Letters: Anne Rice And Christianity; Mitch Miller

Listeners react to our interview with best-selling author Anne Rice, who made headlines recently when she renounced Christianity; and to the death of record producer Mitch Miller. Michele Norris and Melissa Block read from listeners' e-mails.

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MELISSA BLOCK, host:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Melissa Block.

MICHELE NORRIS, host:

And I'm Michele Norris.

It's time now for your letters. Best-selling author Anne Rice made headlines recently when she renounced Christianity. In my conversation with Rice yesterday, she said she decided to leave the Catholic Church because of its stance on social issues, particularly its aggressive fight against gay marriage.

BLOCK: John Fetcho of Los Osos, California, writes that Rice is not alone in her questioning. He says this: While I am not a Catholic, I am a Christian, and it pains me to see some of the pronouncements and actions taken by many of the mainstream churches.

Mr. Fetcho continues with a bit of advice. He writes: There are many denominations that ordain gay and lesbian ministers that she might feel comfortable associating with. But above all, keep up your faith.

NORRIS: Several listeners did not think Rice's decision was worth our airtime. John Shaw of Kansas City, Missouri, writes: News flash. I've finally decided I no longer believe there is life on other planets, and oh yeah, I don't like Brussels sprouts. Can I get an NPR exclusive interview, too?

(Soundbite of music)

Unidentified People: (Singing) (Unintelligible).

BLOCK: Mitch Miller died at age 99 this past weekend. The long-time producer hosted the wildly popular television show "Sing Along with Mitch" in the early 1960s, and he recorded many chart-topping albums.

NORRIS: Our remembrance of Miller yesterday prompted Hilary Stai of Lewis Center, Ohio, to write: I grew up with Mitch, particularly the "Sing-A-Long with Mitch" Christmas album. The album came with about a dozen lyric sheets and its how my sister and I learned multiple verses of all of the Christmas standards.

She continues: It wouldn't be Christmas without singing along with Mitch. Thank you for the lovely trip down memory lane.

BLOCK: And thank you, all of you, for writing. Please keep the letters coming. Go to npr.org, and click on contact us at the bottom of the page.

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