Broadway gala a success

Many thanks to everyone who made the McPherson Opera House gala “A Salute to Broadway” such a rousing success. First, thanks to board member Beverly Hunter, whose idea it was and who put in countless hours making sure everything was perfect, and also to board member Lavonna Peterson, who was Beverly’s right-hand woman and who did heroic service in the kitchen helping chef Horst Eingruber to prepare of the meal. Thanks, of course, to Horst for the multi-course feast. Especial thanks, too, to Kevin Samuelson, who, along with Gloria Grace Prosper, Malissa Newberry, Chad Ingram, and Beverly Schroeder, provided wonderful entertainment after the meal. Above all, thanks to the Williams Corporation for their very generous donation to cover the cost of the food and drink so that all the funds raised directly supported the Opera House. We intend to do a similar event next year but with a different theme.

— John Holecek, Opera House executive director

Reader supports separation of church, state

I respectfully disagree with almost all statements that Mr. Shaw makes in his article titled “Faith and Public Life.” The founding fathers purposely separated church and state in the Declaration of Independence because there were 13 colonies, each with their own brand of Christianity. They had come over from Europe where there were state religions, which dominated and persecuted the other religions.  

They came to America, where they could practice their brand of religion without interference. Therefore in bringing together these diverse groups into a United States, they had to be guaranteed they would not be dominated and persecuted by another brand of religion.   This could only be accomplished by providing a wall of separation between church and state.

Even today we must maintain a separation between church and state so that one religion does not persecute others. Today it is not one brand of Christianity persecuting another brand, but persecutions between different religions, such as Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, Judaism, Hinduism and others. Again, we must maintain this separation to keep one from persecuting another.

Monday, the McPherson City Commission will vote on whether to give tax dollars to a religious organization for a drug and alcohol abuse program. This is a good program and can be done under strict guidelines that don’t violate separation of church and state. If not, we are promoting one religion over the others.

— Gerry Bley, McPherson