The Madison County Journal
January 19, 2000
conversion deserves attention
It is amazing the lengths
big media will go to avoid publishing any story favorable to
the Christian religion. You would think that the conversion of
a major American personality that one writer described as "right
up there with Saul of Tarsus" would be reported in all the
leading newspapers, television programs and news magazines.
Believe it or not, Jane Fonda, the "Hanoi Jane" so
hated by many Vietnam Veterans and other patriotic Americans,
is now a born-again Christian. She has apparently decided that
Bible study is more important than her marriage to Christian-hating
According to an article in the Washington Times, the only major
news outlet to report the story, Fonda was led to her new faith
by her chauffeur, a member of the Providence Missionary Baptist
Church in Atlanta. Fonda is reported to be a regular worshiper
at the mostly black church.
For a person with her history, the sudden discovery that the
first 60 years of her life were a mistake can be very traumatic.
For that reason, it is important that she have time to resolve
these conflicts, learn more about her new faith, and solidify
her beliefs before being pressed to explain herself. After all,
the above-mentioned Saul of Tarsus spent three years in the wilderness
getting to know the new "Paul" before beginning his
Conversions of this type are often real. I have known alcoholics
who instantly abandoned the bottle following their born-again
experience. Others have given up "sinful" lifestyles
to become devoted parents, partners and church workers. It can
While it is rare for someone of Fonda's background to undergo
this experience, it is not unknown. Rock pioneer Little Richard
is now an ordained minister. So are a number of pro football
players and at least one Watergate figure.
I think her recent separation from Ted Turner is a part of Fonda's
efforts to grow and strengthen herself in her new faith. She
is not talking about a divorce. She probably feels his hostility
to her new life and needs time to become confident in her salvation
before attempting to restore her marriage. The sanctity of marriage
is a major part of the Christian religion. At the same time,
the Bible warns that people should not be "unequally yoked
together." If Turner is determined to resist this new force
in Fonda's life, she has no choice but to sever the relationship.
Turner will need to move in her direction for any chance of reconciliation.
The Christian community should close ranks behind their latest
convert. She will need their support, their prayers and their
patience as she develops in her new faith. Numerous faith-based
groups in the Atlanta area are appealing for time and prayers
for Fonda. A member of the Family Research Council, Robert H.
Knight, said that she needs time to grow in the faith before
undergoing trials on His (Jesus) behalf
If her conversion is genuine, and I have no reason to believe
that it is not, Jane Fonda will need a lot of support as she
works to adopt this new reality into her life. She comes with
a long list of questionable actions that will have to be reconciled
with her new faith. The process will be lengthy, with many starts
and stops. However, with the assistance of her new church family,
she can overcome any trials the future holds for her.
Frank Gillispie is founder of The Madison County Journal.
Madison County Journal
January 19, 2000
fire fighters for quick response
We would like to thank the Neese-Sanford Fire Department and
all other area fire departments who responded to our poultry
house fire on Jan. 7, 2000. Because of your quick response we
only lost one poultry house in the fire.
We would also like to thank our family, neighbors and friends
who were so helpful during this difficult time. May God bless
The Timothy Phillips family
The Madison County Journal
January 19, 2000
beat that home cookin'
When you live paycheck
to paycheck you learn to take your meals seriously.
And before you know it, you start missing what was cooking on
your stove all those years while you were at home.
Being a college student, my budget doesn't allow for free spending
on hearty, five-course dinners with all the fixin's you could
My meals have been reduced to late night Papa John's calls, the
value meals at McDonald's, five-minute microwaveable dinners,
suppers in a can, i.e., Chef Boyardee and so forth.
All this kind of makes you want to be back home in your mom's
kitchen where the smells of the night's feast resonated through
the house - when you took for granted that you had a nice home-cooked
Now, 335 Stouffer's frozen dinners later, you finally realize
how good you had it.
I now understand why people who are on the road all the time
crave the chance to sample some cooking from the kitchen, not
the drive-through window.
Coming up, I used to love going out to eat for my meals. At one
time, before fast food came to Madison County and you had to
go to Athens for that sort of thing (and that was only four or
five years ago), it was even like a delicacy of sorts to go to,
say, Taco Bell.
But these days, I believe I've "run for the border"
on one too many occasions and it's getting old. But if you've
barely got enough change to scrape together to afford the Chalupa
dinner, you can't be expecting to have filet mignon or prime
rib steak on your dinner plate each night.
And indulging in the Athens drive-through dinners surely can't
be too good for your health when all those fried dinner plates
start piling up. Soon all those chicken strip and fish dinners
can start weighing you down and make you lose a step or two.
So instead of digging through the apartment, trying in vain to
find a half off coupon for an extra large pizza or trying to
remember what the phone number to Papa John's is, I would every
once in a while like to indulge in some good ole southern delights
when it comes dinner time.
In my opinion, you can go the world over and not find dishes
that can top what is cooked up in kitchens in the South.
What can be better than good ole-fashion southern barbecue? What
could be more mouth-watering than fried chicken, mashed potatoes
and gravy, cole slaw, biscuits, and sweet iced tea? You can have
your clam chowder and crab cakes and stuff of that sort.
I'll be happy to be eating green beans, creamed corn and home-grown
It may not be the food of kings or be served at any ritzy Manhattan
restaurant, but southern-style food is five-star enough for me.
Just writing this makes me miss all those family reunions where
"down home" food is served up in abundance.
However, since I have no chef skills at my disposal, I guess
preparing a country feast at my apartment in the city is out
of the question.
So that means a continuation of corn in a can, Campbell's soup,
frozen pizzas, the number 8 value meals at McDonald's and more
99-cent heart attacks.
Maybe I should take "Cooking 1001" here at UGA. Either
that or find a girl that is handy at frying a chicken.
Ben Munro is a reporter for The Madison County Journal.