Is the Lottery Harmless or Evil?

With lottery ticket sales set to begin on Thursday, there are conflicting views among the Christian community on the subject.

Some ministers say gambling is a sin and say it's along the same line as taking prayer out of schools. Others say they don't believe playing the lottery itself is a sin, but it can lead to one, such as a gambling addiction.

The Roman Catholic Church's Diocese of Raleigh, which includes Eastern Carolina, is officially against the North Carolina Lottery over of fears of the financial burden it may put on the state's poor. But Father Justin Kerber of St. Peter's Catholic Church in Greenville says that doesn't mean the lottery is evil. In fact, Father Kerber says, "I have a brother in New Jersey who hit the lottery in 1998 for $8,500,000, so, and it hasn't affected him in a bad way. He's been able to help many people."

No matter their stance, most Christian leaders can agree, they are concerned that lottery money will eventually be used for something other than education. You can click on the following link for a detailed look at how the lottery proceeds will be divided.