Paul Snider Comments on "A Call to Spiritual Unity"
November, 1999


There is evidence of sincere spiritual searching in the Wolf-Tennant proposals, but I cannot support them.

        1.  The proposals blur the differences between spiritual relationships among individuals and functional responsibilities of and between organizations.  When such boundaries are disregarded there is bound to be some confusion of wisdom.

        2.  The proposals seem to ignore completely all of the sincere and earnest attempts, first as individuals, then as groups, to dissuade Harry before he proceeded.  We are now in step 3 ("the congregation"), having exhausted the possibilities for reconciliation during steps 1 and 2.  I can see no benefit in repeating step 2.

        3.  The proposals seem to assume that truth will be found somewhere in the middle of a dispute.  This is only sometimes true.  Quite often, the truth is mostly or wholly on one side.  We are not in a political process, which results in compromise.  We are rather in a truth-seeking process, in which compromise is not even a consideration.

        4.  The proposals do not take into account the timing issues involved in the exercise of law.  To follow the Wolf-Tennant suggestions would be tantamount to giving Harry his way without possibility of effective legal redress.  Law would no longer be an effective recourse.

        5.  The proposals seem to be unaware of the years upon years in which the Brotherhood, then the Fellowship, tried to formulate a mission statement that would be broadly acceptable.  In view of this experience in failure ­ repeated experiences in failure ­ the proposals are much too optimistic and idealistic.

There are still other reasons I cannot support the Wolf-Tennant proposals, but the above will give you a flavor of my views.  I believe the Trustees should proceed on the course they have marked out.  And I believe they have done this dispassionately.  We all love Harry.  Harry is a very lovable guy.  But we cannot and should not countenance what he is doing and attempting to do.

Warmest regards,