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Ormond Beach Observer Monday, Dec. 2, 2013 4 years ago

LETTER: Volusia County history textbook diminishes Christianity

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One reader believes that the Volusia County School Board's choice to accept the controversial history textbook was flawed.

Dear Editor,

The majority of the Volusia School Board accepted a below-standard history text on Monday, Nov. 18.

The textbook omits many major tenets of Christianity, such as the teachings of Jesus, women’s roles and the misrepresentation of the apostles.

Let us begin with the history text regarding the Sermon on the Mount. “Blessed are the Poor” is missing from the first lesson. Jesus mentioned the poor first. The student readers of the World History text will not know about the “poor” in their history lesson on Christianity. Why?

Second is the major role of women. The Virgin Mary gave birth to Jesus. Mother Mary witnessed the Roman government “officially” torturing, crucifying and killing Jesus on the cross. Mary Magdalene and the other Mary were the first eye witnesses to the resurrection — a central point in Christianity. Early Christian writings describe that women had a major role in the birth, life, death and resurrection of Jesus. The School Board’s accepted history has “officially” omitted the major role of women. Why?

As scholarship is concerned, the text simply omits the teaching of Mark in Egypt and establishing the Coptic Christian traditions in Africa. In Corinthians, Paul wrote about the Greek word, agape, or love in the spiritual sense. In the native Arabic language of Jesus, “kephas or cephas” means “stone.” Peter derives from “petra” in the Latin language. Was Jesus referring to Peter as a building or a human relationship?

My Christian faith refers to the apostles as saints: St. Mark, St. Paul, St. Peter and more. The Volusia County School Board needs to reject below-standard history for any and all grades at all times and all places.

Alan Burton

Ormond Beach

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