‘We understand how some thought we were abandoning our longstanding support of faith-based organizations…’
(Joshua Paladino, Liberty Headlines) Tim Wildmon, president of the American Family Association, sent a letter to Dan Cathy, chairman and CEO of Chick-fil-A, that requested clarification regarding the company’s charitable giving strategy.
“In my personal letter to Mr. Cathy, I asked him two questions: (1) Will Chick-fil-A publicly state that it does not believe the Salvation Army and [Fellowship of Christian Athletes] are hate groups because of the ministries’ beliefs about sexuality, marriage, and family? (2) Will you publicly state that Chick-fil-A will not hesitate to fund these two ministries again, should the opportunity arise in the future,” Wildmon asked in the letter.
Cathy responded tepidly, though he reaffirmed Chick-fil-A’s commitment to its Christian Corporate Purpose statement: “To glorify God by being a faithful steward of all that is entrusted to us and to have a positive influence on all who come into contact with Chick-fil-A.”
Cathy avoided direct responses to both of Wildmon’s questions while conveying a positive attitude toward the Salvation Army and the Fellowship of Christian Athletes.
“We inadvertently discredited several outstanding organizations that have effectively served communities for years,” Cathy wrote, as he described Chick-fil-A’s new giving strategy.
“These changes were made to better focus on hunger, homelessness and education,” he said. “We understand how some thought we were abandoning our longstanding support of faith-based organizations.”
After receiving Cathy’s response, Wildmon said that his words “will mean a lot to evangelicals,” though Wildmon said he still has concerns about the company’s charitable giving to organizations like the Covenant House.
“While it is admirable to help hurting youth in desperate circumstances—including those who are LGBTQ—Covenant House also openly promotes homosexuality as normal, natural, and healthy,” Wildmon said, affording to the AFA.
AFA said it will keep watching Chick-fil-A’s corporate giving to ensure that it aligns with Christian values and the company’s Corporate Purpose statement.
“Most of the Christians I know love Chick-fil-A and want to trust the company to uphold scriptural principles. We have all been huge fans of Chick-fil-A, and want that to continue,” Wildmon said, Todd Starnes reported.