Monday, November 29, 2004

Passport Rule Conflicts with ATI Policy
The Advanced Training Institute is objecting to new rules which ban smiling in visa and passport photos. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services explains that a subject's expression should be non-smiling with both eyes open, and mouth closed. U.S. State Department indicates that a smile with closed jaw is "allowed but is not preferred."

ATI students are not sure how to cope with this directive. "Dozens of ATI students travel on ministry trips to foreign countries," said an ATI spokesman. "We train them to go abroad with a ministry smile, and these new regulations impede an important aspect of our work."

Bill Gothard himself, known for his teaching on submitting to authorities, spoke out against the new rule. "Government leaders all over the world tell me the thing that sets ATI young people apart is their bright countenances. If they cannot smile in their passport pictures, how will they minister to customs officials?"

ATI plans to file a godly, seven-step appeal with the U.S. government which will cite the spiritual and health benefits of smiling.

If this effort fails, however, ATI is prepared to engage in civil disobedience. "We are commanded to let our light so shine before men," said the ATI spokesman, "and we must obey God rather than man. These rules violate the separation of church and state."

ATI is organizing peaceable demonstrations for students to gather and sing "The Smile Song."

18 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Speaking of visas, I've always wondered how Canadians come to work for the Institute. US immigration laws are very strict, and even Canadians can't simply come over and work for an establishment like the Institute without going through a fairly complex work visa application process. Do they work for free and just keep driving back over the border now and then so they don't overstay?

1:53 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wonder how many of them are there illegally. When working at RCI my room was Canadian and there illegally...and the Institute knew it. Mr. G personally knew. I never thought about that...but can we get them busted for that??

~Lata

11:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mr. Gothard may be here illegally; I've always thought he was from another planet.

4:56 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It was worth reading this article just to get to the ending sentence. Brilliant! -- Mairzy

11:14 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

ATI never engages in or supports civil disobedience.
ATIpa

11:23 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ever wanted to know how they keep those red carpets spic and span and the gold hardware all sparky clean...? Simple, hundreds of illegal mexican immigrants that live in the basements of the training centers. You'd think Wal-Mart would have been enough of a lesson

3:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"I wonder how many of them are there illegally. When working at RCI my room was Canadian and there illegally...and the Institute knew it."

Hahahah, I was there for about a month, I remember those two... Funny, because that time that the cops pulled on the the vans over that the "illegal" Canadian was in, and we kept joking that the cop was going to demand a visa.

4:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

sheesh...you make it sound like the muslims and their driver's license. 3 intl trips later...and never heard about the smile policy.

5:28 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Most ATII students are in the "system" because their parents have chosen to enter. That may or may not be good, depending on the Leading of our Wonderful Lord. It must be remembered that in any orgainization, the man who heads up the organization is a man, even though he be a man seeking our God and lead by the Spirit, he remainds a man suceptible to failure. Somewhere along the line of life each young person must come to the personal commitment, not to follow a man but to follow the Lord. Paul suggested the believers of His day follow him even as he followed the Lord Himself. I would like to suggest that comes from a hearty knowledge of the Word given as the breath of God Himself.

When commitment to the truth of the Bible as God's very breath takes residence in the heart of a person, young or old, God Himself becomes the authority. Then there can be gracious disagreement and a willingness to stand alone, if necessary. If a commitment to the Word of God has not taken shape in your life yet, may I suggest you read the Bible from the beginning to the end and allow it to tell you of its truthfulness and faithfulness as sourced in our God? The next most significant thing to learn is who God is and that also is learned by allowing the Bible to speak for itself. God so loves us He gave His Son to be our substitute for death and separation from God. He wants us to know Him.

If you are a young person reacting or rebelling against ATI and/or IBLP, please turn your eyes off the man and the system and look to God, His Word and His Son. You will never believe how rich life can be. Dr. Gothard, IBLP, ATI or any other man, woman or organization is not worth wasting time making it your hopes and purpose for living. You will only be dismayed with any organization or person. All have failures. Trust Jesus Christ - Look to HIM (Hebrews 12:1-3). Walk by faith in HIM. He is worthy of your trust and HE HAS SPOKEN and what HE has said suppasses what anyone else has or will say.

Perhaps it is obvious to you by now that I am not the person signed on this but am using his computer. It is sufficient to say as to my identity, I care about you as a student and all who NEED to begin to WALK BY FAITH in our Great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ.

11:15 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

AHHHH! The smile song! I can't remember how long it's been since I've thought of it! I can still remember traveling along in the buses at Knoxville trying to figure out how to sing it in rounds. (that was back when I actually attended the afternoon sessions...)

2:11 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey! Two posts up!
Blah blah blah. And one more blah for good measure.

5:04 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"quotes" how they keep those red carpets spic and span and the gold hardware all sparky clean...? hundreds of illegal mexican immigrants "end quotes" .... nah... i am well aware of how they keep them clean AND that includes the brass in the elevators, mirrors, and glass everywhere ... we only WISH that it had been Mexican immigrants doing it instead!

9:49 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That brass..(and I mean every bit in the hotel)..gets done EVERY day! Carpets too. I don't think they liked me very much seeing as I was ALWAYS given the job of vacuuming every step on the 7 floor staircase.

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