by Jim Lane
DALLAS -- Two entirely different Christian celebrations of Good Friday took place downtown on April 7th. While evangelicals from the "Esther Call" organization lambasted women's rights and denounced America's "moral decay" at the Federal Building, the Dallas Christian Progressive Alliance marched with their symbolic cross and called for positive action to right the contemporary wrongs that Jesus would surely have condemned.
The annual Good Friday march highlights problems and solutions with contrasting signs combining scripture and recent facts. For example, "Suffer the children to come unto me," contrasts with "196,000 Dallas children are living in poverty."
The marchers gather at strategic stopping points and hear brief messages from church and community leaders about how the life of Jesus translates into a call for present-day struggle. Dr. Ruben Habito spoke on "Who do we walk with?" Reverend Joe Clifford spoke from 1st Corinthians on "Are we perishing or are we being saved?" Reverend Eric Folkerth, whose Northaven United Methodist Church hosts the group's meetings, spoke on "From whom much is given, much shall be required" at the last stop in front of City Hall. He said that the richest nation the world had ever known is disgraced by our levels of poverty, official executions, prison populations, and joblessness.
The evangelicals had gathered a far larger group at the Federal Building to protest the original filing of the "Roe v. Wade" case that advanced women's rights. They said that America must pray for redemption for having committed such a crime.