Dan Cathy, Chick-fil-A chairman and CEO, responded to my personal letter and the more than 116,000 people who signed AFA's petition asking the company for clarification after Chick-fil-A stunned much of the evangelical community by changing its corporate giving.
In November, Chick-fil-A announced that it would not be donating money to the Salvation Army and Fellowship of Christian Athletes. Homosexual activist organizations had hammered away at the two Christian non-profit groups because their doctrinal statements supported a biblical view of human sexuality and marriage. In turn, Chick-fil-A was accused of supporting "hate" because of the corporate giving.
In my personal letter to Mr. Cathy, I asked him two questions: (1) Will Chick-fil-A publicly state that it does not believe the Salvation Army and FCA are hate groups because of the ministries' beliefs about sexuality, marriage, and family? (2) Will you publicly state that Chick-fil-A will not hesitate to fund these two ministries again, should the opportunity arise in the future?
Mr. Cathy's written response included this statement: "We inadvertently discredited several outstanding organizations that have effectively served communities for years."
This response was a welcomed clarification. It appears that Mr. Cathy understands how many evangelicals perceived the company's decision, as he stated that these Christian groups were "inadvertently discredited." The fact that Dan Cathy called these two Christian groups "outstanding organizations" will mean a lot to evangelicals.
However, I also mentioned in my initial letter that Chick-fil-A stated that the company would support Covenant House, a ministry to homeless youth, including homosexual young people. While it is admirable to help hurting youth in desperate circumstances –– including those who are LGBTQ –– Covenant House also openly promotes homosexuality as normal, natural, and healthy. This was evident in Covenant House's participation in the NYC gay pride parade and a number of other efforts that make it clear the ministry does not hold to a biblical view of human sexuality.
As a result, AFA will continue to monitor Chick-fil-A's corporate giving, at least for the foreseeable future. We believe our supporters rely on us to do so.
Most of the Christians I know love Chick-fil-A and want to trust the company to uphold scriptural principles. We have all been huge fans of Chick-fil-A, and want that to continue.