Samaritan’s Purse

Samaritan’s Purse is ostensibly a charity performing good deeds for disadvantaged children. What is not always so obvious is that this is an unsavoury Evangelical Christian organisation that seems more intent on spreading its own brand of Christianity than on genuinely helping others.

The Vicar of Putney describes their evangelical views as “a particularly toxic version of Christianity” while the Rev Vernon Marshall describes it as “an intolerant and racist form of Christianity”.

Samaritan’s Purse persuade children in local schools to donate shoe boxes containing articles for disadvantaged children. The children are specifically told not to include literature of a political, racial, or religious nature; giving the impression that the boxes are distributed in a non partisan fashion. The truth is that this organisation distribute their own brand of Christian Bible stories alongside the boxes. In this manner, boxes donated in good faith, both by Christians and non-Christians, are hijacked and turned into propaganda for this evangelical organisation.

The South Wales Fire Service and the Co-op have both discovered the truth behind this organisation and consequently severed links with them. The BBC has reported on this organisation, exposing some of their less pleasant views.

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As a result of our efforts, Bishop’s Castle Community College have stopped working with Samaritan’s Purse, but the organisation is active in many other schools. Unfortunately, Shropshire County Council have declined to advise schools not to work with Samaritan’s Purse.

References:

Info on the British Humanist Association website
November 2006 – BHA asks members and supporters to remind parents, schools and other groups of the evangelical nature of Samaritan’s Purse

Co-op cuts Christmas box link with US charity
Bibles and anti-Islamic remarks trigger split with evangelical group
Hugh Muir
Saturday November 29, 2003
Guardian

The evangelicals who like to giftwrap Islamophobia
The world’s largest children’s Christmas project has a toxic agenda
Giles Fraser
Monday November 10, 2003
Guardian

Charity comes clean over appeal
Patrick McCurry
Wednesday July 9, 2003
Guardian

Bible brigade is ready to roll
Ed Helmore in New York
Sunday April 6, 2003
Observer

Bringing aid and the Bible, the man who called Islam wicked
Evangelists Fears that US Christians will inflame situation
Matthew Engel in Washington
Friday April 4, 2003
Guardian

Division of faith
Guardian, Wednesday January 15 2003
Patrick McCurry

Presents imperfect
It sounded like a great idea – British school pupils sending Christmas boxes to children in poorer lands. But Patrick McCurry uncovers aspects of the operation that have shocked head teachers
Wednesday December 18, 2002
Guardian

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