To : All Subj: They're After Your Children They're after your children. Do you have young

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From: Bob Sillyheimer 1 Jul 94 19:47 To : All Subj: They're After Your Children They're after your children. Do you have young children? Do you believe in a particular religion? Do you want to bring your children brought up in your own religion? Do you perhaps even feel that your children could be damned to hellfire for eternity if they are not saved by your religion? Well some people, especially the more liberal ones, don't think it makes much difference what religion their children have, but other people do have strong feelings about their own religion. Whatever you feel, you should know that the Southern Baptists are going after your children. And they're not coming to your home and asking your permission, they're going behind your back and approaching your children in public parks and on public playgrounds. * * * from The Milwaukee Journal, 1 July 1994 [note that Waukesha is a city and county west of Milwaukee, being mostly Milwaukee's "bedroom" suburbs] Bible study group not official 'recreation' Baptist's activity in city parks prompts advisory to parents by Sam Martino, of The Journal staff Waukesha -- City officials are notifying parents that a Southern Baptist Bible study group that attracted children to its plan and teaching sessions in city parks is not affiliated with the Waukesha Park and Recreation Department's playground program. Sue Harter, recreation supervisor, said some children mistakenly believed the group's activities were part of the city's summer recreation program. She said parents became alarmed when their children reported learning Bible passages when the children were sent to the park to participate in supervised recreation activities. The children also were asked for their home telephone numbers and addresses. Harter said the department's summer playground program had nothing to do with the Bible classes. "Although their presence is permitted by law, the fact that they are on the playground is confusing to parents and the children entering a play area and not knowing which group to play in," Harter said. She said parents who send their children to more than a dozen playgrounds throughout the city would be alerted of the Bible classes. Parents who live near three parks -- Grandview, Spring and Horeb -- have already received letters concerning the Bible group. Harter said parents should alert recreation department playground staff workers if they don't want their children participating in the Bible group. Harter identified the group as the Waukesha Baptist Church. She said the church notified the city of its plans to perform "community service" in the parks this summer in conjunction with Bible classes. Pastor Paul McDaniel said the group was working with children and planned to be in the parks again in late July. The church is affiliated with the Southern Baptist Convention, the largest of 20 Baptist bodies in the United States with 12 million members. Harter said the group's teachers, mostly teenagers, wear white shorts and white T-shirts. City workers wear blue or teal colored T-shirts and shorts. She said young people were attracted to the Bible classes when the church group's workers played games and passed out items to be colored with crayons. Gayle Edstrand, complained that her 7-year-old son and a 9-year-old niece arrived home from a playground activity carrying the coloring paper with a Bible phrase they were asked to memorize. "My son was saying, 'Mom, I think we are in the wrong group,'" Edstrand said. She said the children were supposed to be at the park playing board games, adding that she believed the children were being taken advantage of. "I feel they attracted our kids to their group with us not being aware that there was going to be two groups in the park -- the Bible group and the recreation program -- going on at the same time," she said. Edstrand said she considered the linkage with the recreation activities to be "totally wrong." "I feel they are taking advantage of children. They have a right to be in our park. But [they] don't have the right to have our kids when they are supposed to be in recreation. We didn't want our kids to be in this," Edstrand said. McDaniel said his group passed out 700 fliers in the park neighborhoods to alert parents of their activities. "We plan to put an ad in the newspaper and to pass out 1,200 fliers in July to let people know what we are doing in the area," he said. School district say the church has been meeting at North High School on Sundays. * * * First they came for the Communists, and we did nothing. Then they came for the Jews and we were silent. Then they rounded up the trade unionists, and we let them. After them, the gays, and we applauded. And now, our children.

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