If you were a follower of my previous blog, you may remember that I partake in a yearly charitable tradition of donating to Samaritan's Purse via Operation Christmas Child. Many of you will remember Operation Christmas Child from school, which is how I got into it to begin with. It was more commonly known back then as the 'Shoebox Appeal'. I do this every year without fail and it never usually ceases to entice me. This year though, there have been doubts. After hearing about much criticism of the supposedly "evangelical" organisation, I am in two minds on whether to send the box or not. There have been many accounts of unfair practise in that the organisation "forces" Christianity upon the recipients of the shoe boxes and many of those accounts have even been described as "racist".
The dilemma I face is whether to send my box. Are these accounts 100% true or is there an element of Christianity involved that perhaps people of different religious backgrounds have taken great offence to and may have twisted to form negative press? Like with many things, it's hard to decipher whether what we are presented is 100% true, partly true or absolutely false. I would feel completely disgusted if Samaritan's Purse were presenting the boxes to such poverty-stricken children, on the basis that they had to be afflicted to Islamophobic preachings. The act of doing so would be blackmail; a crime of global condemning.
I do not have the time or resources to research in-depth about the situation, in order to come to a solid and wholesome conclusion. Doing so would involve actually going out to the places of need and investigating myself. I am not a religious person, nor am I atheist but I completely condemn religious blackmail. No-one should be forced into doing something they do not want, especially young children living in such treacherous conditions. These children should be fed, clothed and adored, not drafted in as young soldiers of an almost cult-like organisation.