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Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Oral Roberts and Me

Don McNay's Blog (From
Oral Roberts and Me

“Now there are some preachers on TV with a suit and a tie and a vest
they want you to send your money to the Lord but they give you their address.”

-Hank Williams Jr.

As an eighth grader in a Catholic school, I was given a challenging assignment. If I wrote a business letter that got a response, I got an A on the project.

My Baptist grandma was a huge fan of tele-evangelist Oral Roberts. I was watching with her when Roberts said he always responded to anyone who wrote to him.

I wrote him, got my A and was on his mailing list for nearly 20 years.

Thus started 30 years of people writing to ask me for money.

I found that magazines sell your name to affinity groups. In high school, I subscribed to Rolling Stone Magazine which sold my name to every left wing group in the world.

I was still getting letters from Brother Oral and many pictures of his prayer tower. I even got return envelopes (Brother Oral never forget to send a donation envelope) with pictures of the prayer tower on the inside flap.

Along with that, I got daily mail from left wing groups.

I would get letters from groups saving whales, groups saving baby seals and groups wanting to save me, the whales and the seals away from nuclear reactors.

The letters had the same message as Oral Roberts, “send us money.”

During my senior year in high school, Oral Roberts University made a big effort to recruit me. After five years on the mailing list, they must have felt that I was part of the Oral Roberts family.

I had to be the only long haired Democrat from a Catholic high school in Kentucky they had ever pursued. I still might be.

It was tempting as no other school wanted me. I was a lousy student with little money and schools would reject my application within seconds.

Then I started telling people I was an Eskimo.

It happened by accident. I was taking some kind of national test and there was a voluntary question concerning race. Since it was supposed to be voluntary, I left it blank. That did not suit the proctor, who insisted I check the Caucasian box. I refused and checked the box for Inuit Americans instead.

My mother swears she did not have a secret Eskimo lover, but I was angry about being forced to answer a “voluntary” question so the Inuit designation stayed.

I was flooded with mail from colleges wanting to recruit one of the few Inuit Americans living in Kentucky. Oral Roberts University suddenly had competition.

I wound up at Eastern Kentucky University which did not care about my grades or lack of Inuit heritage.

Although Oral Roberts eventually stopped writing, liberal groups persist in mailing to me.

I got a letter from Senator John Kerry last week. It listed a variety of world problems and then asked for $1000. He did not say if or how he was going to solve the problems but sending him $1000 would somehow make things better.

Brother Oral was smoother. He wrote me nice letters, sent autographed pictures and never sent less than 10 pictures of the prayer tower. I never sent him any money, although I was tempted when he said he was going to die without it. But I rooted for the school’s basketball team and felt like we had a connection.

I suspect that few of Oral Roberts’ followers voted for John Kerry. Part of the reason might be ideology, but I suspect that those who have received mail from Brother Oral are used to high quality letters. They had to be thinking if Kerry sends out garbage when he is asking for $1000, what kind of stuff will he send out as President?

I’m not worried about John Kerry being President. He blew a golden opportunity and Democrats want him to go away. Even if he sends nice letters, people are going to ignore him.

Oral Roberts suggested that prayer might be the answer to some of the world’s problems. Kerry just listed a bunch of problems with no solutions.

Oral Roberts should have run for President instead. At least he had a plan.

Don McNay is President of McNay Settlement Group where we have a plan for people’s money. You can write to him at or read other things he has written at