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The recent denial of an athletic award to a Mormon high school student because he doesn't qualify as a Christian under the criteria established by the evangelical fundamentalists has thrust an ugly philosophy and practice before millions of readers.

Mormonism, Jehovah's Witnesses and other religions have been branded as cults and non-Christians primarily because they don't believe in the evangelical Trinity.The definition of a Christian that has been established by its use since shortly after Christ's time has been that of a person who accepts Christ as the Messiah and who valiantly tries to live according to his teachings. There is no other criteria. But now, a group of mainline Protestants are in effect saying, "You no longer qualify and you cannot be a part of our Christian club unless you believe in our concept of the Godhead."

That concept evolved because of turmoil that came into Christ's church after the expiration of the apostles. Confusion reigned for several hundred years, and in this setting, a series of councils was called to attempt a restoration of the Lord's word.

The council was made up of Greek philosophers, scholars, bishops of the church, governmental representatives and theologians. One of their main objects was to decide what the nature of the Godhead was. In spite of scriptural delineation, at the beginning of the councils the participants' understanding of the interrelationship of God the father, his son Jesus Christ and the Holy Ghost was incomprehensible and it was still incomprehensible when they had completed their councils and had written up their "findings."

As vague as this contrived relationship is and as foreign to scripture and common sense as it may be, those who would be called Christians are asked to profess a belief in it. There is no other way to be their brand of Christian.

I am sorry that a young man was denied an honor that had been earned. I am sorry that it was withheld in a most unchristian-like manner. If the young man accepts the bitterness of the rejection without rancor and resists the desire to retaliate, I would judge him to be a real Christian - the kind of Christian that deserves the honor of carrying the Lord's name

Guy Hatch

Spanish Fork