Last week I wrote about unfair attacks on Sen. Barack Obama's faith. And though it hasn't been in the headlines as recently, Sen. Hillary Clinton has also faced a steady stream of criticism of her faith. Christianity Today summarizes in sad detail and rightly debunks these "baseless blows to the former first lady" in a [...]
It's time to be in the business of building social movements, not just winning elections.
I don't endorse political candidates, but I will defend them when it becomes necessary. On this, I agree with my friend, Richard Land, the conservative Southern Baptist leader who is often identified with the Religious Right. Richard and I agree that faith has a place in politics and, when we agree on fundamental moral questions, have worked together. Richard says, "I have [...]
I haven't yet read the whole study released yesterday by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life titled, "U.S. Religious Landscape Survey," just some of today's news reports. But what I have read confirms what I see on the road every week. U.S. citizens are on the move religiously. Many people are not staying in the churches of their upbringings. "This is not your parents' church," many now could say as they [...]
When Kevin Rudd was elected prime minister of Australia, I wrote that he was a committed Catholic who was thinking about how to apply Catholic social teaching to public policy. This week, on
Tuesday night, I spoke at the historic Park Street Church in Boston, where the second Great Awakening evangelist Charles Finney preached in 1831, calling people to faith in Jesus Christ and then to enlist in the anti-slavery campaign. William Lloyd Garrison delivered his first abolitionist speech here when he was only 23 years old. I was facing a packed church on a Tuesday night, full of 600 20-something evangelicals who want to be a generation of new abolitionists - focusing on the most [...]
The most considerable evidence that we're entering a "post-Religious Right America" is the shifting political agenda and theological emphasis of a new generation of 20-something evangelicals. I meet them all the time on the road; they are coming out of the woodwork for The Great Awakening book events in mass numbers.
I travel with one of these young evangelicals, a missionary kid who grew up in the former Soviet Union and who recently graduated from Bethel University in St. Paul, [...]
Sunday morning a week ago I preached at the beautiful Grace Cathedral in San Francisco, California. Their service blends the best of the Anglo/Catholic Episcopal tradition with the creative San Francisco one-this time beginning the recessional with dragons celebrating the Chinese New Year. Offering a sermon on hope with the light of a dozen stained glass windows dancing in the huge Gothic Cathedral [...]
Late last week, The Great Awakening book tour brought me to Seattle, Washington. On the media circuit we had a day packed with four back-to-back radio interviews. Almost more interesting than the interviews themselves was the diversity of listening audiences represented by each station.
Interviews ranged from a progressive Seattle rock station (the first to break the news of Kurt [...]
This afternoon's top news is Mitt Romney's announcement that he is ending his run for the presidency. Romney's candidacy raised the issue of whether a Mormon could be elected president. The media stories were about evangelicals who didn't like him because they thought Mormonism was an un-Christian sect.
I was born and raised in Michigan. My governor in the late 1960s was George Romney, [...]
A common question from over the last few years has been for proof that the movement I describe has a real and measurable constituency. "Give us a sign," they say. The headline from the latest Barna Group report is another such sign: Born Again Voters No Longer Favor Republican Candidates. (Barna [...]
This post is drawn from a message I sent to our staff at Sojourners, thanking them for their hard work and support as I begin the exhausting pace of The Great Awakening book tour. I'd like to share it with you as well. I really need your prayers, and wanted to share with you the prayer that I will be saying everyday-likely again and again! It is from Charles de Foucauld. He was a French aristocrat who joined the French army in Algeria, then left it, lived there identifying with the [...]
Evangelicals are leaving the Religious Right in droves.
Rules of Engagement
Seven principles for Christian political involvement in the world.
1. God hates injustice.
2. The kingdom of God is a new order.
I'm on a plane to Portland, Oregon, to begin the West Coast swing of The Great Awakening book tour that will also take us to Seattle, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and San Diego-all back to back. The events are quite diverse and very interesting, from universities, churches, various civic forums, [...]
John Edwards ended his campaign this afternoon at the same place he started it and with the same theme-ending poverty as a moral imperative. In the Ninth Ward of New Orleans, Edwards said that he was stepping aside in this presidential campaign, but that he would now continue his life-long work for economic justice. Before announcing his decision, he called both Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton to [...]