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Palmetto Family Weekly Update – September 11, 2009

September 11, 2009

Welcome to Palmetto Family Weekly Update.

In this issue…

-PFC VIDEO: “Why I Support Palmetto Family Council”

-FRC WEBCAST: Family Research Council Addresses Health Care Reform

-NEWS: “Working Parents and Family Diets: Too Busy to Eat Right”

-OPINION: “For Better or For Worse: When Marriage Vows Get Creative”


“Why I Support Palmetto Family Council”

Dr. Frank Page, Immediate Past President of the Southern Baptist Convention, explains why he supports the work of Palmetto Family Council. Dr. Page pastors Taylors First Baptist Church in Greenville, S.C.

(Click HERE for the video.)


Family Research Council Addresses Health Care Reform

Earlier this week, President Obama presented his plan to reform health care before a joint session of Congress. The theme of his speech can be summed up with the fact that the details, as the President said, still need to be “ironed out.”

Thursday night, FRC Action had its ironing boards out as its live webcast of “A National Townhall on Health Care Reform” examined the moral, ethical, and financial dangers of President Obama’s health care plan. Speaking with Congressional leaders and policy experts, the legislative action arm of the Family Research Council dissected the dangers inherent in the President’s proposed plan, and answered important questions about the President’s plan, as well as provided some alternative approaches.

(Click HERE for the webcast.)


“Working Parents and Family Diets: Too Busy to Eat Right”

A new nutritional study by researchers at Cornell University surveyed 25 working mothers and 25 working fathers in low-to-moderate-income communities and found that more than half of the participants routinely resorted to unhealthy eating options because of their work circumstances.

Carol Devine, the lead author of the study, which was published in the Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior, launched the analysis after a 2006 study that she had conducted revealed that participants’ work schedules were a primary obstacle to better nutritional habits. …

The earlier survey identified 22 “coping” strategies that parents resorted to when they couldn’t sit down with their families to eat a meal that was prepared at home. These included skipping meals altogether, eating at work, eating in the car, ordering take-out on the way home from work, choosing easy and quick-fix meals to serve or overeating after a missed meal. The 69 low-income wage earners in the first study admitted to skipping meals or not eating at home because of time constraints and for financial reasons— some chose not to clock out at work and give up wages for a lunch break. …

We know that when people eat together as a family, diets of both the parents and the children tend to be better. But often our jobs don’t allow us to eat together at home as often as we’d like,” says Devine. … “This study is telling us that it is the structure of our lives that makes it very difficult to do what doctors recommend.”


“For Better or for Worse: When Marriage Vows Get Creative”

Until recently, when couples married, they just used the words provided by his or her church or synagogue. As David Lapp of the Institute for American Values wrote in this op-ed for the Wall Street Journal earlier this summer, more and more couples have decided to write their own marriage vows:

…It’s easy to dismiss the writing of one’s own wedding vows as a harmless exercise, just another way for a couple to personalize their love for each other. …, a popular wedding guide, agrees. After noting how momentous the words are, it suggests that personalizing your own vows makes them “all the more meaningful.” Innocent enough, right? Maybe not, for it goes on to suggest that a bride try the question-phrase “Will you promise to be honest in your relationship, and give him support and strength?” over the more traditional “Will you love and honor him, comfort and cherish him, and forsaking all others, be faithful to him?” The traditional vows insist on exclusive faithfulness. In this revised vow, all that’s required is honesty and “support and strength.

To be fair, though, many couples want to express the kind of commitment enshrined in the traditional vows—they just want to personalize it. This is exactly what my fiancé and I had in mind when we recently sat down with our pastor for premarital counseling. I told him that we planned to write our own vows. He dismissed my idea and directed us to the Book of Common Prayer (published in 1549) for the vows he thought we should exchange. The vows there are more formal, and hardly original: “to have and to hold from this day forward, for better for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, until death do us part.”

When one enters marriage, one steps into an institution bigger than oneself: It includes another person, the community and future children. Acts of this magnitude warrant precise and time-tested words. And as my pastor said: “A church acts like family: We share in the couple’s vows as we witness the vows being made, as we pray for them, support them, and even keep them accountable to those vows during difficult times.

In 1943, German theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer wrote a letter to a young bride and groom, reminding them that “it is not your love that sustains the marriage, but from now on, the marriage that sustains your love.” In the traditional vows, the institution— marriage—makes and forms the couple; the vows set out what marriage is and what it requires. In today’s write-your-own or instant-download vows, the couple picks and chooses the promises they make to each other—they make their own definition. The more casual attitudes toward the vows are probably a symptom of our more casual attitude toward marriage.

(Click HERE to read more.)

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