A recent Gazette Community article, dated Oct 29, 2015, advertised for the Child Evangelism Fellowship's (CEF) "Ultimate Christmas Party." (http://www.vagazette.com/news/community/vg-ugc-article-ultimate-christmas-party-2-2015-10-29-story.html). The party is advertised as containing "Bible Stories, Songs, Snacks, Games."
This is a very misleading advertisement and masks the true intentions of the CEF and this "Christmas Party."
The mission of the Child Evangelism Fellowship (through program such as Good News Club and this Christmas Party) is to convert children ages 4-14 to their specific extreme version of fundamentalist Christianity. They target younger children, "because they can't reason through it and won't question the message." (Tom Boor, Central VA CEF director).
IMPORTANT INFO FOR PARENTS TO CONSIDER BEFORE SENDING THEIR CHILDREN TO THE "Ultimate Christmas Party" or any CEF event (such as the Good News Club):
1) The CEF wants to convert young children to its extreme fundamentalist religious beliefs, regardless of the parent's beliefs or wishes. They don't care about, nor do they respect parents' wishes regarding religious teachings.
A Good News Club missionary recently told The Atlantic, "We know without any doubt that any child that doesn't give their life to Christ is going to be tortured in Hell for eternity. So to respect a parent's right to keep their child from being saved from this fate would simply be immoral on our part."
2) CEF flyers and permission slips are deceptive! They make meetings sound like harmless fun with snacks, songs, games & Bible stories. They hide that the goal of the event is to indoctrinate children and convert them to its fundamentalist beliefs. Nor do they disclose the CEF's focus on sin and punishment and use of shame and fear to convert children.
3) CEF implies it is mainstream Bible-study, but it's really fundamentalist indoctrination. They teach an extreme version of fundamentalism with an unusual focus on sin and punishment. Its curriculum has over 5,000 references to sin, 1,000 references to hell and punishment, and only one reference to the Golden Rule. Its message is divisive and filled bigotry and hatred.
Here's an example of what the CEF's Good News Club teaches children as young as four: "Others may think that you are a good person, but God knows what you're really like on the inside. He knows that deep down you are a sinner--you were born that way. Because you have sinned, you don't deserve to go to Heaven. Instead you deserve to go to Hell and be separated from God forever." (From the Good News Club curriculum)
4) CEF's teachings can be psychologically damaging to young children. The CEF's Good News Club curriculum tells young children they're born wicked, bound for an eternity in hell unless they obey the Good News Club's teachings without question or doubt. It gives children frightening ideas about the wickedness of human nature, and negative ideas about people of other faiths. According to psychologists, these teachings can be traumatic for some children, inflicting psychological damage that can last into adulthood. "Such deep and confusing fear is not easily forgotten." (Former Good News Club student)
This is NOT about freedom of religion nor persecution. This is about the CEF holding evangelical events at public schools instead of Churches intentionally creating the perception for kids that the school endorses it. And it's about the CEF deceiving local parents into sending their children, unsupervised, into aggressive, psychologically-damaging proselytizing with the sole purpose of converting children to an extreme fundamental version of Christianity.
See www.protectoregonchildren for more information about the CEF and Good News Club.
This item was posted by a community contributor.