Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Open Letter to Bonn International School Secondary Principal

I have a sincere concern.  I would prefer to come in and speak face-to-face about this matter, but my work schedule is extremely hectic this month.  

In the name of Jesus Christ, I would like to humbly express our disappointment that it appears that Bonn International School allows a sinful activity (according to our faith) to be openly promoted and celebrated in the open areas of the Agora Building.  

We are among many Christians at BIS.  Surely you must know that the propaganda in the Agora Building would be offensive to Christians, as well as those of other faiths, who teach that homosexual behavior is wrong.  I have spoken to many other parents, and they all agree. 

While I assume that those who allow this over-sexualization of our children do so with good intent (maybe to promote mutual respect for one another and to condemn bullying), we find this pro-homosexual propaganda offensive and disrespectful.

We are teaching Biblical truths to our children at home, instructing them in the ways of God.  But the school celebrates homosexuality with rainbow flags hung next to nation flags (which is a disgrace to all nations, in my opinion), school-endorsed clubs, and propaganda in the passageway displays.  On "Gay Day," when our youngest daughter was eating with a group, there was even a teacher who approached them, proudly extended her arm with a rainbow painted on it, and said, "Look!  I've got a rainbow!"  This is blatant, "in your face" disrespect to people of faith.  I hope you would agree that it would be best for things of this nature to be taught only at home by parents, according to our faith and our values.

I hope you can understand our concern and can place yourself in our shoes.  We respect and love all people, but we do not wish for our children to become callous to sinful behavior by continual exposure to the LGBT agenda, attempting to make this behavior socially and morally acceptable.

Thank you for your time, and we humbly ask for your consideration.  

Your Servant in Christ,
Marty L. Smith


MLS said...

Dear Mr Smith

I'm sorry you should feel so offended by this matter, but the sentiments behind the actions are core to the values that our school promotes.

At BIS we acknowledge and celebrate human diversity in all its forms, and we openly promote acceptance of differences within our community and beyond.

We live in country where homosexuality is embraced in the law, and as a school we respect the host country tolerance this implies for any sexual orientation.

Best regards


MLS said...

Dear Dr. Vanderkelen,

I appreciate your speedy reply.

However, I find it somewhat hypocritical of the school when one of its core values is "respect for others" (one of the "Seven Respects"). Does this not apply to Christians? The current policy of promoting homosexuality shows brazen disrespect for Christians by openly encouraging a behavior that the Bible teaches is an abomination to our God. And I would humbly ask those school leaders making these arguably impertinent decisions to ponder the words of Jesus in Matthew 18:6, Mark 9:42, and Luke 17:1-2. (And I find it rather interesting that your actions fulfill the prophecy of the first chapter of Romans.)

On another note, promoting this activity actually endangers the health and well-being of our beloved children. Citizens for Community Values gathered some intriguing information, and the following is a summary of what was written in the document, "The Legal Liability Associated with Homosexual Education in Public Schools":

Life expectancy—The International Journal of Epidemiology found that gay and bisexual men involved in homosexual behavior cut off years from their lives. One study showed that "life expectancy at age 20 years for gay and bisexual men is 8 to 20 years less than for all men." They therefore concluded that if "the same pattern of mortality were to continue, we estimate that nearly half of gay and bisexual men currently aged 20 years will not reach their 65th birthday."

Sexually transmitted diseases—The danger of various STDs, including HIV infection in homosexual relationships, has been well documented through many studies. The Medical Institute for Sexual Health says that "Homosexual men are at significantly increased risk of HIV/AIDS, hepatitis, anal cancer, gonorrhea and gastrointestinal infections as a result of their sexual practices. Women who have sex with women are at significantly increased risk of bacterial vaginosis, breast cancer and ovarian cancer than are heterosexual women."

Other health risk behaviors—A study by Harvard University of over four thousand ninth- to twelfth-grade students found that gay-lesbian-bisexual "youth report disproportionate risk for a variety of health risk and problem behaviors" and they found that they "engage in twice the mean number of risk behaviors as did the overall population."

Mental health—A study published in the Archives of General Psychiatry found those engaging in homosexual behavior have a much higher incidence of mental health problems. "The findings support the assumption that people with same-sex sexual behavior are at greater risk for psychiatric disorders."

But since the school promotes acceptance of differences, would we also be allowed to display promotional material for Christianity in the display cases, say, that promote healthy monogamous heterosexuality within the bonds of marriage (since that is also embraced in German law) and maybe hang a Christian flag to further show the diversity of our student body? Would the school also promote acceptance and be tolerant of our views?

I am praying for you, Simon, and that we will find a resolution to this matter that is acceptable to all parties for the sake of the children. If we cannot resolve this, I will take my concern next to the Board of Trustees. Thank you again for your time.

Best Regards,
Marty L. Smith

MLS said...

Dear Mr Smith,

We will have to agree to disagree at this stage, and since this matter is before the board it is best to leave it there now.

Best regards


MLS said...

Dear Mr. Smith

Mr Vanderkelen, through Dr. Chris Mueller, forwarded your concern to the Board of Directors and I can confirm we discussed the matter at our recent Board Meeting.

With regards to your concerns we have discussed the matter at length and we do not consider the actions taken as intentionally promoting homosexuality at school, but rather see it as an important awareness-raising exercise. We consider celebrations of human diversity and acceptance of differences within our community and beyond, as part of our core values at school.

As a Board, we have encouraged Dr Mueller to broaden the school’s general awareness and promotion of diversity in all forms and we have asked him to consider further awareness campaigns on subjects such as racism and any discrimination based on gender, age, religion, etc.

Eric Voss
Chair of the Board of Trustees
Bonn International School e.V.