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Interbane

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Church

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Recently, the landlady of the property where we have our gym died. Our lease was until 2011, and the landlady honored that. She willed all her property to the church, and they proceeded to find a way to sell the property with minimal loss. They hired lawyers who looked into the history of our lease and managed to find some loopholes that stated our neglect of the lease, which was not intentional on our part. Some of the veterans here know my name, and I come back from time to time to ask questions and advice. This time, I'd ask something about the law, and morality. Does the American legal system attempt to portray morality? Aside from taxes, it seems so. If there are laws in place that are less than moral, how does that reflect upon a church that pursues the legally correct course rather than the morally correct course? Regardless of your beliefs, the christian church should value morality over legality... Unless they were able to gain 1.7 million dollars from the sale of the property. (yep)I'm very angry... nothing religious is backing these actions by the church, only the greed of man.
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Frank 013
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Church

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You seemed to have forgotten the common justification of its good for the church so it's ok. As far as helping with the legal side of things I do not have any advice, except possibly approaching the church and appealing to their sense of morality. If that doesn't work try the media, churches can seldom afford to look like the bad guys in today's age. Later Life's journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a wellpreserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, totally worn out,shouting..."Holy Crap...what a ride!"
xentryk

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I think it's safe to say that the church probably wouldn't identify their actions as being immoral.I am willing to bet that they believe that following the law is what is moral.Religion and law seem to go hand in hand these days. "This paperback is very interesting, but I find it will never replace a hardcover book - it makes a very poor doorstop."-Alfred Hitchcock
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riverc0il
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Re: Church

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Legal systems are virtually by definition partially all about morality. Especially in regards to victimless crimes. However, property laws would seem to favor those in power and those with money so morality can be good or bad, and having a legal system based partially in morality doesn't necessarily mean those that wrote the laws had the best morals (nor is it easy to judge such from an unbiased position, thus every legal system likely has some flaws).Sorry to hear that you are being bullied around by the church. Money and land are very important to the church and it wouldn't be the first time that the church bullied people around to get their wall. Likely if they were able to do this through the legal system and get their way, they likely believe they are in the right by default. But the legal system doesn't always do what is "right," it just interprets the laws. Sometimes justly and sometimes not. Justice has many different meanings and when justice is "served" it is often not served at all.
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Frank 013
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Re: Church

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The more I read about this situation the more I think that the media might be your only realistic choice. Assuming that one of your group was willing to play the victim, you could get an interview and talk about the greed of the church and how they are willing to go against the wishes of the deceased to appropriate this property. It may not work, but your options seem limited. Later Life's journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a wellpreserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, totally worn out,shouting..."Holy Crap...what a ride!"
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Chris OConnor

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Re: Church

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I think you should approach the media too. No church wants such negative publicity. I'd do this in a heartbeat. Compile your records and evidence and then make a list of all local media. Contact each and every media source and don't give up. You have a good chance of shaming this church into being "Christian."
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Re: Church

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Interbane: They hired lawyers who looked into the history of our lease and managed to find some loopholes that stated our neglect of the lease, which was not intentional on our part. Could you give any specifics on the neglect that was cited as the justification for the nullification of the lease? And how was your lease referenced in the will? If you're still in litigation and can't release that kind of info, I understand. I just don't think any kind of solid advice could be proffered with the information we've received thus far. Really, all you can do, if you don't already have a good lawyer, hire one.Interbane: Regardless of your beliefs, the christian church should value morality over legality...Also, I would hesitate to request a church to act any differently than any other business entity with respect to the law. In fact, I yearn for the day when churches and religions receive no more consideration from the law and act no more differently than the local business next door. If this is no different than how your local pharmacy could and would act, then why do we expect something different from a church? Frank: The more I read about this situation the more I think that the media might be your only realistic choice.I'm not sure how property rights for a church vs. a gym (it was a gym right) will play in the news. Outside of who is actually in the right, and who is being screwed, I just don't necessarily see it playing well. How many people have joined a gym and been screwed by membership fees etc.? Do you really see the general public raising an outcry against a church that might be screwing a gym? Sure if they were selling the property out from under an elderly person who would then be homeless, but public sympathy for a gym? I just don't see people looking deeply into the issue and considering that this is someone's business that is being closed down, and people will be losing jobs, etc. Assuming that the church is wrong, the media, in trying to paint a non-biased picture, will probably lean to the sympathy of the church, and likely won't target the church as acting inappropriately.After I typed all that I just saw that this is in the Religion, Philosophy & the Arts section. Is this just a theoretical question on whether churches should act morally rather than legally within the U.S.?
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Frank 013
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Re: Church

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Quote:IrishrosemAssuming that the church is wrong, the media, in trying to paint a non-biased picture, will probably lean to the sympathy of the church, and likely won't target the church as acting inappropriately.You may be correct, but if I am reading this situation correctly there seems to be very little in the way of choices.It is possible for the media to take the side of the church but I think if this were handled correctly by calling out the fact that the church is acting against the wishes of the deceased, asking where the compassion and forgiveness of the church went, and publicly appealing to the morality of this church might tip the scales in favor of the gym.Gyms don't claim any moral high ground, the church definitely does.And besides even if it totally backfires the gym has nothing to loose. Later Life's journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a wellpreserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, totally worn out,shouting..."Holy Crap...what a ride!"
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Re: Church

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Frank: It is possible for the media to take the side of the church but I think if this were handled correctly by calling out the fact that the church is acting against the wishes of the deceased, asking where the compassion and forgiveness of the church went, and publicly appealing to the morality of this church might tip the scales in favor of the gym.But the whole point of going to the media is to raise a public outcry against an injustice being waged against a victim. Unless the media really paints a picture in favor of the gym and illustrates that the church is clearly in the wrong (if they actually are in the wrong, we don't really know any of the specifics of this case), there won't be any public outcry. I don't think it very likely that a mainstream media outlet would chastise a church in that way, particularly in favor of a gym. Which means the media spot would be useless.Frank: Gyms don't claim any moral high ground, the church definitely does.This does not necessarily translate into legal issues for property rights though. I think the gym's best bet is to hire a lawyer. If there really is gray area here, or if the church is in the wrong, then a likely result would be the best lawyer wins.Frank: And besides even if it totally backfires the gym has nothing to loose.I'm not saying they shouldn't do it, I'm just saying they shouldn't be surprised if media outlets aren't interested in the story. Unless they are really willing to paint the church as the bad guy in this case (assuming the church actually is in the wrong), I think most producers would be uninterested in this story
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Frank 013
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Re: Church

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I think we are saying the same thing but are still not quite agreeing I am not saying that they have much chance of this working, you are correct that (assuming that they consider this newsworthy at all) the media will twist the meaning into whatever slant they wish, and it could favor the church. I also agree that the legal matter is not subject to the morality of the issue. But if the gym members could manage to play on the claim of the church that they are beyond such petty human failings and that they represent morality at its source, the gym could get the attention they need. Weather they are legally in the right or not this could still work. But like you said it is entirely up to the media and how they decide to paint the picture. Later Life's journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a wellpreserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, totally worn out,shouting..."Holy Crap...what a ride!"Edited by: Frank 013 at: 6/18/07 1:06 pm
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