The Mary T. and
Frank L. Hoffman
Letters and Responses
Letter from Monique about Our Christian-Animal Rights Philosophy - 28 Jun 2005
Dear Mary and Frank Hoffman,
My name is Monique and I am currently completing my last year of high school.
I live in Australia and have been educated under a Christian schooling system for over 12 years now.
Through accessing www.all-creatures.org , I have read a bit about your philosophies in relation to vegetarianism/veganism and the value of animals. I find the information extremely interesting as it differs to much of the Christian philosophy I have been raised with.
For the subject "Society and Culture", I have to complete a Personal Interest Project which amounts to 30% of the overall mark. The topic I have chosen relates to how different persons and belief systems value non-human animals, and what beliefs influence people's ideologies in relation to the consumption and treatment of animals.
This topic is extremely important to me as a vegan, and I and feel that including your perspective will be a valuable asset to the project. I would sincerely appreciate it if one of both of you could take the time to reply to this email and answer the following questions. Thank you very much for your time.
See Monique's questions and our responses below.
I hope to get a reply from you soon, but if not I'd just like to say that I really admire you both and appreciate the information available on your website,
Reply from Frank and Mary Hoffman
Thank you very much for your letter and comments.
We also wish you the best on your project.
The major reason we started this ministry was because so many Christians were seeking a more compassionate way of life than their churches were teaching.
See our other responses below. We hope they help.
In the Love of the Lord,
Frank and Mary
1. What does your vegan lifestyle involve?
A vegan lifestyle is a way of living as compassionately as one possible can. Because all animals products involve horrible pain and suffering, we don't eat, wear, or use any such products. Furthermore, since farming animals is very inefficient and causes a lot of pollution, our vegan lifestyle also help to feed the poor and preserve the environment.
2. Why do you choose this lifestyle?
We chose our lifestyle because of our love for God and the whole of his creation. We just couldn't understand how many people could say that they loved God and yet caused so much pain suffering and destruction to His creation. We believe we were called to be peacemaking children of God (Matthew 5:9) for whom the whole of creation anxiously awaits to free it from the corruption to which it has been subjected (Romans 8:18-25).
3. HOW DOES YOUR RELIGION INFLUENCE THIS CHOICE OF LIFESTYLE AND CONSUMPTION?
It's not so much religion as it is faith that influences our lifestyle. We know that there was no death in Eden before the Fall, and that there is no death in heaven (Revelation 21:4). Jesus teaches us to pray for God's heavenly will to be done on earth as it is in heaven (Matthew 6:10); so part of this must involve causing as little death as possible. This is part of being a peacemaker and working to prevent wars, capital punishment, the abortion of unwanted children, and the killing of animals for human consumption and other uses. It is also a way of seeking to become perfect as our heavenly Father is perfect (Matthew 5:48)
4. What is the Christian philosophy in relation to the treatment and consumption of animals, (are they traditionally and contemporarily valued by Christians and in Christian texts)?
Part of this question has already been answered. The origins of this philosophy date back to the beginnings of Christianity. Most of the first Jewish-Christians were vegetarians. Today, the ungodly way of treating animals on factory farms has also made this a contemporary issue, too.
5. Do you think your choice to live vegan lifestyles impacts the wider community (e.g. environment, poverty) if so how?
Most of this question, we also answered above. The lower we eat on the food chain, the less damage we do to our environment. It takes more land to produce the same caloric value with animal foods than it does with producing plant foods. This frees up more land to produce food for the hungry of the world, and in turn helps to prevent poverty.
We welcome your comments
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