. to get the project funding under way. The late Max Johnson of the Afro-American newspapers challenged Woman Power Inc. to pull its weight in that direction. Dr. Delores C. Hunt urged Woman Power to take a leadership role in the project and spearheaded the drive.

Woman Power organized the Century Club, made up of more than 100 women dedicated to contribute or raise $100 each within a year. The goal of $10,000 was raised on time.

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