May 29, 1991

Dear Mr. Campbell,

I carefully read your letter of endorsement and commitment to the Reform Party and its leader Preston Manning.  Since you call yourself “A non-partisan voice for Christ and His Church in Canadian public life,” I assumed that in light of this profound statement you had pondered your decision to join the Reform Party carefully and prayerfully.  Upon reading your letter, however, I reached the opposite conclusion.

Your letter is indicative of a behaviour pattern which lacks the benefit of research before advising others to follow.  It is more important, Mr. Campbell, to do what is right than to act in haste on what seems expedient at first glance.  There are no shortcuts on the road of obedience.  In order to run the race and to win the crown, all checkpoints must be visited.

According to your own words: “The common cause uniting the freedom loving supporters of the Reform Party is the unresponsiveness of the three old Federal partied to the Canadian voters.”  I submit to you, sir, that they have responded very well to the demands of the Canadian voters, and especially a party like the NDP has catered to the demands of their loyal supporters.  Demands which are based primarily on greed and self service.  The Reform Party makes it abundantly clear that they will do exactly the same thing; do as the people want; blindly following, never leading.  Yet you say: “the Reform Party offers the best hope for providing a political climate within which all such objectives of justice and liberty may be realized.”  Such an unsubstantiated  statement must be challenged.  I would hold my peace if it were not for the fact that you claim to be a voice for Christ.  Your statement of support for the Reform Party relegates political principles based on Scriptural truth to the dustbin of irrelevance.

The Reform Party has in its new 1991 edition of “Principles and Policies” deleted the previous reference found in policy statements to “the supremacy of God and the rule of law.”  Instead its official position id that “your conscience comes second to the wishes of your constituents.”  The personal preference of Preston Manning on moral issues has no impact on a party whose conscience is rooted in the will of the majority.

There is therefore no guarantee whatsoever that the Reform Party will champion the cause of the unborn, a cause to which you are so laudably committed.  Yet you do not hesitate to recommend the Reform Party of Canada and in so doing you turn your back to the Christian Heritage Party of whom you know that they closely reflect your deep held convictions.

Your letter therefore indicates an abandonment of your principled position, substituted by a misplaced desire to attain power obtained through a party which places a reckless trust in the people, no matter where they lead us.

Your assumption is therefore misplaced when you state tat you speak words of wisdom by advocating: “coalescing behind the leadership which provides the best hope for realizing the objectives of our common cause and the implementation of our particular Party policies.”  I submit to you, Mr. Campbell, that the Christian faith tells a different story when it says:

Hope in the Lord, O Nation                                                                                                                                                 For with Him there is grace

And plenty of salvation

For those who seek His face

The CHP, at its National Board Meeting on May 17 and 18, concluded that it is impossible for a Party of Principles to work mutually with the Reform Party.  The board concluded that the Reform Party, considering its lack of adherence to defined principles, has not progressed, but regressed instead.  Its policies are like painted sticks stuck into the ground; they strike no roots, bear no fruit, but ere long perish.  The policies of the CHP will endure because they find their reference point in God’s word.  That word calls us to place obedience before pragmatism and faithfulness before success.  In the end, God willing, we will also see fruit upon our labour, in a manner and to an extent unknown.  This, Mr. Campbell, is the voice that must be raised in Canadian public life.

E. Vanwoudenberg

CHP National Leader.