Friday, November 03, 2006

What if a letter to God is postage due?

This article proved to be quite interesting to me. To quote directly:


Some of the letters are comical (a man asking God to let him win the lottery, twice), others are heartbreaking (a distraught teen asking forgiveness for an abortion, an unwed mother pleading with God to make the baby's father marry her).

The letters — about 300 in all, sent to a New Jersey minister — ended up dumped in the ocean, most of them unopened.
The minister died two years ago at 79. How the letters, some dating to 1973, wound up bobbing in the surf is a mystery.

The letters were found by a New Jersey insurance adjuster named Bill Lacovara. He and his son Rocky were fishing and they came across these letters that were in a plastic shopping bag.

Lacovara searched to find people who knew this mysterious pastor (Reverend Grady from the Mount Calvary Baptist Church) as thoroughly as possible, but none were to be found.

Here are more detailed descriptions from the article:

"I'm still praying to hit the lottery twice: first the $50,000," one man wrote. "Than after some changes have taken place let me hit the millionaire."

Another asked God to make a certain someone "leave me alone and stay off my back," while still another asks God to calm a woman who "call the Internal Revenue on me."

One woman complained that her husband always talks about sex, and another writer anonymously dropped a dime to God on someone cheating on his wife, complete with dates, times and locations.

But those, Lacovara soon found, were the exception.

Many more were written by anguished spouses, children or widows, pouring out their hearts to God, asking for help with relatives who were using drugs, gambling or cheating on them.

One man wrote from prison, saying he was innocent and wanted to be back home with his family.

A woman wrote that her boyfriend was now closing the door to her daughter's bedroom each night when it used to stay open, and wondered why.

A teenager poured out her heart on yellow-lined paper in the curlicue pencil handwriting of a schoolgirl, begging God to forgive her and asking for a second chance. "Lord, I know that I have had an abortion and I killed one of your angels," she wrote. "There is not a day that goes by that I don't think about the mistake I made."

One unwed mother wrote that her baby was due in four weeks, and asked God to make the father fall in love with her and marry her so the child would have a father.

Lacovara said he is sad that most of the writers never had their letters read. But he hopes to change that soon: He is putting the collection up for sale on eBay.

I'm not sure what to think about him selling the letters on eBay. I think that cheapens the intent of these people (yes, even the one guy praying for the lottery win).

If I found those letters, I'd take them to my pastors and see if we could talk to a publishing house for a book deal. Kind of like the "Post Secret" thing, or those old "Kids' Letters to God" but less cheesy.

Here's a couple questions to think about over the weekend:

1. If you found those letters, what would YOU do? (This is not multiple choice, but rather, short answer...)

2. If you would write a letter to God (and it could be whatever religious sect you are partial to...Jewish, Christian, Hindu, Buddhist, Muslim, or any others I didn't name), what would you say?

Here's what I would write:
Yeah...I know it sounds hokey, but that's what I would say.

I am really tempted to tag a few blogfriends of mine, but I'm going to hold back. I just hope I hear from some of you...and I'll even post your responses if you tell me it's OK.

Hope to hear from you!

POSTSCRIPT: According to this article, the Reverend's daughter was found. There was a lot of controversy about Mr. Lacovara's plans to sell them on E-Bay, so he will give them to Vanessa Cooper (Rev. Grady Cooper's daughter).