Rev. Richard Wurmbrand, the founder of the Voice of the Martyrs movement, was profound even when completing such a simple task as acceding to a reader’s demand to be removed from the VOM mailing list due to the reader’s concern that Christians are hypocrites. His personal reply to the reader is as gracious as it is instructive on many levels. Read below to find perhaps a new way to respond next time someone complains to you that, e.g., preachers are really like paid actors. (Not only the preachers, agrees Rev. Wurmbrand, but the congregation members are also!) And yet…
Well, read on and discover for yourself.
(And thanks to venerable Wurmbrand historian Merv Knight for sharing this gem from the Wurmbrand Archives!)
I received with delay your letter of April 19. We have taken care that your name should be removed from our mailing list. You are perfectly right in your diffidence towards religious organizations and preachers. There exists very much abuse in this matter. Since religion exists there have always been abusive pastors, priests and rabbis. There have been also other ones who were glad to sacrifice their time, energy and life in the service of their religion. We don’t have to accept all the pastors; neither is it right to discard them all. we should use discernment to discover those who really can be helpful in guiding us on the ways of the Lord….
I am sorry if we have offended you. Though generally I agree with you that the preachers of today are more like actors who promote their careers, it is so not only today, it has always been so. Not only preachers are acting, rank-and-file Christians do it too. Really sincere Christians are a rarity. We strive to be such Christians. You from your side also endeavor and let us pray for each other that we might be found undefiled at God’s judgment.
We usually send our newsletter to people without any obligation from their side. We wish just to inform them about what is happening to Christians in Communist countries in the newsletters. I never tell the story of my sufferings but that of the sufferings of other Christians.
If you wish to know what is happening with your brethren in Communist countries in order to pray intelligently for them, just write to us and we will put you back on our mailing list without the slightest financial obligation for you.
Yours very sincerely,
Rev. Richard Wurmbrand