CARE - Christian Action, Resource and Education - that is what CARE used to stand for but visiting the CARE website, for some unknown reason, you will no longer find that definition.*
This may not seem important as 'everyone knows' that CARE is Christian - what the letters actually stand for seems to be irrelevant. Many Christians, if asked if they are 'pro-life' or 'against abortion' will say they are and that they are members of CARE. Yet if questioned further on specifics the answers are not as forthcoming as they are quite content to let CARE do the work and they just support them.
On closer inspection in the pro-life area, CARE may have lost their Christian values to worldly ones. They have been challenged on various issues but choose to ignore those who challenge them. Dr Ted Williams in his book 'Lessons in Depravity' has a whole chapter on CARE's sex education in schools programme. He is so concerned about this issue that the chapter is quoted in full on his website. He has also just released a book entitled 'What is going on in Christian Crisis Pregnancy Counselling?'.
United for Life have also challenged CARE on the information that they give out regarding abortion, on their website and in their pregnancy crisis centres. We originally wrote to Joanna Thompson, Head of CARE Centres Network on 1 September 2004. Joanna rang to acknowledge receipt of the letter and say she needed time to prayerfully consider it with other members of the team. Until 21 July 2005 we had received no reply. The original website has been removed but some of the original information has been retained in its original wording on their new website.
On 15 June 2005 United for Life wrote to CARE following a UCB Europe radio programme where Roger Smith, Head of Public Policy of CARE and Joanna Thompson spoke about CARE. This letter was directed to the Chairman, Lyndon Bowring. We had an e-mail from them wishing to discuss the letter over the phone but United for Life replied via e-mail that we would appreciate a written reply so that we could take time to consider all the points made. Again, we have yet to receive a written reply.
On 22 June United for Life wrote to Sue Gunn, Manager of our local Pregnancy Crisis Centre with concerns about the programme that they take into the local schools. We are still waiting for an acknowledgement or a full reply.
On 22 July we finally received a reply from Joanna Thompson that was prompted by us sending a copy of the letter to Lyndon Bowring to Joanna to respond to at the e-mail request of Nola Leach, General Director, CARE.
When a Christian organisation is speaking on behalf of other Christians it is only right that those Christians know what is being said, and why.
* Reading the Cheltenham PCC Newsletter's Schools Programme, CARE now stands for Communicating and Re-educating.